May 16, 1911

CON

Charles Alexander Magrath

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MAGRATH.

When Mr. Anderson made his report the treaty was as it is today. That is to say, he was called in after the treaty had been signed at Washington, so that it has not been altered through any suggestion made by him.

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LIB

William Pugsley (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY.

I thought Mr. Anderson made the report in 1908 when this provision was not in article 6.

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CON

Charles Alexander Magrath

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MAGRATH.

That is quite correct. I thought the minister was referring to Mr. Anderson's criticism of the treaty.

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LIB

William Pugsley (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY.

I was referring to his report of 1908. We have secured by article 6 what I think is of the greatest possible importance to the people of that section of Alberta. We provide that, during the dry season when the people want the water, our people shall have a prior Tight to the extent of 500 cubic inches per second if it is not more than three-fourths of the flow, but at all events, during the dry season, at least three-fourths of the entire flow of the St. Mary's river is allotted to us, and that is a matter of great importance. In the flood season the waters flow in vast quantities, and can be stored if our people want to store them. But in the dry season the United States government must not hold back the water so as to prevent our people getting the 500 cubic feet per second, or at least three-fourths of the whole natural flow of the St. Mary's river. These are the words of the treaty, which I think are of extreme importance, and their importance has been overlooked by my hon. friend. Article 6 is as follows:

The high contracting parties agree that the St. Mary's and Milk rivers and their tributaries (in the state of Montana and the provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan) are to be treated as one stream for the purposes of irrigation and power, and the waters thereof shall be apportioned equally between the two countries, but in making such equal apportionment more than half may be taken from one river and less than half from the other by either country so as to afford a more beneficial use to each. It is further agreed that in the division of such waters during the irrigation season, between the 1st of April and 31st of Gctdben inclusive, annually!, the United States is entitled to a prior appropriation of 500 cubic feet per second of the waters of the Milk river, or so much of such amount as constitutes three-fourths of its natural fle w, and that Canada is entitled to a prior appropriation of 500 cubic feet per second of the flow pf St. Mary's river, or so much of such amount as constitutes three-fourths of its natural flow.

Now, can you conceive of a better arrangement for the people of Alberta, who are interested in this irrigation question, than is made in that provision? That provision was not in the suggestion of the American government made by Secretary Root. It was put into the treaty after lengthy negotiations, after our representatives and myself had urged upon those representing the United States, that it would not be fair to our people unless we could secure a prior right to appropriate a certain quantity of the water of the St. MaTy's river; and after these negotiations the United States agreed to this demand, which is of infinite value to the people

of that section of the province of Alberta. And yet my hon. friend deals with the matter just as if this provision were of no importance. I say it is of enormous importance, because no matter whether the flow of water is great or small, no matter whether the season is exceptionally dry or not, no matter whether little water may be left to the United States or not, we during the irrigation season have up to 500 cubic feet per second, or at least up to three-fourths of the natural flow of the St. Mary's river.

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CON

Charles Alexander Magrath

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MAGRATH.

Did I understand the hon. minister to say some time ago that Canada could have the use of some of the diverted waters of the St. Mary's river after they had been turned into the channel of the Milk river?

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LIB

William Pugsley (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY.

What I said was this: that is a matter that rests wholly with the commissioners. It is the duty and power of the commissioners to divide all the waters of both rivers, and of all their tributaries equally between the people of the two countries. They can give more of one river to one country and vice versa in respect of the other river; and if in the judgment of the commissioners it would be better to give to the people of Canada a greater portion of the flow of the Milk river, and less of the St. Mary's river, they would have a perfect right to do that. The treaty imposes upon them the duty of dividing the waters of both rivers, treating them as one stream, equally between the people of the two countries, and gives them the power of so distributing the waters as to make the distribution as beneficial as possible to the people of both countries.

Something has been said by my hon. friend with reference to a letter which I wrote to the Prime Minister to be forwarded to Washington, urging that the United States government should undertake to build a dam upon the St. Mary's river for the joint benefit of both countries. I am free to admit that when I wrote that letter I was strongly impressed with the desirability of securing some such arrangement if I could do so. I do not think it will be improperly disclosing any secret if I say that the Canadian government were prepared to pay a portion of the cost of erecting that dam upon American territory; but the government of the United States said, and we cannot perhaps wonder at their saying so, that they would hesitate to accept a contribution from another government for the erection of works in their country, even though they might be irrigation works that would be for the benefit of both countries. But the strong argument they made, as will appear from the correspondence, was that until they had erected a dam, and had some experience whe-Mr. PUGSLEY.

ther or not it would stand in the bed of the St. Mary's river, it would not be desirable to enter into such an arrangement. It will also appear from the correspondence that they argued that it was not practicable to take water from the bed of the river, but that it would have to be taken from a height of about 30 feet above the bed, and therefore, it would not be possible to store more than one-half the water of the river. That was their view. We were not able to make an answer to that, and after careful inquiry we came to the conclusion that on the Canadian side of the line there were opportunities to store the water off St. Mary's river as good as, if not superior, to those on the American side. We gave a great deal of thought to this question of article 6. A good many months intervened before wre finally agreed to the treaty, even after it had been ratified by the United States Senate, We weTe making inquiry with regard to the effect of article 6, looking at it from every possible standpoint, and conferring with those who had a knowledge of the subject. As a result of all this inquiry, we came to the conclusion that it would be in the interest of Canada to sign this treaty, and that on the whole article 6 would be just to the people of Alberta. We did not act upon the judgment of our own experts alone. My hon. friend has stated that the making of this treaty was a breach of faith with the Alberta Railway and Irrigation Company. He made a strong point of that. Well, Sir, when I tell you that the Alberta Railway and Irrigation Company, through Sir Thomas Shaughnessy, the president of the Canadian Pacific Railway Company, which controls more than 60 per cent of the stock of that irrigation company, approved and expressed to us their approval of the execution of this treaty, I think you will hardly be disposed to agree with my hon. friend from Medicine Hat that there was any breach of faith towards that company. They expressly advised us that it would be not only in the interest of that portion of the western country, but in their own interest, because they were anxious to have permanence in the supply of water for their irrigation works, and they thought it would be better to have a certain quantity secured to them than to have the matter, remain in the unsettled state in which it had been for years. We conferred not only with Sir Thomas Shaughnessy, but with Mr. J. S. Dennis of the irrigation department of the Canadian Pacific railway, a gentleman of large experience in irrigation work. I doubt if there is a man in Canada, or in America, whose judgment might be better relied upon in irrigation matters than that of Mr. J. S. Dennis.

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CON
LIB

William Pugsley (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY.

I know because Mr. Dennis has had charge of the expenditure of many millions of dollars for the Canadian Pacific railway on irrigation works on the eastern slope of the Rocky mountains, and these works are exceedingly successful. The reputation of Mr. Dennis throughout our western country is of the very highest.

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CON

Oswald Smith Crocket

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CROCKET.

Does that view agree with Mr. Anderson's?

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LIB

William Pugsley (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY.

Mr. Dennis' views

agrees with our view, that it is a good arrangement.

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CON

John Dowsley Reid

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. REID (Grenville).

Does it agree with Mr. Anderson's view?

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LIB

William Pugsley (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY.

No, Mr. Dennis' view is that it would be better to agree to this equal division such as we propose. I had verbal interviews with Mr. Dennis., went into the matter very fully with him, and he was clearly of the opinion that it would be in the interests, not only of their company, but in the interests of western Canada that this treaty should go into effect. I have a letter from Sir Thomas Shaughnessy which appears in the return under date of March 4, 1910. It is as follows:

Canadian. Pacific Railway Company,

Montreal, March 4, 1910.

Dear Mr. Pugsley,-Mr. J. S. Dennis, who is our Superintendent of Irrigation, wrote mo from Ottawa, February 16, as follows:

With reference to the interview had this morning with the honourable Mr. Pugsley and Dr. King, Boundary Commissioner, regarding the matter of diversion of international waters, and to my telephonic communication to you through Mr. Beatty, I send you herewith a copy of article 6 of the treaty, together with map of Alberta and a portion of Montana.

As you are aware, I know the local situation very thoroughly, not only on our own side of the line, but also on the other, and after very full and careful consideration of the subject, I am quite decided that the division of the waters of the St. Mary's and Milk rivers, provided for by article 6 of the tr

There is no question whatever in my mind, that the treaty provides for a division of the waters of these two streams on a thoroughly equitable basis, and amply protects our interests in as far as they are concerned with the Alberta Railway and Irrigation Company.

Mr. Pugsley asked that I would write him a letter to that effect, but I said that I would of course, desire to consult you before doing so. I am now advising him that he will hear 289 i :

from you direct with reference to the matter, or through Mr. Creelman.

It is probable that Mr Dennis intended to refer to the Milk river ridge instead of the St. Mary's ridge, hut I am giving the exact language of his letter.

Personally' I am not sufficiently familiar with the situation, nor have I the requisite technical knowledge, to confirm Mr. Dennis' report, but I would accept it without hesitation if it were made with direct reference to any irrigation work or water supply in which this company was interested.

Yours very truly,

(Sgd.) T. G. SHAUGHNESSY, President.

Honourable Wm. Pugsley,

Minister of Public Works,

Ottawa.

Now, Mr. Speaker, my hon. friend had that letter before him, because it is in the return from which he quoted, and yet in face of that positive statement on behalf of the railway and irrigation company he makes a strong plea that the agreeing to this treaty is a breach of faith with the irrigation company, which company says that the provision of the agreement with respect to the division of the waters is on a fair, and equitable basis, and that it would be better that we should enter into it not only in the interests of the people of that section of the country, but in the interests of the irrigation company as well.

I think, Mr. Speaker, that I can now very well pass away from the St. Mary's and Milk rivers, and I will make one or two remarks with regard to what was said by my hon. friend from Montreal, St. Anne (Mr. Doherty), with reference to the Bill itself. He says that he is inclined to think that we have no right to ask this House to confirm and sanction, as section 1 proposes to do, the treaty which has been entered into. I think that we have a clear right to do so. That right is contained in article 12 of the treaty which provides that:

The commission shall have power to administer oaths to witnesses and to take evidence on oath whenever deemed necessary in any proceeding or inquiry, or matter within the jurisdiction under this treaty, and all parties interested therein shall be given convenient opportunity to he heard, and the high contracting parties agree to adopt such legislation as may be appropriate and necessary to give the commission the powers above mentioned on each side of the boundary, and to provide for the issue of subpoenas and for con polling the attendance of witnesses in proceedings before the commission.

I am sure that the hon. member for Montreal, St. Anne, could not have been aware of that provision in article 12. That provision gives us power, and this is the only legislature by which that power can be given to make provision as required by the treaty for the purpose of compelling the attendance of witnesses, and of having

them sworn before giving their evidence. Also, it gives us power to make this provision with regard to a citizen of the United States claiming redress in the courts of our own country for any wrong which he mav have suffered by reason of the diversion of water where the injury takes place upon the other side of the line. Therefore, it is clear that it is not only the right, but it is our duty to make those provisions which are contained in the first five paragraphs of the amended Bill. Hon. gentlemen might say that when I introduced the Bill in the first place I should have thought of these things, and had the sections in. I am quite prepared to say that if I had had an opportunity of conferring personally with my Ihon. .friend the Minister of Justice (Sir Allen Ayles-worth), before the Bill was introduced, and talking the matter over with him. it is not at all unlikely that the Bill as introduced would have contained these sections which we are now asking to be placed in the Bill. But, it is absolutely clear that it is our duty to put them. in the Bill in order to give complete effect to the treaty, in so far as the enforcement of rights, and the granting of remedies is concerned as well as the subpoenaing and swearing of witnesses.

Now, Mr. Speaker, I apologize for taking up so much of the time of the House. The matter is one of a good deal of importance, and I thought it not undesirable that I should reply to the observations which, have been made in criticism of this treaty, which I think is one which is not only just to the pejople whose interest* arel affected by the treaty, and more particularly to those who are living in the province of Alberta, but which is a great step forward in the establishment of permanent peace between Great Britain and the United States. My hon. friend, the leader of the opposition, has referred to the proposed general treaty of arbitration which is now pending between the United' State.s and Great Britain. We all sincerely trust that that treaty will be signed, and will become effective and that for all time to conje it will ensure peace between these gregi nations, but I desire to say that in a smaller way the treaty that this House is now called upon to consider is a great step forward in that direction. When we entered upon these negotiations theTe were irritating questions especially between the people of the west with regard to boundary waters. In our western country people living in the vicinity of the town of Raymond connected with the irrigation company had started upon the construction of some works for the diversion of the waters of the Milk river. The United States government had started in upon certain works for the diversion of the waters of the St. Mary's river. There was ground for ill-Hr. PUGSLEY.

feeling, and it is difficult to say what might have been the result if these negotiations had not been entered upon. This treaty makes provision for all questions relating to boundary waters, all questions arising along the boundary, and all questions of whatever kind, and description which may arise between the government of Canada and the government of the United States being referred to a commission. When the larger treaty goes into force it is possible that it may supersede, and take the place of the present one, but this treaty is. for five years, and only for five years, subject, of course, to its being continued, and we trust it will be continued for all time, unless it be superseded by the larger arbitration treaty between the two countries. If that treaty should come into effect, and should take the place of this one no harm can possibly be done by enacting the present treaty. It is necessary that it shall be brought into force, and brought into force at as early a date as possible. There are many questions which are arising from day to day, and which ought to come before a tribunal such as this will be.

! Motion agreed to, Bill read the second jtime on division, and House went into committee thereon.

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LIB

William Pugsley (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY.

With the consent of the committee, I would suggest that the amended Bill be taken up and read by the Chairman. The present Bill consists of the last two.

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LIB

Gilbert Howard McIntyre (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. DEPUTY SPEAKER.

Is it the desire of the committee to take the Bill as proposed to be amended into consideration?

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CON
LIB

William Pugsley (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Mr. PUGSLEY.

I may say the Bills were printed on Saturday. I asked the law clerk if it had been distributed, and he said they were ready for distribution. I do not know why they were not distributed. I sent half a dozen to some hon. members on the other side. I will let my hon. friend (Mr. Haggart, Lanark) have my copy, if he desires.

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CON
LIB

Gilbert Howard McIntyre (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. DEPUTY SPEAKER.

Section 1 of the Bill as in the members' hands, reads as follows:

The International Joint Commission, when appointed and constituted pursuant to the treaty of January the eleventh, nineteen hundred and nine, between His Majesty and the United States of America, shall have power, when holding joint sessions in Canada, to compel the attendance of witnesses by application to a judge of a superior court of the province within which such session is held, and such judge is hereby authorized and directed to make all orders and issue

M\Y 16, 1911

all processes necessary and appropriate to that end.

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CON

John Dowsley Reid

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. REID (Grenville).

I understood the Minister of Public Works to say, Mr. Chairman, that you were going to take the amended Bill.

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LIB

Gilbert Howard McIntyre (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. DEPUTY SPEAKER.

I proposed to read the amended Bill, but unless I get authority

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May 16, 1911