Community Coalition Against Mining Uranium (CCAMU)
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Letters

by Sulyn Cedar

February 10, 2008

Dear Editor,

Sometimes I wonder if I’m living on the same planet as proponents of the nuclear industry. In last week’s paper a former engineer at the uranium mine at Elliot Lake dismissed other writers concerns about the dangers of the uranium cycle and advised us that “mining can be, and is, in Ontario, done in a safe and healthy way with little disruption to the environment”.

Experts have shown us, and many of us have seen firsthand, graphic pictures of mountains of mine tailings blowing radioactive dust into Elliot Lake and very scary facts and figures about the uranium cycle from exploration to nuclear weapons.

Do all your readers know that ore is removed by strip-mining and trucked to a processing site, usually located in the same area as the mine. The uranium content of the ore is often between only 0.1% and 0.2%. Large amounts of ore have to be mined to get at the uranium. Uranium ore is crushed and leached using large quantities of water. The sludge or tailings, which still contain substantial quantities of radioactive material, are dumped into special ponds or on to the land. Radioactive particles can be dispersed by air and water. Spills have occurred, causing radioactive material to enter groundwater and water systems.

This doesn’t sound safe, or healthy, or likely to cause little disruption to our environment.

Municipal and county governments and the Algonquin First Nations and health units and watershed conservation authorities and scientists are using the precautionary principle to demand a moratorium on uranium mining in eastern Ontario. Please check www.ccamu.ca for local events and actions. Subscribe online to the Uranium News. Talk with your friends and neighbors and help end nuclear proliferation and contamination of our delightful planet.

Sulyn Cedar
Tay Valley Township

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February 18, 2008

Dear Editor,

Ontario’s citizens care about healthy communities. Therefore it’s of the utmost importance to protect that which we love, and act now to stop uranium mining in our region. Our Algonquin neighbors have stepped up to the plate and one man in particular is suffering the consequences of taking a strong stand against this environmentally destructive industry.

Bob Lovelace is a political prisoner. I'm angry and sad that the justice system failed on February 15 at the Frontenac County Court in Kingston regarding contempt of court charges for interfering with the business of uranium mining.

If there's to be hope for dealing fairly with First Nation's issues we must address racism within our legal system. Bob Lovelace spoke about Canadian history and why he has an obligation to stop uranium mining in Algonquin territory, on unceded Crown land. He presented a very clear case in support of the defendents position against Frontenac Ventures Corporation.

Justice Cunningham failed to understand the Ardoch Algonquin's Constitutional rights and Ontario and Canada's duty to consult with them regarding use of Crown land. His decision to incarcerate Bob Lovelace and inflict a heavy fine reflects the colonialist bias of the courts. I'm ashamed of our legal system.

What do we do now? Join us in protest this Saturday, Feruary 23 at 11AM at the Quinte Detention Centre where Bob is a prisoner. Check www.ccamu.ca for actions and events and help us stand strong against uranium mining.
Sulyn Cedar
Tay Valley Township

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March 1, 2008
Open letter to Ontario
Aboriginal Affairs
Minister Michael Bryant,

Bob Lovelace sits in jail in the Central East Detention Centre in Lindsay. He is a political prisoner. I know that his imprisonment is not news to you. What I don't know is why you let the situation with the Algonquin First Nations in Frontenac County get to this point.

When I read your website I get the clear impression that your Ministry is addressing conflict with First Nations in a fair and reasonable manner. It would appear that negotiations over land claims are at long last being handled with respect to First Nations constitutional rights. But for the Ardoch Algonquins and their chief negotiator Bob Lovelace, that is not the case. There was no consultation with the Algonquin First Nations when Frontenac Ventures applied for their mining licence under Ontario’s Mining Act. Who ignored the fact that the Algonquin people have been working to settle land claims in this territory for more than a decade? As you well know, there is and was a constitutional duty to consult with them before economic activities began.

When business as usual trumps human rights issues, something is dreadfully amiss.

If it is true that Ontario intends to deal fairly with First Nations issues, then swift action is required to prevent more draconian judicial decisions. Bob Lovelace, Paula Sherman, Harold Perry and several non-aboriginal property owners are back in court on March 18. Once again peaceful protestors will be facing contempt of court charges for doing the job that your Ministry should have done: preventing mineral exploration on unceded Crown land until First Nations land claims issues are resolved.

You should intervene now to have the present contempt charges thrown out. And ask Premier McGuinty to order Frontenac Ventures to hold off drilling until the constitutionality of Ontario’s Mining Act is dealt with.

Bob Lovelace is serving time for Ontario's crime. You failed in your duty to consult with the Ardoch Algonquins before mineral exploration began in the 'Frontenac Tract'. What are you doing to deal with this now?

Please respond promptly to my request for action.

Sincerely,
Sulyn Cedar
Tay Valley Township

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March 3, 2008

Dear Editor,

I appreciate this paper’s role in facilitating a public discussion about issues that are important to our community. Decades ago I saw a political cartoon with a survivalist standing in the arctic, all bundled up with arms outstretched, proclaiming his safety and freedom far from civilization. Invisible nuclear particles were spinning all around him. My utopian dreamer back-to-the-land bubble burst. I realized that there’s no place on earth that’s safe from nuclear madness. How could I raise healthy children in an apparently clean and beautiful countryside that shares air and water with an industrial society that creates and releases deadly particles as a matter of business as usual? Making nuclear energy and nuclear weapons includes waste products that science still doesn’t know what to do with. We are stockpiling millions of tons of radioactive waste that dangerously degrade over thousands of years.

Stopping the uranium mine in our backyards is about protecting us here, now. Its also about doing our level best as global citizens to protect and preserve our beautiful planet. We must stop really bad ideas like nuclear power and weapons from becoming more cancers, more birth defects, more species extinctions and tons more radioactive waste for generations to come.

Taking action means doing something, whatever’s in your heart to do. Join us in the Community Coalition Against Mining Uranium at www.ccamu.ca and sign on to the Uranium News, uraniumnews@mail.ccamu.ca . Together we will create a kinder, gentler, more peaceful world.

Sulyn Cedar
Tay Valley Township

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March 19, 2008

Dear Premier,

I’m sad and angry about your announcement last week that there are more nuclear power plants planned to meet Ontario’s swelling electricity needs.

On earth now I weep for the pain and suffering and mutations and mushroom clouds that are the nuclear industry’s legacy. Greed and denial breed generations of professionals and politicians that fail to speak the truth about public health and safety regarding atomic energy. You tell us that Ontario needs nuclear generating stations to keep up with its citizen’s swelling electricity needs. You do not tell us that by using other, sustainable sources of power and by turning off unused lights and computers in offices and homes we do not need nuclear poisoning power. Politics in bed with corporate agendas has built a dangerous world that is dominant culture on earth now.

On earth now we live in a collective soup that includes everyone and everything. Twinkle-twinkle radioactive particles. Poisoned babies scream, then cry, then die. Workers polish nuclear missiles. Generals and terrorists plot to kill. Nuclear madness is contagious, the real demon disease of our times.

On earth now we have a horrific quantity of radioactive waste and piles of nuclear weapons with end-the-world potential. We have megawatts of electricity to power lights that burn with no one present, lighting the world with the ghastly glow of waste, waste, gobble-gobble-gobble the raw materials in earth to spit the poisons up on earth now. Mining for uranium is part of the nuclear cycle of death.

“Uranium is the raw material of a power-elite who has taken Mother Earth's every living creature hostage.” Petra Kelly, co-founder German Green Party

NO. I repeat NO uranium mine. Stopping the uranium mine in our backyards is our piece of the crazy radioactive puzzle that makes No sense. My friends and colleagues all over earth say NO to nuclear madness from mining to missiles. The antidote to this dread disease is the willpower to look and listen and learn to change course. Ontario needs politicians who know how to turn off the lights when they leave a room, who understand and work from ecological and compassionate principles. Ontario needs to overhaul its antiquated Mining Act using today’s environmental standards. Mr. McGuinty, you need to negotiate agreements to protect lands while land claims with First Nations are being resolved. Ontario needs corporate citizens to care and perhaps shed a few tears. Ontario needs consumers who understand and change behaviours.

What do you need, Mr. McGuinty? What will you do today to make peace, not war? Please respond.

Sincerely,
Sulyn Cedar
Tay Valley Township