Yet even I was both shocked and appalled at what I learned reading The Toronto Star's editorial this morning.
The headline tells it all: Drilling for oil in the Gulf of St. Lawrence without a clue:
Buried within the more than 400 pages of this spring’s federal omnibus budget bill is an invitation for resource companies to open a new frontier in Canadian oil: the Gulf of St. Lawrence.
The gulf, which touches the coastlines of Canada’s five easternmost provinces, is the world’s largest estuary. It’s home to more than 2,000 species of marine wildlife — an ecosystem integral to the health of our Atlantic and Great Lakes fisheries.
Now, due to measures deep in the federal budget, that ecosystem may be under threat. The bill explicitly highlights the region’s potential for petroleum extraction and includes amendments to the Coasting Trade Act that give oil companies greater access to exploration vessels.
The editorial reveals that a company called Corridor Resources Inc. has applied to drill the first-ever deep-water well in the gulf, a development with dire environmental implications. Even without an oil spill, the seismic drilling will have profoundly negative effects on marine life, and to compound the environmental crime, there will be no way to measure those effects:
The budget rescinded the requirement for environmental assessments of exploratory drilling and crippled the Centre for Offshore Oil, Gas and Energy Research, the federal agency best equipped to deliver such assessments.
In a world already in the midst of the biggest disaster ever experienced by humanity, climate change, the Harper regime is unbowed in its headlong rush to give the corporate sector every opportunity to 'live for the moment," something it has historically proven to be very adept at.