Indigenous peoples have been waiting for this announcement for a very long time (nearly 500 years!). The Catholic Church eventually abandoned its “doctrine of discovery.” But what is it? I spoke with Isabelle Picard, a First Nations specialist who is Wendat herself, to better explain this important news to you.
It is not so simple ! This is a concept introduced by Pope Alexander VI a very long time ago, in the 15th century. Back then, when the Europeans came to America, they wanted the resources, like lumber. However, according to the Pope, it was not very “Catholic” to arrive in the territory and loot it. So this pope told the colonists to convert the Native people to the Catholic religion, since that mission was more “noble”. This is what allowed the European people to take the territory of the indigenous peoples. The settlers felt they had the right because they considered the Aboriginal people to be uncivilized, since they could neither read nor write.
The settlers denied the rights of the natives who were there, they built cities on their territories and took resources. Aboriginal people were therefore considered a “subclass” of people.
Pope Francis said he recognized the error of the Catholic Church, that he apologized, and I think it was sincere. This apology was eagerly awaited by Indigenous peoples around the world, because a similar doctrine had also been put in place in Africa. The pope acknowledged that this doctrine should never have existed and that it led to laws like the Indian Act. This law still has an impact on the lives of Aboriginal people. Today, in 2023, many Indigenous people are considered minors by the state, even if they are adults, because of this law. We have also been represented for a very short time, seen on TV and heard on the radio, for example.
It took 500 years, but people are really happy. It was time ! I heard the news that very morning when I was woken up at 6:45 a.m. to do a radio interview! I thought to myself, “Finally! »
You may have heard of urban sprawl before. But what is it exactly? Our collaborator Laurie Jeanne Beaudoin explains the concept to you in a comic strip!
There are companies that take tap water, pour it into single-use plastic bottles and sell it. The government of Quebec wants to ban this practice. We explain!
In early April, Quebec Environment Minister Benoit Charette proposed new legislation to regulate businesses that use water in Quebec.
The minister wants to put an end to the sale of plastic bottles filled with water from the distribution network, also known as tap water. “To me, that’s nonsense,” Mr. Charette told reporters.
The minister said that nearly 2 billion small plastic water bottles are sold in Quebec each year. “It’s huge,” he blurted out.
With the new law, not all of these 2 billion bottles will be banned. Those that are filled with spring water can still be sold.
What is the difference ? Spring water comes from groundwater which is healthy and protected from human pollution. Tap water, for its part, comes from various waterways (for example, the St. Lawrence River) and had to be filtered in order to be potable, that is to say, good to drink.
Minister Benoit Charette says the new law will significantly reduce the number of plastic bottles. According to the Recyc-Québec website, there are at least 700 million bottles thrown away or abandoned in nature each year.
But the ban is not immediate. The Minister hopes to pass this law “within the next year”.
The Quebec government also wants to increase water royalties. This is the amount of money paid by companies that use a lot of water in their production. We can think of factories that transform wood into paper, those that manufacture chemicals or those that make juice.
The government hopes that increasing charges will cause industries to waste less water. “The goal is not to make money from royalties, it’s to change behavior,” Benoit Charette said.
The royalty money will go into the Blue Fund. It is a kind of account that will be used to finance a range of actions to protect waterways and better manage water.
Have you ever seen machines at the entrance to grocery stores where you can drop off empty cans? Each reported bobbin yields 10 cents. It’s called the instruction.
Starting next November, plastic water bottles and several other glass, metal and cardboard containers can also be returned to certain stores.
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