Pam Woolridge

 
November 23, 2017
Joint Media Release

Water is more precious than gold Ottawa/Toronto – Three Canadian organizations, MiningWatch Canada, Council of Canadians, and Common Frontiers have written to Canada’s Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould and Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland, calling on the Canadian government to respond to any forthcoming requests from Costa Rica’s new Attorney General, Emilia Navas, in a complete and timely manner.

The Canadian government is believed to have information relevant to a recently re-opened investigation concerning possible malfeasance on the part of ex-President of Costa Rica, Oscar Arias Sanchez, with regard to an alleged transfer of $200,000 from Infinito Gold’s largest shareholder to the Arias Foundation in 2008. The transfer of funds took place just prior to then-President Arias issuing an Executive Decree to allow the Canadian mining company to proceed with an open-pit gold mine, despite Costa Rica’s prohibition against open-pit gold mining.

Through Freedom of Information requests, the three Canadian organizations that wrote to the Minsters this week ascertained that Canada has previously been asked for information on this possible transfer of funds in 2013 and that the RCMP had contacted Interpol about this case. But whatever information that the Department of Justice may have was never turned over to the Costa Rican authorities. Citing Canada’s lack of collaboration, then Costa Rican Attorney General was successful in having  the case against Arias closed in 2015 for lack of evidence. However, while Arias avoided trial at the time, his Minister of the Environment, who co-signed the Executive Decree in support of Infinito’s project, was found guilty of malfeasance and was sentenced to three years in prison.

In order for the new Costa Rican Attorney General to proceed with this investigation and adequately judge the merits of this case, Canadian organizations urge the Canadian government to fully cooperate with the Costa Rican authorities this time.

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For information:

Jen Moore, MiningWatch Canada, 1(613) 563-3439, jen@miningwatch.ca
Brent Patterson, Council of Canadians, 1(613) 233-2773, bpatterson@canadians.org
Raul Burbano, Common Frontiers, 1(416) 522-8615, burbano@rogers.com

 
November 23, 2017
Joint Media Release

Water is more precious than gold Ottawa/Toronto – Three Canadian organizations, MiningWatch Canada, Council of Canadians, and Common Frontiers have written to Canada’s Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould and Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland, calling on the Canadian government to respond to any forthcoming requests from Costa Rica’s new Attorney General, Emilia Navas, in a complete and timely manner.

The Canadian government is believed to have information relevant to a recently re-opened investigation concerning possible malfeasance on the part of ex-President of Costa Rica, Oscar Arias Sanchez, with regard to an alleged transfer of $200,000 from Infinito Gold’s largest shareholder to the Arias Foundation in 2008. The transfer of funds took place just prior to then-President Arias issuing an Executive Decree to allow the Canadian mining company to proceed with an open-pit gold mine, despite Costa Rica’s prohibition against open-pit gold mining.

Through Freedom of Information requests, the three Canadian organizations that wrote to the Minsters this week ascertained that Canada has previously been asked for information on this possible transfer of funds in 2013 and that the RCMP had contacted Interpol about this case. But whatever information that the Department of Justice may have was never turned over to the Costa Rican authorities. Citing Canada’s lack of collaboration, then Costa Rican Attorney General was successful in having  the case against Arias closed in 2015 for lack of evidence. However, while Arias avoided trial at the time, his Minister of the Environment, who co-signed the Executive Decree in support of Infinito’s project, was found guilty of malfeasance and was sentenced to three years in prison.

In order for the new Costa Rican Attorney General to proceed with this investigation and adequately judge the merits of this case, Canadian organizations urge the Canadian government to fully cooperate with the Costa Rican authorities this time.

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For information:

Jen Moore, MiningWatch Canada, 1(613) 563-3439, jen@miningwatch.ca
Brent Patterson, Council of Canadians, 1(613) 233-2773, bpatterson@canadians.org
Raul Burbano, Common Frontiers, 1(416) 522-8615, burbano@rogers.com

 

July 11, 2017 – 8:00am

Diana (L) and Amber (R)Amber Cook teaches yoga in Chicago and Diana Oppenheim offers yoga classes in San Francisco. Last year, they contacted the Blue Planet Project after having watched the film Blue Gold based on the 2005 international bestseller about the global water crisis by Maude Barlow and Tony Clarke.

Compelled by a strong desire to take action, Amber and Diana worked out a plan to raise $10,000 USD for the Blue Planet Project, the global water justice initiative founded by Maude Barlow, by cycling across the country from Seattle to San Francisco and teaching yoga classes along the way. Their impressive 1,500-kilometre journey ended last week. At the time this blog was written, they were less than $150 shy of their $10,000 goal and continuing to reach out to potential donors order to exceed that target. To support their effort, please consider donating.

The Blue Planet Project is extremely grateful for the donations that will go towards supporting our advocacy and solidarity work to promote global water justice around the world.

Yoga event

Ensuring access to water for all people and protecting watersheds for future generations requires strategies that challenge the systems that prevent fair and equitable access to basic services and healthy environments for all.

In 2010, the United General Assembly affirmed the human rights to water and sanitation. Today, the Blue Planet Project works with local organizations and activists on grassroots struggles to protect democratic, community control of water. We provide research, analysis, funding and capacity building for local and international campaigns for water justice.

We support the work of impacted communities like the Cape Town Housing Assembly’s campaign to stop a water-metering scheme that is preventing poor people living in townships from accessing clean water. We help amplify the voices of grassroots groups fighting governments and corporations who violate the human rights to water and sanitation. We build global solidarity for local movements standing up to environmentally destructive projects. We provide community activists and local governments with tools to create laws to implement the human rights to water and sanitation and protect the water commons at the local level.

The Blue Planet is extremely grateful to Diana and Amber for their efforts to raise awareness and funds for our work. We would like to thank the following yoga studios for hosting them:

  • Ritual House Yoga in Seattle, WA
  • Yoga Pearl in Portland, OR
  • Yoga Tree Castro in San Francisco, CA
  • Ocean Beach Yoga in San Francisco, CA

We would also like to express our deep gratitude to the following individuals and yoga studios who supported this effort by holding their own fundraiser yoga classes throughout the US:

  • Nicole Kellogg, SLR Pilates, Nile MI
  • Juliet Oppenheim, Detroit Yoga Lab, Detroit MI
  • Stephanie Hicks , The Phoenix Center in downtown A2, in Detroit MI
  • Elle Anna, Six Degrees, Uptown, MN
  • Jenni Frank, Meta Yoga Studios, Breckenridge CO
  • Alexia Bauer, Yogaview, Chicago IL
  • Katy Hanlon Kelnhofer, The Gwen Hotel, Nomad Wellbeing, Chicago IL
  • Rajni Tripathi and Ashley Chung, OhmCulture, Chicago IL
  • Serena Brommel, Room to Breathe, Chicago IL
  • Nicole Vitale, Room to Breathe, Chicago
  • Emily Haines, OhmCulture, Chicago
  • Megan Trusnik, OhmCulture, Chicago
  • Stephanie Bustillos, OhmCulture, Chicago
  • Stephanie Lewis, OhmCulture, Chicago
  • Mary Bosak, OhmCulture, Chicago
  • Michelle Grim, Zen Yoga Garage, Chicago IL
  • Lindsey Weinstein, Ocean Beach Yoga, San Francisco CA
  • Charity Khan, Women’s Meditation Circle, San Francisco, CA
  • Robin Duryea, Kirtan at The Center San Francisco CA
  • Melissa Mae, CorePower Yoga Fremont, San Francisco CA

To receive updates and information from the Blue Planet Project, please sign up for our upcoming newsletter.

Tags: 
 
June 2, 2017
Media Release

Amber and Diana

This week, two yoga teachers, Chicago-based Amber Cook and San Francisco-based Diana Oppenheim, have embarked on a 900 mile month-long Bike for Clean Water trip from Seattle to San Francisco, raising funds and awareness for the global water justice project, the Blue Planet Project.

Along the way they will be teaching donation based yoga classes in Seattle, Portland and San Francisco. Oppenheim and Cook are also encouraging people to donate to through the online fundraising campaign.  

“We believe water is a basic, beautiful right and we are willing to take radical actions to enjoy it and protect it,” says Oppenheim, who holds a Master’s degree in urban planning. “We hope to rally the yoga, cycling and environmentalist communities together and fundraise $10,000 to help promote healthy water systems for all! All donations will go to the Blue Planet Project.”

The Bike for Clean Water yoga classes will take place in the following locations:

​In addition, several yoga teachers and studios in these and other cities throughout the U.S. are joining the cause by holding their own fundraisers.

“We saw the film Blue Gold, which featured Blue Planet Project founder Maude Barlow and we were so inspired that we felt we had to take action,” says Cook. As a Flint-native, Cook is passionate about supporting campaigns against profit-driven policies that harm people and the environment.  

The Blue Planet Project works internationally for water justice, supporting local grassroots campaigns as well as global policy initiatives that defend the human rights to water and sanitation for all and challenge the corporate takeover of the freshwater commons for private profit.  

The Blue Planet Project is supported by foundations and individuals not corporations or the government. The funds raised by the Bike for Clean Water tour will contribute to efforts to defend and expand the right to water around the world.

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Amber Cook, 810-869-6546, amberdcook33@gmail.com

Diana Oppenheim, 248-840-5684, dianamaycuts@gmail.com

 
June 2, 2017
Media Release

Amber and Diana

This week, two yoga teachers, Chicago-based Amber Cook and San Francisco-based Diana Oppenheim, have embarked on a 900 mile month-long Bike for Clean Water trip from Seattle to San Francisco, raising funds and awareness for the global water justice project, the Blue Planet Project.

Along the way they will be teaching donation based yoga classes in Seattle, Portland and San Francisco. Oppenheim and Cook are also encouraging people to donate to through the online fundraising campaign.  

“We believe water is a basic, beautiful right and we are willing to take radical actions to enjoy it and protect it,” says Oppenheim, who holds a Master’s degree in urban planning. “We hope to rally the yoga, cycling and environmentalist communities together and fundraise $10,000 to help promote healthy water systems for all! All donations will go to the Blue Planet Project.”

The Bike for Clean Water yoga classes will take place in the following locations:

​In addition, several yoga teachers and studios in these and other cities throughout the U.S. are joining the cause by holding their own fundraisers.

“We saw the film Blue Gold, which featured Blue Planet Project founder Maude Barlow and we were so inspired that we felt we had to take action,” says Cook. As a Flint-native, Cook is passionate about supporting campaigns against profit-driven policies that harm people and the environment.  

The Blue Planet Project works internationally for water justice, supporting local grassroots campaigns as well as global policy initiatives that defend the human rights to water and sanitation for all and challenge the corporate takeover of the freshwater commons for private profit.  

The Blue Planet Project is supported by foundations and individuals not corporations or the government. The funds raised by the Bike for Clean Water tour will contribute to efforts to defend and expand the right to water around the world.

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Amber Cook, 810-869-6546, amberdcook33@gmail.com

Diana Oppenheim, 248-840-5684, dianamaycuts@gmail.com

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