By LORRIE GOLDSTEIN, Toronto Sun
Living in Ontario these days under the reign of Premier Dalton McGuinty is like being held hostage by the Green Giant.
Only this time, he’s not jolly. He’s just nuts.
The advantage for the rest of Canada is Ontario has literally become a “hothouse” of all things “green” imposed by governments, ostensibly to help the environment, that don’t actually work.
Or rather, that work not to clean up the planet, but to separate hapless taxpayers from an ever-increasing amount of the “green” in their wallets.
Indeed, a good rule of (green) thumb for Canadians is if Ontario is doing something to “help the environment,” you should run screaming from the idea as if Frankenstein had suddenly been unleashed on your community.
Should you one day catch any of your politicians starting to babble like our premier does about all things green, the appropriate response would be to hunt them down with pitch forks and burning torches, before they do something really stupid.
In Ontario, alas, it’s too late. Stupid already rules.
In the latest fiasco, the environment minister temporarily suspended thousands of new “eco fees” the government introduced July 1 on everyday household products, without telling anyone.
The new charges caused so much outrage, McGuinty announced Tuesday he’s called the whole thing off for 90 days while his government retools the idea.
Unfortunately, we’ll be paying the $4 to $5 million the eco fees would have generated during that period through our taxes, until McGuinty comes up with a new fiasco.
Eco fees are supposed to pay for recycling, although we have no way of knowing whether they are, or, if they are, whether we’re getting value for money.
Shortly before that mess, McGuinty caused an uproar in rural Ontario by suddenly cutting the ridiculous 80.2¢ per-kilowatt-hour subsidy we now pay for electricity generated by small-scale solar producers (ridiculous because the normal cost of generating power in Ontario is about 5¢ per kilowatt hour) to 58.8¢ per kilowatt hour, going forward.
This because the government said it can no longer afford the higher rate, although in reality, we can’t afford the lower one, either.
Then again farmers, who were the main beneficiaries of that program, aren’t the big problem.
The big problem is McGuinty has been offering a financial bonanza to industrial wind turbine developers by giving them heavily subsidized, 20-year power-generation contracts (wind energy isn’t viable without massive subsidies), one factor contributing to our skyrocketing electricity bills, expected to rise 25% by the end of next year.
All this for unreliable energy that must be backed up by traditional power sources.
McGuinty’s also a big booster of putting a price on carbon and establishing a North American cap-and-trade market in carbon dioxide emissions, which has done nothing to lower emissions in Europe, has sent electricity prices there skyrocketing and which is beset by multibillion-dollar frauds.
Now a day barely passes where McGuinty, who didn’t know the difference between air pollution and greenhouse gases when he won power in 2003, isn’t pursuing some new “green” initiative that won’t help the planet, but will separate us from more of our green.
It’s too late for Ontario.
We let our Jolly Green Giant get out of control and now he’s running amok.
But you can still save yourselves.