I should like first of all to congratulate those hon. members who have already taken part in the discussion of this important resolution and I am certainly not excepting, but including, the last speaker who I think made a marvellous contribution to this debate.
This is, I think, one of the most important resolutions to come before us in this present session and I am happy to see the way in which this subject is being approached by members on all sides. The resolution itself is comprehensive and to my mind it is one of the most important to come before parliament since I have been a member. Actually it is in keeping with other progressive legislation introduced by the government this session. I am going to say this. I have been a member of the house for 17 years and I do not recall any other session during which so much progressive legislation has been introduced and passed in such a short period of time.
On reading the resolution one must conclude that it allows a great deal of freewheeling in discussion. There are two aspects of it to which I should like to address myself. You will have noticed, of course, Mr. Chairman, that one aspect of the motion deals with
the water resources of Canada and I should like, of course, to deal with that aspect in particular. There are, in fact, so many facets to it, that a member is not really given the opportunity to deal with all of them. I therefore intend to confine myself largely to the subject of the water supply. Then, if I have time in which to do so, I shall deal with the situation in Holland and Denmark with respect to farming, because conditions there are relatively the same as they are in Ontario.
Water pollution is, in itself, a broad subject but certainly it is going to be one of the major problems facing us. It is, I repeat, a problem, and its ultimate solution will be difficult. However, I am happy to note that this fact is being increasingly realized; and as a result of the work which will be done in consequence of the resolution being passed, I think a great deal will be accomplished. Serious attention must be paid to the water problem we face in this country. I say it is an extremely serious problem. I dealt with one aspect of it in an earlier speech and I hope to say more along the same lines today. I must say that the resolution is timely. As we all know, land use has been a matter for concern to the province of Ontario, and the government of that province has made extensive studies through the conservation council of Ontario and other agencies.
In this great era of change, with an accelerating tempo in almost every facet of our daily lives, the present so soon becomes the past that what we now do, and how we do it, must be equated with a critical eye to the future. This is not easy to do and yet so much depends on how well we do it.
The onrush of technological progress bears with it the hope for the future and, at the same time, a deep concern for the potential dangers it holds. While we exploit the one, we need to take extreme care to understand and to minimize the other. We must be sure that our concepts and our practices are attuned to the times and will keep the scales tilted in favour of man, his health and his well-being. From the monthly letter of the Royal Bank of Canada, Vol. 41, No. 4, entitled, "The Relationship of Man and Nature," I should like to quote as follows:
To subdue nature, to bend its forces to our will, has been the acknowledged purpose of mankind since human life began, but the time has come for a revision of our conception of the benefits and responsibilities of holding dominion over all other created things. A new spirit is abroad as scientists and laymen realize that man and the rest of nature are united and individible.
At a time when great elemental forces are clamouring at the bars of our civilization, we need to discard our ideas of 'attacking' the forest, 'bringing under subjection' the mighty rivers, 'con-
quering' the mountains and 'subduing' the prairie. Instead, we need to make the most of all nature as an ally.
Somehow or other the basis of any conservation program must be tied to the continuing economic welfare of the nation regardless of the individual. The use of our soil and water, forest and streams, must eventually be restricted to those who respect and cherish this franchise. The establishment of this principle must be developed and accepted as part of our national attitude just as other rules of conduct are written into our way of life. They protect the individual as they protect the nation. This is very much the case with regard to food and water. Even the presence of water has not always assured man of his food. Abundance often breeds laziness, and the subsequent neglect of water resources can bring stagnation to man and his food production.
I have had the pleasure of attending in this country and in the United States, many meetings on conservation, particularly concerning water pollution which knows no boundaries. Here is a problem area in which we need to break down the barriers of provincialism, the prejudices of proprietary interest, and the varieties of narrow, hereditary points of view, too commonly shared by so many of us. We all recognize that our advancing society needs more water for domestic use and much more water to produce the things we eat, wear and use. To provide adequate water in usable form, when and where needed, and to do this within a reasonable cost, is essential to our way of life.
It is an interesting commentary in this technological era that the availability of adequate water, the world's most plentiful substance, remains an essential key to man's progress. In this country and on this continent our water resources, their use and misuse, are rapidly becoming a prime critically urgent national problem. Beyond satisfying thirst, there is no single water problem but rather a multiplicity of complex problems, issues and questions spanning the technical, political and social fields. In composite these constitute the ingredients that make up public water policy and, in turn, such policy goes to the very heart of our economy.
What we do, for instance, in making available sufficient water determines in a major way the location and prosperity of industry and its supporting populations. For most industries the availability of water is more important even than is the proximity to raw materials or to markets; and the manner in which this water is used affects agriculture, wild life, recreational facilities and the like.
Consideration must be given to the problem so that the ideal habitat of water fowl and wild life will be protected. I am referring to marshes. When we talk about comparative use we must consider the simple mathematics of space.
Another fundamental consideration is the control of water resources. The manner in which this matter is ultimately resolved draws the pattern of land use of great areas of our continent. Among the things to be considered are the impact of water shortages, the complexities of interregional conflicts, the urgency for expanding beneficial uses. All of these demand not necessarily control but attention and action and some degree of co-ordination.
In the North American countries and, of course, elsewhere each of us has a personal and a proprietary interest in how this is done and even more specifically, where and how the authority for doing it is located and administered. To put the water problem in perspective we must first focus on man, his patterns of behaviour and his new-found upsurging technology. May I say this by way of illustration, and this is very important. The great lakes and their connecting rivers are the natural boundary between the United States and Canada for some 1,100 miles, from Duluth to Kingston. The United States population now approaches 180 million, being up 40 per cent in two decades. The metropolitan growth trend will continue. Within two decades, three quarters of this wall to wall population will live in metropolitan centres. We are seeing the development of gigantic metropolitan complexes extending hundreds of miles along superhighways and major waterways. This development also applies to Canada but to a lesser extent. Technological growth is even more fantastic. This statement holds when viewed by any yardstick you might choose, such as gross national product, raw materials, energy requirements, transportation or communications.
In addition to the oil and gas drilling menace to the great lakes, we must realize that the chemical industry and the petrochemical industry are two segments of our economy which are showing phenomenal growth. Synthetic chemicals, plastics, detergents, pesticides, solvents and the like are skyrocketing, not only in quantities but also in diversity. Literally hundreds of new chemicals come into production and use each year. To illustrate, may I point out that these facts, in the field of plastics in the United States in 1940, production was 150 million pounds. Last year it was well over 5 billion pounds. Synthetic detergents increased in 20 years from 15 million pounds to 1.3 billion
pounds. For the same period production of synthetic pesticides and other agricultural chemicals increased from 8 million to 540 million pounds. I cite these particular examples because of their impact as potential pollutants on our water resources, and these will have a great effect on the waters of the great lakes. Our production, Mr. Chairman, as you know, is in proportion to the population of the United States.
In the backwash of these tidal waves are growing needs for usable water and greater competition. These factors will tax to the limit our fresh water resources. It is therefore no wonder that, as a resident on lake Huron and as chairman of the Canadian-American committee on water pollution, I am greatly concerned about oil and gas drilling in the great lakes. We all know that the leases are granted by the provincial government of Ontario. Any pollution from this source concerns several of our departments of government, including external affairs, fisheries, public works, transport, national health and welfare, agriculture and northern affairs and national resources; yet we find ourselves handicapped because we cannot take action unless there is extensive pollution.
I should like to take advantage of this opportunity to pay tribute to the international joint commission which has made great strides in co-operation with the Ontario government and the federal government of the United States in studying the problem and recommending measures to abate the pollution.
A few moments ago I gave an illustration with regard to a run-away oil well not too far from the shores of lake Huron, in Michigan, from which, before it was capped, 100,000 barrels of oil were released. It seems unfortunate that we are obliged to wait for something like this to happen before we can do anything. Yet the provincial government continues to grant leases for oil exploration, which might more properly be termed oil exploitation in many cases, in lake Erie where companies operating for 30 years have never paid a dividend.
Under this resolution I must bring to the attention of the committee the fact that the presence of oil in our water in the great lakes would do much to crucify our tourist industry, our bird life and our fishing, and it would be a menace to health since we in western Ontario are no doubt going to have to depend on our water supply from lake Huron, and this factor is certainly going to affect our agricultural production. I have said
before that the area from Toronto to Windsor will be depending on water from Georgian bay and lake Huron before 10 or 15 years have passed.
The national anarchy in water pollution policy and control programs must be ended. It is time for the province of Ontario and the federal government to get together and see the problems and work together to correct them. This must, of course, be done in co-operation with the United States. Today the people are pollution conscious and want action. The federal government can do something about pollution from the ships which are using the great lakes, and the Ontario government can reconsider its policy of contributing to pollution in the great lakes by issuing licences to drill on property they have already leased to these exploration or exploitation companies. We find one agency of the provincial government insisting on sewage treatment plants, and the plants we have in the east and have maintained previously are not good enough; and we find another agency of government granting leases for oil and gas drilling to foul the waters of our great lakes system. Let us stop fouling our own most important natural resource.
While I am on this subject and since I have spoken on this matter previously in the house, I should like to say that we have been complaining about this objectionable oil and gas drilling in the great lakes by those companies which maintain, as they have maintained over the years, that there is no danger of spillage with all their modern technology and new equipment. A moment ago I gave an illustration of the spillage of 100,000 barrels of oil from a well before it was capped. What would have happened had the oil well been in a lake?
I am happy to have heard not long ago from the front benches of this government that some consideration is being given by the federal government of the United States and our federal government to a problem which has faced our two countries for many years, namely the habit of vessels on the great lakes using the great lakes to dump their used oil and sewage. The conclusion of the study should not be too long delayed. In fact, it has been delayed for 50 years, a period which is too long. The quicker this problem is solved the better; and it can be solved because we in this country and the people of the United States want that body of fresh water kept fresh in spite of any government action or inaction.
I am now going to refer to something that was brought to the government's attention last fall. The government must take heed of the protests from the east coast of our country against the practice of the atomic energy
commission of the United States in dumping radioactive wastes some few miles off the coast; I do not know how many miles it is. However, I think one of the hon. members from New Brunswick or Nova Scotia raised this question last fall.
I say, Mr. Chairman, that this dumping of radioactive waste offers a new and potentially dangerous pollutant of the nation's water courses. The most serious potential danger to our long range health as far as water pollution is concerned will arise when the radioactive waste dumped at sea by the atomic energy commission starts spreading through the oceans. "Out of sight, out of mind" is not a very satisfactory way in which to handle this problem.
So far, since 1951 the atomic energy commission of the United States has dumped at sea 23,000 steel and concrete barrels filled with radioactive waste, and an A.E.C. spokesman has conceded that these barrels break up in ten years or less. Surely there are other places in the United States, such as rock caves, and so on, where this waste can be dumped until perhaps some years hence there can be a safe disposal system.
I think it is a crime that this practice has been allowed to continue and I am going to suggest to the government that the time for action is now. If these barrels, as has been indicated, will contain this radioactive waste for a period of only ten years or less, this material is then free to flow in the oceans. It is true that the oceans are big but it is also true that there must be plenty of space in the United States, in caverns or other places, where they can store this radioactive waste until the scientists of their country or some other country can determine a safe method of disposal. This nation should not stand idly by and let the United States atomic energy commission dump their continually increasing amount of radioactive waste into the Atlantic ocean or any other ocean.
Previously during this session of parliament I spoke about our sand beaches on the great lakes and referred to their pollution. Sand beaches are important in this or any other country because they afford to hundreds of thousands of youngsters and their parents the opportunity to use these beaches for recreation. Let us not deny them that opportunity in this country.
We in Ontario and people in most parts of Canada are blessed with a great deal of shoreline on the great lakes and on inland lakes and rivers but our population at the moment is only 18 million people or a little better. Consider the situation in the United States. At the moment around metropolitan areas such as Milwaukee, Chicago, Cleveland and
Detroit, none of which is very far from the capital of Canada, existing public ownership on the great lakes provides for only one quarter inch of frontage per person living within 50 miles of the shore. There is not a beach on the great lakes that does not show evidence of oil. For thousands of miles on our side of the great lakes every sand beach and every other kind of beach, according to samples taken last year, showed evidence of used oil. It is no wonder that the minister of energy resources in Ontario is much concerned about the practice of ships dumping their used oil into our great lakes system.
I share with him that view and, as I said a moment ago, I hope that our government in conjunction with the United States government will see that this practice is stopped. As I said, this situation is caused by ships using the great lakes. In co-operation with the government of the United States our government can require ships using the great lakes to have on board containers into which their sewage, garbage and old oil can be dumped for proper disposal at some municipal sewage treatment plant. The people of Ontario have put up with this situation for long enough and the time for action is now. I said before and I say again that where people become pollution conscious, as the people of my constituency in southwestern Ontario have become-and I am sure the same should be true of many more areas in Ontario at least-they are more conscious of pollution than they are of taxes.
When I spoke previously I said that I should like to deal with the application of science to agriculture as found in Denmark and Holland. These two countries are today practising scientific farming more effectively than is any other country in the world. While it is true that the land both in Denmark and Holland is relatively flat and that in many sections the soil is particularly good, there are other areas where the soil is far from satisfactory, so that the average high yield per acre recorded for these two countries cannot be credited to soil or climate.
Holland and Denmark have a high agricultural productivity. Holland has a population of approximately 10 million and Denmark 5 million compared with Ontario's population of approximately 5 million. The climate in both European countries is about the same as that in central and southwestern Ontario so that farming conditions should be somewhat similar in the three countries. For many years I have wondered why the farmers in Ontario did not make the same effective use of new discoveries as industry was making on the North American continent. A study of agricultural conditions in Holland
and Denmark shows that farming does not need to lag behind industry as these two countries are adapting the same approach in agriculture that big industry has found so effective. The three main factors that have contributed to the extraordinary accomplishments of Holland and Denmark are:
(1) agricultural education, so effective and extensive that it reaches into every farm home in the country; (2) a large and effective advisory service, adequately supported by research institutes, experimental farms, pilot farms and demonstration fields; (3) an agricultural federation operated by farmers that gives a large measure of support and to an increasing degree guides the research and experimental policy of the two countries.
While the results accomplished are similar in Holland and Denmark, the methods they employ are quite different. In Holland the educational system is similar to that practised in Canada only it is far more intensive, starting with the young farmers and continuing through the training of agricultural scientists. In Denmark the training of the agricultural scientists is the responsibility of the state, but the training of the farm youth, either at boarding schools, folk high schools or agricultural high schools, is the responsibility of the communities these schools serve. While the state makes some contributions to the operation of the 28 agricultural colleges that train some 2,500 pupils, the direction and operation are the responsibility of local boards. In addition, night classes during the winter are attended by some 90,000 pupils.
In both Holland and Denmark practical farm experience is considered to be most important and those wishing to enter agricultural schools or to hold any post of importance must have several years' training on a good farm. As seen from the foregoing, agricultural education is held in high esteem in the two European countries.
In Holland the professors at Wagingen are responsible for teaching and the carrying on of independent research. Research institutes, of which there are about 22, are financed by the state but the direction is by a board of directors composed of farmers, college professors, research officials and government representatives.
The advisory services, which have nothing to do with the research institutes, have their own experimental units in different parts of the country. It is in these units that the more practical aspects of research are developed. In addition, many thousands of farm and field experiments are carried on by the farmers under the direction of the agricultural advisers. All senior agricultural advisers are university graduates. The assistants, of whom
there are a great many, are graduates of agricultural schools who in addition have had many years of practical training in the research institutes, advisory service units and experimental farms. Because the advisory services have their own experimental units, those wishing to sell farmers new fertilizer, spray material or farm equipment find it advantageous to obtain first of all the approval of the agricultural adviser before approaching the farmers, though this procedure is not obligatory. In addition to the foregoing, the farmers federation is responsible for all quality control whether seed, fruit, flowers or dairy products. In fact, the federation operates many control laboratories. In addition, they operate several soil testing laboratories and finance and operate the farm economic institute at The Hague which employs over 200 people.
The federation is yearly increasing its contribution to the research program of the country. The farmers sit on all research institutes and advisory service boards, and take a direct interest in quality control, economic and research programs. In Holland, many farmers may see a film depicting an experiment which includes the work evaluation of the farmers, the planting and harvesting of crops, the care of cattle and improved living conditions for the people, all of which can be accomplished by the application of science to rural life.
In Denmark agricultural activities are handled in a unique manner. With the exception of the agricultural college and the research farms, practically every activity is controlled and directed by the farmers federation, not by the state. In the case of the college and the research farms, the farmers make up the majority of the boards of each institute. Agricultural advisers, of which there are over 600 or one to every three or four hundred farms-and by the way, may I say that there are eight to ten times as many in Denmark as there are in Canada -are appointed either by the federation or local farmers' associations. The government contributes only about 25 per cent to the operating cost of these services. There are innumerable plant and animal breeding stations throughout the country and farm and field experiments are numbered in the thousands, practically all operated by farmers under the direct supervision of the agricultural advisers. In contrast to Holland, the Danes train farmers to keep first-class books, so that with a relatively small staff of economists they are able to obtain comprehensive figures on yields and quality of products throughout the country. Neither Holland nor Denmark operate with subsidies, their philosophy being that good cultural practice is better than
state support. In either country, there is no arbitrary control of the farmers but through demonstrations and persuasion they are encouraged to adopt new scientific methods of farming.
In order to illustrate what extensive scientific application has accomplished in Holland and Denmark, may I make the following few observations.
In so far as Holland is concerned, during the last four years there has been a very marked increase in the amount of grass cut for drying, pressing and silaging. A breed of sheep has been developed that averages 1.88 lambs a year. Strains of fruit trees are under government control. Nurseries receive their scions from experimental stations. Practically all new orchards of apples and pears are dwarf trees, as it is claimed that the early bearing makes it more economical than planting normal size trees.
In so far as Denmark is concerned, over 75 per cent of all cows are bred by artificial insemination. There are 22 progeny testing stations where the quantity and quality of milk produced from heifers is determined in order to build up the average milk production. The same type of progeny control is practised with swine and other livestock, so that even though the present average production is at a high level, it is anticipated that this will still increase due to the new methods of improving livestock.
Subtopic: PROVISION FOR AGREEMENTS RESPECTING MARGINAL LANDS, RURAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES, ETC.