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Mr. Trudeau must choose between the anti-pipeline provinces like Quebec and British Columbia, and the interests of Alberta; between the oil industry magnates and the citizen opposition; between the oil economy with its short term goals and our international commitments for the reduction of greenhouse gases.
Before using the threat of equalization payments as a "poke in the ribs" to provinces such as British Columbia and Quebec, perhaps the petroleum industry should rethink its own dependency on subsidies. It should be aware that it, too, is vulnerable to budgetary policy.
Energy East wants to force the Canadian economy in this 19th century straight-jacket for the next 40 years. As a member of the G8, we need an economy based on know-how, renewable energies, manufacturing as well as refining our natural resources. Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre is right in rejecting TransCanada's antiquated project.
Some see low fuel prices as good news, but there are many downsides. With driving becoming less costly, more cars and trucks could be on the road, which is good for the auto industry but bad in terms of pollution, climate change and traffic accidents. And because the price of oil is now lower than the cost to extract oilsands bitumen, the industry is starting to put the brakes on rapid expansion plans -- bad news for workers and businesses in Fort McMurray and those heavily invested in the industry but good news for the planet.
To Krause, it seemed suspicious that foundations from across the border were giving money to Canadian groups working on Canadian conservation and energy issues. It must be, Krause surmised, that these big foundations are spending their dollars to manipulate Canadian energy and environment politics to further American interests.
It's become a cliché to say that out of crisis comes opportunity. But there's no denying that when faced with crises, we have choices. The opportunity depends on what we decide to do.What choices will we make when confronted with the fact that 2014 will likely be the hottest year on record? Will politicians close their eyes while fossil fuel industry executives shovel money at them and enlist propagandists to spread misinformation and lies?
The filing of the Energy East project this week is a perfect example of this choice and is slated to become the "climate test" for Canadian politicians. Unfortunately, right now this is also a climate test that every political party in Canada is failing. Most Canadian politicians remained silent in the wake of Energy East's filing.
The phrase "extreme weather event" is synonymous with extreme water event, be it flooding, landslide, erosion or polar vortex. Old practices like building on floodplains as in Calgary are proving to be mistakes, especially where the ice-melt from the Rockies has always made downstream residents anxious on both sides of the mountains.
The America that set me on my path would never deny the reality of a scientifically proven problem, or claim nothing can be done about it or that meeting the challenge will destroy the economy. By committing to seek solutions, we will reap benefits -- expected and unexpected. It's time to revive the American know-how and gung-ho enthusiasm that has long characterized this great nation.