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Morning Update: Alberta ditches Ottawa’s carbon plan; NAFTA negotiators focus on Chapter 19, dairy as Trump deadline looms

Good morning,

These are the top stories:

Alberta is ditching Ottawa’s carbon plan after a court decision on the Trans Mountain pipeline

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Alberta Premier Rachel Notley withdrew her support for Ottawa’s national climate change strategy last night in the wake of a court decision overturning approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, scrapping plans to raise Alberta’s carbon tax in 2021 and 2022. (for subscribers)

The Federal Court of Appeal ruling quashed approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project yesterday morning. The move throws into turmoil Ottawa’s multibillion-dollar effort to build the project and its political gambit to create an outlet for Alberta oil to Pacific Rim markets. Notley said Alberta had been “let down," and the Trudeau government should call an emergency session of Parliament. She also wants the federal government to appeal the Trans Mountain case to the Supreme Court of Canada. (for subscribers)

The ruling shows Ottawa has yet to come to terms with the court’s demand for Indigenous consultation, Wendy Stueck and James Keller write. Experts say judges have been fairly clear about what is expected, most recently in the failure of the Northern Gateway pipeline that was also intended to run from Alberta’s oil sands to the B.C. coast. (for subscribers)

Gary Mason writes the Trans Mountain pipeline ruling will create a big political mess for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Notley: “The court’s decision to quash approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion will reverberate in this country for months, if not years.” (for subscribers)

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NAFTA negotiators are focusing on Chapter 19 and dairy as Trump’s deadline looms

Canadian and U.S. negotiators are focusing on a key trade-dispute resolution mechanism and provisions for increased American dairy exports to Canada ahead of a Friday deadline imposed by U.S. President Donald Trump to reach a NAFTA deal. (for subscribers)

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Trump plans to leave for the presidential retreat at Camp David early this afternoon, putting added pressure on negotiators to wrap up the talks.

Are you wondering what a “give” to the U.S. on dairy look like? Martha Hall Findlay writes: “Supply management only benefits what is now a very small number of, on average, multimillionaire producers. It is paid for by Canadian consumers, who pay hundreds of dollars more a year on basic nutrition than they should.” (for subscribers)

Doug Ford says Ontario postsecondary schools will require free-speech policies

Ontario Premier Doug Ford is threatening to cut funding to universities and colleges if they fail to adopt free-speech policies that defend controversial speakers on campus or decline to stop shielding students from opinions some might find offensive.

The government announced on Thursday it will give schools four months to design, implement and enforce wide-ranging free-speech policies. Ford says students who contravene the policies will be subject to existing campus discipline and The Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario will be tasked with monitoring compliance starting in September, 2019. While some academics support the move, others say the new policy is an “unprecedented abuse of university autonomy.”

Midday shooting at Toronto’s Yorkdale mall causes shoppers to flee

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A “minor confrontation” between two groups of young men in Toronto’s Yorkdale Shopping Centre caused one man to fire at least two shots from a handgun, scaring shoppers in one of the busiest malls in the country. While no one was hit, thousands of panicked customers ducked into clothing racks and ran for safety. The brazen nature of the midday shooting – just before 3 p.m. – comes at a time when the city is grappling with a surge of gun violence and as the country considers banning handguns altogether.

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IN CASE YOU MISSED IT

Soulpepper hires Emma Stenning as new executive director

The beleaguered Soulpepper theatre company has found a producer and arts administrator from England to become its new executive director: Emma Stenning. Stenning, formerly the chief executive of the Bristol Old Vic, comes to the position almost eight months after Soulpepper’s board – in the words of a January press release – “severed” its relationship with her predecessor, Leslie Lester.

MORNING MARKETS

Stocks fall

Global stocks fell for a second day on Friday as a report that U.S. President Donald Trump was preparing to step up a trade war with Beijing dampened risk appetite and erased some of the gains made in a rally this week. Tokyo’s Nikkei was down marginally, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng lost 1 per cent, and the Shanghai Composite shed 0.5 per cent. In Europe, London’s FTSE 100, Germany’s DAX and the Paris CAC 40 were down by between 0.3 and 0.8 per cent by about 5:35 a.m. ET. New York futures were also down. The Canadian dollar was just shy of 77 US cents.

WHAT EVERYONE’S TALKING ABOUT

Do the math: Tuition fees are not out of control

“It would be great if, just once, we chose not to indulge in our traditional fall rants about fees and affordability, and instead acknowledge Canadian governments, universities and colleges for having so consistently invested in students over the past 15 years. They deserve a lot more credit than they get.” – Alex Usher

Trump’s worldview is the real threat to global trade

“The hugely successful enterprise of building the liberal world economic order over the past 70 years has depended on America’s willingness to exercise self-restraint. Instead of just throwing its weight around in pursuit of narrow self-interest, as the undisputed economic and military superpower, it has provided global leadership in its commitment to democratic values and the rule of law, including the international trading system. None of this can now be taken for granted.” – Gordon Ritchie, a former Canadian ambassador for trade negotiations and deputy chief negotiator of the Canada-U.S. free-trade agreement

Doug Ford could use some ‘Common Sense’ when it comes to transparency

“The refusal of Ontario’s Progressive Conservative government to follow the new trend of releasing its mandate letters to cabinet ministers means we have to continue to guess where this government is going. But much has already happened. This summer has been a time of upheaval in Ontario politics, with Doug Ford’s government moving swiftly in multiple directions, often provoking strong and vehement opposition.” – Jonathan Malloy is a professor of political science at Carleton University and co-editor of The Politics of Ontario

LIVING BETTER

Student finance 101: How to pay for school, control spending and avoid debt

Back to school is around the corner, and many students will handle their own finances for the first time. Whether you’re headed back to school, or know someone who is, here’s a guide to help students avoid some common financial mistakes, control their costs through proper budgeting and graduate with a plan for getting out of debt.

MOMENT IN TIME

Aug 31, 1830: There’s nothing more suburban than a lush, green, manicured lawn. While teens may loathe maintaining a tidy yard, the chore was a bigger nuisance centuries ago when gardeners wielded scythes and shears: Trimmed lawns were limited to the wealthy. Edwin Beard Budding changed urban terrain forever in 1830 when he was granted the British patent for his push lawn mower, which he thought would be used to maintain sports grounds and expensive gardens. One of Budding’s first customers was the Zoological Gardens in London, where the foreman declared: “It does as much work as six or eight men with scythes and brooms … performing the whole so perfectly as not to leave a mark of any kind behind,” according to the book 100 Local Heroes by Adam Hart-Davis. While Budding’s mower is remarkably similar to the modern-day push mower, he died in 1846 at the age of 50 having sold only a few thousand. But lawn mania was on its way. A neat yard became a status symbol – a well-kept lawn takes time and money, after all. Today, the buzz of mowers – whether push, electric or gas – is most noticeably heard on weekend mornings. – Amy O’Kruk

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