NAFTA’s biggest fault
The oil and gas company Lone Pine Resources is using chapter 11 of NAFTA to sue our government for more than $100 million, because of Quebec’s temporary ban to fracking under the St Lawrence River.
The "Investor State Dispute Settlement " (ISDS) rules in NAFTA give corporations exceptional rights to sue governments in shadowy international tribunals for passing laws or policies that might reduce their expected profits -- policies like the moratorium on fracking to protect the waters and wildlife of the St Lawrence!
These "trade" rules undermine our democracy in favour of corporate profits, and should be removed. Yet with all the coverage about the current NAFTA renegotiations, and ink devoted to what the deal means for Canada, there's been little coverage in the media around the dramatic real NAFTA story playing out right now, this lawsuit to "compensate" Lone Pine for a provincial decision to prevent the destruction and pollution their fracking would cause! Why is the media ignoring this critical piece about NAFTA?
The renegotiations offer us a real opportunity to put an end to these outrageous corporate lawsuits which prioritize profit above all else. Please write your MP to urge the government to get rid of the ISDS from NAFTA once and for all.
It’s time to toss ISDS in the trash-bin of history.
(NOTE: Editorials in this newspaper and The West Quebec Post have indeed called for the end to ISDS privileges for international corporations. – Editor)