Old Trees Matter

Source: Sauvons la falaise facebook page

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On March 29th, the association Sauvons la Falaise organised a peaceful gathering to protest against the decision of the owner of the Meadowbrook Golf course in Cote Saint Luc to cut down old silver maple trees. This event is part of the association’s general fight for the preservation of old trees in Montreal. CKUT reporter Chloe interviewed the founder of the association, Lisa Mintz, and an active member, Louise Chenevert, to get more information about the protest and the general state of tree preservation policies in Montreal.

“Imagine if you went outside in the spring and didn’t hear any birds singing […] you would feel inside that there is something missing” -Lisa Mintz 

lisa mintz
Lisa Mintz (source: Dario Ayala for the Montreal Gazette)

Lisa Mintz created Sauvons la Falaise to protect the falaise St-Jacques, a four-kilometer forester area between the Turcot Interchange and Montreal West. In this interview, she explains the ecological and cultural value of trees for people living in Montreal. She also denounces the state of  the city’s tree policy: few trees are being planted every year, laws are not implemented consistently and trees are being cut down without the consent of local residents.


In 2012, the city of Montreal decided to launch the Plan d’action Canopée, an ambitious project to plant 300 000 news trees over 10 years. While this might be a positive step towards the preservation of green spaces in Montreal, this plan overlooks the difference between new and old trees. As Louise Chenevert explains in this interview, older trees have a greater capacity to absorb carbon dioxide, their roots prevent erosion and they contribute to reduce urban temperatures.

“Sure they can replace trees in a few years with a little sapling that’s got have a dozen leaves on it but that cannot possibly replace a tree that’s got a huge canopy and that does an incredible amount of work for the environment” – Louise Chenevert

It is the Schéma d’aménagement et de développement de l’agglomération de Montréal that sets out the conditions under which Montrealers can cut down trees. According to Jonathan Théorêt, the director of the GRAME, these conditions are quite loose. While some municipalities systematically require a permit to cut down trees, it is not the case in all legislatures. CKUT reporter Chloe discussed with him the GRAME’s proposals to solve this problem.

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Idefix cries each time anyone cuts down a tree (source: Astérix et Obelix “The Mansion of Gods” p.12)


More, More, I want more! 

  • Contact Lisa (l-mintz@hotmail.com) and Louise (514 464 9094) to get involved with Sauvons la Falaise or for any further questions. They are thrilled to answer any questions about starting your own environmental association. Check out their facebook page 
  • Tree Planting! Sauvons la Falaise will be planting trees on March the 2nd (9am) with NDG WMAC [meeting place: St-Jacques and Cavendish]. BYP- bring your own poetry about trees. 
  • Join the GRAME’s campain “Un Arbre pour Mon Quartier”  and check out the group’s facebook page 
  • Join the Jane’s walk organised by Sauvons la Falaise. All the info is available here




Interview on Energy East pipeline impacts on Bay of Fundy with Tim Gray

(Photo Credit: Fundy Baykeeper/Conservation Council of New Brunswick)
(Photo Credit: Fundy Baykeeper/Conservation Council of New Brunswick)
[audio https://ia601508.us.archive.org/10/items/EnvironmentalDefenceInterview/Environmental%20Defence%20Interview.mp3]

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Environmental Defence is Canada’s most effective environmental action organization and recently joined forces with other environmental organizations as well as the First Nations people and citizens of St. John in order to call for a rejection of the Energy East pipeline in the Bay of Fundy, one of Canada’s greatest ecosystems.

This interview was produced by Victoria Xie.

Interview with Kanahus Manuel

Photo: Murray Bush (Vancouver Media Coop)
Photo: Murray Bush (Vancouver Media Coop)

Yuct Ne Senxiymetkwe Camp Stands Up to Imperial Metals and the Mount Polley Mine Disaster

[audio http://www.mediacoop.ca/sites/mediacoop.ca/files2/mc/audio/ckut_news/kanahus_manuel_final.mp3]

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Kanahus is a mother and warrior from the Secwpemc Nation in the Shuswap region of so-called British Columbia. She has been active in fighting against development projects and corporations such as the Sun Peaks Ski Resort and Imperial Metals. Recently, she has been involved in organizing to raise awareness about the Mount Polley gold-copper mine tailings spill, possibly the worst mining pollution disaster in Canadian history. She helped to set up the Yuct Ne Senxiymetkwe camp at the disaster site. For her efforts, she has been named as a defendant by Imperial Metals in a court injunction to stop blockades of the mining company’s operations. She was in Montreal last week, and came by CKUT for an in-depth interview, produced by Aaron Lakoff. Continue reading

Montreal Women Lock Down to Blockade Tar Sands Pipelines – Interview with Alyssa Symons-Bélanger

Alyssa Symons-Bélanger with her neck locked to the gate of a Suncor oil refinery in Montreal. Photo: Aaron Lakoff.
Alyssa Symons-Bélanger with her neck locked to the gate of a Suncor oil refinery in Montreal. Photo: Aaron Lakoff.

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At around 6:30am on October 7, four women locked themselves to the games of a Suncor oil refinery in Montreal’s east end to take direct action against the tar sands and Enbridge’s Line 9 pipeline. Enbridge is hoping to reverse the flow of Line 9 by November 1st in order to bring tar sands Bitumen from the west towards the east. However, a series of direct actions in the last couple months along the pipeline’s route in Ontario and Quebec might be causing this oil transportation company some problems.

CKUT’s Aaron Lakoff was reporting live on the scene when the blockade occurred, and spoke with a spokesperson Alyssa Symons-Bélanger about the group’s motivations on the Tuesday Morning After Show.

Naomi Klein Book Talk in Montreal – “This Changes Everything: Capitalism Vs. the Climate”


[audio http://www.radio4all.net/files/news@ckut.ca/1008-1-Naomi_Klein_talk_Sept_16_2014.mp3]

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Naomi Klein was in Montreal on September 16, 2014 to launch her new book, “This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate” at the Imperial Theatre. The event was organized by Riccochet Media, and recorded by CKUT Radio.

For more information on her new book, or to order a copy, visit:


Supreme Court Refuses to Protect Grassy Narrows’ Treaty 3 from Provincial and Corporate Actions


Members of the anti-logging blockade at Grassy Narrows First Nation quietly marked its 10th anniversary on December 2, commemorating a decade of fighting to keep logging corporations and the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources off their traditional territories. (Photo: David P. Ball)

On Friday, July 11 the Supreme Court refused to recognize the role that the federal government had in protecting Grassy Narrows’ Treaty 3 from provincial and corporate actions–in this case, logging in Ontario. CKUT’s Tiffany Lam spoke with Grassy Narrows’ Chief Roger Fobister to discuss the implications of the Supreme Court decision and the government’s role in working with indigenous communities.

For more information on the Supreme Court decision click here

For more information on the Grassy Narrows struggle click here

Police repression and political profiling affecting the environmental movement?


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The Quebec Network of Environmental groups announced at the end of last month their solidarity with the people who got arrested at the October 10th demonstration against a pipeline project. CKUT’s Amelie Phillipson spoke with the network’s general coordinator Bruno Masse about how the arrests happen at the demonstration, why the Environmental groups network decied to get involved in the issue and how severe police repression is affecting the environmental movement.