Infrastructure Protection

Pipeline route disputed

The Canada Energy Regulator has been asked by the to approve a 1.3km route deviation of the $30.9-billion Trans Mountain pipeline expansion in a bid to void a delay of up to nine months because of extra drilling required by the current plan. However, a B.C. First Nation says the area which would be affected holds “profound spiritual and cultural significance.” [node:read-more:link]

New look at border crossings

Perimeter fences and lighting, surveillance cameras, gate controls and road infrastructure at 11 border crossings have been improved by the Canada Border Services Agency in an attempt prevent a repeat of last year’s “Freedom Convoy” protests which had a widespread economic impact. [node:read-more:link]

Russians weaponize food chain

Grain storage facilities and Danube River ports Ukraine relies on to export grain were attacked by Russian drones August 16. Air defences did manage to intercept 13 which targetted the Odesa and Mykolaiv regions. [node:read-more:link]

Military tackling NWT fires

Canadian Armed Forces personnel and equipment were mobilized today to help the Northwest Territories’ response wildfires threatening several communities, including the capital. The City of Yellowknife declared a state of local emergency late August 14. [node:read-more:link]

Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant shut down

Ukraine’s nuclear agency, announced June 9 that it had shut down the Zaporizhzhia power station due to the breach of the Kakhovka dam further down the Dnipro River which reduced water levels in the upstream reservoir used to cool the facility. Other factors including artillery shelling near the Russian-controlled site. [node:read-more:link]

Britain removing Chinese cameras

All Chinese-made surveillance equipment is to be removed from British government facilities and new rules planned for companies competing for contracts are in response to pressure from within the governing Conservative caucus. Jeremy Quinn, Paymaster General and Minister for the Cabinet Office says the measures would “protect our sensitive sectors from companies which could threaten national security and are a firm deterrence to hostile actors.” [node:read-more:link]

Wildfires evolving into national threat

As of June 6, a total 424 wildfires were burning across Canada, more than 250 of which are considered out of control. This is according to a briefing by seven federal cabinet ministers who said the current fire situation, being fought by civilian and military responders, is one of the most severe on record and that the long-range forecast is for continued abnormal fire activity. [node:read-more:link]

Cybersecurity found lacking

A 2021 ransomware attack on Newfoundland & Labrador’s health-care IT systems was “almost an inevitability,” says Sean Murray, research director for the province’s information and privacy commissioner. “Sometimes mistakes happen and accidents happen (but) in our estimation, that is not what happened,” he said today. “It was pretty clear that we did not have in this province appropriate cybersecurity measures in place […] and that was the major contributor.” [node:read-more:link]

Russians behind pipeline sabotage?

It’s reported that three Russian naval vessels capable of underwater operations were present near the site of explosions which shut down the Nord Stream gas pipelines to European markets last September. Investigations to date indicate that the explosions were sabotage rather than accidental. [node:read-more:link]

Hydro-Québec hacked

A pro-Russia hacker group has claimed responsibility for a cyberattack on Hydro-Québec early today. A utility spokesperson said “our security quickly detected the attack therefore our critical systems were not impacted” and no personal data was compromised. [node:read-more:link]

“Radiation blackmail” in Ukraine

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy says the safety at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power station cannot be guaranteed while it is occupied by Russian troops. “Holding a nuclear power station hostage […] is surely the worst thing that has ever happened in the history of European or worldwide nuclear power,” he said March 27. The station’s six reactors are currently shutdown but power to prevent a meltdown evidently is unreliable. [node:read-more:link]

Zaporizhzhia safety deal near?

International Atomic Energy Agency Director General Rafael Mariano said today that while a deal deal to protect Europe's largest nuclear power plant from a catastrophic accident due to fighting in Ukraine could be “close”, he warned that intensified combat in the area has increased risks to the facility. “It is a zone of extreme volatility so the negotiations are, of course, affected,” he said. “I would not characterize the process for the last few months as one that has not led to any progress.” [node:read-more:link]

Poland breaks up spy ring

Six foreign nationals “from across the eastern border” have been charged by Poland with preparing acts of sabotage and spying for Russia. “Their tasks included recognising, monitoring and documenting weapons transports to Ukraine,” says Interior Minister Mariusz Kaminski. “The suspects were also preparing sabotage actions aimed at paralysing the supply of equipment, weapons and aid.” [node:read-more:link]

Canada empowering Ukraine

repair the country’s battered power grid which continues to be targetted by Russian forces. They are being delivered through a European Union response group that helps to coordinate disaster relief. [node:read-more:link]

Getting ahead of climate change?

British Columbia ostensibly will be better prepared to deal with natural disasters related to climate change though a program announced by Premier David Eby. “The last few years have taught us a hard lesson,” he said, citing wildfires, floods, a lethal heat wave and infrastructure damage. Accordingly, his government is adding $180 million to its Community Emergency Preparedness Fund. [node:read-more:link]


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