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Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Notes from the London Council of Canadians potluck on October 21, 2015 (including a letter to Justin re Protecting the Thames)

London Council of Canadians supporters collect water from the Thames River at the Forks.
Twenty two members celebrated the end of the Stephen Harper era at our October 21 potluck meeting held at the Mary Campbell Common Room. The room has a fresh coat of green paint and all chairs are new! It is a beautiful place to meet and we are indebted to Kathy Kaill for reserving it for us to use. Conversation was intense, and about the election of course. Thank you all for bringing such wonderful food to share. 

After we finished eating, the subject for discussion was “Where do we go from here?” Suggestions considered came from, the Council of Canadians, and the Green Party as well as others with proportional representation appearing at the top of most people’s lists. 

Rod Morley volunteered to head up a group which would collect a bottle of Thames River water to deliver to Justin Trudeau on Nov. 7 as part of a “Climate Welcome” gift. 

Rod wrote, and Meg edited, a letter (see below) from our chapter to Prime Minister Trudeau asking him to protect our river from toxic oil spills. Dimitri Lascaris agreed to accept the bottle of water and deliver it and our letter personally when he goes to Ottawa. 

We had a guest, Jim Joyce, formerly from London, who plans to relocate here from Yellowknife and wants to become active with our chapter. In Yellowknife they are opposing fracking. Jim serves as Treasurer for the Yellowknife chapter. 

Upcoming events: 

 1) The next monthly event will be our annual AGM, November 18, with our business meeting at 6:30 pm and our potluck at 7:30. It will be at the Mary Campbell Co-op common room. 

 2) Climate Rally in solidarity with the Paris Climate Conference - Victoria Park - Nov. 29 - 1 - 4pm 

 3) “This Changes Everything” a film by Avi Lewis and Naomi Kline, will have its London debut on Dec. 7 as part of our Cinema Politica program of monthly documentaries. Venue and details will follow. 

Roberta Cory, Chair 
London Chapter, Council of Canadians 


October 26, 2015 

Dear Justin, 

We, the Council of Canadians London Chapter, are writing to you today and sending along a water sample from the former Heritage River known as the Antler/Thames River from Southwestern Ontario. We are providing this gift to you to remind you of your pledge to safeguard Canada’s bodies of water. 

We in Southwestern Ontario are deeply concerned about the possible environmental damage that could occur to Antler/Thames River should the Line 9 pipeline rupture where it crosses this once protected waterway. The Line 9 pipeline is over forty years old and was never purposed to transport the heavy and toxic diluted bitumen that it is now authorized to carry. 

Many of us in Southwestern Ontario do not want to see the repeat of tragedy that occurred near Kalamazoo Michigan just over five years ago when the Line 6B pipeline ruptured, spilling diluted bitumen into the Kalamazoo River. The Line 9 pipeline was built at the same time, and was built with the same materials and safeguards as Line 6B. We wouldn’t want to see the same devastating result here in Canada, and would hold your two new London MPs responsible should they not heed our warnings and work to stop this accident waiting to happen. It isn't a matter of if it happens – it's when.  

The good people of Southwestern Ontario would love to open up a dialogue with a representative of your government to see if we could come up with alternatives to seeing the start of diluted bitumen – dilbit - being transported through this pipeline. We would love to see if we could come up with new ways to power Canada’s prosperity, without destroying the environmental treasure that is Southwestern Ontario. 

Yours in hope,

Council of Canadians London Chapter