ATLANTICA, Canada's NAFTA Corridor, draws citizen opposition

It should come as no surprise that citizens in Canada, like Texans, are galvanizing their opposition to their NAFTA supercorridor in the northeast from Nova Scotia into New York. They’ve figured out as we have, that it does little to benefit Canadians and has more to do with transporting cheap Chinese goods into the United States at the expense of each country’s sovereignty due to the Security and Prosperity Partnership or SPP .

Groups speak against Atlantica proposal
By Robyn Young
Halifax Daily News (Nova Scotia, Canada)
June 14, 2007

Canada’s largest citizen advocacy organization spoke out against Atlantica yesterday.

Maude Barlow, national chairwoman for the Council of Canada, was the main speaker at the talk at the Scotia Bank Auditorium, Dalhousie University.

She highlighted what she called the dangers of the Atlantica proposal made by the Atlantic Provinces Chamber of Commerce and the Atlantic Institute for Market Studies to integrate the Canada’s East Coast with the northeastern United States.

“This scheme will give the United States greater access to Canadian resources without benefiting Canadians,” she said.

Atlantica is part of the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America, which aims to create a common market between the Maritime provinces, Newfoundland, parts of Quebec, Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire and upstate New York.

Barlow said the plan would erase border restrictions and regulations and create a huge transportation corridor to send Asian goods and energy resources to the United States.

“They’re planning this Atlantic gateway megaport,” she said.

If this happens, the council is concerned it could lead to highways through Nova Scotia as wide as 12 lanes across to carry the “mega” transport trucks to the U.S.

Scott Sinclair, spokesman for the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, explained to the crowd gathered at Dalhousie that the implications of the Atlantica are far reaching.

The high-volume roadway would increase environmental damage in the form of emissions from massive transport trucks, said Sinclair.

“The largest vessels can carry up to 10,000 containers,” he said.

Along with the environmental impact, Sinclair said Atlantica will increase energy exports from eastern Canada to the U.S. at a time when Canada’s reserves of natural gas are already beginning to decline.