Working Hard to Safeguard Paddling Assets for All Canadians

All about Whitewater

All about Whitewater
A Blog about River Preservation and the need to protect our free flowing whitewater resources

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Allison Levine: Some Optimism, and Good Advice

from her comments at IBM Vision 2012 in NY Levine offered the following ten pieces of advice:
·It’s all about assembling the right team, with the right skills. Recruiting mistakes can be quite costly.
·When you set lofty objectives, break them down to checkpoints along the way. Objectives become easier to tackle.
·You have to go backwards to move forward.
· Being afraid is fine, but complacency is what will kill you.
·Form partnerships early and collaborate often. You’ll need strong relationships before you’ll need help and those are the people you can rely on.
· No matter how good or prepared you are, things can and will go wrong, but the “storms” are always temporary.
· Key to surviving is taking action based on the situation at the specific time. Not based on some plan.
· Turning back and walking away from a deal is harder than moving forward, but it’s necessary for survival. If the conditions aren’t right, cut your losses and walk away.
 · Remember that every move you make, will affect everyone else around you. Sometimes, one person’s bad judgment can bring down an entire organization or team.
 · Have to give yourself room to fail as long as you come back from it better and stronger.

She completed her session by admitting that even though she had reached the top of all seven of the continents highest peaks, it “was not really that big of a deal.” “It’s important to remember all of the people who help you on your journey,” said Levine. “No one gets to the top by themselves.” Great advice.

Student Protests in Quebec

Ostensibly it is about tuition fees being raised. Will minimum wages be raised in lock step with tuition increases. Not Likely. So here we have a "system" that requires you to go to university, at only government certified schools. You have no choice. Then you have to pay ever increasing fees, gather unpayable debt, go into debt slavery to get the qualifications, our society needs. So the protests continue. It could have started over anything, but in Quebec the unrest started over tuition fees. But it should be apparent, if it is not, that this really is a battle of the 99% against the 1%. Don't you doubt it. from

Neil MacDonald Launches another Neutron Bomb of a commentary

"Of course, the banks were hardly the sole culprits in the meltdown. They were abetted by every mortgage applicant who lied about his or her income, then borrowed crazy amounts with nothing down, maybe taking some cash at closing for a nice little vacation or a Lexus; by every shady mortgage broker who pocketed commissions from loans that obviously could never be repaid; by every home appraiser who jacked up the value of a property beyond any reasonable figure; and by every analyst at the big ratings agencies that knowingly stamped "AAA" on the securitized garbage being flogged by the investment banks."

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Niagara Gorge - First 'legal' descent

Are you willing to make the ultimate sacrifice?

From Trevor Green: Trevor Greene: From one battlefield to another Published On Sat May 12 2012 IMAGE Trevor Greene in an Afghan village two days before he was wounded. (March 2, 2006) RICK MADONIK/TORONTO STAR " Stephen Harper’s vision of Canada seems to begin, and end, in the tarsands, and everything else be damned. Tolerance is redefined as applying only to anyone who agrees with that vision. Everyone else is “radical,” an “extremist,” or even ncluded in his government’s new program battling terrorism. This is an insult to those of us who have fought, and sacrificed for our country, against real radicals, real extremists and real terrorists. When I read about ministers of the Crown attacking and smearing heroes like David Suzuki, who are trying to put us on a more sustainable pathway, I wonder what’s happened to Canada. I fear for the kind of world my daughter and son stand to inherit should we cave in to this oil-driven agenda. Not a good one, I am certain. With determination, we can overcome all manner of adversity, and reclaim who we are both as individuals and as a people. We face this challenge now with Ottawa, with a government that is taking our country in the wrong direction, undermining the values that make us who we are. I am loath to have to admit to my children that the irreversible degradation of their planet continued on my watch." Capt. (ret’d) Trevor Greene now lives in Nanaimo, BC with his wife Debbie and daughter Grace. They are expecting a son in June. The Greenes run a foundation to educate Afghan girls as teachers.

Monday, May 14, 2012

The Ominous Omnibus - What will change

Tighter rules on political activities of charities Foreign charities must follow national interest More powers to punish charities Medical items and procedures to get tax exemptions New Environmental Assessment Act Fewer people permitted to access reviews Cabinet can add or remove parts of environment to undergo study Fewer projects to receive environmental reviews Minister can change assessment’s scope One-year time limit for assessments Feds can punt assessment job to provinces New rules for those who breach new assessment act Changes will retroactively affect current review panels National Energy Board to hold fewer public hearings Cabinet takes power from NEB Energy projects get time limit Fewer people to participate in hearings Power line permits can have smaller scope Energy projects’ impact on water ways now up to cabinet Environment no longer considered in power line permits More details on energy license violations Fisheries duties punted to provinces Fish habitat protections stripped Smaller projects gone, now dependent on minister Disposal at sea permits changed Permits to impact species at risk to grow longer Twelve Auditor General audits to be cut Treasury Board to scrap human resources reporting Alternative Fuels Report to end Parks Canada can opt out of environmental duties Fewer park reports Fewer reviews for national parks And fewer marine conservation area reviews CSIS Inspector General Minister can license fish for research Repeal of Fair Wages and Hours of Labour Act to hurt workers, says NDP OAS: 65 going on 67 Environmental roundtable disappears Sayonara Kyoto! taken from

RCMP Kettling - to serve and protect (the 1%)

NO WAY OUT, is the definition of Kettling. G8 and G20 protesters get boxed in then get their heads boxed... and clubbed. This is what democracy looks like in a totalitarian regime. Hockey anyone? We don't need brown shirts, we already have blackshirts! Police really are supposed to serve and protect the citizenry. Now the problem appears on the face of it to be "political" but in reality, people are trying to democratically protest, its their right, and they are being arrested without cause, beaten, gased, tasered, and labeled as radicals. This should sound familiar: its a Hitlerian tactic from the little dictator himself. Image from:
The question remains, how, in a democratic country, with free speech, and freedom of assembly are we to address the blackshirted, gas throwing, club weilding defenders of the 1%?
additional images from CBC

Canadian Rivers

Canadian Rivers
I speak for river users too!

The Queen is not amused!

The Queen is not amused!

The Damned Dam - 2005 -

The Damned Dam - 2005 -
22nd Annual Kipaw Rally has modest turnout. - 23rd does better

The Ashlu river: it could happen to you

The Ashlu river: it could happen to you

Whitewater Ontario

Whitewater Ontario
Working Hard to Protect Canada's Paddling Resources

Whitewater Ontario - Mission Statement

It is Whitewater Ontario’s mission to support the whitewater paddling community through the promotion, development and growth of the sport in its various disciplines. We accomplish this through the development of events, resources, clubs, and programs for personal and athletic development, regardless of skill level or focus, to ensure a high standard of safety and competency; We advocate safe and environmentally responsible access and use of Ontario’s rivers. Whitewater Ontario is the sport governing body in the province, and represents provincial interests within the national body Whitewater Canada and the Canadian Canoe Association

Kipawa, Tabaret, and Opemican

Kipawa, Tabaret, and Opemican
If Hydro Quebec is not actively pursuing Tabaret what is that bite out of Opemican for?

Kipawa Dam: After

Kipawa Dam: After
Laniel Dam at 2006 Rally

Where is the Kipawa

Where is the Kipawa
Kipawa flows into lake Temiskamingue, running from Kipawa Lake, under hwy 101 in Quebec

Kipawa Dam

Kipawa Dam
laniel dam at 2004 River Rally

Tabaret is a Bad Idea

About the Kipawa

The best thing paddlers can do to help the cause of the Kipawa:

1. attend the rally and bring others including non paddlers to attend and buy beer and have fun

2. write your MP /MNA and raise the issue and post your objections -1 letter = 200 who didn't write

3. Write Thierry Vandal the CEO of Hydro Quebec strongly opposing the 132 MW standard decrying the use of "diversion" as the most environmentally inappropriate method of power production

4. Write Jean Charest, Premier of Quebec protesting that either the algonquin or the tabaret project will eliminate all other values on the Kipawa River by turning it into a dry gulch.

5. See if you can get other allied groups interested by showing your own interest, ie the Sierra Defense Fund, Earthwild, MEC, and so on.

6. Demand further consultation

7. Currently we are at the point where we need to sway public opinion and raise awareness.

However, if all else fails, don't get mad, simply disrupt, foment, and protest . The Monkey Wrench Gang.

Have you read Edward Abbey?

Important Addresses
CEO,Hydro Québec, 75 boul René Levesque, Montreal, P.Q., H2Z

Tabaret is a Bad Idea (Part Two)

Les Amis de la Riviere Kipawa is poised to use an application to the Federal Court to issue a Writ of Mandamus to ensure the Minster does what he is supposed to do, protect the public's right to navigate the water control structure at Laniel, Quebec using the Navigable Waters Protection Act. (see

In the now gutted Navigable Waters Protection Act lay the means by which the Minister of Transport could keep the public right of passage down our great Canadian Heritage, our rivers and streams which are threatened especially by resource corporations and power brokers such as Hydro Quebec.

These powerful entities continue to petition that 'this' river or 'that' stream is not navigable and therefore not protectable.
I don't say that dams and bridges should not be built, only that if they are, historical navigation rights should be considered and preserved by making reasonable accommodations for recreational boaters.

It is the Minister of Transport, in exercising the right to allow or disallow work on or over a navigable waterway is what keeps boats and recreational boaters plying our waterways.

To many recent cases launched in the Federal Court concerning the Navigable Waters Protection Act, most recently the case of the Humber Environment Group of Cornerbrook Newfoundland versus the Cornerbrook Pulp and Paper Company indicates that the important oversight is not being faithfully performed. Have we really come to the point now where we must say "such and such a stream is one foot deep, possessing so many cubic feet per second flow and so on?" The answer to this is... YES!

The honourable Mr. Justice John A. O'Keefe, ruled that it had not been shown that the river was navigable. How convenient was that to the Minister? But either the Minister of Transport acts to protect our rivers and streams as a public right or he does not and that means rivers and streams currently enjoyed by kayakers and canoists.

Enough of the cheating, and double-talk. Canadians! our rivers and streams are our own, lets urge the Minister of Transport and the our government to protect them.

Peter Karwacki

Tabaret is a Bad Idea (Part Three)

10 Reasons WhyTabaret is a Bad Idea1) Tabaret is too big. The station is designed to useevery drop of water available in the Kipawawatershed, but will run at only 44 percent capacity.We believe the Tabaret station is designed to usewater diverted from the Dumoine River into theKipawa watershed in the future. 2) The Tabaret project will eliminate the aquaticecosystem of the Kipawa River.The Tabaret project plan involves the diversion of a16-km section of the Kipawa River from its naturalstreambed into a new man-made outflow from LakeKipawa. 3) Tabaret will leave a large industrial footprint on thelandscape that will impact existing tourismoperations and eliminate future tourism potential. 4) The Tabaret project is an aggressive single-purposedevelopment, designed to maximize powergeneration at the expense of all other uses. 5) River-diversion, such as the Tabaret project, takinglarge amounts of water out of a river’s naturalstreambed and moving it to another place, is verydestructive to the natural environment. 6) The Kipawa River has been designated a protectedgreenspace in the region with severe limitations ondevelopment. This designation recognizes theecological, historical and natural heritage value ofthe river and the importance of protecting it.Tabaret will eliminate that value. 7) If necessary, there are other, smarter and morereasonable options for producing hydro power onthe Kipawa watershed. It is possible to build a lowimpactgenerating station on the Kipawa river, andmanage it as a “run-of-the-river” station, makinguse of natural flows while maintaining other values,with minimal impact on the environment. 8) The Kipawa watershed is a rich natural resource forthe Temiscaming Region, resonably close to largeurban areas, with huge untapped potential fortourism and recreation development in the future.Tabaret will severely reduce this potential. 9) Tabaret provides zero long-term economic benefitfor the region through employment. The plan is forthe station to be completely automated andremotely operated. 10) The Kipawa River is 12,000 years old. The riverwas here thousands of years before any peoplecame to the region. The Tabaret project will change all that.

Problems on a local River?

  • There is more to do as well but you have to do your research and above all, don't give up.
  • IN the meantime prepared a document itemizing the history of navigation of this spot and its recreational value. Use the Kipawa river history of navigation as a guide: see
  • Under the Ministry of Environment guidelines you have a set period of time to petition the change under the environmental bill of rights, you may have limited time to take this action. But it involves going to court for a judicial review of the decision.
  • 4. contact the ministry of natural resources officials and do the same thing.
  • 3. contact the ministry of the environment and determine if they approved the project
  • 2. determine if the dam was a legal dam, approved under the navigable waters protection act.
  • 1. research the decision and timing of it to determine if an environmental assessment was done.

Minden Ontario

Minden Ontario
Gull River Water control at Horseshoe lake

A History of Navigation on the Kipawa River

Prior to the environmental assessment there was no signage at the Laniel Dam

T-Shirts Area: These are available now!

T-Shirts Area: These are available now!
Send $25 and a stamped self addressed envelop for the Tshirt, and for the bumper sticker, a stamped and self addressed envelope with $5.00 for the bumper sticker to Les Amis de la rivière Kipawa, 80 Ontario St., Ottawa, Ontario, K1K 1K9 or click the link To purchase a Les Amis "T" contact Doug with the following information: Number of shirts:Sizes: Ship to Address: Method of Payment: cash, cheque and paypal, Shipto address:

Bumper Stickers Now Available

Bumper Stickers Now Available
Get your bumper sticker and show your support for the Kipawa Legal Fund ! - send $5.00 in a Stamped, self addressed envelope to: Peter Karwacki Box 39111, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, K1H 7X0