December 6, 1951


The house resumed, from Tuesday, December 4, consideration of the motion of Mr. Chevrier that the house go into committee to consider the following resolution: That it is expedient, for the purpose of providing a deep waterway between Montreal and lake Erie, to create a corporation to be called "The St. Lawrence Seaway Authority" with power, inter alia, to expropriate: to construct, maintain and operate all necessary works; to borrow amounts not exceeding three hundred million dollars; to establish tariffs of tolls and to employ such officers and employees as may be required for the purposes of the authority.


CCF

Clarence Gillis

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Clarence Gillis (Cape Breton South):

Mr. Speaker, after the members who are apparently making up their minds whether they will stay or go have settled down, I shall proceed with my discussion from the point at which I left off when this debate was adjourned. The first thing I want to make clear is that a proper analysis of the subject matter before the house would take more time than is allowed a private member or than could comfortably be occupied by a cabinet minister at one session.

When I concluded my remarks I was documenting the fears that exist in the maritime provinces of the repercussions that the final completion of this seaway project may have on the economy of the maritimes. I

believe that the evidence I submitted from organizations that have studied the matter expressed legitimate fears. For example, I was pointing out that if any of the statements made by the Minister of Transport (Mr. Chevrier) in the house, or by any of the other speakers outside the house, had contained a suggestion that some consideration would be given to future development in the mard-times, those fears might have been eased. But the reverse is true. Every statement at which I have looked seems to indicate that, instead of expanding or retaining the organizations that belong in the maritimes, these organizations were going to be further centralized.

I was dealing with the shipping industry. The Minister of Transport and the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Howe) made statements outside the house clearly indicating that, so far as the future of the shipping industry was concerned, the hopes were that it would be centred in the head of the lakes so far as the Minister of Trade and Commerce was concerned, but the Minister of Transport was a little more general. If a statement had been made that there was a possibility that completion of this seaway would stimulate or add to the shipbuilding industry of the maritime provinces, the feeling would have been different. At present the Canadian shipbuilding industry is centred in the maritimes; that is where it got its start. Through confederation these industries over the years have been siphoned off. It would have at least given us the impression that there is some thinking of the final stages of this development assisting or bringing some benefits to the maritime provinces. I suggest that the miners of Nova Scotia have a legitimate fear. They have presented their case, and I have put it on the record here. A few days ago the hon. member for Cape Breton North and Victoria (Mr. MacLean) received a return with respect to a question as to what progress, if any, had been made in research in taking oil from coal. The answer he received was rather discouraging. There were not any figures. Apparently there was not any interest in the matter. Then I pick up a statement like this in the press. This again is from the Halifax Chronicle-Herald. They do a good research job for the maritimes, and they have this to say:

In the matter of utilization of coal, this coal-producing province usually can sympathize with the lady who is "always a bridesmaid, but never a bride." And so we have this little dispatch from North Sydney: "South America took it away again today. The freighter Shan Trader sailed for Brazil with a cargo of 10,000 tons of specially selected coal from Dosco's old Sydney collieries, which will be processed into nylons. Princess colliery coal was selected for the nylon trade after a series of tests."

St. Lawrence Waterway

That is rather disconcerting and I think it reflects on the thinking of our research people -and we have a great many of them- centred in this city. If it is possible to establish in Brazil an industry manufacturing nylons-and there is a great demand for nylon-and if it is economic to transport coal from Nova Scotia to Brazil and to process that coal into a product that is easily marketed, it clearly shows that what I have said about the thinking of those in the ivory towers in Ottawa is correct. Why have we not done enough thinking to establish the utilization of the product of an industry that is losing its place in our economy because of the advance of natural gas, oil and other commodities? I merely use that as an illustration to show that, as to the maritimes, our thinking leaves much to be desired.

All of the evidence I have put on the record so far has been from organizations that have expressed legitimate fears that the ultimate development of this St. Lawrence seaway means that they are going to lose their means of livelihood. I hope that is not true.

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LIB

Lionel Chevrier (Minister of Transport)

Liberal

Mr. Chevrier:

It is not, I am sure.

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CCF

Clarence Gillis

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Gillis:

When the minister gets to his feet again, I hope that he is going to give us some reassuring remarks on some of the things that I think should be coupled up with this seaway, and I will mention them before I get through. When you threaten the bread and butter of an individual or a group of individuals, the natural thing is for him or them to fight back. To get an illustration, we have only to look at the members of parliament at any time an election is coming up. They fight to get back here. They go out and put on quite a show; they spend money. For a great many of them it is to some extent their means of livelihood. We want to try to place ourselves in the other fellow's position-for example, if you were a coal miner, a steelworker or a small farmer in the maritime provinces, and particularly if you have read the history of Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick since confederation-and take a look at the industries that have been lost over the years. It makes you stop and think, because that is where people live, eat and work; and they want to stay there. It is their home. I think the fears expressed by the organizations whose submissions I put on the record are quite legitimate. .

When I began my remarks I said that the political party to which I belong in that province are not unalterably opposed to this project. While they too fear, nevertheless

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St. Lawrence Waterway they are prepared to give the government the credit for honesty of intention and to believe that it is not the intention of the government to injure any section of the country if it is possible to avoid doing so.

I have here in my hand a survey of this project and its implications when completed. It is dated November 9, 1951. The man who writes this report is Professor David Cass-Beggs of Toronto. The caption of ir is: "The Need for a Federal Authority with Wider Responsibilities". Just a week or so ago I heard the Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Gardiner) quote Professor Cass-Beggs with approval on a survey that he made for the Saskatchewan government, I think it was, in regard to that irrigation project that has been under consideration there for some years. I am not going to read this report but I will say that it is a thought-provoking one. I think it is a fair report. It covers the implication in each province. I agree with this report.

I think it is an excellent one. In his conclusions, Professor Cass-Beggs points out that, in his opinion, this St. Lawrence seaway with its related developments should be, so far as it is possible to make it, the kind of project that could be likened to the Tennessee valley project in the United States, better known as the TVA. If that is followed through, we should be glad if the Minister of Transport, when he is summing up in this debate, can give the members of this house the assurance that the authority now being set up will be, in so far as it is possible to make it, the kind of authority that will be a continuing one, that will have the kind of qualified personnel on it that will not only have authority and the power to develop the power in the provinces of Ontario and Quebec but will also have the power to follow through, so that any potential development that may be available because of this St. Lawrence seaway, from coast to coast, could be undertaken under the management of that authority, subject to the approval of this house, of course, from time to time. We should like to be assured that that is the kind of authority that the minister visualizes that we are setting up at this time. For example, I should like from the minister the assurance that when this authority is set up and when the preliminary things that have to be done are completed, this authority would have the right to complete the study of this project which is better known as the "Quoddy" project in the province of New Brunswick. There is a power development there, and I have the report in my hand. All that the province of New Brunswick is asking for with respect to that power project is that the government would continue the investigation into the possibilities of developing that power in that area. According IMr. Gillis.]

to this report, it will cost approximately $3 million to complete the investigation. If the evidence then proves that it is a possible and feasible project it could be undertaken, in co-operation with the United States authorities, to serve the same purpose in Maine, New Hampshire and New Brunswick as the power project now agreed to by the Ontario and federal governments under the terms of the resolution which the minister has on the order paper.

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LIB

Joseph-Alfred Dion (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Deputy Speaker:

Order. The hon. member has exhausted his time. He may continue with the unanimous consent of the house.

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?

Some hon. Members:

Agreed.

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CCF

Clarence Gillis

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Gillis:

I will not be very long. I thank you very much, Mr. Speaker, for calling my attention to it. I should like the assurance of the minister that that project can be developed. I hold in my hand a clipping date-lined Quincy, Massachusetts, December 3, which reads:

Sidney Grossman, building materials firm executive. said today he is prepared to raise $10 million to develop the Passamaquoddy project as a private venture.

Apparently there is private capital in the United States prepared to do something about that particular power project. When the minister closes the debate I should like him to tell me whether the authority that is being set up will be empowered to undertake that kind of development in that province, or at least have power to complete it.

The Saint John river project is another power project. It is feasible. All the evidence you can examine shows that. It is necessary; it is feasible; it is desirable. What I am afraid of, under this development as we visualize it at the present time, is that we are going to duplicate the economic organizations that they have in the United States; that Ontario and Quebec are to be placed in the same position as the states of New York and Pennsylvania are in the United States, with complete centralization of everything. Anyone who takes a drive through the states of Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine in the United States will agree that that end of the country has been very badly neglected. While the disabilities of the maritimes may be great in comparison with central Canada at the present time, they are as nothing in comparison with what exists between the eastern United States and the central United States. I think that is a bad development; I think it is an unequal development; and I think it is a dangerous development.

If our fears of an over-all atomic war are well grounded, a greater decentralization of

Industry is necessary on this continent. Do not forget that if war comes this will be the target. We do not want to have all our eggs in one basket where they can be knocked out overnight. In that respect I think the United States has a bad development. A press item just a couple of nights ago pointed out that one of their top flight men in the field of atomic war or its potentialities emphasized to the defence organizations in the United States the urgent necessity of considering decentralization of industry in that country. I merely leave that thought with the minister, because that seems to be the kind of world that we are going to live in in the future. We have to keep our guard up, and it is much easier to plan your industries on a decentralized basis than to have to drag them somewhere in the middle of a war, as some other countries had to do in the last war.

I could say a great deal on this subject, Mr. Speaker. I could talk on it for a long time. No one should be uninformed on it. The material that has been available over the years and is available now on this subject, for and against it, is sufficient to keep one interested for a long time. I want to tell the minister that while I put a lot of evidence on the record that expressed fear as far as the maritimes are concerned-I think justifiable fear of people who are directly affected-at the same time I am not unalterably opposed to it. A good feature about it is that it is a government development. It is a development that can be watched by hon. members. The authority now being set up has great possibilities. When the minister closes the debate I would like his assurance that the body to be set up will have authority, in addition to developing the power end of it in the centre of Canada, to take on the power possibilities in New Brunswick and in other parts of the country that have been under consideration for some time. I would like his assurance that consideration will be given to the possibility of power from coal in parts of the country where it is necessary to do that, and that more attention should be given by an authority of this kind to the development of other industries based on coal, in view of the fact that coal as a fuel is threatened from many directions today.

I thank hon. members for granting me an extension of time. I will be listening with interest to the minister's reply and the assurances that I hope he is going to give us.

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LIB

Daniel (Dan) McIvor

Liberal

Mr. Daniel Mclvor (Fort William):

Mr. Speaker, I would be very remiss in my duty indeed if I did not have a word to say on this outstanding project. My first word is to

St. Lawrence Waterway congratulate the minister on his courage and foresight and on the splendid way that he expressed them in his brief. Fort William will be the last port of call for the ships coming up the great lakes. I can see that first ship coming up. It may be that the premier of Ontario will be on that ship as well as the Prime Minister of Canada.

I can think-at least I am free to think- that one of the outstanding reasons why the provincial government of Ontario was elected was the co-operation of the premier of the province with the dominion on this great question. That may not be the only reason, but to us at the lakehead it was an outstanding reason.

Unlike the United States, we are not self-contained. The United States can pretty well get along without the waterways. The tie that binds us to the United States is a tender one. Perhaps in no other place, though I come from the old land, have we so many near relatives as we have in the United States. But the United States can get along without this waterway, while we cannot. It now looks as if Canada was not going to try to get along without it very much longer. When the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Howe) addressed a group of leaders in Washington the other day he said: "We are not bluffing." And any minister and any government that declines to wait ten years, or more than double that, for the United States to make up its mind to co-operate is not bluffing. When the United States knows that this resolution is before the House of Commons it will be more proof that we mean business.

It has been said that we need this waterway. We need it for at least four reasons. The first one is power. When we see in different parts of Ontario steam plants being built to generate electricity it is time for our government to wake up. I know the hon. member for Cape Breton South (Mr. Gillis) thinks that this is only for Ontario. That is only his argument, and I do not think he is convinced that he is right. Anyone who will say that this is for Ontario only is thinking in the wrong direction and for the sake of argument.

He also said there was no scarcity of ships on the great lakes. Had he been at the lake-head when that bottleneck occurred in connection with the handling of grain he would know that ships were taken off the work of carrying ore and placed on that of carrying grain.

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CCF

Clarence Gillis

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Gillis:

I know the hon. member wishes to be fair and accurate. I said I had never heard the question raised in the house concerning a shortage of ships for the movement of grain; and I have not.

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St. Lawrence Waterway

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LIB

Daniel (Dan) McIvor

Liberal

Mr. Mclvor:

Thank you. I am glad you are changing your mind.

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CCF

Clarence Gillis

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Gillis:

I am not changing my mind; I am putting you straight; and sometimes that is a difficult task.

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LIB

Daniel (Dan) McIvor

Liberal

Mr. Mclvor:

The hon. member's statement is reported in Hansard, that there was a shortage of ships on the great lakes. If that is not so, then I forgive him.

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CCF

Clarence Gillis

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. Gillis:

I suggest you read Hansard more carefully.

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LIB

Daniel (Dan) McIvor

Liberal

Mr. Mclvor:

We need power in Ontario, and if we do not have that power to develop our raw materials, then our railways will suffer. How are we going to manufacture our raw materials if we have not the power?

The second reason for the development is that of navigation, and it will be concerned principally with the carrying of freight. We expect however that passengers will be carried, as well. I am not going to say much more along this line. The Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Howe) has said that this great waterways development will be another step to keep pace with the agricultural and industrial development of our country. If we are going to keep up our industrial development, then we must have our waterways.

I know there is opposition to this project.

I have received long letters and resolutions from the constituency of the hon. member who has just taken his seat. Their objections are reasonable, from their point of view, but not from the point of view of the whole of Canada. This country does not begin at Montreal and end at Toronto. The centre and hub of Canada is at Fort William; and when these waterways are developed, it will be a revelation to many to realize that there is as much beyond the great lakes as there is on this side of them. We were taught at school that when one part of the body suffers, the whole body suffers. If Ottawa is the orains of Canada, then Ontario is the stomach. If we are going to supply the needs of industry we will have to have this great waterways development. To me it is absolutely necessary.

A further objection is that the project will cost too much. I ask hon. members to keep in mind that Canada built the longest railway in the world, and that it was done many long years ago at a time when many who now sit in this chamber were unborn. That railway was paid for. Of course in the building there was assistance from the Scottish, the English and the Irish; but those who invested their money did not lose it. If they could build

the longest railway in the world, why cannot we at this time build a great waterways system? We will do it.

I am sure when we see the first ship coming up into the Kam river and turning around in that big basin in which the boats turn, it will be a thrilling sight. I hope that no matter what the opposition may be, or where it comes from, the minister will look at it fairly and squarely, so that he may be fair not only to Nova Scotia and the east but also to others.

I know that if we had had ships when the bottleneck occurred in connection with the carrying of wheat-and there have been other bottlenecks-it would have helped materially in the shipment of that grain. Again I congratulate the minister upon his courage and foresight, and I hope he will stick to his job.

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PC

Alfred Johnson Brooks

Progressive Conservative

Mr. A. J. Brooks (Royal):

Mr. Speaker, I am not going to follow the hon. member for Fort William (Mr. Mclvor) in his remarks. He has always been most complimentary to the government; no matter what it has done, it has always been right, so far as he is concerned. While I cannot agree with him in that, I am not going to enter into an argument at this time.

I do agree to a great extent with the hon. member for Cape Breton South (Mr. Gillis). I should like to congratulate him upon having made an excellent case for the maritime provinces. I do not suppose any part of Canada would be more adversely affected by this project than would Cape Breton, nor is there any part of Canada that would benefit to a greater extent than Cape Breton, if the recommendation made by the hon. member were carried out.

He has placed on Hansard statements from a number of sources in the maritime provinces, particularly one from the united mine workers of his own district. I agree with almost every paragraph of their recommendations. I would add that the united mine workers of the district from which the hon. member comes is the same organization which governs the miners ar Minto, in my constituency.

We are not as definitely concerned as are the miners in Cape Breton, because our New Brunswick coal enjoys, more or less, a local market, and we do not feel our market will be adversely affected to the same extent as will the coal industry of Nova Scotia.

Without the power to look into the future it is difficult to estimate just what the development of the St. Lawrence seaway will mean to this country. We have seen great developments and great undertakings in the

past, of which some have turned out as anticipated, while others have not been so successful. There are very few that have not gone beyond the estimated cost for their construction; on the contrary, most have cost two or three times as much. I fear this St. Lawrence seaway development will be far more expensive than is expected.

In this connection I would refer to the building of the Hudson Bay railway to the port of Churchill. With a number of members of parliament I visited that port last winter and was amazed at the barrenness of the country. It occurred to me then that the building of the Hudson Bay railway must have been more or less of a mistake. That was impressed more upon my mind when I looked at the great grain elevator at Churchill and was told that the shipping season opens in August and closes before October and that last year only twelve ships sailed from that port with grain for Europe. When that matter was before the house all parties were in favour of building the railroad in the belief that it would mean much to the people of western Canada by providing a cheaper method of shipping grain across the ocean. That expectation has not been realized.

As I understand it, there are four principal reasons for the construction of the St. Lawrence waterway. The minister mentioned them the other day and the hon. member for Fort William (Mr. Mclvor) referred to them this afternoon. The first reason is that it will provide a cheaper means of carrying the produce of central and western Canada to the markets of the world and for the carrying of iron ore to central Canada and the United States. Another reason was that it would provide more cheap power for Ontario and possibly Quebec; and the fourth reason was that it was necessary for the defence of Canada.

Let us look at the first reason, that it will provide lower freight rates for the people in central and western Canada. The hon. member for Fort William said that the railroads of Canada are in favour of the development of the St. Lawrence seaway. The hon. member must have been reading material which I have not seen because any report or statement that has come to my notice indicates that the feeling of the railroads is much to the contrary, that they are much concerned over the development of the St. Lawrence seaway because they believe it will interfere with their freight revenues. There is no doubt in my mind that considerable traffic will be taken from the railroads.

I do not think it is necessary to point out that today the railroads of Canada are having a desperate struggle to maintain their

St. Lawrence Waterway equipment and roadbeds and to make enough to cover the ordinary operating expenses. If revenue is taken from the railroads, how will it be made up? No country, and particularly Canada, can get along without railroads. We can get along without our trucks, our aeroplanes and our ships but Canada today and in the future must have railroads. Anything that interferes with the development and future maintenance of our railroads interferes with the development of Canada.

The ports on the great lakes and the seaway will be in use for only seven months in the year; for five months of the year they will be idle. I saw a statement the other day that the thousands of men who might be employed in these ports during the seven months in the year will be without employment for the remainder of the year and be more or less on unemployment insurance and be a burden upon the people of Canada to that extent. If the railroads lose revenue through the building of this seaway, that loss will have to be made up by subsidy or in some other way by the people of Canada. If men are thrown into unemployment for certain months of the year the money to maintain them will have to be provided also by the people of Canada. I wonder if our situation financially is going to be improved through cheaper water rates.

The next point was that this would provide cheaper power for Ontario and possibly Quebec. We in the maritime provinces are sometimes envious of the central provinces because of their great power developments. A moment ago the hon. member for Fort William said that power was needed in the central provinces for the development of industry. I would point out to the hon. member and to this house that there is no part of Canada so much in need of cheap power as the maritime provinces.

What will be the result of additional cheap power in the central provinces? We have heard a lot in the house about centralization and decentralization of industry. It is only logical to come to the conclusion that if there is more cheap power available in the central provinces of Ontario and Quebec there will be a greater concentration of industry there and less industry will be available for the maritime provinces and other parts of Canada.

The hon. member for Cape Breton South (Mr. Gillis) referred to the development of power in the maritimes. If that can be linked up with the development of the St. Lawrence seaway, all to the good. That is something that should be done. We are not small-minded and we have no objection to the development of Ontario, Quebec or any

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St. Lawrence Waterway other part of Canada, but we want our own part developed also. That is all we ask for; that is all we want.

Another argument used by the minister the other day was that this would strengthen national defence. As far as defence is concerned, we are linked up with the United States. If the development of the St. Lawrence seaway is going to aid in the defence of Canada and the United States I should like to ask the minister why the Senate of the United States turned down the proposition. I think they are and should be just as much interested in the defence of the North American continent as we are.

The minister said that ships using the St. Lawrence seaway would not be vulnerable to submarine attack in case of war. That may be true, but ships using the St. Lawrence seaway will not confine their operations to the seaway and the great lakes. Many of those ships will be leaving the St. Lawrence and will be subject to attack by submarine in the Atlantic ocean. As far as I am concerned, that argument does not carry any weight.

Decentralization of industry is being carried out today in the United States and many other countries. For instance, Russia has moved her great factories beyond the Urals or to different sections of that great country so that they will be less open to air attack. In Canada we have a great concentration of industry in cities like Toronto, Montreal, Hamilton and other centres. Our industry is very vulnerable to attack. If our industry were dissipated throughout the country and more placed in the maritimes or on the prairies it would add to the protection of this country and make it much stronger.

The hon. member for Cape Breton South (Mr. Gillis) referred to the next point with which I wish to deal. I do not wish to repeat too much, but following him it is difficult not to do so because he has mentioned nearly everything. The minister dealt with the building of ships and said that the construction of the St. Lawrence seaway would permit the building of ships in the sheltered areas of the great lakes. As the hon. member for Cape Breton South has said, the great ports of Halifax, Saint John, and Pictou form the cradle of the development of the building of ships on this continent. I should like to ask the hon. member for Pictou (Mr. McCulloch), the hon. members for Halifax and the hon. member for Saint John-Albert (Mr. Riley) what they think of the proposition of the future ships of this country being built in the protected areas of the great lakes, thus taking employment away from the

people of Saint John, Pictou and Halifax. I do not believe that will be very much in the interests of the maritime provinces. In fact will be a decided loss.

To my mind one of the chief reasons why the St. Lawrence seaway is being developed is because of the Labrador ore. I think it is the nigger in the woodpile so far as the present haste is concerned. I believe it is one of the chief reasons why the St. Lawrence seaway is to be built now. We understand that the ore in Labrador and the northern part of Quebec is owned by United States interests. In developing the St. Lawrence seaway we are supplying transportation for the conveyance of this great asset to the mills of the United States. The raw material is to be taken out of Canada and processed in that country.

If we look at a map of Canada we will notice that the nearest and logical area for the development of this ore is the maritime provinces. As has been pointed out, it is necessary that coal and iron ore be in close proximity in order to produce steel. In Cape Breton there are mines which can supply any quantity of coal for the production of steel, and if it were not for the fact that the United States and central Canada are anxious to obtain the ore for their established mills anyone who was disinterested in the matter would look at the map and say that the great steel industry for the processing of this ore should be in Nova Scotia and the maritime provinces generally. We have an abundance of coal and an abundance of labour. There is no reason why there should not be greater development in that region than there is at the present time.

It is also a well known fact that other industries locate where the development of steel production takes place. We in the maritime provinces have felt that we are more or less of a depressed area. If we could secure the development of steel production and the establishment of other industries I believe our provinces would be in a position to take their place beside the other provinces of Canada. I should like to point out that in Australia they have more or less the same problem. Not very long ago I read an article in the Christian Science Monitor. The heading is, "Australia Begins to Work Remote Iron Ore Deposit". They have discovered tremendous iron ore deposits in the northern part of Australia at a place called Yampi Sound. The article reads:

Located on the north side of the Sound on Koolan and Cockatoo islands, this 100-million ton deposit will give new industrial stability to this vast thinly

populated region which formerly was dependent on the seasonal fluctuations of the cattle industry for its prosperity.

Australia has realized that the development of a steel industry in the area where iron ore has been found will bring about new industrial stability for that region. I am sure the development of the steel industry in the maritime provinces to a greater extent would give new industrial stability to that area of Canada. I should also like to point out that the same article states that India, where there is a colossal reserve of some 6 billion tons of iron ore, is developing her own steel from her own iron ore. It is not being shipped out to some other country. Besides having the raw product, India is also developing the production of steel and giving employment to her own people. The article compares India's reserves of ore with those of the United States and points out that India has 6 billion tons compared with 3-6 billion tons in the United States.

The thought occurred to me that inasmuch as the United States has 3-6 billion tons of iron ore in her own country it should not be necessary for Canada to ship her iron ore to a country which has such large deposits. Like the hon. member for Cape Breton South, I do not wish to appear narrow in this matter. We are interested in the general development of Canada, and we always have been. We have always paid our share in the development of the great railroads and canals and everything else which goes to build up this country. We are still interested in the development of other parts of Canada. I have listened with much interest to the proposal for the development of the South Saskatchewan river project for the purpose of providing more power for the people and to irrigate certain lands to make them fertile so that there will be greater productivity. We in the maritime provinces are 100 per cent in favour of that development. I believe that the people of Ontario, Quebec and western Canada are prepared to assist in the development of any part of Canada where it is necessary.

When the matter of equalization of freight rates across Canada was being considered in the special committee on railway legislation I was very much pleased to see that the other parts of Canada, Alberta, Saskatchewan, British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec, realized the position of the maritime provinces. Every other part of Canada sympathized with their position and gave practical assurance of their sympathy for our problems in the legislation which was brought before the house. I believe that the people of other sections of Canada would take the

St. Lawrence Waterway same attitude if some practical idea for development in the maritimes were put before them. The hon. member for Cape Breton South spoke this afternoon about the Chignecto canal and Passamaquoddy projects. I think they should be linked up with the St. Lawrence seaway, and I believe we would receive support from every section of Canada.

Some of the fault lies with our own people. I should like to see the governments of the four maritime provinces tell the federal government just what they want. Some will advocate the Passamaquoddy project and others the Chignecto. Others will say we should develop cheap power from coal. Someone else will advocate the Petitcodiac project. I should like to see the premiers of the governments of those provinces get together and decide definitely on what they want. I should like to see them come as a united body and present their needs to the federal government. With the sentiment there is throughout Canada, as expressed in the special committee on railway legislation and in other places, I believe that Canada would be willing to give them what they want and we could get something definite. This idea is along the line of the suggestion of the hon. member for Cape Breton South a moment ago.

I do not know, Mr. Speaker, that there is very much more I can usefully say. As I said a moment ago, we do not like to object to a development of this kind, but we do express the hope and wish that the development will not be at the expense of one section and for the benefit of another section of the country; it should be for the benefit of the whole of Canada. I must say that I agree wholeheartedly with the statement made by the leader of the opposition (Mr. Drew) a few days ago. I should like to read a portion of it which is found at page 1583 of Hansard for December 4:

We have spoken about the need for the decentralization of Industry in Canada. This is the time for us to plan the decentralization of great industries in every part of Canada. We have mills on the Atlantic seaboard today. As we plan for the use of iron ore, let us make sure that those mills now existing in eastern Canada are supplied with iron ore on a scale which will require much greater milling capacity than they have today. And let us recognize that while there are immense advantages in carrying iron ore to the established mills in the central part of Canada, there are equally great advantages in assuring steel supplies at seaports both on the Atlantic and the Pacific, so that we may be shipping steel in the form of steel to our friends and allies in other parts of the world.

As I say, Mr. Speaker, I agree with that statement contained in the paragraph I have read. I feel we must be practical in this matter of the development of the St. Lawrence seaway. I realize that probably 90 per cent of the members of this house are in favour of that development, and that it will

St. Lawrence Waterway become an established fact. I do not think anything I or anyone else can say or do will stop it. We realize also that there will be a power development for the province of Ontario, which needs that development. We realize that the iron ore which is owned by the United States will, to a great extent, go to United States foundries. But I believe our government has it within its power to see that a fair share of that iron ore will be smelted and fabricated in the Dominion of Canada.

We realize all those things. We realize also that if we are to have a great country we cannot shin all our raw products such as iron ore or pulp wood out of the country. We have an example of that in my own province. Companies in the United States own large areas of timber land, from which they cut and ship out of the country about half a million cords of pulpwood a year. The people of New Brunswick do the manual labour, and someone else performs the other work which commands higher pay. Only the other day the minister said .the St. Lawrence seaway would be a great advantage for our maritime shipping. I noticed that last year, for instance, practically the only shipping on the St. Lawrence from our province was about

191,000 cords of pulpwood. Much of the freight for Newfoundland and parts of Quebec consisted of shipments of coal from ports on the great lakes. To my mind that sort of business is not of great advantage to our country.

I would close with this. I hope something will be done to provide cheaper power so that we may have more industry in the maritime provinces, and something will be done to see that our raw materials, such as this iron ore in Labrador and our pulpwood, are not shipped out of the country but are manufactured and developed here. If that is done then young people, not only from the maritime provinces but from other parts of Canada, will And employment in their own country, and be able to live here in peace and prosperity.

Topic:   ST. LAWRENCE WATERWAY ST. LAWRENCE SEAWAY AUTHORITY DEEP WATERWAY BETWEEN MONTREAL AND LAKE ERIE
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LIB

Harry Peter Cavers

Liberal

Mr. H. P. Cavers (Lincoln):

Mr. Speaker, I consider it a great honour to have the opportunity of taking part in this historic debate, which will be long remembered for the contribution it will make to the commerce and industry of the whole of Canada. I should like to commend the Minister of Transport (Mr. Chevrier) for his masterful presentation when presenting this resolution to the house. I believe there was nothing lacking in any of the details of construction as given by him to the members of this house.

Canada has been blessed with the most important means of inland transportation in the world. From Father Point to the western end of lake Superior it extends 2,500 miles inland into the heart of the North American continent, nearly half way from Cape Breton to the Pacific coast. For sheer size the great lakes system is tremendously impressive. It consists of a water area of 95,000 square miles. Its total shore line on the inland lakes is longer than the combined shore line of Canada's Atlantic and Pacific coasts. Are we going to make the most of this great natural advantage that has been given to us? I say, Mr. Speaker, we cannot take advantage of these great natural resources until we have removed the bottleneck which exists between lake Erie and Montreal. The elimination of the bottleneck is what is proposed in the resolution introduced by the Minister of Transport.

It is not a new proposal that is being made to the house at this time. For over one hundred years Canadians have heard a great deal about the development of the St. Lawrence seaway. A celebrated citizen of my district of another day, the late Hon. William Hamilton Merritt, the founder of the Welland canal in 1824, envisaged a great waterway extending from our district up to Montreal and through this bottleneck. In September, 1895, a meeting was held with United States citizens in Cleveland, Ohio, to discuss the project which we are discussing today. We have heard a great deal of the matter since that time.

What does the scheme involve? It involves the building of a channel, 27 feet in depth, extending 2,000 miles into the heart of the North American continent. It has been suggested to me that possibly we have not gone far enough, that 27 feet is not deep enough to carry the type of ship we should like to have come up into the heart of our continent. It has been suggested that it should go deeper and the depth of the channel should be 35 feet.

With the great waterway we desire in Canada we have coupled the gigantic power development which will provide two or three power development sites. I often wonder whether the promoters of the St. Lawrence waterway proper have not been too ambitious and placed too much emphasis on the gargantuan proportions of the scheme, thus frightening some people in this dominion. The greatest obstacle to navigation, the rise of 326 feet between lake Ontario and lake Erie, has been overcome already through the building of the Welland ship canal, which was completed in 1930 at a cost of $133 million. We

are not getting the most out of this great engineering feat which passes through the constituency which I have the honour to represent. It is true that there is much work to be done in the area between Prescott and Montreal. How much will it cost to complete this work? The best estimate that has been given up to the present time is $900 million. In his address the other day the minister made the statement that Ontario and New York indicate that they will undertake to pay for the development of power up to the sum of $400 million. If Quebec joins in the scheme for the development of power at Lachine they will pay an additional $250 million. In this resolution the government asks for power to raise $300 million to complete the proposition. Is it too much to ask that, for the great advantages that will be derived by Canada, we should authorize the government of Canada to borrow $300 million for the completion of this scheme?

Many years ago our forefathers built transcontinental railways to open up the great west. In recent times we have built such projects as the Welland ship canal costing great sums of money. I believe that it would bolster the morale of the Canadian people and give them confidence in themselves if they were to undertake and complete this great project. When can it be finished? As to the development of power, I am told that it will take four working seasons from May until December in each year, and that additional power can be made available to the people of Ontario and Quebec in 1955. It will provide for the generation of 2,200,000 additional horsepower, half of which will benefit Canada, to the extent of 1,100,000 horsepower. We need that power in Ontario and Quebec.

From the standpoint of navigation I am told that it will take about two years longer than the estimated time for the development of power. That would mean that it would be six years before we would have completed the seaway. The navigation and power development factors, it seems to me, are both compelling arguments for the completion of this project. For some period of time we have brought great amounts of iron ore from the Mesabi range at the head of lake Superior, but as time has gone on this great deposit of high-grade ore has been depleted. We now find that we must depend to a great extent on the ore fields of Quebec and Labrador. I can visualize great ore-carrying ships bringing ore from those deposits down the St. Lawrence river and the great lakes to steel-producing mills situated in Canada, developed by Canadian capital on the great lakes and on the Welland ship canal. We already have great steel

St. Lawrence Waterway mills in Hamilton, Toronto and Sault Ste. Marie. If this project is completed many more will be established and located on the great lakes system.

Western Canada has a great deal to gain .vith regard to the transportation of grain, especially wheat. I have discussed the matter with members of this house who come from western Canada and they are of the opinion that this seaway will be of great benefit to the western grain grower. Grain will be loaded in ships at Port Arthur and Fort William and carried to overseas ports.

Mention has been made of the great shipbuilding industries that can be developed on the great lakes. I do not need to inform many hon. members of the fact that we have already commenced a great shipbuilding industry on the great lakes. Last spring I had the honour to attend, along with the Minister of Transport (Mr. Chevrier), the launching of the greatest steamship built on the great lakes. I refer to the S.S. Scott Misener, built by the Port Weller Drydock Company at the northern end of the Welland ship canal, which is within my riding. I know they are ready to go ahead with the building of more ships in their great yards. This work can be undertaken and completed in the comparative safety of the great lakes. I see other great industries expanding and developing along the shores of the great lakes and the Welland ship canal. From the standpoint of defence consideration, we need this great waterway not only for the development of power but for the fact that it will give protection to trade within the boundaries of our country.

Some residents of my own district have expressed considerable alarm lest the great lakes seaway will cause further erosion damage in the Niagara district. I am informed that the development of the St. Lawrence will not have the effect of raising the level of the lakes. I have been assured by competent engineers that the mean water level of the lakes will not be raised as a result of this development.

What then, Mr. Speaker, is the attitude of the United States? Every president from Harding to Truman has endorsed this plan. They have then sought the approval of congress, which has not seen fit to approve their decision. In 1941 Canada entered into an agreement with the United States, after years of study by engineers on both sides of the border. That agreement still has not been confirmed by the congress of the United States. During this debate the suggestion was made that the government of Canada had not made a strong enough or vigorous enough appeal to the United States of America. We do not need to remind the

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St. Lawrence Waterway government of the United States of this great project because it has been before the minds of the governments of Canada and the United States for many years. You will recall, Mr. Speaker, as will hon. members, that the public works committee of the House of Kepresentatives visited Canada less than a year ago. They were greeted by the Minister of Transport and other Canadian dignitaries, and were given the opportunity of going over the proposed undertaking, of perusing the plans and specifications that had been drawn. But when they returned to their native country, by a slight majority they voted against the scheme.

Then the Prime Minister (Mr. St. Laurent) made every effort in his visit with President Truman to see that this great scheme was carried to completion. I therefore believe that we should not be accused of not taking a vigorous attitude in regard to the development of this plan. In an international situation of this kind I think the government might have been criticized had they been too aggressive and too forceful with our neighbours to the south. It is my earnest hope, Mr. Speaker, that congress will still see fit to ratify this plan. If they do not, then we must proceed at once. Our people expect us to give leadership in this great project. They expect us to go ahead with this great development of Canada as a whole.

What about the matter of collection of tolls? If Canada does go ahead with this great project on her own, I submit that we are entitled to charge tolls on other than domestic shipping passing through the St. Lawrence seaway. We have already expended large sums of money on the development of the Welland ship canal and in dredging the watercourse from Montreal down to tidewater. It is only reasonable that we should charge tolls in order that we might collect the original investment and the interest that would be payable on an investment of these proportions.

As a citizen of Canada I am proud to support this resolution. I do so because it affects not only the district from which I come, but will be beneficial to all parts of Canada. As a citizen of the Niagara district I know how much it will benefit the area in which I live. We are in close proximity to power at the present time. We know what power will do for the expansion of industry, and * can see many new establishments bringing employment to our people and a higher measure of prosperity in our district. The St. Lawrence seaway, in peacetime, would strengthen prosperity in Canada. In time of stress or danger it would strengthen our defences to a common foe.

Topic:   ST. LAWRENCE WATERWAY ST. LAWRENCE SEAWAY AUTHORITY DEEP WATERWAY BETWEEN MONTREAL AND LAKE ERIE
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CCF

Joseph William Noseworthy

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. J. W. Noseworthy (York South):

Mr. Speaker, the resolution before us is concerned with the setting up of a corporation for the purpose of providing a deep waterway between. Montreal and lake Erie, and to provide an authority with the right to construct, maintain and raise money for the payment of that construction. The minister himself indicated how important he felt this project was in the progress of Canada. I agree with him that, this is probably one of the most important measures that has come before this house in so far as its effect upon the general economy of the country is concerned.

The project can be a blessing to Canada. It-is a mark of progress. When we realize that, it is now just about a hundred years since we opened up that seaway for traffic of low-draft vessels, and built our earlier canals; when we consider it is now just about twenty years since we signed our first treaty with the United States for the development of this project, which treaty was rejected by the United States Senate; when we consider that it is now twenty years since we spent what I am told would now be the equivalent of close to $500 million on the construction of the new Welland canal and the new locks, it seems a very appropriate time to move forward, to create this 2,000 miles of unobstructed waterway from the head of the great lakes to the Atlantic.

As has been pointed out, the project is twofold. It involves the development of power for the use of the province of Ontario, as well as the seaway. There can be no question regarding the necessity of developing that power. We are told that there are

1,100,000 unharnessed wild horses not being utilized by the province of Ontario, whose energy is available for the use of industry. One engineer has estimated that the power going to waste in the international section of the St. Lawrence is equivalent to the energy that could be created by 28 million men. It is certainly opportune that we develop that power. Those of us who recall the difficult straits through which we passed in Ontario during the latter years of the war and shortly after, those of us who realize the extent to which industry was handicapped by the shortage of electric power in this province, can visualize quite fully the need for the development of the .available power in the international section of the St. Lawrence.

It is quite apparent that the power project could be developed without the seaway. As a matter of fact I understand that the Ontario Hydro Electric Power Commission was very seriously considering trying to get an agreement between the government of Canada, the

state of New York and Washington that would enable them, in conjunction with the appropriate authorities in the state of New York, to develop that power without a seaway, since it seemed obvious that there was not much likelihood of getting a very speedy agreement between the two countries regarding the development of the seaway itself.

It does seem sensible that when we are developing that power project we should at the same time make provision for the development of the seaway. As far as I can gather, it is much more economical to develop them both together. The waterway itself will have an enormous effect upon the economic life of Canada, an effect that itself can be for the good, or one that may not become an unmixed blessing. Whether or not it becomes an unmixed blessing will depend, I think to a large extent, upon the policy which is followed by the government in conjunction with the building and maintenance of this great waterway.

Certainly I shall favour the resolution. To me it is unthinkable that at this day and age Canada, with a prospective 2,000 miles of unobstructed waterway from the heart of the continent to the Atlantic, should continue to permit that waterway to be obstructed for a distance of approximately 100 miles. Ships take on and bring down through the great lakes half a million bushels of grain. Some of those ships can carry 15,000 tons of cargo, all of which has to be transshipped into smaller boats which have to climb up and down twenty-one locks. Then at the other end we have available facilities for ocean liners to reach the port of Montreal. It does seem in line with progress that we should connect those two sections of our waterways system, and that we should provide through the hundred-mile international section a waterway that will permit vessels to pass from the head of the lakes to the coast.

The next point is as to whether Canada is justified in proceeding alone, without the co-operation of the United States, if that becomes necessary. If we fail to obtain that co-operation, then I am all in favour of proceeding with this project. Indeed, I am not sure but that in the long run it would be better for Canada if we were to proceed with the development alone. It can be built entirely within Canadian territory, and after waiting twenty years I think we should not wait longer for the co-operation of the United States. This becomes of greater significance when we are given to understand that it will be self-sustaining.

I believe we should keep in mind that in connection with this waterway the United States is in a different position from Canada.

St. Lawrence Waterway We have been told this afternoon there are sections of our country that question the final outcome of this development. In the United States there are more sectional interests, great financial and industrial interests, that have opposed and continue to oppose the development. On the other hand the United States is no longer a frontier country, and there is not the same national need for this type of project. Our neighbouring country is well settled and is crisscrossed with numerous means of transportation: it does not depend as we do upon the export of raw materials and natural products. There are many reasons why the United States may be less interested in the carrying out of this development. For these reasons I would certainly support the government's move to proceed with the building of the waterway, with or without the co-operation of the United States.

For a few moments I should like to refer to the authority to be set up for the construction and maintenance of the project. There is no doubt that it will bring about a marked change in the economy of Canada, and will have a direct effect upon east-west transportation in this country and upon transportation generally. I suggest, as did the hon. member for Cape Breton South (Mr. Gillis), that when we embark upon work of this kind, where we are spending so much money on something that will affect all parts of Canada, the authority established should have the financial means to study how the development will affect our Canadian economy, and should have authority to undertake the wide range of activities that will be necessary if Canadians are to derive the full social benefits of the undertaking. If the St. Lawrence waterway development is left for the exploitation of private interests, the people of Canada may well stand to lose many of the social benefits that would naturally accrue. Then, the authority should take measures to avert any harm or anything detrimental that may flow from the development and affect any region in our country. We have heard this afternoon how it might have a detrimental effect upon the economy of the maritime provinces. The authority should be such that it can consider those factors, and should be permitted to take whatever steps are necessary to offset them.

Transportation is one aspect of our economic life which will be affected by the opening of the canal. The whole east-west transportation system in Canada will be affected. The toll fixed will have to be tied in with road and rail freight rates. Our transportation system was not built to tie in with a great waterways scheme such as is now visualized. In my

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St. Lawrence Waterway opinion the authority to be established to construct and maintain this project should be in the nature of the Tennessee valley authority. It might very well be called the Canadian great lakes-St. Lawrence authority. One matter that should receive consideration is the effect this project will have upon the transportation systems of Canada.

The minister referred to shipbuilding, but there is more than that involved. There is involved the whole question of the use of ships, what types of ship will be used on this great waterway and so on. The minister indicated that the boats plying the seaway would not eventually cross the ocean, that their cargoes would have to be transshipped at Montreal or some point on the Atlantic. Would it not be possible for a research project to develop a type of vessel which could be used economically on the great lakes and at the same time be sturdy enough to stand the Atlantic ocean in order that goods from the head of the lakes could be carried to various pants of the world without having to be transshipped on the coast?

Certain it is that the huge carton-like ships that now ply the great lakes and which carry, as I said, up to 15,000 tons of iron ore or coal could not venture out upon the ocean. It is also pretty well established that the majority of ocean-going vessels would not be able to come up into the great lakes even after a 27-foot canal is provided. I have here a report by the Brookings institution on this subject. This report indicates that a 27-foot waterway would be of little use to combination passenger and cargo vessels; that 85 per cent of the passenger-cargo vessels now plying the Atlantic would not be able to use such a waterway. These vessels represent 95 per cent of the aggregate tonnage. The report states that the proposed 27-foot channel could not be navigated by 85 per cent of the faster cargo ships, that now reach a speed of 12 knots or over and represent about 65 per cent of the total tonnage.

It must be realized that the day of the slow vessel is past and that speedier and larger vessels now form a much greater percentage of the total tonnage in use than when this report was prepared. A 27-foot channel would exclude 87 per cent of the tonnage that operates under regular schedules out of Montreal and Quebec, and it could not be navigated by 60 per cent of the aggregate grain tramp tonnage engaged in overseas trade. This channel could not be navigated by 81 per cent of the cargo vessels, nor by any of the tankers now engaged in international trade.

It is quite obvious that we cannot expect a large percentage of the vessels now cruising

the ocean to enter this waterway even with a 27-foot channel established to the head of the lakes. It is also apparent that ships now using the upper lakes and the sheltered waters of the St. Lawrence will not be able to cruise the ocean. A question worthy of consideration is whether there could not be developed a type of ship which could navigate that 2,000 miles and then carry on to world ports without its cargo having to be transferred. I think this would involve a research problem which an authority such as this might well undertake.

Then there is the question of shipbuilding and the establishment of outfitting docks and yards. This will depend upon the government's policy regarding centralization or decentralization of industry and population. This waterway is bound to have a great effect upon the location of population and industry in Canada. Great changes in the location of industry and population may well follow the opening of this waterway. Whether or not we are to continue to enlarge a few centres now equipped with docks or whether some of the smaller towns along that waterway which at one time were important are to be revived and dockage provided will depend entirely upon the policy of the government with regard to the centralization or decentralization of industry and population.

Many new towns may be developed along that waterway and many ports whose past glories have faded may be revived. Here is an opportunity to decentralize industry instead of bringing more to the larger industrial centres of Canada. This is a question which I think should receive the consideration of some such authority.

It is because these and many other problems are bound to arise from the development of this waterway that I suggest the authority to be set up should have its scope and responsibilities enlarged. A question raised this afternoon had to do with the extent to which the maritimes might suffer. Certainly it should be the business of this authority to plan the economic development which will follow upon the construction of the waterway. As hon. members have pointed out, part of that planning should be toward the establishment of new industries based upon the natural resources already available in the maritimes and other parts of Canada. There is also the question of conservation. In certain parts of Ontario the shore line is being washed away year by year. The building of the seaway with the consequent creation of large reservoirs of water will destroy much scenic beauty and may very well increase the problems we now have in connection with the conservation of the shore

line. I certainly think an authority such as this should assume some responsibility. It should be given the right to co-operate with the provinces in the preservation of land along the route, and particularly in the creation of recreational facilities. That is a very large field there.

I am supporting the resolution and the project both with respect to power and the waterway, but I am suggesting that consideration should be given to the setting up of an authority with much wider power than is visualized in the resolution.; and I have tried to indicate a few of the problems with which such an authority would have to deal.

Topic:   ST. LAWRENCE WATERWAY ST. LAWRENCE SEAWAY AUTHORITY DEEP WATERWAY BETWEEN MONTREAL AND LAKE ERIE
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LIB

John Horace Dickey

Liberal

Mr. J. H. Dickey (Halifax):

Mr. Speaker,

I will not delay the house long, but I think I should say a few words at this stage of our consideration of this extremely important subject. It is quite obvious, I think, that most of the members of the house who represent constituencies in the maritime provinces are approaching this very important matter with a real effort to avoid taking a negative attitude. I can assure you, sir, from my knowledge of the feelings of the members from the maritime provinces who sit on this side of the, house we do not approach this problem with a negative attitude at all. We regard, as I think most Canadians do, the proposal for the St. Lawrence deep waterway and power project as a most important development. I am sure hon. members and the government, however, will recognize our responsibility to consider every implication of this tremendous undertaking, to express, not only now but in the future stages of this legislation and also during the years in which the whole project will be developed, the interests of the maritime provinces, and to take every step that we feel is required to ensure that the vital interests of the part of the country we have the honour to represent are fully considered and protected.

I do not propose to go into any great detail on this subject at this time. A number of speakers preceding me in this debate have dealt at some length wth the aspects of this proposal which they, or groups in the mari-times from whom they have received representations, regard as threats to the essential economy of that part of the country. The hon. member for York South (Mr. Noseworthy), who preceded me, spoke at some length at the end of his address on the nature of the authority which he considered should be set up to carry out this important development. It is certainly my view that nothing should be done in the setting up of the authority which would in any way shift the

St. Lawrence Waterway responsibility of parliament and the government to oversee the effects and implications of the carrying out of this policy in order to ensure that it does not do direct damage to the maritimes, the west or any other part of Canada. That responsibility should remain in this parliament where the elected representatives of any part of the country that may be adversely affected can raise their voices to explain the difficulties and use their influence to ensure that policies are adopted which will prevent any damage of that kind. I hope that the hon. member had no thought of that kind in his mind, but in view of his expression of opinion I wanted to place myself on record as feeling that this important responsibility should remain in the hands of the people's elected representatives and not in the hands of any authority which might be set up to construct or carry forward this project.

I think all members of the house should be grateful to the Minister of Transport (Mr. Chevrier) for the masterly way in which he opened this debate. His exposition of the policy underlying the resolution was not only a treat to listen to but I think gives us a very sound basis upon which to proceed with this discussion and the consideration of the resolution itself. He laid some stress on the importance which he attached to the project, and of course that importance should not be underestimated. He spoke of the project from the point of view of defence. I think that is a matter we should consider very carefully indeed. Any work of this magnitude which is urgently needed for the defence of the country must demand our consideration. The actual construction and existence of the waterway would of course involve the creation of a number of vital points that in themselves would require protection, and in that sense they create a problem of defence. But given the ability to provide local protection for the important works and structures which will form the physical part of this development, I think we must recognize that its existence will be an important tool of defence if this country is ever again faced with the kind of emergency that we passed through between 1939 and 1945.

I believe, Mr. Speaker, we should never forget the continuing importance to the country of this development from the point of view of defence. The Minister of Transport (Mr. Chevrier) in this house, and the Minister of Defence Production (Mr. Howe) in a speech at Washington, referred, as part of its importance from the aspect of defence, to the expansion of shipbuilding facilities in the protected waters of the great lakes. I believe

St. Lawrence Waterway that is of importance, but I should like to point out that adequate shipbuilding and ship repair facilities will continue to be of the utmost importance on the Atlantic and Pacific coasts, in spite of the provision of new facilities in the central provinces. The facilities at Halifax, Saint John and in the St. Lawrence river are of fundamental importance. While we would never take the position that facilities should not be expanded as they are required in other parts of Canada, we must insist that the facilities on the Atlantic and Pacific coasts be maintained because of their national value. As the needs require, they should be expanded and developed.

Over the last two years a great deal has been said in this house concerning the decentralization of industry. One thing about the St. Lawrence seaway and power project that worries the maritime provinces is that it appears to have a strong centralizing influence. I believe the government recognizes the importance of carrying out, in so far as it is possible, an orderly and economic policy of decentralizing the industry of this country. I should like to suggest that in the important developments which will follow the opening of the seaway, and the development of power facilities which will be a companion to that project, the important objective of the decentralization of industry be not forgotten. Steps should be taken to see that this policy is followed in every field in which it can be followed.

The hon. member for Royal (Mr. Brooks) spoke with feeling earlier in this debate about the use in this country of our natural resources, and the importance of seeing that great resources such as the iron ore bodies in Labrador and Quebec are used and processed in this country. That is a sentiment with which we all can agree. He asked why it was that according to present indications this iron ore will go to the United States to supply the needs of the steel mills in the central part of that country. The. hon. member suggested that there was some direct connection between the development of the seaway project and the use of those iron ore deposits for that purpose. I believe he is probably correct when he says there is some direct connection between those two propositions. After all, when transportation facilities exist they create traffic, and the need for the movement of traffic creates transportation facilities. However, I should like to point out that in considering the development of the tremendous volume of iron ore situated in the central part of Quebec and Labrador, we must remember that it would be impossible to conceive the amount of capital that might

[Mr. Dickey 1

be required to make those resources available to an industry which could not possibly take the volume of the product which would be required to make that development economic.

I wonder, Mr. Speaker, how many years it would be before there would be any possibility of undertaking the tremendous job of making these iron ore resources available to a purely Canadian steel industry. I should think it would be a matter of generations. However, under present conditions the existence of a demand in the United States for large yearly supplies of iron ore will make it possible to develop from these resources, in the first year of operation, something like 10 million tons of ore. I foresee that once that development has been undertaken, and once that ore is flowing down the railroad to Seven Islands and to tidewater, it will create a situation which should provide companies and individuals in the maritime provinces with an opportunity to show their initiative in the employment of supplies of iron ore of a very acceptable nature for the development of our basic steel industry.

Representing the city of Halifax, as I do, I should at least make some reference to the effect which this great project may have on ocean-borne trade. In this connection the Minister of Transport said, as recorded on page 1577 of Hansard for December 4, 1951:

In this connection it may be of interest to note that ocean-going vessels are not expected to play a major role on the seaway. They may very well enter in some numbers, to be sure. But in the circumstances I have outlined it would appear that an ocean vessel would not enter unless it had an inbound cargo as well as an outbound offering. No doubt there will be those that would have this advantage, but otherwise most of them will find it more attractive to pick up their cargoes at Montreal or some other transfer point.

I think this shows that, so far as can be foreseen at the present time, the indications are that the construction and the use of this seaway will not have a significant effect upon the present pattern of the handling of Canada's export trade. In Halifax we have the disability of a seasonal port business. But I think the normal expectation would be that the pattern of this business will not be fundamentally changed by the existence of the seaway, and that we can look forward to some substantial increase in the winter traffic through Canadian Atlantic ports by reason of the expected increase in the general export business of this country which will be assisted and influenced by the existence of the seaway.

The extremely important element of cheap power has also been mentioned in this debate. The development of hydroelectric power has

been of tremendous advantage to the provinces of this country which are so magnificently endowed with those resources. However, they are resources much in the nature of coal fields, oil wells or other resources of that kind. We in the maritime provinces certainly are not well endowed in the field of hydroelectric power. We shall have to turn more and more to the development of power by other means which are as cheap as we may be able to devise. However, we have never taken the attitude that, just because we do not possess these great natural advantages, those fortunate enough to possess them should not develop the resources that lie within their borders. I think that same argument applies to the development of the tremendous sources of power which, as has already been pointed out, are now running to waste to no advantage to anybody. However, I think the principle must be maintained, Mr. Speaker, that the cost of the development of this power must be borne by the people who will use it, and who will reap the advantage from it.

As to the cost of this development, I should like to point out that both as to the power development and the seaway, the proposal is for a self-liquidating project which will not be a burden upon the general revenues of this country and which will not be paid for by the taxpayers generally. The existence in this country of a magnificent system of inland waterways which have been paid for and maintained out of the general revenues of the country has for many years been a disability to the maritime provinces, which were not in a position to get any direct benefit from the existence and the maintenance of works of this kind. If the proposal for the seaway were to be of that nature, we would have to oppose that feature most firmly indeed. That, however, is not part of this proposal; and it should be remembered by all that this undertaking will not be a charge upon the ordinary revenues of Canada.

That is all I propose to say on this matter at this time, Mr. Speaker. I propose to support this motion on the basis of the few remarks I have made. I assure you that we will follow with the greatest interest the development of this matter both with the idea of forwarding the development of Canada in every way which may be proper and at the same time protecting the essential interests of the maritime provinces.

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PC

George Clyde Nowlan

Progressive Conservative

Mr. G. C. Nowlan (Annapolis-Kings):

Mr. Speaker, I am sure the pattern of this debate is becoming painfully familiar to the Minister of Transport (Mr. Chevrier) and to him must be somewhat reminiscent of the debate upon the railway bills, in which he heard much talk about the plight of the maritimes. Even

St. Lawrence Waterway the hon. member for Halifax (Mr. Dickey) also made an address at that time along somewhat the same pattern as the one he has just made. All I can say to the Minister of Transport is that if he listens this time to the representations we make as carefully as he did during that former debate, and if he acts with as much kindness and generosity towards us, we will make him an honorary member of the maritime provinces association.

It is difficult to speak on this proposal in a critical way. One is open to criticism for being an isolationist, a maritimer or a small Canadian. It is particularly difficult to speak in a critical way on this matter when obviously the views which one expresses may not be held by the great majority of the members of this house; and it is quite obvious that they are not. Nevertheless, coming as I do from the maritime provinces and with certain definite mental reservations, at any rate, I feel that I must express these views at this time.

There is one matter I should like to raise at the outset-and it was referred to by the hon. member for Halifax a moment ago- namely the question of the cost of this undertaking. Frankly I am far from satisfied with any information we have so far received with respect to the cost. If, as I understood the hon. member for Halifax to imply, this is not going to cost the treasury of Canada anything, then certainly I would ask the Minister of Transport to give that assurance when he closes this debate. We have heard talk about tolls, and it has been suggested that revenue would be derived therefrom. Frankly I doubt if the minister is in a position to give any assurance as to the quantum of money which will be derived from tolls or to suggest that those would provide for the liquidating of the enterprise as a whole. Obviously the hydro angle would be a self-liquidating enterprise, we will assume. But I have here clippings galore, with which I am not going to bore the house at the moment, from shipping associations and various groups such as that, all pointing out that it would be impossible to charge tolls which would make this a financially profitable venture, or even a liquidating or an operating one. Not at this stage, of course, during debate on the resolution but when we are in committee on the bill itself I would ask that the minister be specific as to what is anticipated with respect to tolls on traffic which will go through these canals, whether the tolls are going to be applied to all traffic or only to some. I have read the debate which took place before the United States congressional committee, and there it was

St. Lawrence Waterway stated that no tolls would be levied upon traffic which came through the other canals.

I do not know whether that statement is right or not, but there is a great deal of vagueness and uncertainty with respect to the matter. I must also say that it is not a matter with which the minister dealt clearly in that admirable speech he made the day before yesterday. The impression I gained from reading his speech was that he found so many things on which he should speak that he omitted to speak with respect to the costs of this undertaking. Not only is there the operating cost; there is the capital cost. We have a conglomeration of figures, of suggestions and estimates, but nothing specific whatsoever. We are told: if you combine hydro and navigation you get so much; if you have co-operation between the United States and Canada you get so much, and if you have this and that you get some other treatment. But nowhere have I seen a definite estimate. In the resolution we have the creation of an authority and the empowering of that authority to spend so much money. Is that all that is contemplated? How much more is it estimated that it will cost to build this enterprise? What is the situation if the United States remains out?

As I understand it, there were discussions during which it was suggested that if this were a joint enterprise the United States would contribute part of the amount which we have already expended on former capital works, certain parts of the Welland canal, and that has been included in these figures. That we know. But if the United States stays out what is the situation, Mr. Speaker? All I am suggesting is that at the appropriate stage this house will expect from the minister a very clearly defined statement of the financial position of this enterprise, as to its capital cost, as to the operating cost and as to where the money is to be derived from to operate it. What will be the tolls imposed on what traffic, and what proportion of the operating expenses will be met by those tolls? That is one general matter on which we will look forward to hearing the minister at a later date.

There is another general observation that I should like to make, Mr. Speaker, one which is perhaps not too popular here. I say it with deference, and I say it sincerely. I must say that the minister did not stress it too much the day before yesterday. Personally I am rather weary of hearing this justified as a defence measure. Obviously we intend to get more steel production some day, and as steel is essential to defence then to that extent I suppose it may be termed a defence measure. Well, I have before me a copy of

[Mr. Nowlan.l

the Financial Post of August of this year, which contains a leading article written by Mr. Ken Wilson, an authority whom I think most people would accept. I notice in it he says it will take eight years at least before this seaway can be brought into operation, and it will take six years before the hydro development can be completed. Now, Mr. Speaker, if our war effort is harnessed to such a slow, leisurely pace as that then I think the suggestion made in this country is most unfortunate. We heard the Prime Minister (Mr. St. Laurent) speaking to the nation over the radio the other night. We heard the Minister of National Defence (Mr. Claxton), speaking in this house within the last forty-eight hours, emphasizing the need of more men and the fact that this country was facing an emergency with which it had to deal. How do you combine that statement with this other one that it is essential to our war effort? Yet, it is something that does not materialize in one phase until six years from now and in another one until eight years from now. I think frankly it is part of the propaganda which is being used to sell this enterprise to this country. It makes a very plausible argument, but I do suggest that it is not in keeping with the realities of the situation.

I am not going to enter into a discussion at this time as to the relative defence qualifications of this canal with respect to the easy shipment by water to the Atlantic coast; but it has been suggested that by inland waterways you have absolute protection and by other shipment you face great danger. There is a real question about that. Why, Mr. Speaker, are we apparently erecting a network of radar stations in this nation? Why do we need large sums of money in the estimates for civilian defence? We are not anticipating attacks by submarine in the city of Ottawa and in the city of Winnipeg; we are anticipating attacks from the air. Apparently the suggestion is that planes may come over and pinpoint a refinery at Sudbury or an oil well at Leduc, yet they may miss completely the vast network of waterways which is contemplated by this resolution. I do not think it is a reasonable proposition. That could be justified only if the same fog rises from these waters as sometimes has been created by the propaganda which is released.

There is another general observation which I should like to make because I come from the east, as some others do. I think our position is relatively analogous to that of the eastern seaboard of the United States. Some will say: You are a little Canadian. There are Americans in the House of Representatives and the Senate of the United States who come from the Atlantic seaboard. As I said, I have read the debates which have taken

place in the committees there, and as I recall it every member of either party representing the Atlantic seaboard in these congressional committees was opposed to a similar resolution with which they were dealing at that time. They have taken that attitude not because they are little Americans, but because they thought it was prejudicial to the interests of the Atlantic seaboard of the United States. If they were justified in that stand then I suggest that possibly'there is some justification for the same position that we take here.

It is true that the opposition has diminished in this country; it is true that fewer voices are being raised. There is no questioning that whatever. I sometimes wonder whether that is owing to the vast influence of government entering into all sorts of organizations, industries and even municipal affairs, where possibly criticisms are not voiced which would have been voiced heretofore. At any rate you do have that opposition there, and it is one that I think we should recognize.

What may be the results of this action? One does not want to be positive in this debate, as I think the minister pointed out in his own address. This is a matter dealing with the future, and far be it from me to make specific declarations of gloom, disaster or abundant promises arising from it. But I think there are certain consequences one can suggest which would inevitably follow; and in this I follow very largely the thoughts which have been expressed by the hon. member for Cape Breton South (Mr. Gillis). I do not think there is any question in the world, Mr. Speaker, but that this will adversely affect the coal industry of Cape Breton. There can be no question about that because at the moment coal from Cape Breton moves by water up the St. Lawrence river to Quebec and through an area that may be termed the Quebec region. United States coal, operating back and forth across the great lakes, cannot come down the St. Lawrence without having to be reloaded into those small barges, and the expense is such that it is not done. Once you have your seaway established I suggest that United States coal, coming out of the great lakes, will come down the St. Lawrence river to the city of Quebec, and to those areas which are now being serviced by Nova Scotian coal, and the result must be unfortunate to the Nova Scotia coal mining industry. If that follows it will also be unfortunate for the agricultural industry of the maritimes and of Nova Scotia, because to some considerable extent we are dependent upon the markets of the industrial area of Cape Breton with respect to many agricultural products in Nova Scotia.

I suggest also with great deference to the Minister of Transport, who is an authority

, St. Lawrence Waterway on this matter and with whom I would not want to quarrel or argue, that there must be some adverse effects for the railways as well. The minister said there would not be. He said: You are going to develop a

great deal of industry and an increase in production, and that will result in greater traffic to the railways. It is a plausible argument, Mr. Speaker, and one which I would not completely deny. But I would ask the minister: Where is your concentrated area

of population? It is in this area of the great lakes and the St. Lawrence basin, is it not? What will happen? You will get the result of this increased production moved by water to various centres along that great waterway of which he spoke. Then what happens? It will be distributed from there by truck on both sides of the river and both sides of the lake, to all the adjacent areas. I suggest that the railways will get but very little of this increased traffic in the concentrated areas of population of Canada. They will, of course, have to carry freight to the outlying portions of the west and the maritime provinces; and what will happen? The freight rate will have to be increased in order that they may do so. The minister himself said, with a degree of optimism which I would like to emulate, that we would be shipping goods by water from the maritimes to the head of the lakes. I think it is possible that casual shipments will be made. But, as the minister himself pointed out, shipment by water is not a one-way route. Ships are not going to load and come back empty. We will have those ships operating only'when they are carrying a load one way and bringing a return load the other way. I suggest there will be very few of those shipments made from maritime ports to the head of the lakes. What goods are moved will be at the expense of the railways. After all, one does not have to be very old to remember that ten or fifteen years ago there was a great problem confronting this nation. It was not the problem of defence or the problem of war; it was the problem of transportation. The Canadian Pacific Railway was facing financial troubles and had to come to the government, to parliament, for assistance. The Canadian National Railways were looked upon as a conglomerate lot, draining the public treasury of money. Then there was enforced co-operation; and we dealt with one of those bills the other day. It was popular to say that in our transportation facilities we were overbuilt for the next fifty or seventy-five years, and that we were facing disaster because of that condition.

Then came the war and ten years of an inflationary boom. Now we are proposing to build another great transportation system

1656 HOUSE OF

St. Lawrence Waterway which will compete with the railways to a greater extent than ever before. I suggest to the house that, given a reduction of the present level of production, and given a return to former conditions-and one does not wish to describe them as normal-given a return to conditions which prevailed before the war, the transportation facilities of this country will be facing problems which will make it most difficult for them to carry on, and which will have been accentuated by this development.

Then there is another problem-and perhaps it is a psychological one-which confronts the maritimes. The hon. member for Halifax (Mr. Dickey) suggested it. I refer to the whole problem of the production of steel. In the maritimes, rightly or wrongly, we have had the feeling for many years that the steel industry, based as it was on iron ore from Labrador and limestone and coal in Cape Breton, could develop Cape Breton into the rough equivalent of a Canadian Pittsburgh. That is what we believed; that is what we still believe. Now what do we see? The main argument advanced for this waterway is that it will facilitate the shipment of iron ore to mills at the head of the lakes. One cannot accept that with too great a degree of equanimity. I can understand why the people of the maritime provinces resent the implication contained therein. I say there is a real danger for any government that progresses too far along that road and recognizes or admits that these iron ores should be exported to the United States over an indefinite future.

In that respect my leader yesterday afternoon made our position abundantly clear.

I wish to support what he said in that connection, because there is a belief which could be developed into an emotional feeling in this country-and emotional feelings are dangerous as applied to governments or to any other group-that we are being exploited to a certain extent. We recognize the necessity for the maintenance of contractual liabilities. We admit all that was said by the hon. member for Halifax about American capital coming in. But we do say that the government, through the Minister of Transport, should say in this debate that adequate steps will be taken to safeguard our iron ore, so that having fulfilled our contractual obligations to the United States quantities of steel will still be reserved for manufacture in Canada, and particularly in the maritime provinces.

Give us heavy industry and secondary industry will follow. That is our problem in the maritimes, and we believe this is an

opportunity to rectify it. That is the feeling against this whole proposition today. As I have said, to some extent it may be psychological; but the fact that it is psychological makes it none the less real. Certainly the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Howe) did not relieve that feeling when he suggested one day, apparently with great horror, that if this seaway were not built the steel industry would have to migrate to the Atlantic seaboard. Well, let me point out that in the United States three vast steel plants are now being erected on the Atlantic seaboard. What is good for the Americans in this respect would also be good for Canadians. Steel does not follow industry; industry follows steel. If we get a steel industry located in the maritime provinces we will have other industries following it. That is something I trust the minister and the government will bear in mind when they are dealing with this matter.

So far as our ports are concerned, to a large extent I agree with the hon. member for Halifax. I think the effect on those ports has been exaggerated. After all, Halifax and Saint John are winter ports. The other ports along the St. Lawence are used in the summer, as are the ports of Montreal and Toronto. But in the winter the ports on the Atlantic seaboard should be used as they have been in the past, and I doubt if there would be any adverse effect upon the maritime provinces in that respect.

Then, of course, there is the financial question. That may not be so important, but if the waterway is built we will have to bear part of the cost of the undertaking-unless the minister qualifies that to some extent in his speech later on. Why should we be asked to bear part of the cost of an undertaking which militates against our welfare? Why should we pay part of the cost of an undertaking which makes no contribution whatsoever to the solution of our problems, on a national basis? We are not small Canadians. We are not asking special concessions. But we do say-and in this I join with the hon. member for Cape Breton South and others- that this should be considered as part of a national plan. If it were considered on that basis we would be prepared to accept it, provided we are shown that in the national plan our special problems will receive consideration and fair treatment. But there is no suggestion of that whatsoever. The discussion thus far has been carried on on the basis of this development being something that will solve the hydroelectric power problem in Ontario, which I think Ontario might very well solve herself if she were free to-

do so. There has been mention that there will be great industrial development around the lakes. I do not believe I would be reflecting unduly upon that development if I were to suggest that the development and industrialization south of the border, on the United States side, will be far greater. They will benefit from this to an even greater extent than will the cities on the Canadian side. Yet we are paying for it. I saw a figure expressed by a United States engineer the other day, who said that 90 per cent of the benefits from this seaway development would enure to United States cities, United States industries and United States manufacturers. Yet Canada is paying the whole shot.

It has been suggested that we are winning in some sort of game in which we are bluffing the Americans by saying we will go ahead alone. I am sure we are proud of our developments, and we are proud the Prime Minister was able to go to Washington. The shock he gave them over there was a thrill for all Canadians. But, irrespective of that, the fact remains that United States industry which is buying raw material, manufacturing it and shipping it out is in a position to benefit far more from this development than are any Canadian industries.

Hon. members to my left, from the beginning, have said that this will assist in the shipment of wheat, and that it will help the wheat producers of the west. That is an argument I should like to accept. I know nothing about the production of wheat and less about its marketing, but my thought has been that the marketing of wheat is settled not by the farmer on the prairies but by the buyer somewhere else. In fact I have heard it suggested in the past that it was settled by the Winnipeg grain exchange, when that body has been criticized from time to time. It may be that there will be a saving of four cents per bushel, but who is going to profit from that? Will it be the farmer in the west?

Topic:   ST. LAWRENCE WATERWAY ST. LAWRENCE SEAWAY AUTHORITY DEEP WATERWAY BETWEEN MONTREAL AND LAKE ERIE
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An hon. Member:

Absolutely.

Topic:   ST. LAWRENCE WATERWAY ST. LAWRENCE SEAWAY AUTHORITY DEEP WATERWAY BETWEEN MONTREAL AND LAKE ERIE
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December 6, 1951