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PostPosted: May 20th, 2008, 10:21 am 
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Is anyone on top of what's going on here? From the website of Merv Tweed, a Member of Parliament, I read that our canoe routes may lose the legal protection that they currently enjoy. A key proposal would be to exclude "minor waters" from the act. :wink:

Quote:

Tweed leads the way to change waterway act

BRANDON – March 13, 2008- Merv Tweed, Member of Parliament for Brandon-Souris, is leading the review to make critical and long-overdue changes to the Navigable Waters Protection Act.

“This act controls every waterway in Canada, no matter how small, and has caused significant delay in the approval of new infrastructure,” said Tweed.

The Transport, Infrastructure, and Communities Committee, which Tweed chairs, will review the act and will be tabling a report on the findings and recommendations for change in June.

“I believe that refocusing the act will provide a more timely and predictable process for the review and approval of critical infrastructure projects,” said Tweed.

The Navigable Waters Protection Act was written in 1882 to protect the public right of navigation in Canadian waters. Unfortunately, this act does not allow for the ability to exclude anything “constructed or placed on, under, over, through or across” a navigable water, as everything may interfere with navigation to some degree.

Industry and provincial, territorial and municipal governments have, for years, been requesting changes to the NWPA to reflect current needs and respond to the increased volume and variety of uses of Canada’s waterways.

The existing backlog of approvals is impeding economic growth and the timely development and refurbishment of critical transportation infrastructure that, in turn, has the potential of creating a backlog for the implementation of projects under “Building Canada Plan”.

http://www.mervtweed.com/PR%20-%20Water ... 202008.htm
I was made aware through the regular updates from the Lake Ontario Water Keepers: the entry on May 12, 2008
http://www.waterkeeper.ca/content/feature.php


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PostPosted: May 20th, 2008, 2:20 pm 
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the implications are a nightmare!

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PostPosted: May 21st, 2008, 9:22 am 
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Interesting Erhard....I don't know enough to coment but only to add to speculation.

Les Amis de Kipawa have fought against hydro Quebec to save the Kipawa river from being diverted. The foundation of their legal stratgey was to take the government to court over the navigability of the dam.

Last fall the case went to federal court and while Les Amis lost, they are rallying for an appeal. There is nothing apparently in the EA to build a case on. I can't verify right now but memory is telling me that the build engineer and the EA engineer are the same company? Someone may be able to correct me on that.

If I was a conspiracy theorist, I'd say that this legeslation is a means to ensure one avenue to protest river projects no longer exists.

Anyways, every government in this nation is looking at rivers as green energy.
If you are interested in Les Amis side of the story:
http://www.grandriver.ca/RiverConferenc ... wackiP.pdf

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PostPosted: May 21st, 2008, 5:53 pm 
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That's not good, and I hadn't heard about it.

The Navigable Waters Protection Office (Transport Canada) has been a help for canoesists and kayakers out here, as our "in" to government, they've helped us (through the provincial association "RCABC") see referrals on several projects, including the installation of man-made log jams, and helped us work with other government departments.

As a recent and positive example, just last month our canoe club came across some dangerous construction debris in a popular river - we contacted our people at Navigable Waters and they worked with Fisheries and Oceans (who happen to have a much more powerful & familar law) to see that the landowner removed the hazard. :clap:

Without Transport Canada having to take us seriously, it would be much harder to insert ourselves into such projects or to have other departments take action to protect recreational waterways.

PY.

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PostPosted: May 22nd, 2008, 6:33 am 
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I had sent an email to the person responsible for getting the consultations out, asking what paddling organizations have been contacted. None have. They even have the nerve suggesting I do their job, and they give me five days to do so. I will be sending a letter back requesting to rectify that omission, and an extension to the deadline.

This is what they sent:
Quote:
The letter inviting stakeholders to send written briefs to the Committee was sent to a variety of organizations, but I do not think there were any paddling organizations included in the list we contacted.

You will find attached the letter in question. Please fell free to forward copies of this letter to the organizations you had in mind. However, you will note from the Committee procedings that the study is well under way and therefore, the deadline for submitting a short brief (no longer than 5 pages) would be Monday, May 26th, 2008. If a brief does not require to be translated (i.e. if it is already provided in both official languages), we would accept receiving it no later than Wednesday, May 28th, 2008.

Cordially,

Maxime Ricard


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 Post subject: Rights ???
PostPosted: May 22nd, 2008, 2:51 pm 
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Erhard!
I just pm you.
I look forward to get this out, but I looks like we will need the help of some others in getting this message out fast.
And it's not just about canoe rights, anglers, and hunters that use these waterway will be affected the same way.
Sounds like they are trying real hard to close the door.
I await your next posting.
Jeff


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PostPosted: May 23rd, 2008, 12:56 pm 
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I just sent out a reply, saying that I canont speak for the paddling stakeholders that they so far have excluded in their consultation, and that five days is insufficient response time for a meaningful comment. I have asked that the Committee contact the paddling community in a formal fashion and give them reasonable time to respond.

I'll let you know what the response will be and hope we'll get a chance to comment.

JJ - you'll have a copy of the note in your mail. 8)


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 Post subject: help
PostPosted: May 23rd, 2008, 2:22 pm 
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This is what I have sent to my MP and some various other org.
We need to make a stink about this so make your own or copy this and send it.
This could effect your access rights to the areas you love.
Jeff
Found out about this this week and I am troubled that no paddling groups in the country were not contacted.
Here is the response the person who found out about it got from the feds.
Time is short on this. We need some noise.
web link: http://www.myccr.com/SectionForums/view ... hp?t=29875
Quote from Erhard"
had sent an email to the person responsible for getting the consultations out, asking what paddling organizations have been contacted. None have. They even have the nerve suggesting I do their job, and they give me five days to do so. I will be sending a letter back requesting to rectify that omission, and an extension to the deadline.
This is what they sent:
Quote:
The letter inviting stakeholders to send written briefs to the Committee was sent to a variety of organizations, but I do not think there were any paddling organizations included in the list we contacted.
You will find attached the letter in question. Please fell free to forward copies of this letter to the organizations you had in mind. However, you will note from the Committee procedings that the study is well under way and therefore, the deadline for submitting a short brief (no longer than 5 pages) would be Monday, May 26th, 2008. If a brief does not require to be translated (i.e. if it is already provided in both official languages), we would accept receiving it no later than Wednesday, May 28th, 2008.
Cordially,
Maxime Ricard
"end quote

RE: Navigable Waters Protection Act.
This act and how it is changed could affect all outdoors people to their access of rivers, and lakes and crown lands and I don’t think it will be good, considering the Federal government did not contact any of the National Canoeing groups let alone whether they contacted any of the various other outdoor groups that this type of legislation could effect.

I am 52 and have been an outdoors person all my life, from a rec. paddler to International racer and back to a rec. paddler who enjoys the vast water routes we have and the easy access this act has let us have in the past.

Here is a quote from Merv Tweed MP for Brandon-Souris web site:
http://www.mervtweed.com/PR%20-%20Water ... 202008.htm
Tweed leads the way to change waterway act
BRANDON – March 13, 2008- Merv Tweed, Member of Parliament for Brandon-Souris, is leading the review to make critical and long-overdue changes to the Navigable Waters Protection Act.

“This act controls every waterway in Canada, no matter how small, and has caused significant delay in the approval of new infrastructure,” said Tweed.

The Transport, Infrastructure, and Communities Committee, which Tweed chairs, will review the act and will be tabling a report on the findings and recommendations for change in June.

“I believe that refocusing the act will provide a more timely and predictable process for the review and approval of critical infrastructure projects,” said Tweed.

The Navigable Waters Protection Act was written in 1882 to protect the public right of navigation in Canadian waters. Unfortunately, this act does not allow for the ability to exclude anything “constructed or placed on, under, over, through or across” a navigable water, as everything may interfere with navigation to some degree.

Industry and provincial, territorial and municipal governments have, for years, been requesting changes to the NWPA to reflect current needs and respond to the increased volume and variety of uses of Canada’s waterways.

The existing backlog of approvals is impeding economic growth and the timely development and refurbishment of critical transportation infrastructure that, in turn, has the potential of creating a backlog for the implementation of projects under “Building Canada Plan”.

What scares me is the last paragraph. Having seen the list of “green” hydro project sites in Ontario that are mostly on crown lands could be fast tracked.

Here’s a link to the report for the Ontario Water Power Assoc. and the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources prepared by Hatch Acres.

http://www.owa.ca/pdfs/news/Waterpower_ ... ov2005.pdf
Having paddled some of the rivers in this report I know they have major fish runs (Agawa 2 sites, Lake Superior P.P.)

Others seem to be on the bait and switch – we will let you have this stretch of river (section of Ottawa that the rafts run) and they will take other sites not used so much.
The biggest problem that I see is the efforts of us, the outdoors people are scattered.
The fishing, hunters, canoeists, and commercial outfitters of the aforementioned groups are all running around spending a lot of time and effort fighting, but getting nowhere.
What I am requesting from you is to get this information out to the various individual and professional groups that you have contact with to help protect our access rights to Canadian waterways.

And with any luck you could challenge them to meet this year and form a coalition that represents the majority of outdoors people.
Please pass this on to any group.
Yours In Paddling and Outdoors.
Jeff McColl


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PostPosted: May 23rd, 2008, 3:03 pm 
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Just sent an email to my MP Gordon Oconnor
It would be nice to hear from others who do the same I think?
Cheers!

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 Post subject: paddle power
PostPosted: May 23rd, 2008, 3:07 pm 
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1 paddle if by river....
2 paddles if by lake...
charge :wink:


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PostPosted: May 23rd, 2008, 3:21 pm 
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Yup, it's an issue that could easily unite paddlers, fishermen and hunters.

I've talked to Maxime (the Committee's "clerk"), and he indicated that this thing is outside the normal process, i.e. there's no law proposal on the table and the committee will enter recess before anything is drawn up as a law proposal and then publicly presented for feedback. Or they might decide to drop it altogether. So, a letter to your MP would help them make up their mind early.

The proposal seems driven by the ministry of transportation but someone else might be behind it....


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PostPosted: May 23rd, 2008, 6:26 pm 
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Below is the body of my letter for your consideration/revising:

I sent it to my MP, and copied it the MPs of my canoe club, a river I mentioned, as well as the ministers of environment, tranport and fisheries.

MP info is here:
http://webinfo.parl.gc.ca/MembersOfParl ... Language=E

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
I am writing you as my MP to voice my concern about MP Tweed's (Brandon-Souris) proposal to make changes to the Navigable Waters Protection Act.

As a canoeist and proud Canadian I think it's important that our government continue to protect our waterways - these are public resources to which Canadians have a right of use and access. I don't share MP Tweed's concern that works should be allowed to take place in small waterways without due process. In fact, regardless of any exclusions from this or other acts, far too many waterways are already threatened by environmental degradation and/or loss of public access.

It is incumbant on the government, at all levels, to manage natural resources in trust for future generations, including navigable rivers. Any decision that disturbs a waterway can have environmental and social impacts that are very difficult to undo. So, any decisions taken now to alter waterways are robbing future generations of their opportunities to decide how to invest our natural capitial.

Just last month the Beaver Canoe Club of Burnaby relied of the NWPA and our connection to Nav Waters (Transport Canada) in order to have Nav Waters work with Fisheries and Oceans to have some hazardous construction debris removed from a popular stretch of the Chilliwack River. Without this legal "in" that respects access and navigation rights, such a responsive, successful outcome would not have been possible, and in-stream users of that popular river would still be at risk.

Such a proposal to change this important facet of Canadian law should not be made without the full consultation of all river users, such as recreational paddlers and fisherman, and it is my understanding (through an Internet forum on canoeing) that such organizations have not been notified about MP Tweed's interest in changing this act.

I also note the Canadian Rivers Day is soon approaching, so I hope that Minister Baird will consider this important element of our health and our heritage.

I hope that you will monitor this issue and ensure that meaningful input is solicited from a broad audience of Canadians, many of whom do not take lightly either the health of or rivers, or our access to them.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

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PostPosted: May 23rd, 2008, 7:27 pm 
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yarnellboat wrote:
Below is the body of my letter for your consideration/revising:

I sent it to my MP, and copied it the MPs of my canoe club, a river I mentioned, as well as the ministers of environment, tranport and fisheries.

MP info is here:
http://webinfo.parl.gc.ca/MembersOfParl ... Language=E

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
I am writing you as my MP to voice my concern about MP Tweed's (Brandon-Souris) proposal to make changes to the Navigable Waters Protection Act.

As a canoeist and proud Canadian I think it's important that our government continue to protect our waterways - these are public resources to which Canadians have a right of use and access. I don't share MP Tweed's concern that works should be allowed to take place in small waterways without due process. In fact, regardless of any exclusions from this or other acts, far too many waterways are already threatened by environmental degradation and/or loss of public access.

It is incumbant on the government, at all levels, to manage natural resources in trust for future generations, including navigable rivers. Any decision that disturbs a waterway can have environmental and social impacts that are very difficult to undo. So, any decisions taken now to alter waterways are robbing future generations of their opportunities to decide how to invest our natural capitial.

Just last month the Beaver Canoe Club of Burnaby relied of the NWPA and our connection to Nav Waters (Transport Canada) in order to have Nav Waters work with Fisheries and Oceans to have some hazardous construction debris removed from a popular stretch of the Chilliwack River. Without this legal "in" that respects access and navigation rights, such a responsive, successful outcome would not have been possible, and in-stream users of that popular river would still be at risk.

Such a proposal to change this important facet of Canadian law should not be made without the full consultation of all river users, such as recreational paddlers and fisherman, and it is my understanding (through an Internet forum on canoeing) that such organizations have not been notified about MP Tweed's interest in changing this act.

I also note the Canadian Rivers Day is soon approaching, so I hope that Minister Baird will consider this important element of our health and our heritage.

I hope that you will monitor this issue and ensure that meaningful input is solicited from a broad audience of Canadians, many of whom do not take lightly either the health of or rivers, or our access to them.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>



just some proof reading......... Burnaby relied on the NWPA?

Pat , do you mind if I copy the body of this sans the local stuff?

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 Post subject: get the info out!
PostPosted: May 23rd, 2008, 8:32 pm 
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Great response Yarnellboat and kingfisher :clap: :clap:
No matter what you or anyone else sends out it is important.
As long as we have the same goal to keep our access rights to the canadian waterways.
Rememeber pass it on to all possible user groups fish/hunt/canoeists/outfiters/ guides.
As a united voice we are a huge industry and interest.
By ourselves we are just blackflies, wait for the season to change and we are gone.
Where are the canoeists that want the free camping areas
aka Crown land
The fishing forum guys ......
Send some emails, get the word out, copy and paste.
SEND!!!
For those who don't believe....
I grew up on the Credit river
When they came up with the first "green" plan for the region
They changed the English language so the "green belts" became
the 403
407
hydro transmission lines
gas lines
I was young
I believed :cry: :cry:
that they would protect the river that gave me life and showed me the world.
now they are trying to save it like the Don :cry:
When I broke my tailbone skiing I was out to document the 16 mile creek valley so when they start to "develope" the surronding areas I could prove them wrong!
These are your inherited rights say nothing and lose them
It is that simple
So sending some emails can't be that bad.
Jeff


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PostPosted: May 23rd, 2008, 9:05 pm 
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Well, I mailed to my local MP (Scarborough-Agincourt) who has been on that very same committee over the years:


Quote:
I am one of your constituents and wonder whether you can do something about an effort of a Committee that seeks to weaken environmental safeguards in the Navigational Waters Protection Act.

It's not fair the committee only talks to the industry etc, and leaves the general populace that enjoys the rivers and creeks in the lurch. And it's not just paddlers that will suffer: If the changes will be implemented, it will be a lot easier to destroy natural environments and thus Canada as a whole will be the loser.

The issue as presented by the Committee is here: http://waterkeeper.ca/documents/LETTER_ ... DERS%20(EN).pdf and I have attached some of my own correspondence with Maxime Ricard, the Committee's clerk.

What can you do to help?


Sincerely Yours,


Erhard Kraus
....address....



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