Category: Environment

Denying the existential threat

Much of climate change denial is driven by money. The world’s ten largest fossil fuel companies are collectively worth trillions and their managers are not going away quietly. For years, they have invested heavily in assets that influence public opinion. These involve squads of online trolls and influencers paid to spread gospels of climate change denial. Acquiring control of corporate media output was another strategy. So-called think tanks conducted widespread skirmishes, including use of Fraser-Institute-style “learning resources” foisted on naive members of media and places of education, including students and faculty. Academics and scientists who don’t care about science have opportunities to pocket more than spare change…

Canada – TrumpLand north?

July 30, Stephen Colbert interviewed Jacob Soboroff and Katy Tur, presenters of American Swamp, a four-part docuseries on MSNBC about government corruption. They talk about politics in the USA but Canadians ought not to feel superior or complacent because our governments are constructed of the same timber.

“Because, if they do do something, they run the risk of angering a special interest or a big donor and those special interests or donors will spend money on getting them out of office. So, they sit there and twiddle their thumbs.”

Paying $185,000 for each job

BC’s fossil fuel industry benefited from credits worth $902 million in fiscal year 2018 and $4.2 billion in the past five years. Each of the jobs in oil and gas extraction cost BC taxpayers $185,000. A similar amount spent on reducing dependence on fossil fuels would have been more effective in creating jobs and protecting the environment.

No free lunch

The proliferation of plug-in stations breeds a mindset that electric vehicles are completely “green” …and they aren’t using “horsepower”. Though the overall impact of all electric vehicles is calculated to be less… it is only slightly less.

On the monorail to oblivion

Were David Black and Christy Clark serious about the Kitimat refinery? During the mid-1960s, American entrepreneur John Shaheen, owner of Shaheen Natural Resources Company and various other petrochemical businesses, arranged to construct an oil refinery at Come By Chance, then an east coast hamlet. The plan was ill-fated and resulted in one of the single largest bankruptcies in Canadian history to that date. It also greatly added to NL’s mounting public debt.

No effective way of managing private power thieves

The decision to proceed on any run-of-river project should be made after the most stringent environmental assessments and cumulative impact studies that are possible, as well as an assessment of where there may be lower environmental footprint alternatives for producing power. All of the most stringent environmental assessment and forest practice standards that exist should be applied to any clearing of forested land connected with any activity, including run-of-river power projects.

Recent Twitter activity

LEAKED: Script idea for the year long TV advertising blitz already begun by the BC Liberal Government. #bcpoli pic.twitter.com/zeUMn5ujg2 — Norm Farrell (@Norm_Farrell) February 26, 2016 //platform.twitter.com/widgets.js Heading should read “Dishonouring the […]

Natural gas – unclean energy

Today’s BC Liberal Speech from the Throne claimed natural gas is “the world’s cleanest-burning fossil fuel.” Of course, that’s a bit like saying the electric Tesla Model S is the world’s least expensive car to operate. The statement requires ignoring $100,000+ costs incurred before one climbs into the driver’s seat. It’s the same with natural gas, and particularly gas that’s been produced by intensive fracking and been liquefied, transported, regasified and distributed to consumers in far-off lands.