Canada, the most-sued country
A lot of ink has been spilled about what Trudeau’s trip to Washington meant for the future of NAFTA, but there’s been little coverage of a dramatic NAFTA story playing out here in Canada.
This week in Toronto, oil and gas company Lone Pine Resources is using Chapter 11 of NAFTA to sue our government for over $100 million, over a temporary fracking ban under the St Lawrence River.
The “Investor State Dispute Settlement” rules in Chapter 11 give billionaire corporations special rights to sue governments in shadowy international tribunals for passing laws or policies that might reduce their expected profits.
Canada is already the most-sued country in the global north because of NAFTA’s Chapter 11 ISDS rules. Most corporations sue us over our environmental regulations. These rules let corporations undermine our democracy in the pursuit of profits, and should be removed.
The NAFTA renegotiations offer an opportunity to put an end to these outrageous corporate lawsuits. It’s time to toss ISDS in the trash-bin of history.