Last week the world hit a new milestone. We crossed 400 parts per million CO2 concentration in the Earth's atmosphere, 50ppm above what is considered a safe level. According to Canada's new advertising campaign website Go With Canada, our government is taking steps on environmental protection, climate action and industry monitoring. Reality paints a different picture.
Canada's ability to oversee large energy projects is crumbling. No matter which way you look at it, Canada's regulatory system just isn't up to the challenging task of protecting the health, environment and economy of Canadians from risky energy projects.
If we connect the dots between all the natural gas, coal and tar sands proposals in B.C., a big picture emerges and the choice we face becomes both stark and clear: B.C. needs a government with leadership and vision to make the hard decisions. The province needs courage to stop building pipelines that would put at risk thousands of jobs and lock us into global warming. We need stewards to protect our collective future wisely, by investing in green jobs and saying yes to a clean energy future.
In the past the BC NDP condemned the Liberal carbon tax policy without doing the hard work to address how an NDP government would address these challenges. Under the leadership of Adrian Dix it is now clear that an NDP government would take these issues very seriously and they have taken the time to carefully consider how the carbon tax needs to cover more greenhouse gas emissions to ensure that we not only reduce pollution but also build a stronger and more equitable economy for B.C. I'm impressed.
Gerry Protti, Alberta's new overseer of environment and safety in the province's oilpatch, has been central to a network of oil industry front groups and lobbyists for many years and it is raising the eyebrows of more than a few people. Protti was recently named as the new head of the Alberta Energy Regulator, a new provincial agency whose mandate, is "...to provide for the efficient, safe, orderly and environmentally responsible development of energy resources in Alberta."
TransCanada, the multinational corporation hoping to build the controversial northern half of the Keystone XL pipeline, spent over $280,000 on lobbying the U.S. government in the first quarter (Q1) of 2013, according to lobbying disclosure records.
Quebec's recent Earth Day 2013 celebrations saw a lot of misguided ideas being bandied about by environmental activists who are determined to radically shrink Canada's energy production and consumption based upon a single value: preventing climate change.
Some people think a widespread shift from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources is not practical or even possible. And so we carry on, rushing to squeeze every last drop of oil and gas from the ground using increasingly difficult and destructive methods like fracking, deep-sea drilling and oil sands extraction, with seemingly little concern for what we'll do after we've burned it all.
Questions include what exactly caused the spill, how big was the spill exactly, and how long did it take for emergency responders to react to the spill, to name a few. But one thing is certain according to the new study: For the residents of Mayflower, quality of life has been changed forever.
Jim Hansen, the esteemed scientist formerly of NASA, is spewing "nonsense" when he is talking about global warming and Canada's Keystone pipeline, according to Joe Oliver, Canada's Natural Resources Minister and former investment banker turned heavy oil mouthpiece.
A National Post article explains that various energy initiatives, such as a plan to convert one of TransCanada's existing natural gas pipelines into an oil pipeline from west to east, came about through discussions with only the relevant parties, which enabled greater cooperation.
O'Brien's has had its hands in the botched clean-up efforts of almost every high-profile oil spill disaster in recent U.S. history, including the Exxon Valdez spill, the BP Deepwater Horizon spill, the Enbridge tar sands pipeline spill into the Kalamazoo River, and Hurricane Sandy.
The government appears determined to challenge any information, person or organization that could stand in the way of its plans for rapid tar sands expansion and transport and sale of raw resources as quickly as possible to any country with money. The results have been astounding.
On occasion I like to believe that people can change their behaviour. I suppose I am an optimist in that regard, at least until I am proven wrong. This past week I was deeply troubled by the report about some recent statistics as they do not bode well for our ability to change our behaviour. Those statistics? The traffic infraction numbers for February to March 27 2013 on Highways 63, 881, and 69.
As part of this year's nation-wide, week-long celebration of water, Canada Water Week, here are some questions for getting the most out of your documentary viewing experience. David Lavallee's film, White Water, Black Gold, has received myriad distinctions. It will air on TVO Wednesday March 20 at 10 p.m.
With consideration of the Keystone XL pipeline proposal heading into the home stretch, a parade of Canadian politicians have been making the trek to the U.S. to try to convince the Obama Administration of the pipeline's merits.The good news is that the recent visitors -- from Premiers Redford and Wall to federal Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver -- now acknowledge that Canada's environmental record is crucial to the upcoming U.S. decision.The bad news is that there are some gaping holes in that record.