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, February 19, 2014

What is happening in the Ukraine? They fought authority... authority always wins!

  • Karwacki: is a Ukrainian name, except that my research reveals that my Grandparents were born in Poland and with the border change during the time of the treaty of Riga (1923) their home became Ukrainian territory. I consider myself Polish Ukrainian, covering both bases.

    Is this really an engineered "regional" war? 

  • I've heard that this has to do with a government that has made alliances with RUSSIA in order to fascilitate the sales of natural gas from GAZPROM while a substantial portion of parilament/ and citizens want closer alliances with Europe

  • Peter Karwacki
    Your cheat sheet to the complex web of money, power, and politics behind Ukraine’s violent protests.

  •  Its not like the average Ukrainian can win in this if their GAS SUPPLY IS TURNED OFF BY RUSSIA. (How likely is that in reality? its happened before!

  •  Why on earth are the average Ukrainians burning tires in Kiev,  Who or what is pushing them for that...?
     Knowing the history of the "USA" and their CIA/NSA penchant for destabilizing governments in order to "server their national interest" my guess is that they are involved in some way and have "engineered" as you have said, these protests. But that is such a conspiratorial point of view, people would dismiss me as "nuts" if I said that.
  • Ukrainians on the West (former Polish teritory) really want to go towards EU. However, Eastern Ukrainians (former Russia) want to go towards Russia.  Janukovich negotiated a deal about joining EU in the future, and when it came to signing, he reneged.
  •  I still don't know what is pushing people to burn tires - do they really feel sincerely that their government has left them out hanging to dry? Imagine what it would take in CANADA for people to get out in -10 weather, in the middle of the night, to protest like this. And further, what is their real alternative? The Ukrainian protesters want the president to resign, they want to persuade him that he has lost the trust and majority of votes, (which is not true), it is felt that there is still majority of Ukrainians in the East that miss the good old days of USSR rule. 

  • What is driving them? Possibly high ideals, the notions of  Solidarnosc, Wałęsa and others but history tells a different story.
  • Janokovich came to the Ukrainians in Novemeber with real bullets. So they stand there. For a third month. It is shocking how little media coverage there is in the US.  What is pushing people to war in Syria, what has pushed people to generalized wars in the Middle East and Northern Africa, to militia wars and guerrillas to the south of the Sahel, to civil unrest.  If this sounds like a movie script: It is! The problem with revolution is that its often the "little guy" that gets crushed. If you take governmental structure away, even a bad one, you are left with Anarchy, and anarchy inevitably leads to death and destruction (maximum entropy)


  • Since November, several protesters have been taken into Polish hospitals. The opposition leader, also negotiating on the political level with Janukovich was  offered seats in the government, although these were refused!
  • It seemed like the discussions were moving away from the street protests towards civilized dialogue, but it did not happen. The president used power, police, and security forces finally to secure the status quo. 
  • Where is Putin in all this?. 
  • Are the authorities using the umbrella of the olympic games to massacre people. There have been months of kidnapping people from hospitals, cabs, direct killings, using snipers to shoot people on Majdan. Again, shocking, that there had to be a day when 30 people were killed to make the news in Canada.
  • This is really about the 10%/90% problem. I am not a religious man, but I do feel that the christian ethic, the long view, the insisting on business cases over human values /environmental values has lead us down a dangerous path of "no perogies".  History proves that for every "revolution" there is an equal and opposite "counter revolution" People get crushed, and a New World "order" emerges from the ashes. We are seeing history in the making, we are living it. My heart - I feel for the Ukrainians.
  • What happened last night, is that the Ukrainians were very close to having a political deal, they almost had agreement to revert to the 2004 Ukraine constitution, which gave the Ukrainian president less power. They were about to vote, when parliament members related to Janukovich said "no".  So the protesters started their march on the parliament. 
  • This is when the authorities ( remember the I fought authority introduction?) started shooting. But they also started shooting in other Ukraine cities too, which means that they were just looking for an excuse. 

  • My question is" why Ukrainians are fed up?" Their average salary is 405$, 24% below the poverty level, and yet the richest of their rich are billionaires in hard cash. The Ukrainian currency is only good for wrapping fish, and the bureaucracy and corruption makes it very difficult to investment, and have business invest in the Ukraine. A big portion of the country just wants a normal life, but they believe that moving out of the Russian influence will give it to them.405$ per month, to be completely clear all the while the prices of consumer goods are really not low - many items are cheaper when imported from Poland. 
  • Vodka and cigarettes are affordable -GO FIGURE! - historically, its easier to manipulate a drunk mob. 

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