Author Archives

Norm Farrell

Gwen and I raised three adult children in North Vancouver. Each lives in our community with seven grandchildren, 12 years and younger. I have worked in accounting and financial management and publish IN-SIGHTS.CA with news and commentary about public issuesv.

Resolving EV inhibitions

For personal use in urban areas, electric vehicles are clearly in our immediate future. But not everyone lives in a place where battery charging is a simple affair. Fast charging stations are costly to build, damaging to batteries, and may be expensive to use, drawing power at times of peak demand.

Explanations for BC Gov’t wasting billions of dollars

Kurzweil and others have argued that people find this pace of change almost impossible to grasp, because it is human nature to perceive rates of progress as linear, not exponential… People tend to focus on the past few years, but pulling back reveals a much more dramatic change. Many things that society now takes for granted would have seemed like futuristic nonsense just a few decades ago…

Survival of the unfittest… megaprojects

UC Berkeley scholar Karen Trapenberg Frick wrote of the 25 years it took for Californians to build a Bay bridge replacement. Dr. Frick said the project was “a cautionary tale to which any governing authority embarking on a megaproject should pay heed.” British Columbia’s highly paid bureaucrats and political leaders were not paying attention.

Bring out the dead…

Ignoring climate change in the short term has benefits both to individuals and to organizations. Individuals do not have to make changes in the cars they drive, the products they buy, or the homes they live in if they ignore the influence their carbon footprint has on the world…

Hypocrisy

It says a great deal when a person at the centre of national policy making chooses to leave government to work on the climate crisis. She is silent about the dedication of Canada and its three western provinces to expanded fossil fuel production, including Alberta tar sands bitumen, the the dirtiest fossil fuel on the planet…

321 years into a 246 year cycle

Canada’s federal government gave $4.5 billion to Kinder Morgan for Trans Mountain after the owners had difficulty financing expansion of the pipeline. By 2020, the new construction budget had soared to $12.6 billion. But according to a 2021 management report, “As of March 31, 2021, construction is approximately 25% complete, with $7.1 billion in capital spending incurred since the inception of the project.” So 56% of the budget had been spent but the project was only 25% complete. That signals a total cost to taxpayers in excess of $20 billion. Compounding that massive loss will be the ongoing ecological disaster of increased tar sands production and the elevated risk to Vancouver and North Shore communities, the inner harbour and coastal waters.

Why care?

Apollo 14 astronaut Edgar Mitchell reported experiencing an “Overview Effect”… He became profoundly aware that each and every atom in the Universe was connected in some way, and on seeing Earth from space he had an understanding that all the humans, animals and systems were a part of the same thing, a synergistic whole.

Privatizing public wealth

Years ago, corporations decided they should pay less for BC’s natural resources. The companies funded pressure groups, slick online websites, and social media shills. All amplified public messaging in support of private resource extraction. Lobbyists wined and dined politicians and senior bureaucrats. Dollars moved into the bank accounts of political parties. The efforts were successful. For the expenditure of a few million, industrialists gained billions.

Climate action pretence

Governments impose carbon taxes ostensibly to deal with climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions. But effectiveness is limited since the taxes are not applied broadly or at levels sufficient to reduce or compel reduction in fossil fuel production and consumption…

Science deniers at the helm

British Columbia produces “the world’s cleanest natural gas.” In the same 2019 press release, Justin Trudeau echoed that statement. The fiction of BC producing clean fossil fuel originated with Premier Christy Clark’s Liberals. The claim was as honest as the one about LNG rewarding the province with one trillion dollars in economic activity and depositing one hundred billion dollars into a “BC Prosperity fund.”

Unchecked commercial fraud

Corporate media can’t be bothered to report what is happening at BC Hydro. Facts are readily available; they’re just not examined. The reason why was explained by the organization Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting (FAIR): “Independent, aggressive and critical media are essential to an informed democracy. But mainstream media are increasingly cozy with the economic and political powers they should be watchdogging.”

A valley will be destroyed

Valley of the Southern North is a love letter to The Peace Valley and the people and creatures that make it their home. The Site C dam, now under construction, will destroy ancestral territory of the Dane Zaa and Cree, violate treaties and displace residents, farmers and wildlife living along its shores.