British Columbia is not just North America’s largest coal shipper, it plans to be a major LNG exporter. Destructive public policies demonstrate the hold on Canadian politicians enjoyed by private vested interests and lobbyists. Otherwise intelligent people have turned into fools who pretend climate change can be ignored or dealt with by comforting words as long as money can be made from fossil fuels.
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.”
Indifferent to existential threats
While natural gas producers now pay nothing to the BC public in comparison to earlier days, production of the fossil fuel has about doubled in the last ten years. Fossil fuels may pose an existential threat to the world, but politicians in Canada are either unaware or indifferent. Evidence suggests the latter.
LNG plants will only be constructed in BC if the province provides unprecedented subsidies and tax relief. Inducements include natural gas that is essentially free of royalties and other levies, electricity at a fraction of the cost BC Hydro incurs for new power and, after passage of Bill 10, tax credits that will eliminate provincial income tax that might otherwise be paid by LNG operators.
Governmental pandering and corporate fiction peddling
Most people are unlikely to remember the following.. from J. Wellington Wimpy. “I’ll gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today.” I’m old, so I remember. Again, sensing the usefulness of predicting disaster (cue organist) … unless … Royal Dutch Shell’s “I-See-The-Future!” tea leaves gambit continues… with help from (cue organist) a Globe and Mail puff piece…
Fossil fuel pollution we forget
After Canada’s federal government asked its energy regulator to examine broader environmental effects of the Energy East pipeline project by TransCanada Corp, including upstream and downstream emissions, the proponent, a company with substantial […]
Plug pulled on LNG
The BC Business Party told many contemptuous lies during its tenure but ones involving LNG were the largest. The captured corporate media crew in BC’s Legislative Press Gallery facilitated Liberal untruthfulness by failing to look behind or beyond government press releases. Attentive research would have convinced any objective researcher that government was telling tall tales when it projected an almost $3 billion a month increase in in gross domestic product (GDP).
LNG facilities: siting, safety, regulation
When British Columbia conducts LNG negotiations behind closed doors, without public statements of principles or bargaining frameworks, citizens should worry. I have written about our government’s willingness to provide the gas industry with 9-figure production subsidies and Liberal aversion to collection of natural gas royalties but there is another subject to consider. It is the safety and security of LNG facilities…
Socialized losses, privatized gains
Every megaproject conceived and executed by BC Liberals in recent years has ended with massive cost overruns, despite the predictable “on-time and on-budget” claims. Most involved contractors with foreign domiciles. Check out the Port Mann bridge project, South Fraser Perimeter Road, BC Place renovation, Vancouver Convention Centre, Sea to Sky Highway, Northwest Transmission Line, etc.
BC dodged a bullet
Agreements between Postmedia – the country’s largest newspaper chain – and the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP), plus an equally disgraceful deal between the company’s Vancouver Province and the LNG industry have permanently stained the organization’s journalistic credibility… Once a newspaper is committed to a controversial view, it’s like a clock that strikes 13 – it can never be trusted again.
Huge cost, high risk, low government revenue, few permanent jobs, better choices
When thinking about the Petronas LNG project (PNW LNG), we should consider which supporting claims for it were believable. The value and benefits of the project have been routinely misrepresented.
Behind the ostensible government
Behind the ostensible government sits enthroned an invisible government owing no allegiance and acknowledging no responsibility to the people. To destroy this invisible government, to dissolve the unholy alliance between corrupt business and corrupt politics, is the first task of the statesmanship of the day.
Pembina Institute reacts
The trillion dollar charade has ended. The sparkle ponies are pissed. Not that the whole thing was anything but a big lie from the start, created to save a desperate Liberal party that worried it was headed for defeat at the 2013 polls. Sustaining the fantasy cost taxpayers a massive sum of money and put BC’s so-called free enterprise coalition in bed with private and foreign government-owned corporations, a few controlled by individuals with appalling records.
Stakes high, LNG bets unsafe
Today Pacific Northwest LNG announced what has been obvious for a considerable time. Unless the provincial government was prepared to guarantee profits and underwrite losses, the project was not proceeding. The writing was on the wall when this In-Sights article was published in 2014.
Circular flow of income
Economists write papers on the circular flow of income but they don’t include the flow between politicians, businesses and the public treasury. In BC, it is commonplace. If you are an observer grown cynical – like the writer – you may wonder what secret benefits are to be found in the circular flow of income between Government, the governing party of British Columbia from 2001 to 2017 and the companies they purport to regulate.
Empress’ new clothes
Before BC’s last provincial election, the governing party was trailing in the polls, still suffering from the HST fiasco, their failed effort to shift sales tax burdens from businesses to individuals. Premier Clark’s handlers decided to weave her a new set of clothes. When first shown to the public, oblivious cheerleaders in the corporate media rose in unison to applaud. Like the child in Hans Christian Andersen’s story, alternative media revealed the truth.
Opportunity not years away, it is now
Three months before the 2013 provincial election, Christy Clark’s government issued a Speech from the Throne that made a few grandiloquent asseverations. Today, the 2017 Speech from the Throne was presented to […]
Saying no to the Forces of Know
At The Gazetteer, RossK and friends are commenting about reports that Petronas does or does not aim to bail from the land of Sparkle Ponies. In my opinion, discussion of what’s been said or not said […]
Taxpayers as bagholders
Normzig, “No matter how many speeches are made or how many permits are issued and how many rainbow forecasts are shown, the only way BC is getting LNG plants anytime soon is […]
Duped by fossil fuel barons
The following excerpts are from a piece in DeSmog Blog. It is written by Martyn Brown, an articulate commentator on public affairs and, years ago, Premier Gordon Campbell’s Chief of Staff. The linked piece is the fourth of four parts about B.C.’s climate action plan. The entire series is worth the time of anyone seeking a more complete understanding of the intended and unintended directions of BC’s current energy policies. It is excellent work.