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Great Lakes Article:

Deal to ban Great Lakes diversions flawed, say critics
Posted on on November 23, 2005

OTTAWA (CP) - Critics say a draft agreement among Great Lakes states and provinces to ban large-scale water diversions is deeply flawed and would weaken Canadian sovereignty.

Environmental groups say the agreement - which has been in the works for years - allows for withdrawals of up to 23 million litres of water a day and places virtually no restrictions on the bottled water industry.

However, many of the groups are supporting the deal - known as the Great Lakes Annex - because it will ban long-distance diversions.

Mary Muter of the Georgian Bay Association said pressure for water diversions will grow in the future as political power in the United States shifts to thirsty southern states.

Other organizations oppose the deal, saying Ontario and Quebec would be outnumbered by the eight Great Lakes states in decision-making.

The Council of Canadians says the deal - which must still be approved in state and provincial legislatures - would severely weaken Canadian sovereignty over the lakes.

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