As part of a Great Lakes tour, Maude Barlow addressed a concerned and enraged audience on May 17th. Approximately 200 people attended the event which featured introductory remarks by Wally Bannon, Fort William First Nation and presentations by Charlene Rogers, Environment North and Ellen Mortfield, EcoSuperior Environmental Programs.

Barlow is the National Chairsperson of The Council of Canadians, a non-partisan organization that works with a variety of stakeholder groups, unions and other organizations to promote progressive policies on public health care, fair trade, clean water and other social justice and environmental issues. With the convergence of the erosion of Canada’s environmental regulations, over-extraction of fresh water, increasing contaminants that scientists are only beginning to understand and global changes, such as climate change, the Great Lakes are more vulnerable now than ever. Barlow’s message encouraged people to inform themselves of the issues and work together to take action to protect the Great Lakes.

“People often ask me how I do it…why I don’t get angry and discouraged,” said Barlow, “I transfer those feeling to other people and hope they take action. I sleep like a baby after these presentations.” Judging from the questions and discussion after her talk, it seems Barlow has done her job in Thunder Bay- sweet dreams!

For more information on The Council of Canadians, visit: