Wednesday, October 28


Blacklocks, Canada, Coronavirus

‘STUNNING FIGURE’: COVID furloughs of federal employees cost $439M

COVID-19 furloughs of federal employees have cost taxpayers more than $439.3 million, according to Blacklock’s Reporter.More than a quarter of Canadian government staffers took pandemic leave from work with pay, Treasury Board records show.“This is about transparency,” said Conservative MP Kelly McCauley, who requested the figures. “Canadian taxpayers have a right to know it.”The report to the Commons government operations committee said that from March 15-May 31, thousands of employees were given the OK to stay home from work with pay. Of 287,978 employees at federal departments and agencies, a total of 76,804 took paid leave, the equivalent of 27%.The number of cases of COVID-19 infection among public servants was 423, by official estimate.“These are not people working fr...
Blacklocks, Canada

Less daylight isn’t to blame for winter increase in rail crossing collisions: TSB

Poor driving habits more likely have a role in the increase in winter rail crossing accidents than shorter daylight hours, the Transportation Safety Board says.Train-car collisions are “one of the most serious types of rail accidents,” with 26 deaths occurring in Canada last year alone, the board said, according to Blacklock’s Reporter.Most of these accidents occur between December and February, with data showing 48% of crossing collisions occur on public roads at gated crossings with bells and flashing lights.The board’s 2019 statistics found shorter daylight hours were not a factor even though “the largest increase in crossing accidents in winter occurs in the daylight.”The theory presented was that winter drivers are less likely to brake or “attempt to conserve momentum” at a ...
Blacklocks, Canada, Ontario

Most airborne mercury pollution in Canada comes from China: Report

The Department of Environment did not identify China by name, but said in a new report that mills and factories in East Asia are at the root of most airborne mercury pollution in Canada, according to Blacklock’s Reporter.“It is difficult to distinguish between mercury from foreign and domestic sources because mercury can be transported long distances on wind currents,” read the report, called An Evaluation Of The Effectiveness Of Risk Management Measures For Mercury. The report estimated mercury fallout averaged 40 tons a year with “approximately 37% from East Asia.”Chinese mills, mines and factories were outed as the cause of high mercury deposits at remote Canadian lakes and mountains.“Ninety-seven percent of mercury deposited in Canada as a result of human activities originate...