Luisa Vieira

German engineer Carl Benz designed the world’s first vehicle with an internal combustion engine back in 1885. Since then, we’ve gotten better at making cars, but the vast majority of the 1.4 billion vehicles on the road use engines based on the technology pioneered by Benz a century and a half ago.

Maybe not for long. As countries push for electric vehicles and begin to wind down the production and sale of ICE automobiles, the auto industry is changing, and so is the infrastructure that supports it. Is North America up to changing gears?

Read moreShow less

CBP Border Patrol agent during a news conference announcing the completion of border wall prototypes in San Diego.


The New Hampshire American Civil Liberties Union is suing Customs and Border Protection for access to apprehension and encounters data along the New York, Vermont, and New Hampshire borders with Canada. In February, CPB claimed there was an 846% jump between October 2022 and the end of January 2023. Now the ACLU is asking CPB to prove it with hard data – which the latter is disinclined to do. The border agency says it “does not release enforcement statistics and/or enforcement data at less than a Sector or Field Office level.” Whether CPB can keep this data private remains to be seen – that will be up to the courts.

In March, as President Joe Biden visited Ottawa, Canada and the US struck a deal on closing a common irregular border crossing and amending the decades-old Safe Third Country Agreement. The deal was short on details and long on promises, and experts said it posed a risk to migrant safety. In May, Canada’s Border Services Agency said the deal was working, claiming irregular migration had fallen “significantly.”

The March deal was premised on increased irregular migration between the two countries. That deal is done, and the ACLU suit won’t change it, but it isn’t the only border policy change being sought based on agency claims. In New Hampshire, for example, Gov. Chris Sununu is pressing for a tighter, more expensive border patrol to address irregular crossings from Canada into his state. That measure is currently being considered by the state Senate.

While governments like to claim they make policy based on hard facts, the ACLU thinks that evidence should be made public, especially when it comes to an issue as sensitive and significant as migration. This isn’t the ACLU’s first border policy-related pushback. In fact, last week, CPB settled a 2020 lawsuit with ACLU chapters over border patrol checkpoints on Interstate 93 in Woodstock, NH, near the US-Canada border. Use of the checkpoints has now been suspended.

A firefighter conducts a controlled ignition on the Sturgeon Lake Wildfire Complex GCX001 near Valleyview, Alberta.

Alberta Wildfire/Handout via REUTERS

Canada’s wildfire season is already in full swing, with a series of intense blazes in Alberta that have sent toxic smoke across the country and into the US Midwest. A wet and cold weekend followed by cooler temperatures this week helped firefighters from Canada and the US battle the 100+ fires, but dozens of blazes remain out of control. Fires are also burning in the provinces of British Columbia, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba, where thousands have been forced to evacuate. And it’s only May – wildfire season goes through September.

Read moreShow less

Toronto Dominion bank logo is seen outside of a branch in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

REUTERS/Chris Wattie

Toronto Dominion Bank and Tennessee-based First Horizon Corporation had been set on a $13.4 billion merger for over a year. But last week, the two banks called things off, citing TD’s “regulatory hurdles” and offering few details. Early this week, it was reported that TD’s anti-money laundering efforts might have soured the U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Reserve on the deal.

Read moreShow less

MP Michael Chong speaks during a news conference to announce he is running for the leadership of the Conservative Party in Ottawa, Canada.

REUTERS/Chris Wattie

Ottawa’s relationship with Beijing already resembled a broken vase, but on Tuesday, more pieces shattered when China expelled Canadian diplomat Jennifer Lynn Lalonde from Shanghai. The move came in response to Canada’s expulsion on Monday of Chinese diplomat Zhao Wei for his alleged role in threatening Conservative MP Michael Chong and his family.

Read moreShow less
Annie Gugliotta

Just over two years ago, Canada’s Liberal government dismissed the country’s absence from AUKUS – the Indo-Pacific security alliance between Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States. “This is a deal for submarines,” said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, “which Canada is not currently or anytime soon in the market for.” He assured voters it would have no impact on Canada’s Five Eyes partnership (the intelligence pact between Australia, New Zealand, the UK, the US, and Canada), and that was that.

Canada wasn’t being snubbed or sidelined for being a defense-spending laggard … or so we were told. Canada simply didn’t want or need nuclear submarines. Never mind that it was reported at the time that AUKUS also included military technology and information sharing as part of its Indo-Pacific strategy.

On second thought …

Read moreShow less

Alberta Premier Danielle Smith speaks at the Calgary Chamber of Commerce.

REUTERS/Todd Korol

Oil executives will be keeping an eye on the too-close-to-call Alberta election campaign that kicked off this week. The race pits incumbent Danielle Smith, a fiery libertarian, against former Premier Rachel Notley, leader of the leftist New Democrats.

Read moreShow less

A Canadian soldier holds a flag as they wait for the arrival of PM Justin Trudeau along with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg in Adazi, Latvia.

REUTERS/Ints Kalnins

Canada is a NATO laggard – but it’s far from alone

The aging defense league is finding a new raison d’etre battling Russian aggression in Ukraine. But Canada still falls short of the 2% GDP military spending goal that NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg recently said is set “not as a ceiling but a floor, a minimum, that we should all meet.”

A recent NATO report estimates that Canada’s share of defense spending declined against its GDP to 1.27% in 2022, down from 1.32% in 2021 and well shy of the 2% target. Several members spend less than the target, but Canada falls toward the mid-to-bottom of that list.

In 2022, the US topped the list at 3.47% of GDP. The US routinely nudges Canada to spend more on defense. Last month, its ambassador to Canada said he was “hopeful” the country would hit the NATO target.

Canada has no plan to reach the 2% target, and its latest budget is still light on defense spending. But the government does tout that it has the sixth-largest NATO defense budget and is a top contributor to the alliance’s common fund. Canada also spent billions on new fighter jets and is making investments in northern and continental defense. NATO doesn’t penalize states that don’t hit the 2% target – and it’s hard to imagine Canada getting thrown out of the club, so all it can do is name and shame in the hope that Canada starts to pull its weight.

Read moreShow less