In advance of world leaders coming to Toronto and Huntsville, Ontario, on June 25, Canadian police have displayed the security measures that will be used to deter protesters, which will include thousands of federal, provincial and municipal police officers on horseback and motorcycles as well as officers in riot gear with SWAT and police snipers on high alert.
Police also have purchased Long Range Acoustic Devices, also known as sound cannons, to control the anticipated crowds. These are similar to those used at the last G20 summit held in Pittsburgh last year. Preparations in Toronto—the site of this month’s G20 summit—have included adding 77 closed circuit security cameras in downtown Toronto as an additional safety measure.
Some members of the Liberal party as well as of the New Democratic Party have called for an investigation into thee cost of security for the G20 summit. Slated to be the most expensive security operation in Canadian history, Auditor General Sheila Fraser will investigate the $800 million and rising price tag for the summit. Costs are estimated to reach nearly $1 billion at the summit’s conclusion.
Previous G20 meetings have each been expensive but have varied widely in cost depending on location. Security for last year’s summit held in London cost $30 million while the summit held in Japan two years ago cost closer to $300 million. Security expenses for this year’s summit increased when Canada agreed to host both the G20 and the G8 summit (in Huntsville).
June 1: This AQ-Efecto Naím segment looks at sustainable cities in the hemisphere.