February 26, 1925

IND

William Findlay Maclean

Independent Conservative

Mr. MACLEAN (York):

Is this the first public statement on that?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   GREAT LAKES LEVELS
Sub-subtopic:   EFFECT OF DIVERSION OF WATER BY CHICAGO DRAINAGE CANAL
Permalink
LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

I think it is, yes. At any rate this despatch has not been brought down. It will be brought down with the other papers now they have been asked for.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   GREAT LAKES LEVELS
Sub-subtopic:   EFFECT OF DIVERSION OF WATER BY CHICAGO DRAINAGE CANAL
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CON

Henry Lumley Drayton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir HENRY DRAYTON:

That was 1924?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   GREAT LAKES LEVELS
Sub-subtopic:   EFFECT OF DIVERSION OF WATER BY CHICAGO DRAINAGE CANAL
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LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

The last despatch I read was March 17, 1924. This is

Great Lakes Levels

from the British ambassador to His Excellency the Governor General:

British Embassy,

Washington, D.C., January 9, 1925.

With reference to my dispatch No. 278 of July 17 last, I have the honour to transmit to you herewith copies of the decision of the United States Supreme Court delivered by Mr. Justice Holmes on the 5th instant affirming the decree for an injunction against the sanitary district of Chicago to prevent them diverting water from lake Michigan in excess of the 250,000 cubic feet per minute allowed by the Secretary of War.

This opinion begins by summarizing the defence of the Chicago authorities and refuses to take seriously their denial that they are at present, diverting a volume of water far in excess of the allowance permitted. It then points out that the main arguments on behalf of an injunction are, firstly, the authority of the United States to remove obstructions to inter-state and foreign commerce, and, secondly-

To this I would particularly direct the attention of my hon. friend from West York (Sir Henry Drayton).

and, secondly, the terms of the treaty of January 11. 1909, with Great Britain, which expressly forbids action affecting the natural level or flow of boundary waters without the authority of the United States or Canada and the approval of the International Joint Commission established under that treaty. It affirms the force of the act of Congress of March 3, 1899, and its application to the present case, and the authority of the Minister of War to act thereunder. It^ disallows the defence of the Chicago sanitary district based upon the permits already granted by the Secretary of War in regard to the diversion of this water as being too futile to need reply, and finally after commenting unfavourably on the delay which has been permitted in the legal proceedings instituted in 1913 to determine the rights of the sanitary district in this matter, grants an injunction to take effect in sixty days without prejudice to any permit the Secretary of War may issue under the authority conferred on him by the law.

This decision o-f the Supreme Court was not unexpected.

The despatch continues:

Meanwhile the House of Representatives has referred to a committee a measure introduced by Congressman Hull to sanction a diversion of water from lake Michigan up to 10,000 cubic feet per second and to create a nine foot channel from the lake to the gulf of Mexico. Further, the senate committee is to resume its hearings next Tuesday on Senator McCormick's resolution for a joint committee of both houses of congress to investigate the nine foot channel question. Copies of the Hull bill and the McCormick resolution are enclosed herein.

I understand that the Canadian National Advisory Committee recently met in Ottawa to prepare instructions for the guidance of the Dominion representative on the Joint Engineering Board and Your Excellency will no doubt inform me in due course what further action the Dominion government, after consideration of the present favourable decision of the Supreme court, desire me to take vis a vis the United States government in this matter.

I am sending a copy of this dispatch to His Majesty's Principal Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs.

I have the honour to be, My Lord,

Your Excellency's most obedient,

humble servant,

Esme Howard.

Now, that despatch

fMr Mackenzie King.]

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   GREAT LAKES LEVELS
Sub-subtopic:   EFFECT OF DIVERSION OF WATER BY CHICAGO DRAINAGE CANAL
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CON

Henry Lumley Drayton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir HENRY DRAYTON:

What further

action has been taken?

Mr. MACKENZIE KING. I am coming to that. I want to make it perfectly clear that we have been acting in conjunction with the British government through the British ambassador at Washington; all parties have been duly informed; we have been taking the course which we believed to be, and which I think will prove to be, the most effective in bringing about the result desired by this country. As has been mentioned, an application was made to the United States Secretary of War to give a special permit to the Chicago sanitary district for a continuance of this diversion for a certain period. We are informed of that hearing. We immediately communicated with the government of the United States and asked that we be permitted to be represented. On the 16th of. this month the following despatch was sent to the British ambassador by His Excellency the Governor General:

Information has been received by Canadian government that a hearing is to be held before the Secretary of War of the United States at Washington on February 20, upon an application from the sanitary district of Chicago, for permission to divert 10,000 cubic feet per second from the waters of lake Michigan for " sewage disposal and sanitary purposes," and also to discuss the terms of a proposed permit from the Secretary of War to the sanitary district for a lesser diversion of water for a limited terms of years, and it is the desire of the Minister of Marine and Fisheries to send Mr. William J. Stewart, chief hydrographer of his department, to be present at the hearing.

My ministers request that necessary arrangements may be made for the attendance of Mr. Stewart.

Bync.

Necessary arrangements were made, the government of the United States cordially acquiesced in our request, and Mr. Stewart was present. As I mentioned in the House the other day when a question was asked on the point, Mr. Stewart was instructed to attend but not to participate unless he should be called upon to make some special representations. He was asked by the Secretary of War, if any investigation had been made by Canada to determine whether the lowering was due to the abstraction or to other causes. He replied that Canada had used exactly the same method of investigation as had been used for the upper lakes. An elaborate system of stream measurements had been taken, automatic gauges being used for determining the levels. Then Mr. Stewart in his report made to the minister on his return adds this paragraph:

I stated that it was Canada's earnest desire that any order he might issue would have in view the earliest possible complete stoppage of the abstraction, and that

Great Lakes Levels

*we had expressed our objection to it in a great many dispatches that had been filed from time to time with the Secretary of State, commencing with an elaborate brief presented to Mr. Stimson in 1912.

* When we sent Mr. Stewart to Washington we felt it would strengthen his hands if while he was there a further despatch were sent to the Secretary of State for the United States, and accordingly the following was transmitted bj'' His Excellency the Governor General to the British ambassador at Washington on the 20th of this month for transmission to the Secretary of State, Mr. Hughes:

Attention of the Canadian government has been directed to a report that the Secretary of War of the United States has fixed a time for public hearings on the application of the sanitary district of Chicago for permission to increase the quantity of water which it is now permitted to divert from lake Michigan under authority of the Secretary of War, and proposes to consider whether in accordance with the recommendation of the Chief of Engineers the amount permitted to be diverted should under certain conditions be increased to 8,500 second feet in lieu of 4,167 second feet to which it is limited under the recent judgment of the Supreme Court of the United States.

Government of Canada would not wish to oppose such interim measures as may be necessary to protect the health of the inhabitants of the city of Chicago, but in this connection it feels impelled to reiterate the protests it has already made against the abstraction of water from the St. Lawrence basin and to make it clear that the government of Canada does not surrender any claims that might be put forward for consequential loss suffered or to be suffered. It is impossible to lose sight of the fact that the effect of a present increase in the permitted diversion will be to postpone the relief for which navigation and other interests injuriously affected by the conduct of the Chicago sanitary district have been too long waiting and which subject only to the paramount necessity of safeguarding public health they are now entitled to receive.

The injury to Canadian interests by any lowering of the natural levels of the Great Lakes, their connecting waters and the St. Lawrence river by a diminution of the natural water supply is of constantly increasing importance not only from the point of view of navigation in the lakes and the lower St. Lawrence, but also from the point of view of power development. It is recognized also that United States interests are likewise substantially affected.

The Canadian government feels confident that the government of the United States is fully alive to the advisability of restricting within the narrowest possible limits the amount of water to be diverted. It feels sure that no permit will be granted for the diversion of any water not essential to protect the health of the population of Chicago and that the period during which the diversion must on this ground continue will be made as short as circumstances permit.

Tha.t, Mr. Speaker, brings the matter tup almost to the present week, and I submit, without supplementing the despatches which I have just- read, that I have given to the House ample evidence that the government of Canada is watching and safeguarding in every particular the interests of our country in this matter. In this connection we have the active support and ico-operation of the British ambassador at Washington and of the

British government at home through the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs. In view of the fact that the government of the United States itself applied for an injunction, that the Supreme Court of the United States granted this injunction to the government of the United States and that the matter in the United States has thus reached such a satisfactory stage, I think it would be unfortunate if a resolution were to go out from this House at this time to the country and to the United States implying that the government of Canada had in any way failed to take necessary action in the matter.

Sir HE.NRY DRAYTOiN: If my right hon. friend will permit a question so as to complete the narrative: He has said that Chicago was promoting a bill before the United States congress following the judgment of the Supreme court. Perhaps he could tell us how that stands?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   GREAT LAKES LEVELS
Sub-subtopic:   EFFECT OF DIVERSION OF WATER BY CHICAGO DRAINAGE CANAL
Permalink
LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

At the moment I do not recall what, particular reference was made to that bill, but I do 'think that the despatches I have read are sufficient to indicate that any bill of the kind would come under our general protest, because we have taken the broad stand that any measure that will allow this diversion to continue would be inimical to our interests and should not be permitted. That is the broad position we have taken and it is being maintained.

May I put one further aspect before the House, because I think it will help to interpret to hon. members the point of view of the government in this matter. Certain of the states in the United States are as much interested in this matter as are the people of this country. It has been the subject of consideration in the courts in the United States as well as by the government of the United States, and both the courts and the government. have decided against Chicago. I submit that for Canada to endeavour to interfere either with the judicial or the executive procedure of the United States when both are in accord with our own wishes and interests would be to set matters back rather than to help them. I hope that under the circumstances my hon. friend (Mr. Church) will not press his resolution.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   GREAT LAKES LEVELS
Sub-subtopic:   EFFECT OF DIVERSION OF WATER BY CHICAGO DRAINAGE CANAL
Permalink
IND

William Findlay Maclean

Independent Conservative

Mr. MACLEAN (York):

Has a counter protest been made that the hydro-electric project in Ontario is unfairly diverting the

same waters?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   GREAT LAKES LEVELS
Sub-subtopic:   EFFECT OF DIVERSION OF WATER BY CHICAGO DRAINAGE CANAL
Permalink
LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

There have

been protests and counter protests. I have seen by the press-

Annuity to Dr. Saunders

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   GREAT LAKES LEVELS
Sub-subtopic:   EFFECT OF DIVERSION OF WATER BY CHICAGO DRAINAGE CANAL
Permalink
IND

William Findlay Maclean

Independent Conservative

Mr. MACLEAN (York):

They do not come up in connection with this matter?

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   GREAT LAKES LEVELS
Sub-subtopic:   EFFECT OF DIVERSION OF WATER BY CHICAGO DRAINAGE CANAL
Permalink
LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

No, we have

been trying to keep the two questions separate. I think it is altogether in the interests of both governments that they should be kept separate.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   GREAT LAKES LEVELS
Sub-subtopic:   EFFECT OF DIVERSION OF WATER BY CHICAGO DRAINAGE CANAL
Permalink
CON

Henry Lumley Drayton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir HENRY DRAYTON:

I quite agree with my right hon. friend as to the bill. In view of the finding of the Supreme court that the treaty holds, the bill, of course, would' be a far greater breach than anything else could be. In view of all the circumstances I have the permission of the hon. member (Mr. Church) that the motion be withdrawn.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   GREAT LAKES LEVELS
Sub-subtopic:   EFFECT OF DIVERSION OF WATER BY CHICAGO DRAINAGE CANAL
Permalink
LIB

George Newcombe Gordon (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. DEPUTY SPEAKER:

Is it the unanimous consent of the House that the hon. member be allowed to withdraw his motion?

Motion withdrawn.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   GREAT LAKES LEVELS
Sub-subtopic:   EFFECT OF DIVERSION OF WATER BY CHICAGO DRAINAGE CANAL
Permalink

ANNUITY TO DR. SAUNDERS


On the motion of Mr. MILLAR: Whereas the Canadian people in general, and the people of western Canada in particular, have reaped and are reaping still, material benefits to the extent of many millions of dollars annually as a result of the discovery by Dr. Charles E. Saunders, of that variety of spring wheat known as Marquis, which possesses early ripening and strong milling qualities, therefore, be it resolved that this House is of the opinion that, the government should consider the advisability of granting a life annuity of $5,000 to Dr. Saunders.


PRO

John Millar

Progressive

Mr. MILLAR:

Mr. Speaker, I am prepared to go on with this resolution, but I have just been in communication with the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Low) as to the necessity of it. If necessary I can go on to-night.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ANNUITY TO DR. SAUNDERS
Permalink
LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

The government has already undertaken to do what it suggests. The estimates for the present session contain an appropriation of the amount suggested' in the resolution, namely, $5,000, as an annuity to Dr. Saunders.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ANNUITY TO DR. SAUNDERS
Permalink
PRO

John Millar

Progressive

Mr. MILLAR:

The resolution proposes

that it shall be made a life annuity.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ANNUITY TO DR. SAUNDERS
Permalink
LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

An annuity is a payment each year during the life of the person to whom it is granted.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ANNUITY TO DR. SAUNDERS
Permalink
PRO
LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE KING:

Yes.

Topic:   QUESTIONS
Subtopic:   ANNUITY TO DR. SAUNDERS
Permalink

February 26, 1925