G7: Cost: $224.6 MILLION = 20 water treatment plants!

G7: Cost: $224.6 MILLION = 20 water treatment plants!

Postby Oscar » Tue Feb 13, 2018 8:05 am

Two-day G7 summit in Charlevoix to cost $224.6 million, the equivalent of 20 water treatment plants

[ https://canadians.org/blog/two-day-g7-s ... ent-plants ]

February 13, 2018 - 5:49 am

(PHOTO: The Council of Canadians brought a 'scrap the summits' message to the G8 summit in Huntsville, Ontario on June 24, 2010.)

The Council of Canadians has long argued that the so-called 'Group of' summits are expensive and undemocratic.

Expensive because the meetings cost hundreds of millions of dollars (the three-day G8 and G20 summits in Huntsville and Toronto cost more than $857 million) and undemocratic because the meetings include only the richest countries in the world (and not, for instance, the 54 countries in Africa or the 12 countries in South America).

We have argued that G-summits should more inclusively be G-195 summits (all countries represented in the United Nations General Assembly) and that it would be more cost-efficient for them to take place at the UN Secretariat Building in New York (where the costs of security measures would be minimized because of a consistent location).

The Toronto Star editorial board agreed with us in 2010 when it wrote, "At root, the G8/G20 summits are about a handful of leaders pressing the flesh together. That needn’t cost the earth, or require legions of retainers. These affairs are sinking under their own weight. It’s time to lighten the load.”

Now, the CBC reports, "Hosting top world leaders at the upcoming G7 summit in Quebec's picturesque Charlevoix region is expected to cost Canadian taxpayers $224.6 million dollars. According to spending estimates tabled [by Treasury Board president Scott Brison] in the House of Commons Monday [February 12], the price tag for hosting the gathering of world leaders, and the meetings leading up to it, will be steep."

The article adds, "Security provided by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police is expected to eat up $125 million of that budget on its own. 'The majority of the funding ... will support security measures, including deployment of RCMP and military personnel, support of provincial police and necessary equipment. Funding will also be used for logistical needs such as leasing of space, temporary staff and upgrades to the local communication network.' For example, the Public Safety department will get $18.9 million and National Defence will receive $9.6 million to help the RCMP ensure security at the event."

As such, the G7 summit this coming June 8-9 would cost $112.3 million per day or about $4.7 million per hour over the 48 hour period.

To put this in context, it will cost about $11.2 million to build a new water treatment plant and related infrastructure at the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation near Port Perry, Ontario. This First Nation has had irregular access to clean drinking water since 2008. It is not a stretch to say that the cost of the two-day G7 summit could instead be used to build 20 water treatment plants on First Nations across this country.

Other concerns
We are also concerned that the RCMP has announced that they plan to set up 'free speech zones' for the G7 summit. Our argument is that all of Canada should be considered a 'free speech zone' and that it's a violation of democratic rights for people who want to protest on key issues of our day to be kept out of sight of leaders making decisions about their lives (notably, G7 decisions about climate change that affects us all).

And we are also very concerned that the G7 summit will be US President Donald Trump's first visit to Canada.

Justin Trudeau's objectives for the summit include "advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment" (it defies credibility that Trump could contribute to this discussion); working together on climate change, oceans and clean energy (Trump has described climate change as a hoax, has submitted formal notice to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement and has opened almost all US coastal waters for oil and gas drilling), and "building a more peaceful and secure world" (Trump has tweeted his nuclear-launch button is bigger than the North Korean leader's button).

There is also evidence that Trump has committed hate crimes (Columbia University Professor Hamid Dabashi has argued Trump's bombing of Iraq and Syria should be seen as such) and sexual assault (fifteen women have made accusations against Trump ranging from sexual harassment and sexual assault to lewd behavior).

As such, we initiated this online petition opposing Trump's visit to Canada. It was launched one-month ago today and has now been signed by 21,761 people. Please help us reach our next target of 25,000 people signing the petition by March 8, International Women's Day by clicking here now: [ https://secure.canadians.org/page/18583/petition/1 ]


Brent Patterson's blog
Political Director of the Council of Canadians
[ https://canadians.org/blogs/brent-patterson ]
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Re: G7: Cost: $224.6 MILLION = 20 water treatment plants!

Postby Oscar » Fri Feb 23, 2018 9:14 pm

G7 summit 'free expression area' will be almost 2 kms from where Trudeau & Trump are meeting

[ https://canadians.org/blog/g7-summit-fr ... re-meeting ]

February 23, 2018 - 2:48 pm

The RCMP has confirmed that a so-called 'free speech area' will be located in 'a vacant lot' beside the Musée de Charlevoix which is almost 2 kilometres from the Fairmont Le Manoir Richelieu, the luxury hotel where the Justin Trudeau, Donald Trump and the other G7 leaders are scheduled to meet on June 8-9.

The RCMP says, "The designated free expression area, where people can exercise their rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and freedom of expression, will be on a vacant lot located near the museum and protected area in La Malbaie." That's about 1.4 kilometres away by foot, 1.9 kilometres by car.

The RCMP also says (as seen in the photo below), "A fence will be erected between Chemin du Havre and Rue des Carrières."

The Council of Canadians has opposed previous 'free speech zones', notably at the time of the North American Leaders' summit in Montebello, Quebec (in August 2007) and the G20 summit in Toronto (in June 2010).

That's in part because the report by retired judge Ted Hughes that came out of the public inquiry into police violence at the 1997 APEC summit in Vancouver stated that people have the right to "see and be seen" by "visiting leaders".

The RCMP solution in Montebello was to have an audio/video feed of the designated protest area streamed into the summit (presumably with the fictional notion that the G7 leaders could watch that feed during their meeting). The 'designated protest area' for the G20 summit in Toronto was on the north lawn of Queen's Park, almost three kilometres away from where the leaders were meeting.

At the time of the G20 summit in Toronto, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association stated, "Freedom of expression is protected throughout Canada: our country, and all of Toronto is a ‘free speech zone'. Protesters cannot be prevented from demonstrating outside of the 'designated demonstration area', particularly when the area set aside is situated in a place that is so remote from the meetings that protesters cannot be directly seen or heard by the leaders. Therefore, it is appropriate for the police to acknowledge publicly the right of protesters. Language suggesting that protesters are strongly encouraged to gather in the free speech zones is inappropriate."

Earlier this month, the CBC reported, "Hosting top world leaders at the upcoming G7 summit in Quebec's picturesque Charlevoix region is expected to cost Canadian taxpayers $224.6 million dollars. According to spending estimates tabled [by Treasury Board president Scott Brison on February 12], the price tag for hosting the gathering of world leaders, and the meetings leading up to it, will be steep."

That article adds, "Security provided by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police is expected to eat up $125 million of that budget on its own. 'The majority of the funding ... will support security measures, including deployment of RCMP and military personnel, support of provincial police and necessary equipment. Funding will also be used for logistical needs such as leasing of space, temporary staff and upgrades to the local communication network.' For example, the Public Safety department will get $18.9 million and National Defence will receive $9.6 million to help the RCMP ensure security at the event."

To put this in context, it will cost about $11.2 million to build a new water treatment plant and related infrastructure at the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation near Port Perry, Ontario. This First Nation has had irregular access to clean drinking water since 2008. It is not a stretch to say that the cost of the two-day G7 summit could instead be used to build 20 water treatment plants on First Nations across this country.

The Council of Canadians rejects 'free speech areas', defends the freedom of expression, says that Trump is not welcome in Canada (you can add your name to our petition here), and argues that the United Nations in New York is a more appropriate location for G-195 summits (that include all countries, not just the richest ones).


Brent Patterson's blog
Political Director of the Council of Canadians
[ https://canadians.org/blogs/brent-patterson ]
Oscar
Site Admin
 
Posts: 7733
Joined: Wed May 03, 2006 3:23 pm


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