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Two-thirds of Canadians support closing businesses again if COVID-19 cases spike: survey – CTV News

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TORONTO —
As scientists and policy-makers anticipate a second wave of COVID-19 later this year, a new survey suggests a majority of Canadians support closing non-essential businesses again if cases spike.

The new poll conducted by Nanos Research for CTV News surveyed 1,049 Canadians within the past week, and found that two-thirds of respondents support, or somewhat support, another round of business closures in the event of a significant rise in cases and hospitalizations.

Forty-two per cent of respondents said they support the closures, while another 28 per cent said they somewhat support them. About one in four Canadians oppose (16 per cent) or somewhat oppose (11 per cent) the idea.

Support for shutting down businesses during a second wave was strongest in Ontario (53 per cent) and weakest in Quebec (24 per cent). Those older than 55 — who are more susceptible to the virus — were more supportive of the closures, at 77 per cent, than younger Canadians aged 18 to 34, at 64 per cent support.

Businesses were hit hard in March when the pandemic forced many to shutter, leaving millions of Canadians without jobs.

To offset lost wages, the federal government has doled out monthly payments of $2,000 to more than 8 million Canadians without work through the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) since April. As of July 3, more than $53.5 billion had been paid out.

In mid-June the federal government extended CERB by eight weeks, offering more time for workers looking for a job. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said the government is looking for ways to incentivize returning to work rather than staying home and remaining on the program.

In recent months, business has slowly returned to normal as provinces expand their lists of which businesses are allowed to reopen.

4-IN-5 SUPPORT MANDATORY MASKS

The poll also found that most Canadians support the mandatory wearing of masks in all public spaces, with 54 per cent in support and 25 per cent somewhat supportive. Nearly one in five respondents said they opposed (11 per cent) or somewhat opposed (nine per cent) mandatory face masks.

Support for mandatory face masks was highest in Ontario, at 65 per cent. While Ontario Premier Doug Ford has repeatedly rejected this idea, Toronto — which accounts for 12 per cent of Canada’s total caseload — recently made it mandatory to wear a face mask in all enclosed public spaces, such as grocery stores and public transit.

Ottawa’s mayor said he’d be open to a similar rule, if it’s supported by the city’s top doctor.

Support for mandatory masks in public was lowest in the Prairies, which still saw a majority of support at 68 per cent.

A group of Canadian doctors and scientists have been pushing for masks to be mandatory in all public spaces, saying the step is a simple and effective way to quash the outbreak. Many public transit authorities already recommend or require that passengers wear masks, including in Vancouver, Ottawa, Hamilton and Guelph.

Canada Masks 02

CANADIANS EXPECT A SECOND WAVE

The number of daily cases of COVID-19 has been steadily trending downward for months. For example, the country reported 286 new cases of COVID-19 on June 30, a sizeable drop from 772 new cases May 30.

But epidemiologists have been warning for months that, based on what is known about how coronaviruses spread, a second wave of cases is likely in the winter or fall.

This message appears to resone among Canadians. According to the Nanos poll, nearly nine in 10 Canadians say a second wave of COVID-19 infections in the next six months is likely (57 per cent) or somewhat likely (32 per cent). Just five per cent say it’s not likely, with three per cent saying it’s somewhat not likely.

METHODOLOGY

Nanos conducted an RDD dual frame (land- and cell-lines) hybrid telephone and online random survey of 1,049 Canadians, 18 years of age or older, between June 28th and July 2nd, 2020 as part of an omnibus survey. Participants were randomly recruited by telephone using live agents and administered a survey online. The sample included both land- and cell-lines across Canada. The results were statistically checked and weighted by age and gender using the latest Census information and the sample is geographically stratified to be representative of Canada.

Individuals randomly called using random digit dialling with a maximum of five call backs. The margin of error for this survey is ±3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. This study was commissioned by CTV News and the research was conducted by Nanos Research.

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What the Beirut blast radius would look like if it occurred in Canadian port cities – CBC.ca

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We know from witnesses and reporting that the massive Beirut explosion earlier this week, which occurred when 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate detonated, flattened much of what was within about a three-kilometre radius of the blast. 

The sheer force flipped cars, blew out doors, broke windows and caused walls to collapse within five kilometres of the blast and reportedly broke windows as far away as nine or 10 kilometres from the Beirut port.

And people in Cyprus — some 235 kilometres across the Mediterranean Sea — said they heard the explosion and their windows rattled.

In Canada, the sale, transportation and storage of ammonium nitrate is carefully controlled by federal regulations, making a blast like the one that occurred in Beirut unlikely, Mario Tenuta, a professor of applied soil ecology at the University of Manitoba, told CBC News earlier this week.

But if it did occur, the maps below show how some cities with waterfronts or ports would be impacted. 

Saint John, N.B.

(CBC News)

The port in Saint John, N.B., is the third busiest by tonnage in the country. Thousands of people live within three kilometres of its port. And the city is home to the UNESCO Stonehammer Geopark — which features rocks and fossils that date from late Precambrian time a billion years ago up to the most recent Ice Age.

An Irving oil refinery lies within 10 kilometres of the waterfront. And were such an explosion to happen there, it would surely be heard — or even felt — across the Bay of Fundy in parts of Nova Scotia. 

Montreal

(CBC News)

The Port of Montreal is a major industrial and commercial hub. And the city’s famed Old Port occupies about two kilometres of the waterfront, home to some of the city’s oldest architecture and tourist attractions.

Within three kilometres are several well-known neighbourhoods and landmarks, including the Latin Quarter, St-Laurent Boulevard, the Bell Centre, McGill University and more. But the effects of such a huge blast would possibly be felt as far away as the west-end neighbourhood of Notre-Dame-de-Grâce. It might be heard as far away as Ottawa. 

Toronto 

(CBC News)

Toronto’s waterfront on Lake Ontario is densely populated, with about 65,000 people living on the city side and on the nearby Toronto Islands. There is a mix of industry, parkland and condos within three kilometres of the waterfront. Within five kilometres, there is Bay Street — Canada’s financial district — as well as major tourist attractions and shopping.

But the destruction might reach as far away as the Yonge and Eglinton area. And the sound of the explosion might have been felt as far away as London, Ont., to the west or across the lake in Buffalo, N.Y.

Yellowknife

(CBC News)

The city of Yellowknife is on the northern shore of Great Slave Lake. The airport is less than five kilometres from the waterfront, as is downtown Yellowknife, which is where most of the city’s 20,000 residents live.

The cityscape features both highrises and original pioneer shacks, all of which would feel the impact of such an explosion. And were a blast as massive as the one in Beirut was to happen in Yellowknife, people hundreds of kilometres across Great Slave Lake in Hay River, N.W.T., might even hear it. 

Vancouver

(CBC News)

If an explosion like the one in Beirut happened in Vancouver’s port, it would almost certainly be felt across the water in Nanaimo, B.C., or Victoria, perhaps even as far away as Port Angeles, Wash.

Within three kilometres of the Vancouver waterfront is Stanley Park, the popular Gastown neighbourhood and downtown Vancouver, home to about 62,000 people.

Less than five kilometres away is Granville Island, a popular market that is also home to theatres and artisan studios.

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Canada consulting on retaliatory tariffs, what's on the list? – CTV News

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OTTAWA —
The federal government is holding consultations on a long list of potential tariffs Canada may impose of American aluminum products in response to U.S. President Donald Trump’s 10-per-cent tariff on Canadian aluminum imports.

Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland condemned Trump’s move during a press conference on Friday, calling it “absurd,” while unveiling a draft list of 68 products that could soon be subject to new tariffs worth as much as $3.6 billion.

“In response to these unwarranted tariffs, Canada will respond swiftly and strongly in defence of our workers. We will impose dollar-for-dollar countermeasures in a balanced and perfectly reciprocal retaliation. We will not escalate and we will not back down,” she said, speaking in Toronto.

Freeland noted that the government is looking for input, from Canadians in the next 30 days, to finalize the list of products.

“The prime minister has decided to launch consultations on a broad and extensive list of aluminum-containing products. We invite Canadians and Canadian businesses to participate in these consultations,” she said.

The consultations list includes:

  • Household washing machines, not including machines which both wash and dry, of a dry linen capacity not exceeding 10 kg, fully-automatic
  • Bicycles and other cycles
  • Bicycle wheels
  • Golf clubs, complete
  • Articles for sports and general physical exercise (e.g., bats, hockey sticks, playground equipment)
  • Refrigerators, household type, compression type
  • Monopods, bipods, tripods of aluminum
  • Embossed aluminum cans for use in the packaging of beverages
  • Metal furniture of a kind used in offices
  • Aluminum ores and concentrates
  • Slag, ash and residues, containing mainly aluminum
  • Aluminum tube or pipe fittings
  • Aluminum doors, windows and their frames and thresholds for doors
  • Aluminum containers for compressed or liquefied gas
  • Aluminum nails, tacks, staples (other than those of heading 83.05), screws, bolts, nuts, screw hooks, rivets, cotters, cotter-pins, washers and similar articles

The remaining items are variations of those listed above. Freeland said it’s ironic that Americans will be negatively impacted by the tariffs Trump announced.

“Any American who buys a can of beer or soda or a car or a bike will suffer. In fact, the very washing machines manufactured at the Whirlpool plant where the president made his announcement yesterday, will become more expensive for Americans and less competitive with machines produced elsewhere in the world. “

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Canada to impose $3.6B in tariffs in response to Trump's move against Canadian aluminium – CBC.ca

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The federal government will spend the next month consulting with Canadians about which U.S. metals products to target with retaliatory tariffs as a new trade dispute flares up, Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland said Friday. 

The government intends to impose $3.6 billion in punitive counter-measures after spending 30 days consulting with business leaders and other Canadians about potential targets from a preliminary list.

“Canada will respond swiftly and strongly,” Freeland told a news conference.

She made the announcement a day after U.S. President Donald Trump re-imposed tariffs of 10 per cent on certain aluminum products, ending a recent period of calm on the U.S.-Canada trade front. 

The products being targeted by the U.S. are used as raw materials in other aluminum-based goods, and comprised slightly more than half of Canadian aluminum exports to the U.S. over the past year. 

Freeland said Canada would seek to avoid escalating the dispute. She said the retaliation would be reciprocal and limited in scope.

But she blasted the Trump administration — calling it the most protectionist in U.S. history. She called its rationale for new tariffs “ludicrous” and “absurd.”

She also said Americans would suffer more than anyone else — for example, she predicted a price increase on the very washing machines made at the Ohio plant where Trump announced the tariffs.  

Ford said he’s disappointed by the U.S. president’s move, which comes in the middle of a pandemic. ‘Who does this?’ he asked. 0:51

“The United States has taken the absurd decision to harm its own people at a time when its economy is suffering its deepest crisis since the Great Depression,” she said.

“Any American who buys a can of beer or a soda or a car or a bike will suffer. In fact, the washing machines Trump stood in front of yesterday will get more expensive.”

She called the tariffs “unnecessary, unwarranted and entirely unacceptable,” and said “a trade dispute is the last thing anyone needs” during an economic crisis.

The business community also lambasted Trump. 

“Here we go again,” said Maryscott Greenwood of the Canadian American Business Council, saying this is an especially bad time to trigger a trade war.

‘Bad idea’

“Poor timing, bad idea. I don’t know what else to say.”

In the U.S., a Wall Street Journal editorial accused Trump of retreating to his favourite play — tariffs — in the hope of salvaging his struggling re-election bid.

“[This is] Mr. Trump at his policy worst,” said the paper, whose conservative editorial board usually supports Trump, but frequently criticizes him on trade policy.

 Canada’s premiers are pressing Ottawa to punch back.

Ontario’s Doug Ford began a news conference Friday by raising the issue, unprompted. He said he feared steel tariffs might also be imminent, and expressed his annoyance with Trump.

“I just have to say how disappointed I am with President Trump right now,” Ford said.

“Who would do this [now, in difficult economic times]? Well, President Trump did this…. And I encouraged the deputy prime minister to put retaliatory tariffs as close as possible.”

Quebec Premier François Legault, whose province is an aluminum-producing hub, echoed the sentiment. He tweeted that he’d asked Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to impose counter-tariffs.

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