Blog

Panel agrees that the Canadian public science landscape has changed in recent years with some negative consequences for Canadians, and our science reputation.

This is a guest post by Heather Douglas, the Waterloo Chair in Science and Society in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Waterloo.

This is a guest post by Michael Spratt, an Ottawa based criminal lawyer.

In a recent speech to the Canadian Medical Association, Health Minister Rona Ambrose said something no cabinet minister ought to have to say out loud: that her boss, Prime Minister Stephen Harper, and his government are firm believers in evidence-based policy.

If the government is committed to an independent, rigorous scientific assessment then it cannot base a decision on the Northern Gateway pipeline on this flawed report. To do so will simply serve to further undermine both public confidence and government credibility.

On April 23rd, new regulations for the Fisheries Act came into effect--dramatically weakening pollution prevention measures by increasing ministerial discretion and reducing the role for science and evidence.

These changes allow the Ministers of Environment and Fisheries to grant blanket authorization to industry to pollute our waterways instead of making these decisions on a case-by-case basis, based on the best available scientific and Indigenous knowledge. Ministers are now able to: