Divestment – where do the Churches stand today?

The Federal budget released yesterday (March 23)  included a very minor change to provisions of the Income Tax Act that allowed companies to fully deduct exploration expenses (seismic testing, exploratory drilling etc.) from revenue in the year in which these expenses were occurred.  Now these expenses can only  be deducted over time – unless the … Read more

Faith and Climate Change

Stephen Scharper is a wonderful speaker:  profound – yet humorous. He does more than communicate.  He illuminates his subject.   He is a masterful interpreter of Christian theology on the subject of climate change. His commentaries in the Toronto Star have inspired more than one 4RG blog.  Read “A Christmas Day Message  for Grandparents everywhere. … Read more

The US Mid-term Election: One step back, and . . .

Will the Results of the US election bury what hope there was of achieving an agreement on climate change? Moving off the present climate trajectory is a collective task.   Without US leadership and technological support the needed reduction of GHG will probably not happen. Prominent Republicans in the US Senate have referred to global warming … Read more

Are the tar sands ecocide?

For six decades Canadians regarded the tar sands as a natural resource to be developed.  The site of the tar sands, located in Canada’s Northern boreal forest, was very sparsely populated, mainly by aboriginal peoples. Apart from sporadic mine sites, there was no other large economic activity carried on until tar sands development arrived in the early 60’s.

Initially no one recognized the risks that could result from the development of the tar sands.  Certainly the extraction of the bitumen from the tar sands would destroy trees and the landscape, but this destruction could later be remedied over time by restoration of the forest.  It was assumed that the toxic substances released by extraction and processing would be in minimal quantities, and so absorbed in the vast space until nature had rendered them harmless. If by chance health consequences did arise, the long-suffering aboriginal peoples would be unlikely to complain until the tar sands reached the status of national resource. The generation of CO2 emissions was not foreseen as a risk until the development was well underway.

Read moreAre the tar sands ecocide?

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