Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Emergency task force to stop Devils Lake outlet

Friends of the Earth Canada and Friends of the Earth-U.S. called on the Canadian government to take the United States to the International Court of Justice in The Hague in order to stop the completion of the Devils Lake Emergency Outlet in North Dakota. The completion of the outlet threatens to move polluted waters and invasive species from the United States into a Canadian river that flows into Hudson’s Bay.

(The Sheyenne is a tributary of the Red River, which makes a sinuous path north across Manitoba, where it almost encircles the University of Manitoba's Fort Garry campus.)

“One year ago today, Canada called on the United States to halt construction of the Devils Lake Emergency Outlet in North Dakota, and to conduct an independent inquiry into the impact of the polluted water that will be discharged from Devils Lake into Canada’s Red River,” said Beatrice Olivastri, CEO of the Friends of the Earth Canada. “The United States has ignored this request, and the completion of the Outlet is scheduled to happen in less than 90 days. When the tap is turned on, the effects will be irreversible.”

The proposed diversion will move water from one water basin in the U.S. to another in Canada: Devil’s Lake in North Dakota into the Red River in Manitoba, which flows north into Lake Winnipeg and out to Hudson’s Bay. Little or no research exists on the aquatic impacts such as invasive species and the movement of pollutants such as sulphates, phosphates, mercury, boron and arsenic when the State of North Dakota diverts this water to where it has not flowed before.

“The actions of the United States fly in the face of our 96-year-old Boundary Water Treaty which says thou shalt not pollute,” said Olivastri. “The United States is once again being a bad neighbour.”

“North Dakota is embarked on a risky polluting activity that damages the reputation of the United States and reinforces the perception that U.S. citizens don't care about what people in other countries think,” says Dr. Brent Blackwelder, President, Friends of the Earth-U.S.
Olivastri noted that in 1977, the International Joint Commission (IJC) concluded an independent inquiry into another large water project, the Garrison Diversion, recommending that the project should not proceed unless the two countries agreed that any risk to Canadian waters was eliminated or no longer a concern. “If anything, since that 1977 report, we know the risks from diversions have increased due to invasive species, disease and contaminants,” Ms. Olivastri observed.

The Friends of the Earth organizations in Canada and the United States are insisting that if no independent IJC inquiry is mandated within 60 days, the government of Canada must bring the United States before the International Court of Justice in The Hague in order to stop the Devil’s Lake project.

Friends of the Earth recommends the diplomatic efforts of Canadian politicians in Washington to resolve this conflict.

(To take action on this issue, check out www.foecanada.org.)

7 comments:

masters_lil_slutty_grl said...
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hazee_grl said...

wow that sux!!

Hi again :D ... i was so surprised to read how much the author of the earthsea books hated the movie. I loved it.

masters_lil_slutty_grl said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
hazee_grl said...

Okay i sent off all the appropriate e-mails re. the river. Couldn't take the guilt of inaction ;) Inaction? Is that a real word? :P I'm too lazy to look tonight ... ha

Timothy said...

I appreciate some reasons why Ursula K. LeGuin may not have enjoyed the movie. After all, it wasn't HER Earthsea.

LeGuin's Earthsea has colour and femininity and subversiveness and urgency which are opposed to (and fly in the face of) the status quo and TV.

That said, I still enjoyed the movie. I just think of the Earthsea movie as a seperate thing, a piece of art in its own right, only based on Ursula K. LeGuin's ideas.

hazee_grl said...

Hey, how's it going?

Timothy said...

I'm doing fine, how about yourself?