Hill and Knowlton take over Mega Quarry bid "Communications"

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Tommy_Paine
Hill and Knowlton take over Mega Quarry bid "Communications"

http://www.guelphmercury.com/news/local/article/559793--valeriote-joins-...

"Reached Thursday, the company’s former spokesperson, Michael Daniher, said Toronto communications firm Hill & Knowlton took over media relations for Highland due to the “increasing volume and complexity” of the file."

Background on the Mega Quarry Issue:

http://rabble.ca/news/2011/06/monster-mine-plan-cuts-deep-ontario-farmland

And

http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/krystalline-kraus/2011/07/activist-commu...

A little background on Hill and Knowlton:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hill_%26_Knowlton

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nayirah_%28testimony%29

And

http://www.crocodyl.org/wiki/hill_amp_knowlton

"The Torturers’ Lobby
In 1992, when The Center for Public Integrity published “The Torturers’ Lobby,” a report on lobbying and PR efforts by repressive regimes, Hill & Knowlton topped the list of earnings at $14m in one year. Its client list of human rights abusing states including Indonesia (responsible for genocide in East Timor and West Papua), China, Kuwait, Israel, Egypt, and Peru. It earned $1.2m from Turkey alone from 1991 to 1992. The contract with China was accepted shortly after the Tianenman Square massacre when China needed to clean up its tarnished image."

--------------------------------

So far, the people against the quarry have had enjoyed pretty decent media coverage in the main stream media, and good coverage in small local papers.  I have not noticed any pro quarry articles or columns.   I have a feeling this is about to change. 

This affords us the opportunity to see how a company like Hill and Knowlton will conduct it's war against opponents, and it will also give us an opportunity to see just what publications, reporters and editors are in their grasp. 

I would appreciate help in tracking this.  If you see a column, or report, or something on broadcast media supporting the mega quarry bid, please post it here.  

Beyond the issue at hand with the quarry, this is a great opportunity to map out how companies like this operate to change public opinion, and just what media publications and personalities are working for this particular company.

Spectrum Spectrum's picture

Hi Tommy,

Your first link did not work....so shortened it to see.

http://www.guelphmercury.com/news/local/article/559793

Media is of course a important aspect of developing "a perspective with the population"  so that the company can do it's thing for sure.

Second link is not there.

http://rabble.ca/news/2011/06/monster-mine-plan-cuts-deep-ontario-farmla...

third link was unspecific as to "which one of blog postings,"

http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/krystalline-kraus/2011/07/activist-commu...

Quote:

Hill & Knowlton and the CIA.
This free market approach to manufacturing public perception raises
the issue of:

Quote:
whether there is something fundamentally wrong when a foreign
government can pay a powerful, well-connected lobbying and public
relations firm millions of dollars to convince the American people
and the American government to support a war halfway around the
world. In another age this activity would have caused an explosion
of outrage. But something has changed in Washington. Boundaries no
longer exist.......

Quote:

"Managing the outrage
is more important
than managing the hazard
."

--Hill & Knowlton's Thomas Buckmaster


 

Tommy_Paine

Thanks, Spectrum.   I usually check the links, but it's been such a long time since I had trouble, I guess I got lazy.

 

These sure are the fellers in the black hats, ain't they?

Spectrum Spectrum's picture

Hi Tommy,

I guess the PR failed to mention this below?:)

 

Quote:
An American hedge fund is about to break ground on a massive mining project that could poison a million people's drinking water and the headwaters for five major rivers, would create an open pit deeper than Niagara Falls and decimate thousands of acres of lush farmland -- and we have 4 days to stop them.

For years, Highland Companies deceived residents, posing as a potato farming company and quietly buying up thousands of acres of land from local farmers. Then, it was suddenly revealed that the massive plot of farmland would be converted into a limestone quarry -- a 2300 acre pit so deep it would seriously interfere with the ground water system in the region. But, in order to start digging, Highland must win approval from Minister of Natural Resources Linda Jeffrey.

Jeffrey is taking 4 more days to consider public opinion on this quarry before making her decision. We can deliver an overwhelming wave of opposition to Highland's destructive plan. Sign the petition, forward it to everyone and it will be submitted to Jeffrey before the consultation period ends.

http://www.avaaz.org/en/stop_the_quarry/?vl

Council of Canadians report on the mega-quarry
http://www.canadians.org/index2.html

Limestone quarry threatens prime farm land (Toronto Star)
http://www.thestar.com/news/ontario/article/734969--limestone-quarry-threatens-prime-farm-land

Environment ministry blasts mega-quarry proposal (Toronto Star)
http://www.thestar.com/news/article/1017849--environment-ministry-blasts-mega-quarry-proposal

The call for open submissions to the Ministry of Natural Resources
http://www.ebr.gov.on.ca/ERS-WEB-External/displaynoticecontent.do?noticeId=MTEyNTY2&statusId=MTY4ODI5&language=en

Chong calls for federal review of quarry proposal (Guelph Mercury)
http://www.guelphmercury.com/news/local/article/549053--chong-calls-for-federal-review-of-quarry-proposal

Spectrum Spectrum's picture

Join the fight to protect this precious land and water!  ACT NOW to have your voice heard – THE DEADLINE is midnight on Sunday July 10th.

Quote:

ACTION ALERT: Your help needed to stop proposed mega-quarry

July 6, 2011

Back in April, we asked you to write the provincial government to demand an extension of the comment period on the proposed mega-quarry in Melancthon Township.  More than 1,800 fellow Council of Canadians members did just that, helping to convince the government to push back the deadline under the Environmental Bill of Rights.  Thank you!

Now your voice is needed once again.  We have just five days left to let them know what we think of the plan to dig a mega-quarry and in the process destroy thousands of acres of prime Ontario farmland and damage the headwaters of five major river systems.  

The mega-quarry has been proposed in Melancthon Township on Highway 124 just north of Shelburne. The Highland Companies (owned by a Boston hedge fund) has filed an application for a 2,400-acre aggregate mine, which would make it the largest quarry in Ontario and the second largest in North America.  This precious land is the “rooftop of Ontario” running along the border of the Niagara Escarpment.  For many months, the Council of Canadians has been working with local groups to stop this open pit mine because of the extraordinary impacts it will have on neighbouring communities, watersheds, Ontario’s food supply and the drinking water of more than one million people.

Tommy_Paine

Yes, and I would invite all who read this to sign the pettition (interesting site, you can see the signators in real time) and register their objection to the ministry, if you have not done so already.

I've been on this kick for about a year, maybe more.   Whatever the issue, this is one of the powerfull things alligned against us-- Public Relations companies that have infiltrated the media and can get the media to ignore and or attack ordinary citizens who try to protect their rights, and their well being. 

It's not new.  And it's not the only such mechanism that thwarts democracy.  But it's one that gets scant attention, I think, and therefore they have a pretty clear, unfettered field to opperate in.  If nothing else, we can start shining some light under this rock.  Who knows, maybe if media knows we are on the lookout for such things, they might be more reticent to be called out as shills for Navigator, or Hill and Knowlton, or any of the others.

More likely, by understanding the exact mechanism, the actual players in the media who shill for these guys, then maybe effective  tactics to combat this might be devised.

I think this affords us an opportunity to do such mapping.

laine lowe laine lowe's picture

I signed the AVAAZ.org petition yesterday and they reached 70,000 in a matter of hours. It's now at 93,000+. Perhaps this is why Hill & Knowlton were called in.

Any idea why there is no official federal-provincial environmental assessment review of this project?

Tommy_Paine

Quarries are exempt from automatic environmental assesments in Ontario.

MegB

The Aggregate Resources Act governs quarries, and quarry owners are largely self-policing since the Ministry of Natural Resources doesn't have the staff to enforce what little regulation the ARA provides.

I was up in Melancthon on Thursday.  They have the best tasting water of any place I've been.  My friend, who owns a farm there, said, "drink it while you can - we don't know how long it'll be here."

I have a very bad feeling about Hill & Knowlton's sudden involvement.  They have lied for some of the worst abusers of human rights and the environment on the planet, and demonstrably act without anything like conscience or morality.

Spectrum Spectrum's picture

Tommy_Paine wrote: wrote:
More likely, by understanding the exact mechanism, the actual players in the media who shill for these guys, then maybe effective  tactics to combat this might be devised.

I think this affords us an opportunity to do such mapping.

Quote:
For years, Highland Companies deceived residents, posing as a potato farming company and quietly buying up thousands of acres of land from local farmers.

Okay Tommy, looking at the process here,  it was a deception used in terms of buying up of farm lands? If this can be proven and presented to the government then there was prior motive by making use of a subverted plot to obtain and use this method to gain the final result(open pit mining). This then is a clear and concise method determining the outcome by demonstration of "this map as methodology to that completion."

Would you agree?

 

 

 

Todrick of Chat...

I have also signed the www.AVAAZ.org petition. We need to stop this quarry and save the farmland.

MegB

Spectrum wrote:

Tommy_Paine wrote: wrote:
More likely, by understanding the exact mechanism, the actual players in the media who shill for these guys, then maybe effective  tactics to combat this might be devised.

I think this affords us an opportunity to do such mapping.

Quote:
For years, Highland Companies deceived residents, posing as a potato farming company and quietly buying up thousands of acres of land from local farmers.

Okay Tommy, looking at the process here,  it was a deception used in terms of buying up of farm lands? If this can be proven and presented to the government then there was prior motive by making use of a subverted plot to obtain and use this method to gain the final result(open pit mining). This then is a clear and concise method determining the outcome by demonstration of "this map as methodology to that completion."

Would you agree?

Actually, it has been proven and presented to the government - the Minister of Natural Resources - and she basically said it's a done deal.  So we know the government's position, and that's not in question.  What is interesting is how the PR landscape will change now in terms of the media.  This remains to be seen.

Tommy_Paine

Spectrum wrote:

Tommy_Paine wrote: wrote:
More likely, by understanding the exact mechanism, the actual players in the media who shill for these guys, then maybe effective  tactics to combat this might be devised.

I think this affords us an opportunity to do such mapping.

Quote:
For years, Highland Companies deceived residents, posing as a potato farming company and quietly buying up thousands of acres of land from local farmers.

Okay Tommy, looking at the process here,  it was a deception used in terms of buying up of farm lands? If this can be proven and presented to the government then there was prior motive by making use of a subverted plot to obtain and use this method to gain the final result(open pit mining). This then is a clear and concise method determining the outcome by demonstration of "this map as methodology to that completion."

Would you agree?

 

 

 

But wait, there's more:  Highlands has also bought up old rail beds.  So the hundreds of trucking jobs which may be there at the outset, will dissapear when the aggregate starts getting shipped by rail. Which Highlands says they are not going to do, but why would they buy up the rail beds otherwise?   And there are other mealy mouthed, "prove me a liar" type deceptions going on that you just can't prove empirically.

Obviously the strategy is to just get the big hole started, and whatever happens later no one can do anything about anyway.

But what I am talking about is using this to see just who are the reporters and editors willing to sell out to a P.R. company.  This kind of intelligence can prove to be adventatgeous not only in this issue, but with issues down the road.

Spectrum Spectrum's picture

Tommy_Paine wrote:
But wait, there's more:  Highlands has also bought up old rail beds.  So the hundreds of trucking jobs which may be there at the outset, will dissapear when the aggregate starts getting shipped by rail. Which Highlands says they are not going to do, but why would they buy up the rail beds otherwise?   And there are other mealy mouthed, "prove me a liar" type deceptions going on that you just can't prove empirically.

Obviously the strategy is to just get the big hole started, and whatever happens later no one can do anything about anyway.

But what I am talking about is using this to see just who are the reporters and editors willing to sell out to a P.R. company.  This kind of intelligence can prove to be adventatgeous not only in this issue, but with issues down the road.

Hi Tommy,

You first learn the method of deception? You then learn the methodology of the deceptors?

This then becomes the "mode of operand i" and "signatures of methods use to acquire," to shift accountability of methods, methods of big business governments which are using this method to transfer public utilities and resources to management practices of Big business and placing financial control over to the market.

Tommy_Paine wrote:
This kind of intelligence can prove to be adventatgeous not only in this issue, but with issues down the road.

Mind map of the mind map guidelines.

You create what is then called a "Mind Map" of the deception. I am not perfectly clear on such a design, but thought it might present options from which to consider? It has to do with diversions,  so with clearing away the noise,  in order to see the schematics of the plan?

If government is complicit with this by decision, then they are guilty as well? If you have the info for legal action, then a class action suit not only against the company but also against the Government?

Were property values inflated in agreements to encourage selling? Did government change rural designation of land properties out of agricultural zone to aid company? Who are the people involved?

Research will pay off as you write the story.

Tommy_Paine

That's kinda it in a coconut shell.  My intent might not have been so complicated, although I suppose if you wanted to map it out globally, you'd need more than a spread sheet.

"If government is complicit with this by decision, then they are guilty as well? If you have the info for legal action, then a class action suit not only against the company but also against the Government?"

Well, if memory serves you gave me a link a while back to a site that tells you who is the registred lobbyist at Queen's Park for a given corporation.  The lobbyist for Highlands, when you take that name and search it at elections Ontario, is a notable financial contributor to the Liberal Party of Ontario. 

Unfortunatley, while many people might see that as "bribery" the criminal code does not.  As far as class actions suits, I doubt it would have traction but you never know.  That would be interesting.

But, that information made available in a timely way might engender outrage that is difficult to manage.

Tommy_Paine

Here we go:  

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-investor/wall-street-legend-aims-to...

An nice supportive piece by Martin Mittelstaedt, extolling the virtues of hedge fund operators. 

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Globe and Mail writes thoughtful panegyric to "Wall Street Legend" Seth Klarman

Quote:
 Seth Klarman is considered one of the world’s money managing impresarios, a superb value investor whose record of outsized returns has given him cult status on Wall Street.

What interests him now might be a surprise: rocks and spuds in a rural Ontario backwater....

The rock could be worth up to $25-billion, depending on its quality.

To be sure, there is a big element of dice-rolling. To hit pay dirt, the quarry needs to be licensed, which means overcoming the fear and loathing among many in the local area toward the proposed development. It’s a huge, hard-to-quantify risk....

It isn’t clear whether pit farming is economically viable, given the high cost of electricity for the hundreds of millions of litres of water that will need to be pumped daily.

The biggest investment risk, though, is the human factor. People living near proposed quarries tend to hate them, what with the prospect of blasting, dust, and worries over groundwater disruption. This one is no different.

“Folks will fight this until the bitter end,” predicts Carl Cosack, a cattle farmer who lives nearby.

 

 

 

MegB

Martin Mittelstaedt used to be the Globe's Queen's Park correspondent, and was fairly left-wing about 15 years ago.  I wonder what happened.

I particularly like the reference to "a backwater", as if people didn't live near the proposed quarry or, if far away, weren't affected by it.  70 trucks per hour along school routes, not to mention the seismic activity generated by blasting, and the heavy truck traffic.  Not to mention the atmospheric dust generated by open pit blasting. 

Between 2009 and 2011 Baupost hedge fund went from approx. 15 billion to 23 billion.  How does an Ontario farming community fight this financial might?

Fuck.

Tommy_Paine

Well, if you were a big evil Public Relations Company, who better to shill for you than someone with environmental and some lefty cred?

"How does an Ontario farming community fight this financial might?"

Interestingly, the 78 comments under the article were almost entirely impuning Mittlestraedts integrity, and people seem quite astute as to the operations of Hill and Knowlton, and see their hand behing the article. 

Which speaks to "managing the outrage", quoted above by Spector.  I am not sure P.R. companies can do that, or have such a clear playing field as they once did. 

I think a lot of people underestimate what impact this shift could have on politics.  I know Rupert Murdoch has.

boomerbsg

Looks like H&K have bought a government.

Liberal Ken Chan who ran for Toronto city council and lost (thank god) to Kristyn Wong-Tam is now the chief staf to Minister of Natural Resources Linda Jeffery. 

Take a look where his campaign chair Jason Grier is now. 

http://www.hillandknowlton.ca/our-experts/jason-grier

and check out page 6 of this pdf to see who are still keeping in touch as of July this year. At a Liberal event none the less 

http://members.peo.on.ca/index.cfm/document/1/ci_id/59716/la_id/1

Ontario where the environment can be raped depending on who you know and how much you pay.

Tommy_Paine

Thank you.

 

boomerbsg

Not hard to find if you know where to look Money mouth

Save Ontario and our drinking water by supporting local groups like NDACT (North Dufferin Agricultural And Community Taskforce) and their fight against American corporate interests.

http://www.ndact.com

Honour Jack and fight for our children's right to clean drinking water and local food. Stand up to those who would steal our bithright! Make this an election issue!!!

MegB

The project will irrevocably destroy this very fragile aquifer at the headwaters of three major river systems and pollute the drinking water of more than a million people downstream.

Almost every PR statement made by Hill & Knowlton/Highland Group is misleading and/or an outright lie - and can be proven as such.  Still floating the "mostly potato farming myth", they own 8,000 acres of prime farmland, but are farming only 600 or so acres.  Local seed potato vendors and potato farmers who have refused to sell out or have been vocal opponents of the mega quarry are being forced out of business because of the control Highland exerts over the local market.  Property values near the proposed quarry have plummeted, beautiful historic farmhouses are not only pulled down, but are set on fire (a scorched earth method of intimidation). 

The local activists are intelligent and well-informed, and are truly a force to be reckoned with.  I spent nearly four days last week in Melancthon, talking to residents and activists, and am so very impressed by these hard-working people who refuse to give in to corporate interests and have generations of food production and love for the land invested. They share a strength and optimism that are powerful weapons against the greed, arrogance and stupidity that are demonstrably what characterize the whole mega quarry venture.

boomerbsg

One of the big problems is that neocons have gutted the public service and its ability to enforce the law. Apparently law and order only applies to kicking the crap out of the poor.

http://www.opseu.org/campaign/savemnr/index.htm

The company keeps crowing about the 400 plus jobs they will create but they will be all low paying and dangerous non-union jobs

I am so depressed at the lack of support from cities like Toronto. This location was specifically chosen because of how few people live up here. Out of sight out of mind. Where are the progressive councillors in Toronto on this issue?

We desperately need them to get in the game. Toronto is the media centre of the country and the media don't pay attention to anything north of the airport. This HAS to become a city issue. Remember how Jack, Olivia and Miller led the fight against the reprehensible Adams mine garbage dump. WE NEED YOU TORONTO!

Dufferin-Caledon is Tory country and progressive voices are outnumbered and out gunned. The only time a non-Tory was elected was in 1997. Liberal MPP Mavis Wilson who now works for the quarry!!!

AGAIN HELP US TORONTO!

Toronto is Liberal country but it can be won over by the orange crush. Please help make this an election issue. Call radio talk shows, call your MPP and MP and tell your neighbours. If anybody knows anybody in the NDP please tell them about this quarry. I'm at my wits end and can't bare to watch my grandparents loose their home.

boomerbsg
Tommy_Paine

boomerbrg, I just went looking for it but could not find it, a link to a Toronto city councelor's page.  Anyway, he is pushing a resolution condemning the mega quarry at city hall.   Sorry, I can't remember his name, or find the link. 

My daughter lives in the Roncessvales area, and she says the street she lives on has a lot of "Stop the Mega Quarry" signs. 

 

boomerbsg

I know!! I just got back to Toronto before school and have been walking about and seeing them everywhere!

pogge

Tommy_Paine wrote:

boomerbrg, I just went looking for it but could not find it, a link to a Toronto city councelor's page.  Anyway, he is pushing a resolution condemning the mega quarry at city hall.   Sorry, I can't remember his name, or find the link.

[url=http://joshmatlow.ca/component/content/article/19-general/553-councillor... Matlow?[/url]

Tommy_Paine

Yes, thank you Pogge. 

I trust my memory too much.  I should be organizing all this information.  If only there was some magical information storage device at hand.  Blast, all I've got is this damned computer.

 

pogge

[url=http://www.torontosun.com/2011/08/29/toronto-councillor-steamed-over-pla... councillor steamed over plan to dig up potato farm [/url]

Quote:

Councillor Josh Matlow wants the City of Toronto to dig into the Melancthon Mega Quarry fight.

Matlow will ask councillors on the executive committee next week to demand an environmental assessment of what would be the second-biggest rock quarry in North America before it is built in the Township of Melancthon, north of Toronto, near Shelburne.

“While we have municipal boundaries, the impact on our environment and access to food don’t,” Matlow said Monday, explaining why he thinks the city should get involved beyond its borders. “It would be in the heart of some of the last remaining agricultural lands in the Toronto region - Toronto, being the heart of the Greater Toronto Area, has an integral interest in the land surrounding our city.”

pogge

If there's a different thread for updates on the actual development, please let me know and I'll move this:

Daily Commercial News: [url=http://dcnonl.com/article/id46498]Opposition to Melancthon, Ontario aggregate quarry[/url]

Quote:

Opposition to the Highland Companies’ proposed “mega quarry” in the Township of Melancthon continues to mount as the quarry application enters into its next phases.

...

Under current regulations, Highland has until March, 2013 to attempt to resolve the 2,050 objections filed under the aggregate act which includes concerns raised by ministries, municipalities and agencies, as well as non-government organizations and the general public.

They may conduct additional fieldwork, amend reports and even change operating plans and conditions to resolve the objections. Highland would then be legally obliged to contact the objectors and outline the steps they have taken to resolve their concerns. The objectors, in turn, have 20 days from receipt of the correspondence to either withdraw their objections or confirm they are dissatisfied.

If objections remained unresolved, the application is forwarded to the Ontario Municipal Board for a hearing.

More at the link but that lays out the timing.

pogge

[url=http://www.news.ontario.ca/ene/en/2011/09/statement-from-minister-of-the... from Minister of the Environment John Wilkinson Regarding Highland Companies Proposed Quarry in Dufferin County[/url]

Quote:

"After careful consideration, the Minister of Natural Resources and I have agreed to bring forward a regulation making Highland Companies subject to the requirements of the Environmental Assessment Act. As a result the company will be required to undertake a comprehensive Environmental Assessment for the proposed quarry in Melancthon Township.

Ministry of the Environment officials have thoroughly examined the technical reports which were submitted by the quarry proponents. Based on a review of those reports, and because of the unique nature of the Melancthon quarry proposal, I believe a full Environmental Assessment is necessary.

The McGuinty government is committed to protecting our water and our environment. Today's decision ensures that a transparent and independent assessment of the environmental impacts of Melancthon quarry proposal will be conducted."

ETA: a followup report from the Orangeville Banner: [url=http://www.orangeville.com/news/local/article/1075457--minister-orders-e... orders EA for Melancthon quarry[/url].

pogge

[url=http://www.thestar.com/living/food/article/1054611--chefs-farmers-unite-..., farmers unite for Foodstock[/url]

Quote:
Activist chef Michael Stadtländer is spearheading a farm-based food protest and hopes 20,000 people will join him.

The Oct. 16 event is called Foodstock and it’s a pay-what-you-can culinary and musical rally against a proposed limestone mega quarry on prime agricultural land next to the Niagara Escarpment. The project’s opponents fear for the region’s water, farming and quality of life.

“We have to protect land that can grow food,” Stadtländer said Thursday. “We’re just at the dawn of localism, and after seeing the drought, hurricanes and floods that have happened in the United States, I think we had better secure where our food comes from.”

More at the link.

ETA: God I hate this editor.

MegB

I am SO going to Foodstock!

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Melancthon quarry galvanizes opponents

Quote:

In 1830, a group of men set out from Hamilton, Ontario, to open up 32 hectares of land on a small Ojibway lake by Melancthon Township's Pine River. They, and the small industries that came after them, were attracted to the water resources in what was soon to be known as Horning's Mills. They built a sawmill, a grist mill, a frame house, and brought their families to settle and build this small historic community.

I stood on the crumbling foundations of one of the original mills for which Horning's Mills is named 180 years later, thinking about another group interested in the area's resources. The Highland Companies, with the financial backing of the $23 billion U.S. hedge fund Baupost, has bought up close to 8,000 acres of prime Ontario farmland in this sensitive area, and proposes to blast a 2,400 acre hole into the region's aquifer.

They'll also have to pump out some 600 million litres of water that filters through the aquifer each and every day to keep that big hole from filling up with water from a complex, largely unmapped network of underground streams and rivers. Now why, you may ask, would anyone want to destroy an aquifer -- the headwaters of five major rivers -- and put at risk the drinking water of some 1 million people downstream?

 

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

The proposed project is simply insane.

Tommy_Paine

Isn't it though?  

Unrelated to this project, I just found out yesterday that just a few miles north of the proposed megga quarry, near an elementary school in the small town of Proton (pronounced Protun, not like the atomic particle) there is a high temperature incinerator proposed to burn sewage sludge trucked all the way up from Toronto. 

If it's so safe, why not locate the incinerator in Rosedale, and save all that trucking fuel and expense?

pogge

[url=http://www.simcoe.com/news/article/1136224--quarry-protest-friday]Quarry protest Friday[/url]

Quote:

With just days left until the Oct. 6 provincial election, a group of farmers and concerned residents will be taking their message once again to Queen’s Park tomorrow (Friday) to protest the proposed mega quarry northwest of Alliston in Melancthon Township.

The rally begins at 3:30 p.m. outside the legislature in downtown Toronto. Organizers from Stop the Mega Quarry are holding the rally to celebrate achievements made over the past six months to put the quarry under more scrutiny, like the recently enacted environmental assessment. A list of speakers will attend the rally, including farmers, local food advocates, chefs, First Nation’s peoples and the Council of Canadians.

pogge

[url=http://www.orangeville.com/news/local/article/1226868--protest-never-tas... never tasted so sweet[/url]

Quote:

Adam Black never thought he would see the population of Melancthon swell to nearly 10 times its norm.

However, Foodstock “overwhelmed” the potato farmer as 28,000 people flooded his hometown on Sunday (Oct. 16), braving rain, intense wind and hail to show their opposition to The Highland Companies plans to turn 2,316 acres of farmland into an aggregate mine.

I'd say 28,000 is a pretty respectable turnout.

Tommy_Paine

I was there, and it was a great turn out.

Considering that some people were probably diverted by the "Occupy Toronto" protest, and that the weather leading up to, and all the forecasts for the weekend were for cold wet windy conditions, it was amazing. 

I would hope that they make this an anual event, and move it up to the week before Thanksgiving. 

We got there around 11:30, and stayed till around 4:00. 

Various chefs were set up in the Woodlot (which was a good place to be-- once out of the wind, it was actually a pleasent day.)  and there were-- in spite of line ups-- many people impressed by the food.  I was impressed that all these chefs pulled that off without electricity, cooking over campfires. 

Many people watched the musical guests.  I stayed in the woods for the most part as the genre of music wasn't enough to get me out into the wind, so I can't give a review other than to say thousands braved the wind driven drizzel to enjoy the music, so I suspect it got good reviews from them.

There were also geology maps of the area to inform and turn the crank of geology nerds like me.

Walking through the crowds the only complaints I heard were about the line ups-- which looked worse than they actually were because they moved pretty quick from what I experienced.  And the mud.  Some people were surprised that there would be mud on a farm... 

All though I didn't see this, some others commented on one woman who steadfastly remained in high heels for the event.  Mostly though, I was amazed at the different colours and fashion patterns now available in Wellington Boots.

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When we left we went back to our friend's place who has a farm just west of Dundalk. We visited for a bit, then took off to a person's place east of there, that Rebeca West had met some months ago.  That host had invited Hanah, our ten year old who, (strange for 10 year old girls, I know) is infatuated by horses for a horse back ride. 

Our hosts land was breath taking.  there were swales or slumps or little hills that had me wondering if they were kettle features from the glaciers, or some karst feature from being on the edge of the escarpment.  The view over these features showed the opposite ridge of Pine valley on the horizon.  And the sun broke through from time to time.  

This sits right on the edge of the proposed quarry. 

The blasting and dust will make the area unfit for anything.

 

Tommy_Paine
pogge

Coverage in the Atlantic: Foodstock: Canadian Foodies and Chefs Fight Mega Quarry in Ontario

Quote:
The people kept coming. Despite rain and a bitter wind, tens of thousands of people gathered on a farm near Shelburne, Ontario, earlier this month to protest the transformation of 2,300 acres of prime agricultural land, by an American-backed company, into one of the continent's largest limestone quarries. About 100 chefs from across Canada, including some of the country's most famous, threw the biggest party the local food movement has seen here -- they called it Foodstock -- in the hope that they could save farmland and the groundwater below.

pogge

I believe this is the thread we were updating with developments.

The Highland Companies wants to pay municipalities more

The normal royalty payable to the host municipality would be $.06 per tonne of aggregate. The Highland Companies -- in the interest of "building good relationships" -- has volunteered to pay $.50 per tonne. I'm thinking that pending environmental assessment and the turnout at Foodstock have them a bit nervous about their investment.