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Our Water Is Not For Sale Network Responds to Alberta Irrigation Districts' Declaration

Legislations not declarations needed to ensure water is protected for ecosystems, human needs, treaty rights and future generations

23 Mar 2011

Yesterday, Alberta's Irrigation Districts released a declaration, available online.

In response, Director of the Sierra Club Prairie Sheila Muxlow on behalf of the steering committee of the Our Water Is Not For Sale Network made the following comment: 

"Although it is encouraging that the irrigation districts recognize that water must be prioritized for human and community needs, this declaration does not go far enough as there is no recognition of ecosystem needs or treaty rights to water, nor can it be passed off as an acceptable statute to provide water security for people in times of shortage. To ensure real water security in Alberta we need to have clear legislation passed at a provincial level that entrenches protections and prioritizations of water rights for ecosystems, human needs, treaty rights, and future generations. It is not enough to rely on a 'trust us' statement from unaccountable organizations when it comes to something like water. We need strong, accountable laws to ensure just distribution of water within the province."

Our Water Is Not For Sale is a network of more than 50 orgnaizations and 1,000 individuals, including faith groups, first nations, unions, environmental and social justice organizations, farmers, and many more. We are calling on the government to establish a water allocation system that respects treaty rights and puts the needs of people, our communities, and the environment first.   

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Posted March 24, 2011 by AEN

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