Transcript: Climate Change and Food's Future | Feb 14, 2020

Steve stands in the studio. He's slim, clean-shaven, in his fifties, with short curly brown hair. He's wearing a gray suit, white shirt, and spotted brown tie. A wall screen behind him reads "The week in review."

Steve says THE AGENDA THIS WEEK CHECKED IN ON DIFFICULTIES ROILING STUDENT UNIONS IN THE PROVINCE; CONSIDERED CANADA'S SHIFTING MUSICAL IDENTITY; AND EXAMINED A GROWING AFFORDABILITY GAP IN HAMILTON. THE AGENDA'S WEEK IN REVIEW BEGINS CONSIDERING WHAT CLIMATE CHANGE MIGHT MEAN FOR THE FUTURE OF FOOD.

Music plays as an animated slate reads "The week in review."

In a clip, Steve sits in the studio with guests.

A caption on screen reads "The future of food on a hotter planet.

Steve says LET'S SET THIS UP AND, MR. DIRECTOR, IF YOU WOULDN'T MIND BRINGING THIS GRAPHIC UP SO WE CAN SHARE THIS INFORMATION WITH THOSE WATCHING AND LISTENING ON PODCAST.

A slate appears on screen, with the title "Climate change versus the food system."

Steve reads data from the slate and says
50 percent MORE FOOD. HOWEVER, CLIMATE MODELS SHOW THAT GLOBAL CROP PRODUCTION WILL DECLINE EVERY DECADE FOR THE REST OF THIS CENTURY DUE TO DROUGHT, HEAT, AND FLOODING. CLIMATE CHANGE MAY REDUCE CROP YIELDS BY 2 percent PER DECADE OVER THE NEXT 100 YEARS. ANOTHER ESTIMATE BY THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES IN 2011 SAYS THAT FOR EVERY DEGREE CELSIUS THAT THE GLOBAL THERMOSTAT RISES, THERE WILL BE A 5 TO 15 PERCENT DECREASE IN OVERALL CROP PRODUCTION. CLIMATE CHANGE ALSO PUTS SOME OF OUR TASTIEST FOODS IN PERIL, INCLUDING COFFEE, WINE GRAPES, CHERRIES, CITRUS FOOTS, AND CACAO. IS THAT HOW YOU SAY THAT? OKAY.

A female voice says COCOA.

Steve says IN THE WORDS OF FOOD WRITER AMANDA LITTLE, ALL THE DELICIOUS FOODS ARE DYING. OKAY. WE HAVE A SERIOUS DISCONNECT HERE AND I WANT TO START WITH JANET IN WASHINGTON. CAN YOU TELL US, IN YOUR VIEW, TO WHAT EXTENT CLIMATE CHANGE IS AFFECTING OUR FOOD SYSTEM TODAY.

The caption changes to "Janet Ranganathan. World Resources Institute."
Then, it changes again to "It's happening now."

Janet is in her fifties, with chin-length straight brown hair and feathery bangs. She's wearing a gray jacket and a spotted gray scarf.

She says SIGNIFICANTLY. THE IMPACTS OF CLIMATE CHANGE ARE ALREADY BEING FELT GLOBALLY. THE YIELD OF WHEAT HAS FALLEN. AND AS THE TEMPERATURE, CHANGES IN PRESCRIPTION AND SEA LEVEL RISE HIT IN, WE'RE GOING TO SEE A LOT WORSE. THIS CHALLENGE IS SORT OF EXACERBATED BY THE POINT THAT YOU MADE, STEVE, WHICH IS THAT WE HAVE TO INCREASE THE FOOD PRODUCED BY OUR SYSTEM BY 56 percent, ACTUALLY AROUND 56 percent, BETWEEN NOW AND 2050 WHILE CONTENDING WITH CLIMATE CHANGE IMPACTS AS WELL AS RESTRICTING THE EXPANSION OF AGRICULTURE INTO THE REMAINING FORESTS AND DOING THIS WITHIN A GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS BUDGET. WHAT I LIKE TO CALL THE MOTHER OF ALL SUSTAINABILITY CHALLENGES, HOW TO FEED THE WORD SUSTAINABLY.

Steve says INDEED. IT SOUNDS LIKE IT. TOM, LET ME GET YOU TO FOLLOW UP. THE FOOD WRITER I QUOTED, AMANDA LITTLE, SAYS WE CAN ACTUALLY TASTE CLIMATE CHANGE IN OUR FOOD TODAY. CAN WE?

The caption changes to "Tom Philpott. Mother Jones. Author, 'Perilous bounty.'"

A map of southern U.S.A. appears briefly on screen highlighting the location of Austin, Texas.

Tom is in his fifties, clean-shaven and bald. He's wearing glasses, a dark suit and a blue shirt.

He says I THINK IT'S TRUE. I THINK MAYBE IT'S A LITTLE BIT LESS TRUE IN THE UNITED STATES AND MAYBE IN NORTH AMERICA... IN SORT OF THE ENGLISH-SPEAKING PART OF NORTH AMERICA BECAUSE WE ARE, YOU KNOW, SO FAR WE ARE PROSPEROUS ENOUGH TO WHERE WE HAVE A STEADY SUPPLY OF INEXPENSIVE FOOD DESPITE A BUNCH OF RECENT SHOCKS. BUT I THINK THAT WHAT WE'RE SEEING IS A FRAYING AROUND THE EDGES. YOU KNOW, WE SAW MASSIVE STORMS IN THE MIDWEST LAST YEAR. THIS IS OUR CORN BELT. THIS IS OUR BREAD BASKET. AND THE STORMS DIDN'T END UP CAUSING A LOT OF YIELD DROP. IT CAUSED SOME YIELD DROP, IT CAUSED SOME ACREAGE NOT TO BE PLANTED. BUT THE REAL HIDDEN IMPACT THAT I THINK WE ARE YET TO SEE IS THE WASHING AWAY OF SOIL. YOU KNOW, BASICALLY BECAUSE THE WAY THAT OUR FOOD SYSTEM WORKS IN THE CORN BELT, WHICH IS THE SORT OF UPPER MIDWEST OF THE UNITED STATES, YOU BASICALLY HAVE TWO CROPS GROWN, CORN AND SOYBEANS, AND NOTHING ON THE GROUND IN THE WINTER AND SPRING. IT'S COMPLETELY BARE GROUND. SO WHEN THESE SPRING STORMS COME RAGING IN, YOU'VE GOT SOIL VULNERABLE TO WASHING AWAY, AND THAT'S EXACTLY WHAT HAPPENED LAST YEAR. AND SO I THINK WE'RE STILL AT THE BEGINNING OF SEEING THE EFFECTS OF CLIMATE CHANGE HERE IN THE GLOBAL NORTH. AND I THINK IT'S DIFFERENT IN THE GLOBAL SOUTH. I THINK THEY'VE FELT IT MORE. AND IN THE FOOD THAT YOU MENTIONED, WE ARE SEEING, YOU KNOW, THOSE WILL BE GETTING MORE EXPENSIVE FOR SURE.

The caption changes to "The Week in Review. @theagenda. Tvo.org."

Steve says LORI, LET ME GET YOU INTO THIS INASMUCH AS THE POLLINATORS. WE DEPEND ON THE POLLINATORS FOR A LOT OF OUR FOOD, AND WHAT IMPACT DO YOU SEE CLIMATE CHANGE HAVING ON OUR POLLINATORS.

The caption changes to "Lori Stahlbrand. George Brown College."

Lori is in her fifties, with blond hair in a short bob and bangs. She's wearing rounded glasses, a gray suit, blue blouse and gray metal necklace.

She says DEFINITELY CLIMATE CHANGE IS HAVING AN IMPACT ON POLLINATORS. ABOUT ONE-THIRD OF OUR FOOD IS ACTUALLY DIRECTED RELATED TO POLLINATION AND COULD NOT BE PRODUCED WITHOUT POLLINATORS.

Steve says NAME NAMES.

Lori says ALL SORTS OF FRUITS AND VEGETABLES AND TREE FRUITS AND THINGS LIKE ALMONDS. IT'S ACTUALLY A SITUATION NOW WHERE IN CALIFORNIA THEY ARE BRINGING IN BEES THAT WILL POLLINATE THE ALMOND TREES BECAUSE THERE ARE NOT ENOUGH POLLINATORS AROUND. AND WE'RE SEEING THAT ALL OVER THE WORLD. THERE'S NO QUESTION THAT THIS IS A MAJOR ISSUE. BUT THERE'S AN AWFUL LOT WE CAN DO ABOUT THAT.

Steve says HOLD OFF ON THAT.

Lori says WE WILL GET INTO THAT.

Steve says WE ARE SURELY GOING TO GET INTO THAT. WE'LL IDENTIFY THE PROBLEM AND SEE IF THERE'S ANYTHING WE CAN DO ABOUT IT. WHAT ABOUT THE FISHERIES, PHILIP? WHAT IS THE IMPACT ON THE FISHERIES OF CLIMATE CHANGE.

The caption changes to "Philip Loring. Arrell Food Institute."

Philip is in his forties, with mid-parted wavy brown hair and a trimmed beard. He's wearing a gray suit and a pale blue shirt.

He says I'M GLAD YOU BROUGHT UP FISHERIES BECAUSE A LOT OF TIMES THEY'RE LEFT OUT. FISH ARE ONE OF THE MOST TRADED AND CONSUMED COMMODITIES IN THE WORLD. ABOUT 20 percent OF OUR PROTEIN COMES FROM FISH GLOBALLY. A LOT OF PEOPLE DON'T REALIZE MUCH OF THE WARMING, AS MUCH AS 80 percent, IS GOING INTO THE OCEANS FIRST. YOU WARM UP WATER, AND YOU IMAGINE WHAT HAPPENS. FISH GO INTO DIFFERENT PLACES. PREDATOR-PREY RELATIONSHIPS DECOUPLE. YOU SEE FISHERIES MOVE NORTH OR POLE WARD OR GO DEEPER. THAT HAS COMPLICATIONS FOR FISHERMEN AND FISHING LIVELIHOODS. AND WE SEE MAJOR POPULATION DISRUPTIONS LIKE PACIFIC COASTAL SALMON OR POLLOCK.

The caption changes to "For more on this story visit: tvo.org/theagenda."

Steve says I READ ACCOUNTS FROM FISHERS, I GUESS WE CALL THEM NOW, WHO SAY THAT A STUFF IN MY NET, I'VE NEVER SEEN THAT STUFF BEFORE. WE DON'T SEE THAT STUFF UP HERE. BIZARRE, EH? IS.

The caption changes to "Philip Loring. University of Guelph."

Philip says YOU SEE SPECIES OF SALMON GO UP INTO ARCTIC... IN THE TROPICS, THIS IS WHERE PEOPLE RELY ON AS MUCH AS 80 percent OF THEIR PROTEIN FROM THE SEA, THOSE WATERS... THOSE FISH CAN'T TOLERATE MUCH WARMER WATERS. ENTIRE LIVELIHOODS AROUND FISHERIES WILL BE REALLY IMPACTED.

Steve says JANET, CO2 IS A GREENHOUSE GAS BUT IT'S ALSO PLANT FOOD. I WONDER WHAT EFFECT HAS MORE CO2 IN THE ATMOSPHERE HAD ON THE PLANTS THAT WE EAT?

Janet says IT'S KIND OF INTERESTING BECAUSE SOME OF THE EARLIER INTERGOVERNMENTAL PANEL ON CLIMATE CHANGE STUDIES SAID INCREASING CO 2, CONCENTRATE IN THE ATMOSPHERE WOULD ACTUALLY INCREASE FOOD PRODUCTIVITY, AND TO SOME DEGREE IT DOES. BUT SOME OF THE ADVERSE IMPACTS AROUND WEATHER CHANGES KIND OF COUNTER THAT. I JUST WANT TO GO BACK TO YOUR QUICK QUESTION ABOUT, CAN YOU ACTUALLY TASTE CLIMATE CHANGE, BECAUSE THERE HAS BEEN SOME RESEARCH THAT SHOWS THAT ACTUALLY THE NUTRIENT QUALITY OF FOOD ACTUALLY DECLINES UNDER AN INCREASING CO2 CONCENTRATION IN THE ATMOSPHERE. MAYBE YOU CAN'T QUITE TASTE THAT, BUT CERTAINLY IT HAS AN EFFECT ON THE NUTRITIONAL QUALITY OF FOOD.

Steve says GOTCHA. I'M IT GOING TO READ AN EXCERPT FROM A BOOK COMING OUT IN A COUPLE OF MONTHS CALLED "UNCERTAIN HARVEST" AND THIS WILL SET THE TABLE FOR OUR DISCUSSION TO COME. MR. DIRECTOR, IF YOU WOULD?

A quote appears on screen, under the title "A lot like the global banking system." The quote reads "The complex web of imports and exports that makes up our current global food system itself looks a lot like the global banking system just before the 2008 crash. It's a system in which a few nations supply a disproportionate quantity of food to the rest of the world; in which a few major global transportation nodes facilitate much of the world's trade; in which eight crops provide three-quarters of the world's calories; and in which a handful of multinational corporations control up to 90 percent of the world's grain trade.
It doesn't take much to imagine a scenario in which something might happen."
Quoted from I. Mosby, S. Rotz and Evan D.G. Fraser, "Uncertain Harvest. 2020."

Now music plays as an animated slate reads "The week in review."

Steve sits with different guests.

A caption on screen reads "Student union strife. Opting out."

Steve says ONE OF THE FIRST THINGS THAT THE NEW DOUG FORD PROGRESSIVE CONSERVATIVE GOVERNMENT DID WAS ESSENTIALLY INTRODUCE SOMETHING CALLED THE STUDENT CHOICE INITIATIVE. I'M GOING TO RELY ON YOU TO REMIND OUR VIEWERS WHAT THAT WAS ALL ABOUT.

The caption changes to "Emma Sandri. The Eyeopener. Ryerson University Student. @emmarosesandri."

Emma is in her twenties, with shoulder-length straight blond hair. She's wearing a black shirt and pendant earrings.

She says SURE. IT WAS BASICALLY A POLICY DIRECTIVE THAT CAME TOP DOWN WHICH STATED THAT PREVIOUSLY MANDATORY PARTS OF STUDENTS' TUITION WERE NOW NOT MANDATORY. STUDENTS COULD OPT OUT OF THEM IF THEY CHOSE TO DO SO. SO THINGS THAT WERE MANDATORY INCLUDED LIKE ATHLETICS, YOU KNOW, CAMPUS SAFETY INITIATIVES, THINGS LIKE THAT, AND THINGS THAT WERE NOT MANDATORY WERE STUDENTS UNIONS, STUDENT PRESSES, STUDENT UNIONS, GROUPS, THAT KIND OF THINGS. STUDENTS DIDN'T HAVE TO PAY FOR THEM. SO OF COURSE THAT ALSO CAME WITH A WHOLE HOST OF CUTS TO OSAP, AND SO WHEN PEOPLE AT THE CFS WENT TO THE ONTARIO GOVERNMENT AND ASKED FOR THAT POLICY DIRECTIVE TO BE REPEALED, TO BE STRUCK DOWN, WHICH DID HAPPEN, ONE OF THE THINGS THAT THEY DISCUSSED IN COURT WAS THAT, YOU KNOW, THIS INITIATIVE WHICH IS SUPPOSED TO BE SAVING STUDENTS MONEY CAME WITH ALL OF THIS STUFF, THESE OSAP CUTS, WHICH INHERENTLY ARE COSTING US STUDENTS SO MUCH MORE MONEY, AND OF COURSE AT THE SAME TIME DEFUNDING STUDENT PRESS AND STUDENT UNIONS WHICH PROVIDE A VITAL SERVICE FOR CAMPUSES.

Steve says I'LL GET YOU TO PICK UP THIS STORY INASMUCH AS... THIS WAS PORTRAYED BY THE PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT AS, WE WANT TO GIVE STUDENTS THE RIGHT NOT TO HAVE TO SPEND MONEY ON THINGS THEY DON'T WANT TO SPEND IT ON. WHAT'S YOUR VIEW OF THAT APPROACH?

The caption changes to "Jonathan Bradley. The Post Millennial. Ryerson University Student."

Jonathan is in his twenties, clean-shaven, with short brown hair. He's wearing a blue shirt.

He says I THINK THAT THE STUDENT CHOICE INITIATIVE FOR THE MOST PART WAS A GOOD THING. YOU SHOULD BE ABLE TO OPT OUT OF THINGS LIKE THE CFS BECAUSE THEY...

Steve says CANADIAN FEDERATION OF STUDENTS.

Jonathan says THEY DON'T REPRESENT MY VIEWS. THEY DON'T REPRESENT STUDENTS I'VE SPOKEN WITH. I BELIEVE THAT YOU SHOULD BE ABLE TO OPT OUT OF THE RSU AS WELL. IF YOU DON'T LIKE THE AGENDA OF THE CURRENT STAY TUNED UNION, YOU SHOULD BE ABLE TO OPT OUT OF IT. HOWEVER, THERE ARE THINGS THAT SHOULD BE MANDATORY. THEY ARE WATCH DOGS ON CAMPUS. SO SHOULD WALK SAFE PROGRAMS AND ANYTHING INVOLVING CAMPUS SAFETY AND HEALTH, THAT SHOULD BE MANDATORY. BUT FOR THE MOST PART IT'S A PRETTY GOOD POLICY.

The caption changes to "The Week in Review. @theagenda. Tvo.org."

Steve says WHAT ABOUT THE ARGUMENT THAT PEOPLE WATCHING THIS, THEY MAY NOT ALL LOVE DOUG FORD'S GOVERNMENT, BUT YOU'VE STILL GOT TO PAY YOUR TAXES. YOU DON'T GET TO NOT PAY TAXES JUST BECAUSE YOU DISAGREE WITH SOME OF THE POLICY PRONOUNCEMENTS FROM THE GOVERNMENT. ISN'T THAT THE SAME THING HERE?

Jonathan says THAT'S A LITTLE DIFFERENT BECAUSE GOVERNMENT, WE'RE ALL MANDATED UNDER. WE ALL LIVE IN ONTARIO, THEREFORE WE ALL HAVE TO PAY TAXES. WHEREAS WITH THE STUDENT UNION, IT'S LIKE, IF I DON'T LIKE THAT, MAYBE I DON'T WANT TO HAVE THIS REPRESENTATIVE, MAYBE I DON'T AGREE WITH THE AGENDA. IT'S KIND OF A DIFFERENT THING BECAUSE IT'S NOT REALLY AN OFFICIAL GOVERNMENT, IT'S JUST A STUDENT GOVERNMENT.

Steve says I BET STUDENTS THINK IT'S PRETTY OFFICIAL, OR SOME OF THEM DO ANYWAY. ANYWAY, LET ME GO ON TO SAM. THAT WAS A LITTLE ASIDE. SAM, GIVEN THAT STUDENT... WHAT'S IT CALLED?... STUDENT CHOICE INITIATIVE, WHAT KIND OF CHALLENGES OR PROBLEMS DID THAT POSE FOR YOU WHEN STUDENTS WERE NO LONGER OBLIGATED TO PAY FOR SOME OF THE THINGS THAT THEY HAD TO IN THE PAST?

The caption changes to "Sam Schroeder. University of Ottawa Students' Union. @SamRG_Schroeder."

Sam is in his twenties, clean-shaven, with short, side-parted blond hair. He's wearing a black shirt.

He says YEAH. THE FIRST PROBLEM WAS BUDGETING, BECAUSE WE HAVE TO PRESENT OUR BUDGET BEFORE WE KNEW WHAT THE OPT-OUT RATE WAS GOING TO BE. SO WHEN IT COMES TO BUDGETING FOR DIFFERENT SERVICES WE WANTED TO OPEN, IT WAS VERY, VERY DIFFICULT TO DO THAT. IT ALSO MEANT INEVITABLY A REDUCTION IN SERVICES, A REDUCTION IN THE AMOUNT OF STAFF WE COULD BRING ON, WHICH MEANS THAT SOME OF THE SERVICES THAT STUDENTS UNION PROVIDES, WHICH ARE IMPORTANT TO STUDENTS AND IMPORTANT TO ALL STUDENTS, COULDN'T BE AS FUNDED AS WELL AS IT WOULD HAVE BEEN OTHERWISE. IT LEADS TO ALL KINDS OF ISSUES IN THAT SENSE. I THINK THERE ARE OTHER WAYS WE CAN GO ABOUT IT. TYING BACK INTO THE LAST CONVERSATION WE HAD ABOUT RSU, I MEAN, IT WAS A STUDENT PAPER WHO UNCOVERED THAT. IT WAS A STUDENT PAPER AT OUR UNIVERSITY WHO UNCOVERED IT. SO TO NOT PROPERLY FUND STUDENT PAPERS IS INEVITABLY GOING TO LEAD TO, YOU KNOW, WORSE ETHICS AT THE STUDENT UNION LEVEL, LESS ACCOUNTABILITY.

Steve says EMMA, LET ME FIGURE OUT FROM YOU, WHAT IS THE STATUS NOW ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT STUDENTS WHO GO TO RYERSON ARE OBLIGED THROUGH THEIR FEES TO SUPPORT THE EYE-OPENER?

Emma says I BELIEVE RYERSON TOOK DOWN THEIR OPT OUT PORTAL SO STUDENTS CAN NO LONGER OPT OUT AND THEY HAVE STARTED COLLECTING FEES ONCE MORE. SO STUDENTS ARE NOW OBLIGATED TO PAY FOR THE EYE-OPENER, WHETHER THEY LIKE IT OR NOT.

Steve says IS THAT A GOOD THING?

Emma says I THINK IT IS. PERHAPS THEY DON'T THINK IT IS. I DON'T WANT TO EVER SAY, LIKE... PEOPLE COME FROM DIFFERENT SITUATIONS AND SOMETIMES 5 dollars MEANS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN MAKING RENT OR NOT. BUT THERE ARE ALSO A WHOLE HOST OF STUDENTS WHO ARE SAYING, WELL, IT'S A GOOD THING THAT I GET TO OPT OUT OF PAYING FOR THE EYE-OPENER BECAUSE, YOU KNOW, THEY'RE A LEFT WING CAMPUS NEWSPAPER AND THEIR REPORTING IS INHERENTLY BIASED AND WE DON'T LIKE THEM.

Steve says ACTUALLY I THINK THE PREMIER SAID MORE THAN THAT. HE SAID STUDENT FUNDS GOING TOWARDS A BUNCH OF CRAZY MARXIST NONSENSE. IS THAT WHAT YOU GUYS ARE?

Emma says MAYBE. MAYBE THAT'S THE PERCEPTION. I DON'T THINK WE ARE. I THINK WE'RE PRETTY BALANCED IN OUR REPORTING. BUT OF COURSE THERE ARE ALWAYS PEOPLE WHO ARE GOING TO DISAGREE WITH HOW WE REPORT.

Steve says THAT'S THE WAY IT WORKS. WHAT'S THE UNIVERSITY'S POSITION ON WHETHER OR NOT THIS STUDENT CHOICE INITIATIVE IS A GOOD THING OR BAD THING?

The caption changes to "Jen McMillen. Ryerson University."

Jen is in her forties, with short blond hair and side-swept bangs. She's wearing a black blazer and an indigo blouse.

She says YOU KNOW, OUR APPROACH TO THE STUDENT TRUST INITIATIVE IS SIMILAR TO WHAT IT IS ON ALL OF THESE TYPES OF ASPECTS. WE PARTNERED WITH OUR STUDENT GROUPS AND THOSE WHO RECEIVE FEES AND TALKED ABOUT WHAT IT WAS... WHAT WAS THE REQUIREMENT OF THE DIRECTIVE AND HOW COULD WE MOVE FORWARD TO PRESERVE AS MUCH STUDENT LIFE ON CAMPUS AS POSSIBLE. WE RECOGNIZE THE VALUE OF THE SERVICES THAT ARE PROVIDED AND SO WE ENGAGED IN DEEP CONVERSATIONS WITH THE EYE-OPENER, WITH THE RADIO STATION, WITH THE RSU ABOUT WHAT WE COULD DO WITHIN THE CONFINES OF THE EXPECTATIONS ON US OF THAT DIRECTIVE.

Steve says BUT DID YOU oppose the policy?

The caption changes to "Jen McMillen, @RyersonVPS."

Jen says IT'S NOT REALLY THE UNIVERSITY'S PLACE TO SAY WHETHER WE OPPOSE OR SUPPORT. THERE WAS A DIRECTIVE THAT CAME WITH VERY CLEAR CONSEQUENCES AND SO WE... WE FEEL LIKE WE STRUCK A REALLY STRONG BALANCE OF PRESERVING AS MUCH, INCLUDING SOME COMPONENTS OF CAMPUS MEDIA THAT REMAINED MANDATORY, AND THEN ONCE THE DIRECTIVE WAS STRUCK DOWN, WE DID REMOVE THE OPTION FOR STUDENTS TO OPT OUT OF FEES AND CONTINUE TO COLLECT THEM AS MANDATORY.

Steve says YOU CAN INFER FROM THAT THAT YOU WERE OPPOSED TO THE IDEA OF LETTING THIS...

Jen says COULD YOU?

Steve says I THINK YOU COULD.

[LAUGHTER]

The caption changes to "For more on this story visit: tvo.org/theagenda."

Jen says I THINK WE BELIEVE IN THE VALUE OF SERVICES THAT ARE PROVIDED BY STUDENTS. I THINK WE HAVE ALSO DEMONSTRATED STRONGLY THAT WE DON'T BELIEVE THAT SHOULD BE UNCHECKED, THAT THERE HAS TO BE ACCOUNTABILITY FOR THAT.

Steve says I UNDERSTAND THE TIGHT ROPE THAT THE UNIVERSITY HAS TO WALK BUT THE FEDERATION OF STUDENTS FELT NO SIMILAR TIGHT ROPE.

The caption changes to "Kayla Weiler. Canadian Federation of Students-Ontario."

Kayla is in her twenties, with long straight auburn hair. She's wearing a black sweater.

She says WE FILED A CHALLENGE AGAINST THE STUDENT CHOICE INITIATIVE. IT WAS THE CANADIAN FEDERATION OF STUDENTS WITH THE YORK FEDERATION OF STUDENTS, UNDER THE FACT THAT THE STUDENTS CHOICE INITIATIVE WAS A DIRECT ATTACK ON THE DEMOCRACY OF STUDENTS UNIONS. STUDENTS HAVE ESTABLISHED DIFFERENT ORGANIZATIONS THROUGH DEMOCRATIC REFERENDUM ON THEIR CAMPUSES, AND IF THERE ARE TO BE CHANGES TO THOSE FUNDS, IT'S THROUGH REFERENDUM THAT THOSE DECISIONS ARE MADE.

Now music plays as an animated slate reads "The week in review."

Steve sits with different guests.

A caption on screen reads "Canadian Music: Modest no more? A changing of the guard."

Steve says WE HAVE A LOT OF... WELL, YOU WANT TO CALL THEM NEW INTERNATIONAL SUPERSTARS ON THE SCENE? WE HAVE DRAKE, THE WEEKND, ALYSSIA CARA. THEY ARE MORE OUT THERE THAN THESE GUYS. HOW DO YOU REGARD IT?

The caption changes to "Kiana Eastmond. Sandbox Studios."

Kiana is in her twenties. She's wearing a denim shirt and a gray beanie.

She says I THINK THERE ARE A COUPLE OF THINGS HAPPENING AT THE SAME TIME. THE WORLD IS MORE OUT THERE. WE LIVE IN A SOCIAL MEDIA WORLD WHERE YOU CAN SEE EVERYTHING HAPPENING. BEFORE YOU DIDN'T KNOW IF DIANA ROSS WAS EATING TODAY, IF SHE WENT TO CHIPOTLE.

Another male guest says I CAN'T IMAGINE DIANA ROSS AT CHIPOTLE.

Kiana says NOW WE CAN SEE EVERYTHING. I THINK THE TWO THINGS THAT ARE HAPPENING IS THAT WE HAVE MEGA STARS FROM BOY WONDER, WHO IS WINNING A TON OF PRODUCER AWARDS, TO PARTYNEXTDOOR, WHO IS A REALLY WELL REGARDED WRITER TO 1985. EVEN THE PEOPLE BEHIND THE SCENES IN MUSIC RIGHT NOW ARE WRITING FOR SOME OF THE BIGGEST STARS IN THE WORLD. SO THIS IDEA OF MODESTY CHANGING, I THINK (a)... YOU KNOW, PEOPLE FORGET THAT URBAN MUSIC COMES FROM A PLACE OF BRAVADO. IT WAS A PLACE OF I NEED TO BE SEEN, I WANT TO BE SEEN...

Steve says I THINK YOU DESCRIBED IT AS BRAGGADOCIOUSNESS.

Kiana says THAT'S PART OF THE REASON IT'S SO MUCH MORE IN OUR FACE RIGHT NOW ON THE CANADIAN LANDSCAPE BECAUSE WE HAVE SOME OF THE BIGGEST URBAN STARS IN THE WORLD AND URBAN TRANSITIONED FROM BEING ITS OWN GENRE TO POP MUSIC. IT IS OFFICIALLY POP MUSIC NOW.

Steve says JOHN, LET ME GET YOUR TAKE ON THAT, THOUGH. THERE IS A CERTAIN, AGAIN TO USE ROOKZ' WORDS, THERE'S A BRAGGADOCIOUSNESS ABOUT THIS UPCOMING... I GUESS ESTABLISHED GENERATION OF CANADIAN SUPERSTARS... YOU KNOW, ANNE MURRAY WOULD NOT HAVE GONE FOR THAT KIND OF THING. GORDON LIGHTFOOT WAS NOT BRAGGING ABOUT HOW FANTASTIC HE WAS. HOW IS THIS TRANSITION GOING?

The caption changes to "Jon Dekel. Freelance Journalist."

Jon is in his thirties, with short auburn hair and a prominent full beard. He's wearing glasses and a black sweater.

He says SURE. IT'S ALSO A BIT OF RECONTEXTUALIZATION OF WHAT POP MUSIC IS, AS ROOKZ POINTED OUT. YOU HAVE TO CONSIDER WHERE THE BRAGGADOCIOUSNESS SITS, IF THAT'S A WORD. YOU HAVE TO PUT THAT IN THE CONTEXT OF HIP-HOP MUSIC AND PUT WHAT GORD DOWNIE PUT IN THE CONTEXT OF KIND OF LOCALIZATION OF ROCK MUSIC. THE WAY THAT BOTH CONSIDER AUTHENTICITY IS A LITTLE DIFFERENT. SO WHEN YOU LOOK AT SOMEONE... SINCE I'M IN NEW YORK I'M GOING TO PERHAPS BRING UP THE VELVET UNDERGROUND WHICH IN ROCK WAS A VERY SPECIFIC BAND. THEY SPOKE ABOUT NEW YORK AND THAT LED THEM AN AIR OF AUTHENTICITY. BUT IT WOULD BE VERY HARD TO CONSIDER THEM A POP BAND PER SE. WHEREAS SOMEONE LIKE DRAKE, THAT KIND OF TAKING THE CITY ON HIS BACK IS CONSIDERED A GOOD THING, YOU KNOW, AND IT ALLOWS HIM TO SPEAK TO A LARGER AUDIENCE. SO PUTTING THAT ALL IN CONTEXT AND COUCHING IT IN THAT IDEA, YOU GET A DIFFERENT SENSE OF WHAT IS POSSIBLE IN TERMS OF KIND OF TAKING YOUR CITY ON YOUR BACK OR TAKING YOUR COUNTRY ON YOUR BACK AND SAYING, YES, I'M FROM THIS PLACE, YES, THIS PLACE IS GREAT, AND EVERYBODY SHOULD COME TO ME RATHER THAN ME PRETENDING I'M FROM NEW YORK.

The caption changes to "The Week in Review. @theagenda. Tvo.org."

Steve says ALAN?

The caption changes to "Alan Cross. 102.1 The Edge."

Alan is in his fifties, clean-shaven, with wavy brown hair. He's wearing glasses and a black shirt.

He says THERE WAS ALWAYS A BIG DEAL ABOUT ROCK BANDS SELLING OUT, YOU KNOW, SELLING OUT THEIR ART. WITH HIP-HOP AND RAP AND THE CURRENT POP ENVIRONMENT, IT'S NOT ABOUT SELLING OUT, IT'S ABOUT CASHING IN, WHICH IS A COMPLETELY DIFFERENT THING. AND THAT IS LEADING TO, AGAIN, THIS BRAGGADOCIOUSNESS, WHICH IS AN ESSENTIAL PART OF THIS MUSIC.

Kiana says WELL, I ALSO THINK IT HAS TO DO WITH THE FACT IF YOU ACTUALLY GO BACK TO THE ROOTS OF HIP-HOP, EVERYBODY WOULD, AND I'M SURE ERIN CAN SPEAK TO THIS, IT WAS A PART OF CREATING MUSIC, I'M FROM THE BRONX, I'M FROM ATLANTA, I'M FROM TEXAS. IT'S BEEN WEAVED DAY ONE INTO THE CULTURE OF THE MUSIC.

Alan says WHAT NEIGHBORHOOD WERE YOU FROM?

Kiana says THAT WAS PART OF THE MUSIC FROM 30 YEARS AGO UNTIL TODAY. OUR STARS BEING FROM THIS SPACE, BECAUSE YOU DON'T SEE ALESSIA CARA SAYING HEY I'M CANADIAN IN EVERY SONG. IF IT'S IMPORTANT TO REPRESENT YOUR CULTURE OR BRING YOUR CULTURE TO THE FOREFRONT, THAT'S ALWAYS WHAT HIP-HOP HAS DONE FROM DAY ONE.

Alan says YOU DON'T SEE IT WITH THE WEEKND OR ALYSSIA CARA, YOU DO SEE IT WITH DRAKE. HE HAS BEEN THE CITY'S GREATEST AMBASSADOR.

Kiana says THE COUNTRY'S.

Alan says THE COUNTRY'S GREATEST AMBASSADOR SINCE I DON'T KNOW WHO.

Steve says YOU HAVE WORKED WITH DRAKE, HAVE YOU NOT?

Kiana says I HAVE HAD THE OPPORTUNITY, YES.

Steve says FOR MY GENERATION, HELP EXPLAIN HOW HE PUT TORONTO ON THE MAP?

The caption changes to "Kiana Eastmond, @rookzie."
Then, it changes again to "You can't take the Canadian out of the artist."

Kiana says WELL, I THINK THAT... IN SO MANY WAYS FROM JUST, YOU KNOW, (1) HE'S AN INCREDIBLE WRITER AND PEOPLE IN THE INDUSTRY LOVE HIM FOR HIS WRITING SO HE'S DONE A LOT FOR OTHER ARTISTS. HE HAS REALLY OPENLY CLAIMED TORONTO... A LOT OF STARS AND A LOT OF PEOPLE WHEN THEY WORK IN ENTERTAINMENT FROM CANADA GO AND LIVE IN L.A., THEY GO AND LIVE IN NEW YORK. YOU KNOW, DRAKE WAS HERE OVER THE SUMMER PLAYING VOLLEYBALL WITH HIS FRIENDS UP BY YORKDALE. YOU KNOW, HE'S CREATED THINGS IN TORONTO LIKE OVO BOUNCE, OVO FEST. HE'S DONE SO MANY THINGS.

Alan says HAS THAT NICE CRIB ON THE BRIDAL PATH.

Steve says CREATED A LOT OF JOBS UP THERE TOO, RIGHT.

Jon says HE BUILT IT IN TORONTO.

Steve says GO AHEAD, JON.

Jon says MOREOVER, HE'S DONE THE SUMMIT. HE'S MADE TORONTO AND THE IDEA OF TORONTO AN IMPORTANT PART OF HIS MUSIC AND HIS GLOBAL BRAND.

Steve says WELL, AND I GUESS, ERIN, THE WHOLE RAPTORS THING TOO HAS JUST... HE'S SO CLOSELY ASSOCIATED WITH TORONTO RAPTORS BASKETBALL AND THAT'S INTERNATIONAL NOW.

The caption changes to "Erin Ashley. Exclaim! Magazine. @ellhah."

Erin is in her early thirties, with long straight brown hair. She's wearing a khaki shirt and a golden necklace.

She says ABSOLUTELY. ONE MISSING ELEMENT FROM THIS NARRATIVE IS THAT RAP HAS NEVER BEEN SEEN AS A PROFITABLE GENRE IN CANADA.

The caption changes to "For more on this story visit: tvo.org/theagenda."

Erin continues SO TO HAVE SOMEBODY LIKE DRAKE AND TO HAVE THE PRODUCERS THAT HE WORKS WITH AND TO HAVE ARTISTS LIKE MERTA BEATZ, ALL THESE ARTISTS COMING UP AND MAKING THIS INTERNATIONAL MONEY FOR US AND SAYING I'M CANADIAN, THAT'S SOMETHING THAT'S SO IMPORTANT AND THAT'S SOMETHING THAT HAS ALLOWED THE INDUSTRY AT LARGE IN CANADA TO START RECOGNIZING US AND TO START ACCEPTING THAT, YOU KNOW, HIP-HOP IS POP MUSIC AND IT IS AN IMPORTANT GENRE FOR THE ENTIRE INDUSTRY TO START PAYING ATTENTION TO.

Now music plays as an animated slate reads "The week in review."

Steve sits with different guests.

A caption on screen reads "Left behind in a growing Hamilton."

Steve says STEVE, WE'RE GOING TO PICK UP ON YOUR REALLY QUITE EXCELLENT SERIES FOR THE SPEC AND SHARE SOME OF THESE FACTS WITH OUR VIEWERS AND WE'LL DO A LITTLE Q and A AFTER THAT. SHELDON, IF YOU WOULD? LET'S BRING THIS GRAPHICS UP. THIS IS TEN YEARS AFTER STEVE BEGAN HIS CODE RED PROJECT. ONE OF THE THINGS HE FOUND WAS...

A slate appears on screen, with the title "Examining quality of life in Hamilton. One decade later."

Steve reads data from the slate and says OF 13 INDICATORS, 10 DECREASED, MEANING THE QUALITY OF LIFE IN THOSE 10 AREAS GOT WORSE. ONLY TWO INCREASED SIGNIFICANTLY. EMERGENCY ROOM VISITS WENT UP 30 percent OVER THE DECADE WHILE THE POPULATION OF HAMILTON ONLY INCREASED 6 percent. AND EMERGENCY ROOM VISITS FOR PSYCHIATRIC REASONS WENT UP BY 60 percent. OKAY, STEVE, THESE ARE A FEW OF THE CATEGORIES THAT WE LOOKED AT. YOU LOOKED AT MANY OTHER INDICATORS, SUCH AS WHAT?

The caption changes to "Steve Buist. Hamilton Spectator."
Then, it changes again to "A decade of decline."

Steve Buist is in his fifties, with short gray hair and a trimmed goatee. He's wearing glasses, a black suit and a pale blue shirt.

Steve Buist says I THINK THE ONE THAT PROBABLY SHOCKED PEOPLE THE MOST WAS THE GAP IN LIFE SPAN BETWEEN THE BEST AND THE WORST NEIGHBOURHOODS IN HAMILTON. SO WE FOUND 10 YEARS ON FROM THE ORIGINAL PROJECT A 23-YEAR DIFFERENCE IN LIFE SPAN BETWEEN THE BEST AND THE WORST NEIGHBOURHOODS. WE HAVE A NEIGHBORHOOD IN HAMILTON WHERE THE AVERAGE LIFE SPAN IN 2016-2017 WAS 64.8 YEARS. I MEAN, THAT DOESN'T EVEN GET YOU TO YOUR PENSION. YOU KNOW, TO HAVE THAT KIND OF OUTCOME, WORSE THAN ERITREA AND SUDAN, YOU KNOW, THESE ARE THIRD WORLD OUTCOMES IN A CITY AND A COUNTRY AS RICH AS CANADA, AND THAT'S JUST, FRANKLY, BOTH HORRIFYING AND SHOCKING.

Steve says DO YOU WANT TO SAY WHAT NEIGHBORHOOD IT WAS?

Steve Buist says IT'S... IT'S A NEIGHBORHOOD RIGHT NEAR THE DOWNTOWN, SO IT'S IN A REALLY CHALLENGED PART OF THE CITY. BUT I THINK WHAT'S REALLY IMPORTANT IS THESE HUGE DISPARITIES THAT WE'RE SEEING ACROSS THE CITY AND THESE DISPARITIES TIME AND TIME AND TIME AGAIN ARE THE SAME. THE WEALTHY PARTS OF THE CITY HAVE GOOD OUTCOMES, AND THE POOR PARTS OF THE CITY HAVE REALLY, REALLY BAD OUTCOMES, AND THAT'S WHAT'S DISCOURAGING.

The caption changes to "The Week in Review. @theagenda. Tvo.org."

Steve says LET'S ASK THE OBVIOUS FOLLOW-UP QUESTION, WHICH IS WHAT CONTRIBUTES TO ALL OF THAT?

Steve Buist says I THINK THAT... I THINK THERE'S TWO THINGS: ONE, HAMILTON STILL HAS HIGH RATES OF POVERTY, BUT MORE IMPORTANTLY, HAS REALLY CONCENTRATED AREAS OF POVERTY, AND JUST... WE'RE SEEING INCOME INEQUALITY IS ACTUALLY GROWING ACROSS THE CITY. SO JUST... JUST THE FACT THAT WE HAVE THESE HUGE DISPARITIES IN WEALTH IS WHAT REALLY LEADS TO POOR HEALTH.

Steve says LAURA, CAN YOU HELP US UNDERSTAND THAT? I'VE LOOKED AT THE NUMBERS HERE AND THERE ARE SOME NEIGHBOURHOODS WHERE THE POVERTY RATE, THE PERCENTAGE OF PEOPLE IN POVERTY, IS 4 and a half percent, AND THERE ARE OTHER NEIGHBOURHOODS WHERE IT'S LITERALLY ALMOST HALF THE PEOPLE. HOW DOES THAT HAPPEN?

The caption changes to "Laura Cattari. Hamilton Roundtable for Poverty Reduction."

Laura is in her forties, with long wavy dark hair. She's wearing a black sweater.

She says THERE ARE A FEW FACTORS. ONE, THERE ARE NEIGHBOURHOODS, BECAUSE THEY'RE ECONOMICALLY DEPRESSED, THAT ATTRACT MORE PEOPLE SIMPLY BECAUSE THE RENTAL RATES AND WHAT PEOPLE CAN AFFORD. SO PEOPLE TEND TO CONGREGATE IN AREAS THAT THEY WILL BE ABLE TO AFFORD TO LIVE IN. BUT, I THINK THE INCREASE IS DIRECTLY RELATED TO INCOME PRECARITY. PEOPLE FINDING IT MORE AND MORE DIFFICULT TO LIVE. WE'VE SEEN RENTAL RATES RISE AND PEOPLE'S INCOMES ARE NOT FOLLOWING SUIT. SO PEOPLE ARE MOVING, OR TRYING TO MOVE... NOT ALWAYS SUCCESSFULLY... AND TRYING TO FIND A WAY TO MAKE SOMETHING WORK THAT'S REALLY IMPOSSIBLE.

Steve says SARA, FROM YOUR EXPERIENCE, CAN YOU SHARE SOME INSIGHT INTO WHY THE POVERTY SEEMS TO BE SO CONCENTRATED?

The caption changes to "Sara Mayo. Social Planning and Research Council of Hamilton."

Sara is in her forties, with straight brown hair pulled back. She's wearing a black jacket.

She says WELL, YOU KNOW, I MEAN, HAMILTON, WE'RE EXPERIENCING WHAT MANY CITIES ACROSS CANADA ARE EXPERIENCING. IT'S NOT HAMILTON-SPECIFIC. TORONTO HAS HIGHER POVERTY RATES THAN HAMILTON, HIGHER RATES OF INEQUALITY THAN HAMILTON. WHAT'S DIFFERENT MAYBE IN HAMILTON IS THAT... YOU KNOW, CITIES LIKE TORONTO HAVE SORT OF EXPORTED A LOT OF THEIR POVERTY OUTSIDE OF THE DOWNTOWN INTO THE OLDER SUBURBAN AREAS AND IT'S LESS VISIBLE ON AN EVERYDAY BASIS TO PEOPLE WHO PAY ATTENTION AND SHOULD BE PAYING MORE ATTENTION TO THESE THINGS. AND SO IN HAMILTON, WHEN WE DO A MAP OF POVERTY IN HAMILTON, YES, IT'S MORE CONCENTRATED IN THE LOWER CITY, BUT THAT DOESN'T MEAN, YOU KNOW, THE SUBURBS HAVE FOUND A WAY TO SOLVE POVERTY THAT THE LOWER CITY HASN'T.

The caption changes to "For more on this story visit: tvo.org/theagenda."

Sara continues WHAT WE'RE MAPPING IS WHERE ARE AFFORDABLE RENTS, WHERE IS AFFORDABLE HOUSING IN HAMILTON, AND MOST OF THE SOCIAL HOUSING HAS BEEN BUILT IN THE LOWER CITY, AND SO IT'S A GOOD THING, IN A WAY, IN THAT THERE IS HIGHER RATES OF SOCIAL HOUSING IN HAMILTON THAN IN OTHER CITIES, SO THAT PROTECTS PEOPLE FROM THESE HIGH RATES OF RENTAL, BUT IT'S NOT... WE NEED THOSE KIND OF AFFORDABLE HOUSING OPTIONS IN ALL PARTS OF THE CITY, IN ALL CITIES ACROSS CANADA.

The clips end and Steve stands in the studio alone.

He says AND THAT'S JUST SOME OF WHAT WE COVERED THIS WEEK ON THE AGENDA. FOR MORE, INCLUDING THE FULL CONVERSATIONS, YOU CAN ALWAYS VISIT OUR WEBSITE, THAT'S tvo.org, OUR YouTube CHANNEL AT Youtube.com/theagenda OR OUR TWITTER FEED, THAT'S Twitter.com/TheAgenda.

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