These are the top stories:
Coronavirus: The latest on its spread and the economic impact
Person-to-person spread of the coronavirus within Canada unrelated to travel to an outbreak region is inevitable, experts say as they call for more aggressive testing. “You can slow it down, but you can’t stop it,” said Michael Gardam, chief of staff at Toronto’s Humber River Hospital. “Local transmission is coming.”
On the health front:
- The growing outbreak in Washington state, where six have died amid reports suggesting the virus has been circulating for at least six weeks, is raising concerns it could have spread to neighbouring B.C.
- Ontario has “pilot” sites testing patients with flu-like symptoms for COVID-19.
- There are 27 confirmed cases in Canada: 18 in Ontario, eight in B.C., and one in Quebec.
- The wife of a Canadian who died while on a business trip to China is urging Ottawa to help find out whether he succumbed to the virus.
- Some Canadians who tested positive for the virus aboard the Diamond Princess cruise ship remain in Japan.
- Have a trip planned? Here’s what experts say you should consider if you’re travelling during the outbreak.
On the economy front:
- The Bank of Canada is facing pressure to implement an interest-rate cut amid concerns about the economic threat of the virus. Central banks elsewhere have signalled they are preparing actions to support the economy.
- The OECD has warned that global growth could fall by half – from 2.9 per cent to 1.5 per cent – if the outbreak proves long-lasting.
- Wondering how to manage your money amid market uncertainty? Read Rob Carrick’s do’s and don’ts.
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It’s Super Tuesday. Here’s what to watch for in the Democratic presidential race
Is it now a two-way contest between Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders, or will Michael Bloomberg find a receptive audience? And what kind of impact might Amy Klobuchar’s and Pete Buttigieg’s endorsements of Biden have on the race?
There are 14 states voting today, with more than a third of the available delegates up for grabs. Sanders has held a double-digit lead in California, but Biden is coming up behind. And the pair are polling neck-and-neck in Texas, a state one expert says is a key test of Bloomberg’s ad campaign.
For Sanders, a massive throng of volunteers has helped vault the Vermont senator into front-runner status. Their biggest test yet comes today, as they organize a large get-out-the-vote effort.
John Horgan says the Wet’suwet’en deal won’t stop Coastal GasLink construction
The B.C. Premier said the tentative agreement reached with the province and the federal government will focus on the issue of rights and title – but not the planned pipeline that has sparked nationwide protests.
“There’s a difference of opinion around the Coastal GasLink project, but the permits are in place, it’s approved, it’s under way," Horgan said, adding: “Where we want to be … is forward-looking.”
RCMP patrols and construction work in Wet’suwet’en territory have resumed.
Details of the agreement reached by hereditary leaders are expected to be shared soon with Wet’suwet’en members, who will then decide on its approval.
How have the blockades affected Canada’s railways and ports? A Globe analysis found a spike in dwell times for rail cars and vessels, though suggestions that the Ontario’s Belleville-area blockade singlehandedly brought Canadian rail traffic to a halt aren’t true.
ALSO ON OUR RADAR
Trudeau addresses shift to low-carbon economy: The Prime Minister told a mining conference that Ottawa recognizes the switch will be “a big adjustment for many industries.” His government will be seeking input on how that transition will look as it crafts a policy to reach emissions targets for 2030 and 2050.
Netanyahu likely short of majority: The Israeli Prime Minister’s right-wing bloc appeared set to win 59 seats, two shy of a majority. In the event of political gridlock, Netanyahu would be headed toward his corruption trial without possible avenues to derail the legal proceedings.
Fewer boys born in Ontario after Trump’s 2016 win: A new study has found that fewer boys than typically expected were born in a period beginning in March of 2017, timing that would align with possible stress levels experienced by pregnant women four months earlier. The disparity was not found in conservative-learning regions.
Global rebound rumbles on as policymakers send support signal: Global stocks and commodity markets extended a tentative recovery from their coronavirus slump on Tuesday, as global policymakers signalled a united front to address the economic fallout from the spreading outbreak. Just after 6 a.m. ET, Britain’s FTSE 100 was up 2.26 per cent. Germany’s Dax and France’s CAC 40 gained 2.97 per cent and 2.55 per cent, respectively. In Asia, Tokyo’s Nikkei finished down 1.22 per cent. The Shanghai Composite Index added 0.74 per cent. New York futures were higher. The Canadian dollar was trading at 74.85 US cents.
WHAT EVERYONE’S TALKING ABOUT
The oil boom is over. Will Alberta’s energy policy catch up?
Thomas Gunton: “According to Premier Jason Kenney, Teck’s decision is just another example of the federal government’s anti-investment policy. … This response misses the fact that the oil sector is in the midst of a structural change driven by international market forces and climate policies that are constraining future growth in Alberta’s oil sector.” Thomas Gunton is the director of the Resource and Environmental Planning Program, Simon Fraser University.
TODAY’S EDITORIAL CARTOON
Which countries produce the best wines at good prices?
Wine critic Christopher Waters writes: “There’s a steady stream of ripe and complex reds coming out of Spain, Portugal and the south of France that are good and cheap. Côtes du Rhône reds are a great place to start. Value-priced malbec from Argentina can impress, while Italian whites other than pinot grigio are underappreciated for their vibrant and refreshing character.”
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MOMENT IN TIME
The Battle of Pelee Island
March 3, 1838: Pelee Island, the southernmost populated point in Canada, is 42 square kilometres in the western half of Lake Erie, and is known for its migratory birds and winery. Worth fighting for? Apparently so on this date in 1838, when the Battle of Pelee Island pitted American supporters of William Lyon Mackenzie’s rebellion against British forces and local militia. A week earlier, 300 Canadian and American patriots had left Sandusky, Ohio, walked across the frozen Great Lake and invaded the defenceless island. They destroyed property and seized livestock. The British commander in charge of Upper Canada’s Western District, Lieutenant-Colonel John Maitland, assembled a force to retake the island. On March 3, five infantry companies (126 men in all, including local militia and Indigenous people) left Amherstburg, Ont., at 2 a.m. Led by Captain George Browne, they marched across the ice to the southern side, arriving at daybreak. By 2 p.m., the fight was on, first with bullets, then fixed bayonets. The enemy was routed. Browne lost five men, the rebel supporters lost 11. Later, Maitland wrote of his dead soldiers, “they did not fall before an honourable enemy, but under the fire of a desperate gang of murderers and marauders.” – Philip King