COP 23: WILL THE UNITED STATES BE AT THE TABLE?

Representatives of the members of the Arctic Council agreed on a draft statement covering the May 17 meeting of Council. Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland  noted the significance of the United States agreeing to the Council’s statement that supported the Paris agreement on climate change. After the draft text was circulated to the US Government, Rex Tillerson, the … Read more

Climate Change: the Need for Optimism

Not so long ago, the US and China were regarded as obstacles to the reduction of GHG emissions that are the principal cause of climate change. Yet these two countries very recently ratified the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, which requires a country-by-country reduction in emissions needed to avoid global warming to a degree that … Read more

Where does Canada stand?

Prime Minister Trudeau addressed a plenary session of COP 21.  In his remarks he identified several factors that distinguish his Government from the previous Conservative Government. Most importantly Climate Change will be a priority during his term of office.  That is a change that Canadian voters will welcome.  Recent public opinion polls confirm a big change … Read more

So Mr. Oliver, what are the other options?

On hearing that Ontario was joining a cap and trade system with Quebec and California to set a price on carbon, our finance Minister, Joe Oliver, reacted predictably.  He described cap and trade as effectively a tax. Horrors! Oliver objected to cap and trade as it would raise the price of everything for hard working … Read more

“Dire Warning” means really DIRE!

A  Globe & Mail headline for a front page article on the latest UN Climate Change Report released by the IPCC (the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) described it as a “Dire Warning”.  The Globe found those words so alarming that it has withdrawn them from its online database of published articles. In our opinion … Read more

The New Economy

There are countries whose existing industry interests create problems for adoption of renewable energy.   Australia and Canada have very large investments in fossil fuels.  Australia has enormous coal reserves, and Canada has its tar sands.  The US has large investments in coal, gas and oil.

The US also has perhaps the world’s largest investment in new technology. Technology heavyweights such as Apple and Google have committed to expand use of renewable energy. So the current political struggle pits the fossil fuel industry (coal mining states) against the technology sector (California, New England states).

Many countries leading the transition to renewable energy do not have to overcome opposition from local fossil fuel interests. Germany, a manufacturing powerhouse, is shutting down its remaining coal mines by 2018.  So . . .  without a large fossil fuel industry, Germany has had an easier task in developing both the infrastructure for renewable energy and investment in renewable installations.

Read moreThe New Economy

At last: a Canadian Statesman

At the 4RG Guelph Climate Change Forum, Stephane Dion did not back away from his support for a carbon tax as the best legislative weapon to reduce Greenhouse Gases that are largely responsible for climate change. He suggested that at the 2015 Paris Conference on climate change countries could agree on the level of carbon … Read more

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