The same U.S. foundations that fund conservation in Canada also fund American groups working towards energy security, including a foundation called Securing America's Future Energy. The name says it all. American foundations aim to reduce fossil fuel dependence to stop global warming and strengthen U.S. national, energy and economic security. That's clear. What's unclear is whether they fund conservation initiatives in Canada, in part, to foster U.S. energy security.
Kinder Morgan would like us to believe that their Trans Mountain pipeline project in British Columbia is a better proposal than the one Enbridge has put forward, and that they're a more responsible company. Of course, as a climate activist I don't see any oil company proposing to expand oil consumption as playing a positive role in today's day and age. But given all of Enbridge's bungling as of late, some folks may be swayed by this argument.
"Art for an Oil Free Coast" will open for just a few days on Granville Island featuring a film, book and art exhibit featuring dozens of British Columbia's most talented and acclaimed visual artists. The exhibit -- designed to stimulate discussion about the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline in Kitimat, B.C. -- will then travel to Victoria, Saltspring Island and beyond.
A group of Canadian businessmen has obtained the blessing of Alaskan tribes and Canadian First Nations to build a railroad through their lands that could carry up to five million barrels per day from the oil sands to the super tanker port in Valdez, Alaska. This is truly a nation-building project that must be seriously evaluated by all governments and the oil industry.
As Canadians, we are well aware that we are sleeping next to an elephant, and that the choices made by the American president have broad implications not only for Canada but for rest of the world. Much to the chagrin of many conscientious Canadians, the implications of a changing climate were off the radar in the American election before Hurricane Sandy swept in. The topic was not raised even once during the 2012 U.S. presidential debates. You would think it would be a no brainer to talk about this issue, given that the United Nations has called climate change "the single biggest threat facing humanity today."
The courage and resilience of the First Nations people in general, and specifically through their ongoing resistance to and suffering from mineral extraction such as the tar sands mining in Alberta, further affirms that we have a great deal to learn from the aboriginal peoples of this region and elsewhere.
Conflict between B.C. Premier Christy Clark and Alberta Premier Alison Redford over the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline to the West Coast is not in the long-range interests of either province and needs to be resolved. In July, Ms. Clark laid down five conditions for considering support of the project, including a provision that B.C. must receive a "fair share" of the fiscal and economic benefits. Ms. Redford's response was immediate and negative and seemed to assume that B.C. was seeking a share of Alberta's oil royalties, even though this was not the case. Since the Alberta Premier has been seeking to take the lead in developing a "national energy strategy," it's in her interests to take the initiative in negotiating a resolution to this dispute with British Columbia.
Our government is ramming through another omnibus budget bill, and is set to sign a deal with China, both of which seem aimed at facilitating the pipeline and other resource-extraction projects. Why would anyone want to sell out our interests, democratic processes and future like this? And why would we put up with it?
As I write this thousands of people are gathered in Victoria, B.C. risking arrest to send a clear message that Canada's west coast is united in opposition to the expansion of tar sands pipelines and tanker traffic. There is no one size-fits-all solution to environmental issues, but that's exactly what PowerShift is all about.
If a mega corporation wanted to build a ski resort in your most treasured forest, you'd raise your voice. If a little girl in your community was standing up to big oil because she wanted to save sea otters, you'd raise your voice. If a thoughtful group of First Nations said to you "how can we understand the total impact of all these development projects unless we are working together?", you'd raise your voice too. Well, this is your chance. B.C. is facing unprecedented environmental challenges.
TransCanada plans a rugged over-mountain route for its proposed Coastal Gaslink pipeline to the Shell Canada liquified natural gas project in Kitimat, B.C., company officials said this week in two presentations. The pipeline would initially carry 1.7 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day from the Montney Formation region of northeastern B.C. over 700 kilometres from Groundbirch, near Dawson Creek, to Kitimat.
Proponents of the Northern Gateway pipeline proposal seem hell-bent for leather on conducting what may be the most inept natural resource project application in B.C. history. Their place in the Canadian business school textbooks is assured, under the heading "Enbridge to Nowhere."
A large part of Canada's problem is that we are increasing our fossil-fueled ambitions at breakneck speed in the absence of a long-term national energy strategy. No one seems to know where we're going, but the end of the road is looming, and it might lead to a steep drop.
Every July, around 10 Canadian universities scattered across the country play host to 500 students from all provinces/territories and even internationally. Although the program is for open-minded high school students who are not afraid to delve into any subject and become challenged or inspired in ways they never thought possible in one month, I hope to break the stereotype that this is "nerd camp". My program consisted of 56 total Shads and we lived in residence at the university.
The criticism of B.C. Premier Christy Clark's strategy regarding negotiations over Enbridge's proposed Northern Gateway pipeline is unwarranted. Clark has been clear on what the province requires in order to move forward with construction of the pipeline in Northern B.C. while her Alberta counterpart has given her little to work with. Clark said herself, it's her job to fight for B.C. and our environment. She's absolutely right, and we should all be in her corner cheering her on.
I'm beginning to feel sorry for Premier Christy Clark. She is a very nice person, personable and able to speak. What she is not capable of doing is speaking sensibly or making decisions that make sense. It seems obvious to me that she is getting wretched advice and nowhere is this more evident than on the pipeline issue.