It appears that Canadian water rights are for sale, for while Canadians have gone about the business of life, the nation’s been inundated with ‘foreign investors’ buying up huge tracts of their land, with some parcels larger than some kingdoms. But instead of Canadians profiting from all this foreign real estate investment, Canada’s literally becoming a global community garden, and a foreign owned food supply. Some new land owners are ready to defend their newly purchased land’s bounty, and their right to now exploit it as they see fit, with whatever force against Canadians they deem necessary.
Some of that geographic and geologic bounty is water. Clean, clear water, one of the most precious commodities on Earth. And because Canada has huge bodies of fresh water that are on, or border private land, said fresh water is fast becoming one of the most valuable commodities on Earth. However, water doesn’t have to be shipped in its natural state to still be incredibly valuable. By using Canada’s fresh water to raise their livestock and crops, foreign corporations and governments don’t have use their own land and water for those resources. Nor do they have to deal with any of the subsequent pollution and over-fertilization that leaves the land void of life.
The result has been that instead of foreign nations purchasing Canadian goods and commodities from Canadians, they now buy from international corporations who use Canadian land to supply their needs, and exploit Canadian export laws, subsidies and tax breaks to inexpensively extract and export those resources globally, whether they be wheat or oil, and then sell them for huge profits by exploiting consumers at the other end.
And, it’s not just happening in Canada. In the United States, Saudi Arabia’s largest dairy company, Almarai Co., bought land that almost doubled its holdings in California’s Palo Verde Valley, an area that enjoys first option on water from the Colorado River. The company also acquired a large tract near Vicksburg, Arizona, becoming a powerful economic force in a region that is well known for having far fewer well-pumping restrictions than other parts of the state (no pun intended).
Almarai’s purchases now total about 14,000 acres, and enable the Saudis to take full advantage of the US’s farm-friendly water laws. However, the purchases have rekindled debate about whether a patchwork of western regulations and court rulings favor farmers use of water too heavily, especially those who grow low-profit crops such as alfalfa, which consumes huge volumes of water, at a time when cities are urging people to take short showers, flush only when ‘necessary’, avoid washing cars and replace grass lawns with ‘alternate’ landscaping products.
In 2014, Almarai paid $47.5 million for just 9,800 acres in La Paz County, Arizona, an alfalfa-growing region that is sparsely populated, but is exempt from severe water restrictions imposed on Phoenix, Tucson and other large Arizona cities, exempting the land from a 1980 state law designed to protect the state’s aquifers. John Szczepanski, director of the U.S. Forage Export Council, said of the Saudi’s land purchases, “It flies in the face of economic reason. You’ve taken on all of the risk a farmer has. The only way you can justify that, is that they’re really not trying to make a profit. They’re trying to secure the food supply.”
It’s common knowledge that Saudi Arabia has attempted to grow its own water-intensive crops to support its food chain for decades, rather than having to rely on farms abroad. However, scarce supplies of fresh water caused by their oil and gas industries forced them to reverse that policy about eight years ago. To conserve additional water, the country banned selected crops. That meant that as of 2016, the Saudi kingdom no longer produce wheats, or green fodder – livestock feed derived from crops like alfalfa – for at least three years, but only in Saudi Arabia.
This explains how over the last ten years Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have emerged as significant buyers of north American hay to feed livestock, as their own governments curb water use. How much hay? Well just in the last year, combined they accounted for 10 per cent of all U.S. exports of alfalfa and other grasses. It appears the recent land acquisitions will allow them to begin supply their own, without needing to buy from American suppliers, or deplete their own resources.
And, speaking of dwindling resources, as more and more nations have taken significant measures to protect their dwindling resources, Canada seems to be in a frantic race to sell off everything it can, as fast as it can, and doesn’t care if it gets less than fair value for what is left of its rapidly depleting resources. In fact, bigger and bigger mass extraction projects are being planned and built all the time. Perhaps, instead of being exploited by countries like Saudi Arabia, Canada should use the experience to learn from them, and by doing so, begin to profit immensely.
Concerning mass extraction, the British Columbia government has pulled out every stop, legal or not, to advance the construction of the Site C dam in the Liard basin of northern British Columbia. This dam is not being built to supply power to the public, or to sell to the USA, it is being built specifically to generate power to facilitate Petronis mass fracking of the basin’s natural gas deposits, and will store trillions of gallons of fresh water that will be used for fracking, a process that needs massive volumes of fresh water to mix with poisonous chemicals before being pumped into the ground to extract the gas.
In turn, this will cause the largest environmental spill and disaster in all of BC history, as those fracking poisons in turn leech into and pollute all of the fresh ground water throughout the entire area. Unfortunately, the pollution will not just stop there. Eventually follow the water table all the way to the sea, as the massive invisible toxic spill expands without any way to stop, or even curtail it. And sadly, the government of British Columbia not only sanctions this disastrous spill, it heavily financially subsidizes it to the tune of billions of dollars.
On an even larger scale, even as this is being written international corporations are aggressively colluding with traitorous politicians worldwide to pass the disastrous Trans Pacific Partnership Bill, designed to strip Canadians of virtually every right that its courageous veterans fought and died for. The TPP will cause Canada the loss of well over a million jobs in the next decade alone, and and will allow global entities to exploit the nation’s resources without obligation or restriction. All while legislatively enshrining into law the right for foreign governments and corporations to imprison or kill any and all Canadians who threaten or interfere with their very anti-Canadian activities.
Canadians would be wise to take the issue of the sale of Canadian land to foreign interests to the offices of their politicians, and demand that they protect the sovereignty of Canada instead of protecting the profitability of outside interests. It’s a new world, and there’s becoming less and less of it available to provide food for more and more people. Canada needs to take immediate action to protect itself, while there is still anything left worth protecting, and needs to rid itself of the mindset that selling off its assets is in any way in it’s best interests. In fact, the the sale of Canadian land to foreign interests is much like Canadians burning the siding from their houses to keep warm; ultimately leaving them with no shelter, and no way to stay warm. Wake up Canada, before it’s too late, eh!