We need to consider the consequences of our ‘green’ initiatives

By Raymond, Chalifoux, Special to the Sarnia Observer

It’s time we got rational and practical with our energy policy. There should be a moratorium on future “wind” and “solar” developments and Ethanol; and consider the consequences of our “green” initiatives.

We have handed out these permits indiscriminately at outrageous guaranties for over 20 years without regards to any new technologies that lie ahead. We don’t even have the infrastructure (smart grid) in place to handle the inconstancy of “Green Power.”

Has there been any thought about what to do if these projects in the future are abandoned for financial or technological reasons? What happens to these infrastructures that are in place? Wind power is more efficient at night, yet this will be our low cost to consumers at that time yet cost more to taxpayers! Solar is more efficient in day time when all the air conditioners are on during weekends when people are home. Again cheap power to consumers but cost more to the taxpayers again.

It was not bad enough we use corn to produce ethanol, now we want to produce rubber from corn! What are we thinking? I can see the price of corn and everything else should be coming up roses!

Southern Ontario is the center of over 60 per cent of Canada’s prime farmland and we are covering it with Solar panels and now corn. This is a complete waste.

Instead, if we are to make use of solar, would it not better serve us by concentrating our effort on using “roof tops” (Walmart in the U.S.A. is transforming many of its stores to solar this way).

Solar and Wind are not a reliable source of energy and must be built in conjunction with Hydro; Nuclear and coal. All these countries who promote wind and solar is mainly because they do not have coal or oil of their own.

China, the USA and Russia, like us, have plenty of coal, oil; and and gas. Unlike the US, they plan to use these resources along with the Green energy. Closing our coal plant will do absolutely nothing for the environment.

We must not forget that we do not live in a bubble. There are not environmental boundaries. While we consider closing our few coal-fired plants (already paid for by the way), China is building or opening a new one every week and the USA is not far behind.

China is leading in Solar and wind power but is also the uncontested leader in coal power.

It’s easy for us to be puritanical in promoting solar, wind and ethanol because we are the have lots and will survive. But two thirds of the world is not.

The cost of basic foods are rising so much that the majority of the human race is starving.

Regarding ethanol, the facts are not out on the practicality of using it at least from corn, a major food staple of the world. It takes almost as much energy to produce it as it benefits.

The bottom line is we should take a breather and consider all the consequences. Either way we go, we should not be held ransom by any one energy source. We should be like China and develop all forms in concert with one another.

Raymond Chalifoux is a resident of Sarnia.

22 thoughts on “We need to consider the consequences of our ‘green’ initiatives

  1. In some countries children are indoctrinated into Gaia worship. Fortunately it does not happen here. But in some countries…?? It’s just awful…

    See here for example…
    http://climatelessons.blogspot.com/

    It’s not happening here is it?

    Tell me that people are “onto” the Dr. Rick Smiths of the world. …please tell me that are children are not being brainwashed…

  2. Is it any more rational or ethical to plaster our good farmland with suburbs while it’s proven that people can live in highrises more efficiently?? Typical narrowminded city slicker…
    Poorly written article by the way. I hope the SO never paid him for it.

  3. “It’s not happening here is it?”

    Well, I can say that at least some of our public schools here in Ontario host Earth Day celebrations. One that I’m aware of included students joined together in a circle playing a game that involved passing around a giant bouncy ball, like those exercise ones, painted up as the Earth.

    Who knows what prefaced the event, but I can guess there was probably some talk by the teachers on how our planet was being destroyed by these youngsters’ parents.

  4. Joseph Martins,

    How is it that the US developed all their small towns of the last century into cities?

    Are you saying we should not allow people to build a home in the country here in Ontario? That we should all live in apartment high rises in the city so that farmers can grow corn?

    Small town growth is essential so that business can develop in the rural areas and people can work where they live and live where they work.

  5. I beg to differ…schools are now teaching “Gaia” worship under the cloak of Green!………….better wake up to what’s going on before one day your child comes home from school and “whacks you” because you didn’t turn your thermostat down to 12 degrees during a cold weather alert!

    We should act like “China”?……………….I can’t believe anyone would have the nerve to say that!

    China will kill your second born if you have one…….China will harvest organs from prisoners …….Geezuz!….how uninformed are the Canadian populace?……….

  6. Dense urban populations breed all sorts of undesirable social problems that do not exist in suburban & rural areas. Children grow up on the streets which leads to gang problems is just one example of the social problems created.

  7. “…people can live in highrises more efficiently”.

    Ahhh….Nothing like raising a family in a 700sq. ft. shoebox only a short elevator ride to the beautiful outdoors. Take a deep breath. Don’t you just love the smell of that fresh city air? And all this can be had in downtown TO for what, about $2000 per month to rent? Maybe $3K for 1200 sq. ft? But if you don’t like to rent, you can always buy I suppose. That way you can can pass the shoebox on down to your grandchildren, but only if you live long enough to work until you’re 100 and pay it off before you hit the dirt nap.

    Efficient, yes. But from who’s perspective?

  8. Just in case anyone thinks that Green Policy has anything to do with the “environment” and doesn’t have anything to do with Economic Policy by Governments world-wide must read this report from Potsdam Institute For Climate Impact Research (PIK).

    We are being worked over like a bunch of “rented mules” by our “Illustrious Leaders”

    Time for the “mules” to start backing up!

    http://notrickszone.com/2011/02/22/piks-naive-new-deal-based-on-a-state-of-the-art-model-of-climate-economics/

  9. It’s a good bet that all Ontario political parties know just what damaging information has been gathered against IWTs and the effects IWTs will have on Ontario if they continue to be installed in Ontario.

    But all parties don’t know what to do about this situation as it is a rare occurence in politics when vast numbers of the public become informed about an issue and this is a very politically dangerous situation if you are planning to run for eclected office.

    How do you face and what do you say to well informed voters? Political platitudes won’t work in this kind of a situation.

    So voters ask lots of questions and keep on asking lots of questions until you get answers from those who seek to represent you.

  10. Melodie, Barbara, Wegrait,
    I’m just playing the devils advocate here 🙂
    The arguement against solar on the basis of it using up farmland is weak when you take into acccount the poor planning that goes into building suburbs/malls/plazas etc. A highrise is an extreme example of utilizing as little space as possible for human habitaition but the pre war concept of building towns and cities with blocks instead of cul de sacs was much more efficient than what we see today.
    Efficient in terms of land use, energy consumption, transportation etc.
    It’s also no surprise that the land around cities is usually highly productive farmland because if you build a city than why not build it on or near a place where food is plentiful right? Sure but now we are paving over more and more of our best farmland and once it’s paved over, it more than likely won’t be used for farming anymore. Good land should be saved to produce food, not to build a BestBuy or Canadian Tire. Cities and towns should build inwards on abandoned properties instead of taking to easy way out and building outwards onto farmland.

    A solar farm is peanuts in comparison to whats happening all over the province around most growing towns and cities. At least a solar farm can be farmed again in 20 years (don’t get me wrong, I don’t think covering farmland with something that is only 15% efficient is a good idea)

    Also dense urban environments don’t breed gangs. Poor economics and poor parenting do. I live in the country and we have gangs as well, motorcycle gangs especially…and they make a living off of…. crystal meth which is more prevalent in smaller towns than it is in cities on a per capita basis. Makes you want to move to the city doesn’t it?
    JM

  11. In addition to playing “devil’s advocate,” Joseph has also demonstrated the power of wandering off topic.

  12. Most cities and towns grew up along rivers and rail lines and not because of available good farmland.

    It has now become too costly due to urban brown fields to rebuild in many cities. Far cheaper to build on land that was never used for industrial purposes. So the eco-nuts have shot themselves in the foot on this issue.

    When you pack large numbers of people into small spaces you get all kinds of undesirable social problems. Like neighbours fighting over all sorts of trivial problems.

    Children have no place else to go except in the streets to play. Wealthy urbanites have the resources to care for their children in dense urban areas. Poorer people do not. Poor people can’t afford all sorts of activites to keep their children busy.

    Nice to bring up these issues as they do relate to future energy needs.

  13. Joseph, I wouldn’t be so sure about the land being suitable for farming again in 20 years after solar. I’ve heard there is long-term damage. Perhaps someone else has more info about this. I think once the land has been converted to solar it’s gone from productive agricultural land.

  14. Josephs Martins,

    When starting our family in 1977, we made a decision to leave a cookie cutter subdivision in Streetsville and move to the county to raise our boys. We worked very hard to realize this dream. We made many sacrifices. Now that our sons are grown up and finished university I was trying to hang on to our farm for my future grandchildren so that they too can grow up in a home where the door is never locked. In the summer only the screen door is shut. I want them to be able to sleep out under the stars on their own property, read a good book in the hayloft, have a bon fire, shoot at tin cans or clay birds, learn to drive a standard transmission on an old tractor, bring home an injured animal and nurse it well enough to be released back to the wild, ride a horse, build a fort, learn how to fix stuff, improvise and make do. These are the things that are worth fighting for. This is the legacy I want to pass on to future generations…these are the things that McGuinty just doesn’t get!

  15. Well said Melodie.

    Re J Martin – “the argument against
    solar on the basis of it using up farmland
    is weak.”

    How about the argument that solar is
    costly, inefficient and not practical on
    a commercial scale in this country i.e.
    latitude, climate etc….

  16. Hi Melodie

    We too moved to the country around the same time for the same reasons. And they are certainly worth fighting for. And the reasons why I started to pay attention to this fight initially.

    But I suspect you will agree it is also worth fighting for the health and welfare of those who live in other settings in the province, whether or not that health and welfare is impacted by the close proximity of turbines, the rising cost of hydro which leaves parents with fewer financial resources to invest in their children or the loss of jobs resulting from the cost of power. Perhaps even to resist the dictatorial decrees of the government.

    I agree with what you are saying; I am just suggesting that there are also other good reasons for this fight as well. Regardless of one’s reason for the fight, our combined efforts will stop McGuinty and the destruction of our province.

  17. Mattie, Of course I agree with you. This false dogma will effect all Ontarians. I was responding to the comments made by Joseph Martins that it is more economical for people to live in the city. I truly suspect that our mineral rights are coveted by foreign corporations as well. The wind turbine leases give them a foothold as many will move , sell or abandon their property.

  18. See Bill 173…

    “Northern Ontario” means that part of the province of Ontario lying north of the south shores of the French River, Lake Nipissing and Mattawa River; (“Nord de l’Ontario”)

    “Southern Ontario” means that part of the province that is not in Northern Ontario. (“Sud de l’Ontario”)

    Southern Ontario

    (2) In Southern Ontario, for lands where there is a surface rights owner and the mining rights are held by the Crown, the mining rights shall be deemed to be withdrawn from prospecting, staking, sale and lease as of the day this subsection comes into force.

    Exception

    (3) Despite subsection (2), any mining claims, mining leases or licences of occupation for mining rights existing on the day this section comes into force shall not be affected by the deemed withdrawal under that subsection and shall remain open for prospecting, sale or lease.

    Reversion to Crown

    (4) If a mining claim, lease or licence of occupation described in subsection (3) reverts to the Crown by forfeiture, expiry, termination or otherwise, those mining rights shall, upon the reversion to the Crown, be deemed to be withdrawn from prospecting, staking, sale or lease.

    Application to open lands

    (5) If mining rights have been deemed withdrawn under subsection (2), a surface rights owner may apply to the Minister for an order opening the mining rights for the lands or any part of them for prospecting, staking, sale and lease and the Minister may issue the order.

    Relief from forfeiture

    (6) Subsection (4) does not affect any powers of the recorder or Commissioner to grant relief from forfeiture or to make related orders under section 49, or any powers of the Minister to revoke, cancel or annul a forfeiture or termination under subsection 185 (1).

  19. Glad to hear what? That they want to destroy Energy and Mining as well?

    Ok, Ok I know what you mean… but still…

    This is one of their stupider moves — and that’s saying a lot…

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