The first electrons of power flowed across the seabed in Nova Scotia's Minas Basin recently delivering electricity to homes, from a giant instream tidal device. I want to be excited about it. Happy even. Instead, it's tainted by the dismissive attitude of Nova Scotia's government towards indigenous people and fishers, or really anyone in the province who raises concerns about the potential impact on their lives from these experiments.
Ontario is taking a comprehensive approach to cutting emissions, which is a good thing. While some folks may love to hate the Green Energy and Green Economy Act, the reality is that it's the reason Ontario is Canada's clean technology leader. And the coal phase out was the right move, too, which is why it's being emulated by Alberta, why Ontario hit its 2014 GHG emissions target, why our air is now smog-free, and why people like me, who care about the environment and our kids' future, can breathe more easily.
Raising the minimum wage, diversifying Alberta's economy and supporting working people have my full support, but I'm sorry Premier Notley, I just can't get behind you on pipelines. New pipelines aren't good for the environment, they aren't good for the climate, and I'm sorry, but they aren't good for working people or good governance, either.
Two degrees is the absolute red line that scientists say the world must not pass if we are to have any chance of stopping a growing climate crisis before it spins beyond our control. The 2-degree mark was only breached temporarily but it is a worrying sign that everyone, especially our elected leaders, need to pay attention to.
All around the world people took to the streets to help give the earth a voice. From Mumbai to Australia, London to Berlin, Ottawa to Vancouver millions danced, sang, and marched to push our world's elected leaders, currently in Paris for COP21, to increase their ambition, listen to the science and the voices of those most impacted, and lead the world out of climate chaos.
Investors are realizing that divestment doesn't mean financial losses. Thanks in part to plummeting global oil prices and the booming clean energy economy, divested portfolios have been outperforming those with investments in fossil fuels. Divestment doesn't just mean pulling your investments from fossil fuel holdings -- it also means redirecting investment dollars to alternatives like clean energy, green tech and climate solutions.
Fossil fuels, the writing is on the wall. Some countries are already powered by 100 per cent renewables, others are on their way. Our cars and transport are starting to be electrified and solar panels, wind turbines, and geothermal are going up in communities around the world (Bangladesh is installing nearly two new rooftop PV systems every minute).
"First Nation communities, especially ones that are isolated and reliant on diesel for power, stand to benefit the most from a transition. These panels are an example of the type of solutions our communities should be implementing -- ones that create jobs, lower energy costs and don't hurt the environment to do it."
To Warren Sarauer putting a solar electric system on his roof was a no-brainer but when some innovative electricity retailers in Alberta decided to offer almost double the going rate for his exported solar energy he was ecstatic. Sarauer is a big solar energy supporter - through his company Evergreen and Gold Renewable Energy he puts renewable energy systems into people's homes. But last year he tackled a project that would set an example for his clients, he built a net-zero office.