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General

Brexit Delays Are Fueling a Dangerous Rage Among Britain’s Far Right

Posted October 15, 2019 by Anonymous

“The whole thing has become so toxic, it sometimes feels like we’re on the verge of the Spanish Civil War”

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General

JUUL Is Facing a New Lawsuit from a Dead Teen’s Mother

Posted October 15, 2019 by Anonymous

“We anticipated this being the next big thing,” one lawyer on the case said.

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General

Ohio Jail Guards Plead Guilty After Video Shows Them Beating Mentally Ill Man Strapped to a Chair

Posted October 15, 2019 by Anonymous

The Cleveland-area jail has come under harsh scrutiny due to alleged civil rights violations and inmate deaths.

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General

Justin Timberlake’s New Music Will Lean Heavily on Black Artists, Again

Posted October 15, 2019 by Anonymous

The ‘Man of the Woods’ singer appears tired of the woods; he just announced forthcoming collaborations with SZA, Lizzo, and Meek Mill.

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General

What You Need to Know About a Liberal-NDP Coalition

Posted October 15, 2019 by Anonymous

Jagmeet Singh and Justin Trudeau have (sort of) walked back cooperation comments, but that hasn’t stopped pundits from speculating.

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Film

Adam Driver Chases CIA Secrets in a New Trailer for ‘The Report’

Posted October 15, 2019 by VICE Staff

In the new VICE Studios-produced film, Adam Driver plays a government staffer working to uncover the CIA’s use of torture.

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General

Here’s Robert F. Kennedy Jr. Explicitly Voicing His Support For Anti-Vax Godfather Andrew Wakefield

Posted October 15, 2019 by Anonymous

Apropos of seemingly nothing, the once-respected environmental activist and Kennedy scion posted a long tribute to the father of the anti-vaccine movement.

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General

Watch This Humanoid Robot Hand Solve a Rubik’s Cube

Posted October 15, 2019 by Anonymous

The efforts are paving the way for robots that can solve complex mechanical problems in the real world.

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General

Shocking: Buying Homes Based on ‘Wellness’ Is Only a Trend for Rich People

Posted October 15, 2019 by Anonymous

The real estate market has caught on to the neat trick of selling people things based on vaguely defined “health” benefits.

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General

Woman Had to Have Gallbladder Removed After Waiter Poured Liquid Nitrogen in Her Drink

Posted October 15, 2019 by Anonymous

The FDA has advised against consuming anything that has had liquid nitrogen added to it right before serving.

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General

Insights on artificial intelligence in the developing world

Posted October 15, 2019 by Anonymous

Stakeholders from across Africa, including T. Idriss Tinto (foreground) of Burkina Faso, gathered in Nairobi, Kenya, in April 2019 for a three-day workshop aiming to strengthen the work of artificial intelligence researchers and policy makers. Experts believe AI can help transform societies in developing nations.

Artificial intelligence is transforming societies worldwide. In developing countries, AI’s potential to benefit local economies, healthcare, agriculture, education and other sectors is sparking optimism and investment. Matthew Smith, senior program specialist at the International Development Research Centre and lead author of the 2018 IDRC whitepaper Artificial intelligence and human development.

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General

Real World Self-Selected Intermittent Fasting (IF) Vs. Continuous Energy Restriction (CER) Study Sees 73% of IF and 61% of CER Participants Not Lasting Even 6 Months

Posted October 15, 2019 by Yoni Freedhoff

So what happens when you offer people with obesity the choice between 5:2 style intermittent fasting (IF) (very-low calories (VLC) 2 days weekly with 5 days of less restricted eating) and more traditional caloric restriction 7 days a week? Would encouraging people to choose between two strategies increase their likelihoods of successful weight management a year later? Would one group lose more weight than the other? Would adherence be the same?

That were the question post-doc RD Rona Antoni and colleagues set out to explore and they recently published a paper discussing their results.

197 patients with obesity presenting to the Rotherham Institute for Obesity were offered the choice between 5:2 IF (630 calories from liquid meal replacements on the VLC days), or an aimed 500 calorie continuous energy restriction (CER) 7 days per week with diet based off that recommended by the UK’s dietary guidelines. Both groups received support from specialist obesity nurses for 6 months and were also asked to return for measurements and discussion at one year. All were also provided with access to, “a variety of specialist facilities, resources and multidisciplinary specialists including exercise and talking therapists“, and all were reviewed in clinic monthly where measurements were taken (weight, total body fat, fat-free mass (FFM), waist circumference, systolic and diastolic blood pressure and an overnight fasted blood sample) and adherence was discussed.

99 patients chose IF, and 98 chose CER. 6 months later, 73% of IF patients and 61% of CER patients had dropped out. At one year, 83% of IF and 70% of CER patients were lost to follow up.

Of those who quit IF by 6 months, 18% explicitly reported they did so because they could not tolerate the diet, something that none of the CER drop outs reported, other IF drop outs reported they quit due to fainting or hypoglycemia on VLC days.

Regarding completers’ weight losses at 6 months, the IF patients lost a statistically significant, but likely clinically meaningless, 4lbs more than the CER group. All blood measures (including fasting glucose, insulin, hsCRP, and lipids) were found to be the same between groups. Blood pressure changes were also not different between groups.

At one year, the 17 remaining IF patients were found to have regained their lost weight, while the 30 CER patients were found to be maintaining their albeit small amount (3%) of weight loss.

So what to make of this study?

I think the most striking finding was the overall 66% attrition rate across both arms. Certainly this study does not suggest that IF is an easier regime to follow than CER (at least not when provided at the Rotherham Institute for Obesity – given weight management support is a service and not a product, it’s certainly possible that different providers might have seen different outcomes for both arms, but I do think this speaks to the challenge of scalability of behavioural interventions).`But what I really think this study highlights is the fact that the real-world likelihood of purely dietary interventions treating our increasing weights is very low indeed. Instead, we need more tools for treatment (certainly including medications and surgeries), and more importantly, if we’re going to see change, we’re going to need environmental level changes to turn this boat around.

As to whether IF or CER will work for you don’t forget that one person’s horribly restrictive diet is another person’s happy lifestyle. If you’re trying to find your own right road, even if the first road fails, and even if angry diet gurus and zealots try to tell you there’s no other road, keep trying different forks until you find the one that suits you best, as when it comes to diets, adherence is all that matters in the end, and if you don’t like the way you’re living, you’re not likely to keep living that way.

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General

Great Tweet of the Day

Posted October 15, 2019 by Anonymous

Via the inimitable Dick King-Smith – you owe it to yourself to follow his tweets.  Make sure to have the sound on for this one:

Teddy the talking porcupine enjoys an autumnal treat.
Sound on, if you please. pic.twitter.com/PuQmCN3Srv

— Dick King-Smith HQ (@DickKingSmith) October 4, 2019

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General

Commander in Least

Posted October 15, 2019 by Anonymous

I haven’t checked because I don’t want to ruin my amateur standing, but as far as I can remember, the US Constitution gives only one real job to a U.S. President — being Commander in Chief of their armed forces.And for someone who hardly works at all,…

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General

#395 When your taxi driver knows all the secret routes

Posted October 15, 2019 by Anonymous

Bouncing beltless in the backseat you’re zooming down dark streets, slick roads, and slippery lanes. Doesn’t matter if you’re cabbing back from cards, hitting the downtown bars hard, or flying home for a quick recharge. Nope, the only thing that matters is if your cabbie knows the secret sidestreet shortcuts that shave a couple minutes […]

The post #395 When your taxi driver knows all the secret routes appeared first on 1000 Awesome Things.

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General

Yelling at the Empty Chair

Posted October 14, 2019 by Anonymous

Does anyone still remember that during the Republican Convention in 2012, Clint Eastwood infamously spent 10 minutes yelling at an empty chair, wherein sat an Invisible Obama? Well, just as Eastwood’s Man With No Name represents the American West …

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General

#396 When the hold music is actually surprisingly good

Posted October 14, 2019 by Anonymous

When I was in high school my friend Chad worked at a big-box electronics store down by the lake. He’d put on a shirt, tie, and giant clown-faced grin before selling bubble jet printers and floppy disks on Friday nights. Since the rest of us were hopeless layabouts we’d aimlessly cruise around town sipping Slurpees […]

The post #396 When the hold music is actually surprisingly good appeared first on 1000 Awesome Things.

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General

Why I am voting for Trudeau

Posted October 13, 2019 by Anonymous

Trudeau stands for poverty reduction, international democracy promotion, Indigenous partnership, climate change initiatives and economic development
He also stands for personal courage: 

Why did I vote Liberal? Because Justin Trudeau put on a bulletproof vest, faced a threat on his life and rallied his supporters, while Scheer bailed on a scheduled campaign stop when he saw a dozen teenagers holding protest signs and went for hotdogs instead. #cdnpoli #elxn43

— Vex Murphy (@VexMurphy) October 13, 2019

We didn’t know why we were waiting but we would have waited all night to support Justin Trudeau.

— 🦂🌈Joanne 🌈🦂 (@JoanneCangal) October 13, 2019


And the inimitable Montreal Simon sums it up, as usual:

Just like the bullies couldn’t intimidate me, the Con hate mongers can’t intimidate Justin Trudeau…

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General

Great tweet of the day

Posted October 12, 2019 by Anonymous

Its not from today, its from a while ago, but it is a great one:

This poem never fails to destroy me. It’s one of the reasons I started writing poetry, a billion years ago. pic.twitter.com/P4Db9oMEsB

— Grendel’s Mom 💀 (@ambernoelle) March 3, 2019

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General

Saturday Stories: Jimmy Dorsey’s Generosity, Eating Disorder Recovery, And New Coke

Posted October 12, 2019 by Yoni Freedhoff

Petula Dvorak, in The Washington Post, with two incredible stories, the first about hunting for one man whose generosity and $80 helped launch an incredible career, and then the story about finding that man – Jimmy Dorsey

Amelia Boone, in Race Ipsa Loquitur, discusses her eating disorder recovery.

Tim Murphy, in Mother Jones, on the murder of New Coke.

        
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General

10 days to go

Posted October 12, 2019 by Anonymous

Ten days to go and I expect we will soon start to see a certain degree of panic among Canadian pundits, as they realize their unrelenting negativity toward Trudeau and their horserace cynicism toward election events and platforms may well lead Canadians toward a Scheer minority government.  

And thus the Trudeau government emphasis on poverty reduction, international democracy promotion, Indigenous partnership, climate change initiatives, and economic development will be finished, over, kaput – to be replaced by YankeeDoodleAndy’s mishmash of inept and contradictory promises to somehow spend more while cutting more  – and if you believe any of that, I have a bridge to sell you.
Former Parliamentary Budget Officer Kevin Page isn’t particularly impressed with the Cons’ newly-released budget either:
Page said that closing the tax gap is a worthwhile pursuit, one that all the federal parties are pursuing. He said it was a worthy goal but it hasn’t been tried in Canada on the scale the Conservative are proposing. …”The one thing you don’t do, in any plan, if you’re saying this is about competitiveness and productivity when you are doing this, is go after infrastructure, because its so critical. That truly is an investment.” Page said that economists point to infrastructure spending as a useful tool for boosting a nation’s long-term productivity and growth rates.
“Deficit financing tax cuts? That’s consumption. If you give me a tax cut I will either spend it or I will just deal with my debt issues with that extra few hundred bucks a year. That provides a temporary boost to the economy, whereas infrastructure definitely is the longer term boost.”
Page also said that finding $5 billion in savings from operational expenses would be a challenge — that Harper tried to do it but couldn’t find the savings. He also said that cutting $1.5 billion from the foreign aid budget was doable but it would give Canada a very different personality on the world stage.

 By the way, the Liberals are talking about things that really matter to Canadians, like student loans and pharmacare  and climate change.

 

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General

What you need to know about Inner YouTube and PewDiePie

Posted October 11, 2019 by Anonymous

Fascinating NYT article about PewDiePie, whom I had heard about only because my son knew about him and about the whole new Inner YouTube culture that he represents, sort of.

I started hanging out on Inner YouTube in earnest a few years ago, and its scale and insularity was jarring at first. Imagine a genetic mutation that gave everyone born after 1995 the ability to see ultraviolet light. Imagine that these people developed an identity around UV light, started calling themselves “UVers” and became suspicious of any media product made exclusively on the visible spectrum. As an old person with normal eyes, you would experience this change as a kind of slow cognitive decline. Every day, as more and more of the world played out in UV, you would struggle to catch glimpses of it. All of a sudden, people would be talking about Area 51 or eating Tide Pods, and you’d have no idea why. This deep chasm of understanding between Inner YouTube and the rest of the world has proved to be the defining problem of Kjellberg’s career.

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General

Bye, Felicia

Posted October 11, 2019 by Anonymous

Is that an approaching bus I hear? https://t.co/tyhzlyN3XD

— Joan McCarter (@joanmccarter) October 11, 2019

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General

Canada’s latest Nobel laureate and our election science policy debate

Posted October 11, 2019 by Anonymous

Hear from Canadian-born cosmologist James Peebles about his Nobel Prize; The Quirks & Quarks science and environmental policy debate

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General

Anybody there?

Posted October 11, 2019 by Anonymous

Just wondering if I should start up this blog again?  I have been away from it for more than two years now, and thinking maybe I would like to get it going again.  So maybe I will.  I am doing more on Twitter now, but it can be…

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General

Bayou Bridge Pipeline Construction Mess Poses Major Risk to Atchafalaya Basin

Posted October 11, 2019 by Julie Dermansky

Read time: 6 mins

It is a crime against nature,” Jody Meche, president of the Louisiana Crawfish Producers Association-West, said while scanning the Bayou Bridge pipeline right-of-way on the west side of the Atchafalaya Basin, the country’s largest river swamp in a designated National Heritage Area. 

His voice trembled with rage as he told me that he was speaking for all the animals living in the basin that can’t speak for themselves.

“The Bayou Bridge pipeline has left a dam across the Atchafalaya Basin affecting the fisheries, the birds, the otters, minks, raccoons, and nutria,” Meche said.

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General

#397 Burning your fingers while peeling off the first freshly baked cookie from the oven

Posted October 11, 2019 by Anonymous

It burns. Chocolate chips drip down your fingertips as that softly-crumbling cookie melts into a hot puddle of steamy goodness in the middle of your mouth. Gasp for air, pop your eyes, and suck in some cool breaths as you try to chew without touching that red-hot cookie lava. Part of what makes these cookies […]

The post #397 Burning your fingers while peeling off the first freshly baked cookie from the oven appeared first on 1000 Awesome Things.

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General

Shamans, Spirits, and Faith in the Inuit North

Posted October 10, 2019 by Anonymous

Shamans, Spirits, and Faith in the Inuit North

Kenn Harper’s new book (left) details traditional Inuit mythology such as the central story of Sedna (right) and how those beliefs came to interact with Christianity, which missionaries began introducing into the Arctic in the 19th century. (Left: Courtesy of Inhabit Media; right: Germaine Arnaktauyok: Sedna — The Ruler, 1994/courtesy of Inhabit Media)

In his new book In Those Days: Shamans, Spirits, and Faith in the Inuit North, Kenn Harper shares tales of Inuit and Christian beliefs and how they came to coexist —and sometimes clash — in the 19th and 20th centuries. During this period, Anglican and Catholic missionaries came to the North to proselytize among the Inuit, with often unexpected and sometimes tragic results.

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General

#398 Going to a movie on your own

Posted October 10, 2019 by Anonymous

It happened by accident the first time. Years ago I was staying after school but had late-night plans to meet friends at a downtown movie theater. I was going to catch a lift with my parents, watch the latest Bruce Willis blow-em-up, and then squeeze into my friend Mike’s rusty Saturn for the ride home. […]

The post #398 Going to a movie on your own appeared first on 1000 Awesome Things.

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General

Massachusetts Lawmakers Step Up Pressure on Enbridge to Scrap Controversial Gas Compressor Station

Posted October 9, 2019 by Anonymous

Read time: 4 mins

Lawmakers from Massachusetts urged Canadian energy-giant Enbridge on Wednesday to reconsider the siting of a compressor station in a densely populated area outside of Boston. In a letter to the company’s president and CEO Al Monaco, United States Senator and presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren, together with Senator Ed Markey and Representative Stephen Lynch, asked Enbridge to find an alternative to locating the compressor station in Weymouth.

Compressor stations, which propel natural gas through pipelines, emit a variety of pollutants and are usually built in rural areas.

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General

#399 Discovering a new shortcut on your drive home

Posted October 9, 2019 by Anonymous

Move over, Marco Polo. Columbus, Clark, and Cortes, you got nothing, either. Sure, maybe you sailed over choppy waves, fought with cannibals, and documented distant lands. Maybe you traded silk with kings, discovered precious stones, and toppled terrible empires. Maybe you even found new technologies and trade routes while helping us realize the Earth wasn’t […]

The post #399 Discovering a new shortcut on your drive home appeared first on 1000 Awesome Things.

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General

#400 Putting your own shoes back on after bowling

Posted October 8, 2019 by Anonymous

It’s like rolling a strike for your feet. AWESOME! Photo from: here — Check out my podcast 3 Books with Neil Pasricha —

The post #400 Putting your own shoes back on after bowling appeared first on 1000 Awesome Things.

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General

Celebrating 25 years of the Canadian Geographic Challenge with Alex Trebek

Posted October 7, 2019 by Anonymous

Alex Trebek and John Geiger at the 25th anniversary of the Canadian Geographic Challenge

Alex Trebek addresses guests at 50 Sussex during the launch of the 25th Canadian Geographic Challenge. (Photo: Ben Powless/Canadian Geographic)

On Saturday, October 5, Alex Trebek joined The Royal Canadian Geographical Society (RCGS) to launch the 25th annual Canadian Geographic Challenge at 50 Sussex, the RCGS’ headquarters in Ottawa.

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Children

Dear @BowlCanada, Selling Chocolate Should Not Be A Prerequisite For A Child To Play In Your Leagues

Posted October 7, 2019 by Yoni Freedhoff

This is not the first time someone has shared the story of a kids’ sports league that requires junk food fundraising, but it may be the first time that the league’s program coordinator explicitly stated that the child of a parent willing to pay a bit more instead of being stuck selling $50 of chocolate wouldn’t be welcome.

I’ve said it before and will say it again, our food culture is broken and junk food fundraising is just one small aspect of that, and when you question social norms, no matter how broken they might be, don’t be surprised when you get pushback. But damn, it’s depressing.

Here is the redacted email exchange I was forwarded

Parent:

Hello,

My kids’ dad signed our child up for bowling and is telling me I have to sell half of these chocolates.

I asked for information and the lane said that Bowl Canada mandates this.

So I have a few things to ask.

I’ve noticed that General Mills is a sponsor. Do they make the chocolates and are they the party that is behind this arrangement?

Why chocolate when we are in the midst of an obesity epidemic? Especially for an organization encouraging health? There are all sorts of fundraisers. If given the chance I would gladly purchase fresh vegetables through Peak of the Market, for example.

Also, why not give parents the option of giving a donation for tax deductible purposes rather than making them buy a bunch of poor quality chocolate that is probably connected to child labour? You’d still cover the costs you are hoping for.

Bowl Canada Program Coordinator

Dear [Redacted],

We are happy to hear that your child will be registering for bowling this season! Yes, Youth Bowl Canada has one official fundraiser each year and our tried and true method of raising funds, to help keep costs down for families, is the sale of chocolates.

Every two years, Youth Bowl Canada considers proposals from many companies offering an array of products, with various levels of monetary return which benefits all levels of bowling in Canada. Chocolate companies can repeatedly offered the best deal to not only bowling, but to schools, community clubs, etc.

General Mills was a sponsor of Bowl Canada last year, however it was simply a free game of bowling offer on select food products in stores. They have not wished to quote on our fundraisers in the past.

I hope I have addressed your concerns. Please feel free to reply should you have any further questions.

Parent

Hi [Redacted].

Thanks for your quick response. My understanding is, then, that these chocolate sales are mandatory if we want our kids in bowling. Is that correct?

If not correct, if this fundraiser is optional, no big deal; I don’t have to take part in something I find morally objectionable in order for my kid to have this opportunity.

If correct, that you require these chocolate sales, I would urge Bowl Canada to reconsider this policy, for 3 reasons.

1. It is objectionable to force fundraising on families. Some people are very good at this kind of stuff. Others have anxiety or lack the connections to have people to sell to. Sometimes the families least able to support a fundraiser are the ones whose kids most need this kind of programming.

2. This does not support physical health. As I mentioned, obesity is a major issue in society. I can appreciate that you are looking for good money makers but I think non-profits should be mindful of other considerations.

3. Why not give parents the option of something else? I am not going to sell these chocolates. If I end up buying half from my kids’ dad I will end up with chocolate I don’t want in my house and maybe end up throwing it out. I will have spent what? $50 on chocolate so Bowl Canada can get $20? I’d much rather just give you the $20 profit you are looking for. Why not just give me that option rather than making me spend more money than is necessary?

4. Chocolate is ethically problematic. Most chocolate manufacturers have child labour and harsh conditions as part of the production process. This is wrong and I believe what we support with our money should not hurt other people.

So I find myself between a rock and a hard place: I love my kid in bowling, it has been great for him. But I don’t think it’s right to force me to take part in something I find morally objectionable.

Please reconsider your policy.

Bowl Canada Program Coordinator

Hi [Redacted].

Yes, chocolate sales are required for the YBC program to participate in all YBC programs and events.

I will, however forward your concerns on to those that review YBC policies for future consideration.

Regards

Ugh.

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General

Geography teacher of the month: Alana Sawatsky

Posted October 7, 2019 by Anonymous

Burnaby teacher encourages her students to get outdoors

Alana Sawatsky loves to explore places like Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve and Haida Heritage Site, in British Columbia. (Photo: Alana Sawatsky)

Alana Sawatsky takes a climate justice approach to teaching, emphasizing what students can do to make a difference in the world and how geography is relavant to just about any subject. She encourages her students in Grade 10 social studies and Grade 12 geography at Moscrop Secondary in Burnaby, B.C., to get closer to nature to cultivate a sense of wonder and an emotional connection to the planet. She also teaches geography methods at the University of British Columbia. Here, she talks about inspiring her students and why geography is so important.

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General

#401 The sound of dry crispy leaves blowing across an empty parking lot

Posted October 7, 2019 by Anonymous

Orange skies burn as winds whisper for your chilly walk home. The sun dips down in the distance and dogs bark behind backyard fences as your hair blows wildly in the cool and crisp breeze. You squint into the wind and stuff your hands in your thin pockets as you sniff up that smoky sweet […]

The post #401 The sound of dry crispy leaves blowing across an empty parking lot appeared first on 1000 Awesome Things.

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General

Dominion Buys Pipeline Support at Supreme Court Through GOP Attorneys General

Posted October 5, 2019 by guest

Read time: 3 mins

By Kelly Roache, crossposted with permission from Energy and Policy Institute

With the US Supreme Court poised to decide this month whether it will review a ruling key to the Atlantic Coast Pipeline’s future, majority-owner of the project Dominion Energy has received support in its case from Republican state Attorneys General and the US Department of Justice. Both US Attorney General William Barr and the state Attorneys General have close financial ties to the utility – including through a GOP group that funneled millions to one key proponent.

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General

Already Burning for a Month, Fracked Gas Blowout in Louisiana Could Last Two More Months

Posted October 4, 2019 by Julie Dermansky
Gas well blowout burning in Louisiana on October 1

Read time: 7 mins

For the fifth week since the blowout began, a large flare is still burning at the site of GEP Haynesville, LLC’s blown out fracked gas wells in northwestern Louisiana. The blowout occurred on August 30, shortly after the company began a frack job, igniting two adjacent wells. A state official estimated that efforts to contain the blowout could take another two months, or more.

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General

Washington Petrochemical Plant Subsidies Would Violate Federal ‘Double Dipping’ Rules Say Environmental Groups

Posted October 4, 2019 by Sharon Kelly
Kalama methanol plant site

Read time: 7 mins

A plan to build a natural gas–fueled petrochemical plant in Kalama, Washington, ran into a new legal hurdle last week, as a coalition of environmental groups raised new objections to its construction.

The Port of Kalama methanol plant, if built on the Columbia River between Washington and Oregon, would expand North America’s capacity to export products produced by fracked shale gas wells, and is part of a $5.2 billion plan to develop methanol plants in this corner of the Pacific Northwest. It has applied for funding from a controversial Department of Energy “Advanced Fossil Energy Projects” program — an $8.5 billion fund offering taxpayer subsidies to the fossil fuel industry.

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