Sunday, November 12, 2017

Moving past coal in Surrey



The Canadian Press is reporting that "Environment Minister Catherine McKenna is arriving today in Bonn, Germany, to attend the second week of COP23, the annual United Nations climate change talks that two years ago led to the Paris climate change accord."

"McKenna and Perry are hosting a joint event Nov. 16 to launch a joint campaign calling for other countries to declare a plan not to build any more unabated coal-fired plants and eliminate existing ones. 'We want every country to look at how they can reduce their use of coal and phase it out and we want to be supporting developing countries to do so,' McKenna told The Canadian Press in an interview last week."

"About 10 per cent of electricity in Canada comes from coal, and 40 per cent of the electricity around the world is generated by coal-fired power plants. A year ago, Canada committed to eliminating coal as a source of power by 2030. Britain has committed to getting rid of it by 2025. Since Canada and the U.K. first announced their coal phase-out campaign last month, Italy and Netherlands added themselves to the list of countries aiming to get rid of coal. France had already set a 2025 coal-phase out target."

This is the direction the rest of the world is moving in. We can argue climate change until the cows come home. The fact is the visible pollution in Beijing from coal is off the hook. Surrey is contributing to that insanity by trying to expand it's coal exports to China while China has committed to reducing coal emissions. Normally, a good businessman can see the writing on the wall when it comes to supply and demand. It's time for us to innovate and move past coal exports. Not only will that help China's smog problem but it will also give us sustainable business. Innovation means moving forward not backward.

This applies to BC because the obsession to increase coal exports out of the Surrey docks is the real reason they want to get rid of the George Massey tunnel when Richmond itself does not. There's nothing wrong with the tunnel. The spin doctors are spamming the media with lies so they can line their pockets with dirty money. The problem is, that plan is very short sighted.

The Telegraph is reporting that "India is set to overtake China and become the world's largest emitter of sulphur dioxide, an air pollutant that is generated when coal is burnt and can lead to severe haze, acid rain and asthma complications." Quarts Media is reporting that "This week, air pollution forced some 4,000 schools to close in New Delhi, as India’s capital suffers through an air quality nightmare. Now, here’s more bad news on the pollution front: the country is passing China as the world’s biggest emitter of deadly man-made sulfur dioxide (SO2)."

The Sierra Club is reporting that "Coal is our country’s dirtiest energy source, from mining to burning to disposing of coal waste. Our campaign is uniting grassroots activists across the country to move America Beyond Coal."

Replacing a perfectly functional tunnel so they can dredge the Fraser river and load more coal onto the cargo ships out of the Surrey docks is insane. There is no future in it. It's like investing massive amounts of money in VCRs. Propane and natural gas are clean burning. Coal is not. Hydroelectricity is clean. Nuclear reactors are not. We need to move forward.

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