Wednesday, January 31, 2007

McGuinty’s Government is Consistent on the Environmental File

The Ontario Liberals and McGuinty continue to break campaign promises on the environment. First it was the coal burning thermal plants. Then they announce they can’t meet their 60% goal to recycle garbage and are only reaching 25%. The most glaring is with regards to Ontario’s boreal forests.
In the last election McGuinty is quoted as stating “We will institute meaningful, broad-scale, land-use planning for Ontario’s northern boreal forest before any new development”. Yet his minister of environment Dave Ramsay has said there will not be industrial deferrals while planning takes place. This puts the endanger woodland caribou of northern Ontario at further risk. Bill Thornton assistant deputy for forestry said in November that killing off woodland caribou might be unavoidable, ”at the end of the day there will be human activity in northwestern Ontario that will bring negative consequences to caribou.” (See Cameron Smith’s column in the Star Sat. Jan. 20.) In my view this amounts to species genocide. How can a government be so disrespectful of the our environment? To plan to make a species extinct is unacceptable.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Climate Change Will Cause Future Job Losses

I was interested in the thesis in Dion’s speech that being at the fore front of fighting climate change will bring economic opportunities to Canadian entrepreneurs. I believe this to be so true.
We do know that not to take action will cost us jobs. We have two examples of this taking place in Canada this year. One is the Pine Beetle plague that has ravaged British Columbia’s forests and is has now moved into Alberta’s forests. The beetle hash a continuous forest to eat to the east coast. Once the trees are killed the forest industry has a short window to try and salvage the dead trees so there is a short term upswing in the mill towns. When the usable trees are gone then unemployment sets in. The Beetle is killed by a periods of cold temperature below -40oC. This did not occur in British Columbia all through the 90s so we have an epidemic. Prior to that cold helped keep the beetle in check. The Second example of climates changes negative impact is the warm winter we have had to this point. There is a negative effect on our winter recreation/tourist industry. Here in southern Ontario there have been layoffs of staff in both the down hill and cross country sectors. The snowmobile industry and ice fishing industry have also been hard hit. This will have a negative impact on many small family run businesses.

Not to take aggressive action to curb and reverse our emissions now will hurt Canadians employment opportunities and standard of living.

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