Climate Change is not a Charitable Cause – Open Letter to CRA

Nov. 24, 2021
Canada Revenue Agency, Charities Directorate
Competition Bureau of Canada
Parliamentary Budget Officer

Open Letter

RE: Climate Change is not a Charitable Cause

PDF here

In previous correspondence between our organization and the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) Charities Directorate, this agency made it clear that climate change is not a charitable cause, and that charitable causes must be ‘local, tangible and measurable’ in nature. The example of a charitable cause offered by the CRA was that of the Halifax Food Bank serving X number of Haligonians per year with a measurable outcome.

Thus, we are deeply concerned that there is now a campaign by major philanthropies under #PhilanthropyForClimate to focus on climate change as their ‘cause’, which we understand to not be allowed under the Charities Act.

Climate change is not local, tangible, or measurable, but global, intangible due to its chaotic, non-linear nature, and measurable only over time frames of decades to millennia – in other words, beyond the operational and scientific scope of charities.

Climate Change Rhetoric is out of Control

As recently seen with Dr. David Suzuki’s Nov. 21, 2021 inflammatory statements that pipelines will be blown up if action is not taken on climate change, while wearing a David Suzuki Foundation jacket, such influencers in the ENGO world are misinforming and misdirecting the public on climate change and net zero costs. Such comments put Canadians lives at risk. Indeed, many demands and claims are made about climate change by these environmental non-governmental organizations (ENGOs) that are not supported by the evidence, and these unelected, unaccountable ‘charities’ and spokespeople associated with them are never required to substantiate their claims about renewables performance and costs or the costs and implications of NetZero goals. It is wrong that the public is effectively paying them, through tax-subsidies, to mislead and frighten children and adults into compliance on unviable, economically destructive climate and energy policies. Likewise, in some cases it appears these ENGOs are acting as proxies for commercial interests.

Though the David Suzuki Foundation has issued a formal statement distancing their organization from David Suzuki’s pipeline comments, it is clear the two are strongly associated despite claims that David Suzuki has distanced himself from the organization. As of Nov. 24, 2021

Taxpaying Canadians who work on the ground in pipeline construction face a direct threat from this rhetoric as do other people working in the energy sector. Taxpaying members of the public and citizens have been put at life-threatening risk because of David Suzuki’s inflammatory comments. Most of the Canadian public are served by oil and natural gas pipelines that keep them alive and safe, that provide energy for modern medicine, and that ensure essential goods and services are mobile year-round.

Likewise, the ENGO charity Ecojustice continues to make false and frightening claims about climate change on its website, in public communications and in court documents. Ecojustice has launched several lawsuits against the Canadian federal government and some provincial governments on climate change issues, repeating false information about extreme weather and climate change. Their claims are disputed by the facts in this open letter which we have posted on our website.

These groups – combined – are a powerhouse and as reported by the Deloitte Report of the Alberta Inquiry, summarized in this article by Robert Lyman, 31 ENGOs have been funded for some $2.1 billion by Canadian governments.

How is fearmongering based on false information charitable activity?

Charitable Activity would Rebuild British Columbia – ENGO Charities Must Step Up

While small local charities and non-profits are struggling to gather funds to help devastated British Columbians and their communities, we hear silence or false and misleading statements attributing the crisis to climate change from ENGOs. Meteorologist Cliff Mass published an article that presents rainfall data showing no trend towards more extreme precipitation. The flooding event originated from a narrow plume of water vapor from the Pacific Ocean. Mass wrote “It was cooler than normal immediately off our coast and near normal for virtually the entire path of the atmospheric river.” Both metrics show that the heavy rain event was not caused by global warming.

We note that many of the environmental non-governmental organizations that are charities, have large piggybanks and many have substantial real estate and other assets, all of which are tax-subsidized or operating tax-free or tax-reduced. Many are located in British Columbia, the site of catastrophic flooding, caused largely by lack of government investment and maintenance of the Fraser Valley dike and drainage systems, and in part due to lack of dredging and maintenance of waterways, often opposed by environmental groups. We do not see any of them stepping up to save their own province or people.

THIS would be charitable activity. They are silent. What is going on?

As an example, the TIDES/MakeWay Foundation has included ‘climate’ as part of its stated mandate on the CRA website, as well as ‘capacity building.’

We ask that you delete ‘climate’ as a mandate or delist charities that continue to claim climate as a cause, and that you direct TIDES/MakeWay and other ENGO charities, particularly those in British Columbia, to step up, fund, and rebuild British Columbia communities as part of their claimed ‘capacity building’ since they have richly benefitted from Canadian taxpayers.

Tax-Subsidized Canadian News Media are Misleading the Public

Similarly, a recent project by the Canadian Journalism Project issued “The Climate Coverage in Canada” report which, based on surveys, proposes that climate be covered ‘as a crisis’ in Canada. The parties further propose that freedom of the press, freedom of scientific inquiry and freedom of expression, all inherent Charter Rights, should be abrogated to block and prevent those with dissenting views on what is termed the ‘consensus’ view of human-caused climate change from any access to the media. Their recent report and various public statements advocate for blocking any dissenting views on matters related to climate change.

Canadian media willingly plastered news of Greta Thunberg’s WEF speech “Our house is on fire… I want you to panic” in headlines across Canada but had no similar coverage of her April 2021 testimony to US Congress in which she told Congressman Norman that there was no science behind her statement “I want you to panic”. She said that she did not want anyone to literally panic and that these statements were ‘just metaphors.’ This would be very important news for the children of Canada and the world, many of whom are terrified of an apocalyptic end of the world, yet somehow the tax-subsidized Canadian media did not find this newsworthy.

The recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report, in the 4,000-page scientific document, only refers once to the word ‘crisis’ in reference to media coverage. According to Roger Pielke, Jr.’s analysis, the IPCC report actually has good news in that it no longer foresees a catastrophic future as likelythe exact opposite of the messages that the tax-subsidized Canadian media are trying to impose upon citizens and the tax-paying public. Thus, the climate emergency is over. We DO have time. Likewise, Roger Pielke, Jr. also demonstrates that the IPCC report shows that extreme weather events are NOT increasing. This is an area of research that he has been covering for 25 years and he is a well-recognized consultant to the insurance industry. Dr. Pielke’s 42-page CV is here. Somehow tax-subsidized Canadian media do not find this newsworthy.

The federal government is funding Canadian media for some $600 million in direct grants, often for a ‘climate change’ reporter. In addition, the news outlet may pick up publication grants from other federal or provincial government departments. The CBC is government funded for some $1.4 billion per year; and furthermore, paid subscribers to most tax-subsidized news media in Canada can also submit their subscription fees as tax deductions when filing their taxes.

Consequently, the journalism project noted above is advocating for selective reporting that does not represent the broad spectrum of science or public opinion, while these journos are riding on the wallets of all Canadians. The media are already ‘censoring climate now’ – and they plan to make it worse.

How is media censorship a charitable activity?

This is an abrogation of the fundamental Charter Rights of Canadians and blatant abuse of the Canadian taxpayer.

We ask that you issue a formal statement to this effect to the news media in Canada and require them to provide equal representation of opposing/dissenting views on climate and energy issues or forego their charitable tax status for subscribers and forego their government funding.

Michelle Stirling
Communications Manager
Friends of Science Society

Additional References:
Why Renewable Energy Cannot Replace Fossil Fuels by 2050
What You Really Need to Know about Renewable Energy (That the Pembina Institute Won’t Tell You)
Net Zero. Not What the Experts Predict.
Speed Bumps on the Road to NetZero
Penury or Prosperity: A Critical Review of “Bridge to the Future”
A Cruel and Unusual Punishment – NetZero 2050 Climate Policy
ENGOs Influence in Canada – a Series of Reports on their Finances, Power and Implications for Canada
When Giants Arise: The Real World of GHG Emissions and Growth

1 Comment

  1. Robert Cochrane

    … and, unlike the USA, Canadian law does not demand the names of principals be made public.

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