New measures announced to protect North Atlantic right whales

first_imgOTTAWA — The federal government has announced new measures to protect North Atlantic right whales in the Gulf of St. Lawrence that have been dying from ship strikes and getting caught in fishing gear.The new measures will include increased aerial surveillance to try to spot the whales in the gulf and extending speed limits for ships east of the current speed-restriction zone, where vessels will have to reduce speed to 10 knots when a right whale is spotted in the area.Ships travelling in a buffer zone of up to five nautical miles around these areas will also have to slow down if a whale is seen.Smaller ships — those longer than 13 metres — will now also be subject to the speed restrictions, where previously only ships over 20 metres were affected.To reduce entanglements in fishing gear, the trigger to close a fishery is being adjusted so that if even one right whale is spotted anywhere in the gulf, all non-tended fixed-gear fisheries will be closed for 15 days in addition to existing closures.Fisheries Minister Jonathan Wilkinson says the deaths of six North Atlantic right whales since June have prompted the government to implement urgent new measures to try to protect this iconic and endangered species. The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Federal government to match Red Cross donations for Fort McMurray

first_imgRachel Gilmore APTN National NewsOTTAWA –The government of Canada will match all donations to the Red Cross to assist people displaced by the wildfires in Fort McMurray, Alta., Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Thursday.The House of Commons is holding an extraordinary debate on the devastating fire, which is in its third day and has forced the evacuation of nearly 90,000 people in northern Alberta.Trudeau says the scale of the fire’s destruction has not yet been fully assessed but called it “far-reaching and utterly devastating.”“To see the pictures out of Fort McMurray right now that could be taken in a war-torn corner of the world instead of our own backyard is a reminder of how Canadians will and must stand together with our friends and neighbours in this difficult time,” Trudeau said in the packed Commons.There are five reserves within 50 kilometers of the fire and over 6,000 residents of Fort McMurray self-identify as aboriginal, or roughly 10 per cent. That’s about six per cent higher than the country-wide Indigenous population.While none of the party leaders mentioned the impact for Fort McMurray’s large Indigenous population during the debate, all of them spoke about the importance of unity in this time of crisis.Trudeau said the government operations centre is co-ordinating the federal response and monitoring the situation around the clock.Four Griffon helicopters and one Hercules aircraft have been deployed by the Royal Canadian Air Force with further air support on standby, he said.A number of federal departments have been pressed into service, including National Defence, Health Canada, Indigenous and Northern Affairs, Natural Resources Canada and the RCMP.Disaster assistance funds will also be coming, in addition to the government’s matching Red Cross donations.“We will weather this storm together, and together we will rebuild,” said Trudeau. “I want to assure the people of Alberta we are doing everything we can to help.”The government of Alberta has declared a state of emergency in a bid to galvanize the country’s relief efforts. Alberta is also matching Red Cross donations up to a cap of $2 million.Rona Ambrose, the interim leader of the Conservative party, said the citizens of Fort McMurray come from across Canada and have built a thriving resource community that now needs the support of the whole country.She paid tribute to all the Atlantic Canadians who have made lives in Fort Mac, “which gives us hope and faith that the city of Fort McMurray will rise again.”Ambrose said people around the world are watching the images and that Fort McMurray’s residents have faced “literally hell on the Earth in the last couple of days.”She said the city grew from nothing and became “the economic engine of this country.”NDP Leader Tom Mulcair called the stoic response of Fort McMurray citizens reassuring, praised the “strength of character” of Albertans and called it “profoundly Canadian” to band together in a disaster.He noted Bombardier water bombers from Quebec are on their way to the fire.“Everybody in Canada understands and feels for the people of Fort McMurray today,” said Mulcair. “This House should rise as one and provide all the support and help they need.”Green party Leader Elizabeth May said the images coming out of the region are heartbreaking.“We are one country and we love Fort McMurray,” said May. — with files from the Canadian Presslast_img read more

LANCE Hohaia has taken delivery of a sporty little

first_imgLANCE Hohaia has taken delivery of a sporty little number thanks to two local firms.Airtec Filtration and Car Lease UK have sponsored the Hyundai IX35 that the Kiwi International will drive this season.Established in 1997, Airtec Filtration has provided customers with a complete solution to their dust and fume control needs and in doing so have reduced the pollutants in the workplace and consequently the environmental impact on the world we live in. They have established a reputation for quality workmanship at competitive prices by providing innovative and cost-effective engineering solutions.The award winning Car lease UK is a vehicle leasing company, based in Leigh Nr Manchester, which has been owned by the King family for 40 years.It is the fastest growing leasing company in the country and aims to provide consistently competitive funding options on most makes/models of cars and commercial vehicles, including Business and Personal Contract Hire packages, as well as Business and Personal Contract Purchase and also Lease Purchase.Airtec’s MD, Mike Redmond, is a big fan of the club having been a long-time supporter, sponsor and shareholder.He said: “I have been a fan for many years and my first major sponsorship was being involved with a consortium of local businesses who finally managed to bring Paul Newlove to the Saints, which history has proved was a very wise and significant signing that transformed the club at that time! “I’m proud to sponsor Lance Hohaia and I’m sure he will become another one of those significant signings.  Good Luck Lance!”Brother-in-law Mike King, from Car Lease UK, was also involved in the Newlove deal and was inspired to sponsor the club after seeing the work of Chairman Eamonn McManus.“I was in awe of Eamonn and what he has done for Saints,” he said. “He invested in the club when probably no one else would have done and his passion and commitment to the Saints is second to none.“I wanted to return that in a small way and I’m sure Lance will enjoy the new car!”last_img read more