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Accidental Deliberations: Monday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your Monday reading.

- Frances Woolley reminds us of some of the hidden advantages of the rich, and suggests that they point toward the fairness of taxing wealth in addition to consumption: The greatest freedom money offers is the freedom to walk away. Your bank doesn’t offer you unlimited everything with no monthly fees? Walk away. There’s always someone else who wants your money. Your phone plan is too expensive? Walk away (o.k., that may not be the best example).

People with money have alternatives, which makes their demand for goods and services elastic. Food (Read more…)

reeves report: Ontario Anti-Fracking Bill Passes Second Reading

NDP MPP Peter Tabuns speaking with reporters at Queen’s Park. (CBC News Image.)

A PRIVATE MEMBER’S BILL from Toronto-area NDP MPP Peter Tabuns to ban fracking in the province passed second reading Thursday by a 29-18 vote with support from the governing Liberals.

“Water or gas — that’s our choice,” Tabuns explained to the House. “We can’t have both.”

Threats to groundwater contamination as found in Pennsylvania this month; links to triggering earthquakes in Ohio and Alberta; questions over the perilous, ponzi-like investment structuresupporting the fracking industry. It all led Tabuns to believe the (Read more…)

Northern Insight / Perceptivity: Greenhouse gas emissions

It seems Canada is about to end a long tradition of coordinating greenhouse gas reduction targets with the United States. With much of the densely populated east coast at risk from rising sea levels, Americans know that climate change action is necessary. The Harper government, more firmly in the grasp of the fossil fuel industry, prefers change that is merely symbolic.

The Washington Post reported recently: The Obama administration on Tuesday outlined an ambitious plan for slashing U.S. greenhouse-gas pollution over the next decade, calling for accelerating the shift from fossil fuels to clean energy to stave (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: Premier Christy Clark’s miserable record is finally catching up with her. It is Fire Sale time in BC!

Richard Hughes–Cowichan Conversations

I have always been amazed as to how the BC Liberals along with their far right conservative friends in Ottawa manage to snow the citizen taxpayers with the fabrication that they are wise and capable handlers of our economy.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Premier Christy Clark-selling off our assets to cover hers.

We have been scammed and conned into very difficult financial circumstances fuelled by the illusion that fracking our way into the future will mean jobs, and a great wealth of profits needed to fund our social services, highways and other infrastructure demands.

(Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: Damien Gillis–A Primer–LNG In A Nutshell

Damien Gillis clearly explains the processes of producing the so called clean LNG fuel.

Cowichan Conversations: Rafe–The reason why the NDP cannot win the next election is because of three little letters, LNG

Richard Hughes–Cowichan Conversations

Cowichan Conversations is pleased to feature this post from Rafe Mair.

Rafe has had a long and distinguished career that includes time as an MLA, Cabinet Minister and later as an award winning broadcaster, talk show host, successful author, and blogger.

Rafe is all about politics and our environment. We are all better off for his contributions to British Columbia.


I am no expert in the culinary arts – except the eating part – so I have no idea whether a cooked goose can be uncooked. The BC New Democratic Party, if it wants any chance (Read more…)

reeves report: Opposition Bill Wants Ontario to Ban Fracking

NDP MPP Peter Tabuns speaking with reporters at Queen’s Park. (CBC News Image.)

New Democratic MPP Peter Tabuns introduced a private member’s bill Wednesday encouraging the Liberals to adopt a ban on hydraulic fracturing in the province.

Tabuns, a former executive director of Greenpeace Canada and his party’s Environment and Climate Change critic, said the Liberal government of Kathleen Wynne should follow the lead of Ontario’s neighbours, many of whom — Quebec and New York state, in addition to the Maritime provinces of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia — have already outlawed the disputed oil and gas extraction procedure.

“There (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: Quicksilvers Bankruptcy Stalls Fracking Operations On The Island

Don Maroc

It is never good form to gloat over someone else’s ill fortune, but when their loss is our gain it’s hard to maintain a polite composure.

Quicksilver Resources, Inc., and its 13 U.S. subsidiaries, have joined the line-up at a Texas bankruptcy court putting itself under the protection of Chapter 11 of U.S. law.

The Fort Worth, Texas, corporation’s action does not include their Calgary, Alberta, subsidiary Quicksilver Resources Canada, Inc. but it will certainly cut the blood supply from the U.S. fracking heartland.

We are going to be fracking rich! Oops!

Joining the (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: Rafe: Joe Oliver says fracking is safe, so it must be

Rafe has seen the light!

Nice to see that Rafe Mair has come to his senses and is now backing the corporate toadies, aka the Harper Cabinet and the light headed Finance Minister Joe Oliver aka ‘Chuckles’.

They are all joyfully promoting LNG and spending our money doing it.

It is a comfort how given enough misinformation and then peering down the barrel of a C51 shotgun focuses the mind.

Is Rafe kidding? Has he really changed sides? Rafe, how could you?

Read his latest missive here in his tell all post from the Common Sense Canadian

. . . → Read More: Cowichan Conversations: Rafe: Joe Oliver says fracking is safe, so it must be

The Common Sense Canadian: Joe Oliver says fracking is safe, so it must be

Finance Minister Joe Oliver (Adrian Wyld/CP)

I must apologize for being an alarmist. I now discover there is no reason for concern about hydraulic fracturing, commonly called “fracking”. I have been alleging that this process of “mining” natural gas is dangerous not only to the atmosphere and the people around the process, but to the water used and the potential damage thereafter to the water table.

I now understand that there are no problems whatsoever with this process and that the scaredy-cats in places like New York and Quebec that have banned “fracking” – and the United Kingdom and the (Read more…)

The Common Sense Canadian: Rafe: Federal leaders out of touch on LNG, fracking

Thomas Mulcair, Stephen Harper and Justin Trudeau

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has thrown down the gauntlet with his promise of federal tax giveaways for LNG enterprises.

I expected this sort of nonsense – just one look at the smug sneer of power on the face of James Moore, Minister of Industry, over the last few months, indicated that this decision was coming and that the opinions of the people of British Columbia didn’t matter a tinker’s dam.

This I think is one of the central points.

When it comes to industry and the people with whom this government are philosophically aligned, (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: You Can’t Feed Your Kids Oil, But Eating Is Overrated Anyway.

It’s been here for a while.  It’s what happens when you begin to run short on something everybody needs.

It’s America’s frackers versus America’s farmers.  They both want water and there’s not enough to go around.  Frackers want it to get oil and gas out of the ground.  Farmers need it to grow food.

This is only just getting started but, this year, an estimated 1.2-billion dollars of corn, soya and wheat crops are at risk to the industrial demand for scarce water.

…industrial water users typically have a higher capacity to absorb the increased costs associated with rising (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: Alberta – Yet Again, Number One!

It seems that Alberta has claimed another world record.  This time it’s for the magnitude of a fracking-induced earthquake, a 4.4-magnitude temblor last week at Fox Creek.

“The location of the earthquake is consistent with being induced by hydraulic fracturing operations,” confirmed Peter Murchland, a spokesman for the Alberta Energy Regulator.

“The AER regards all changes in seismicity that have the potential to indicate an increased risk associated with hydrocarbon production seriously,” Murchland added.

…For years industry and fracking experts argued the technology wouldn’t cause quakes that could be felt on the surface.

But specialists in earthquake hazards such (Read more…)

The Common Sense Canadian: Ease radioactive waste dumping restrictions, say North Dakota shale oil producers

Trucking costs for radioactive waste in North Dakota’s Bakken oil field are too high, says the industry

Read this eye-opening Jan. 28 Reuters story on the push from North Dakota shale oil producers to loosen restrictions around the dumping of radioactive waste – a cost-cutting measure as prices for their resource plummet.

(Reuters) – North Dakota’s oil industry is pushing to change the state’s radioactive waste disposal laws as part of a broad effort to conserve cash as oil prices tumble.

The waste, which becomes slightly radioactive as part of the hydraulic fracturing process that churns up isotopes locked underground, (Read more…)

The Common Sense Canadian: LNG, Fracking and BC’s Energy Future: Nanaimo event

BG Group’s Methane Lydon Volney tanker (Photo: BG Group)

The Common Sense Canadian’s Damien Gillis and retired KPMG partner and chemistry Ph.D Eoin Finn will be in Nanaimo Wednesday night to discuss the province’s energy vision.

Finn has been a leading voice on the economic and safety risks of the proposed Woodfibre LNG plant near Squamish. Drawing on his MBA and years of experience at one of the world’s largest accounting firms, he will dissect the local and global economics of the BC Liberals’ LNG plans.

Gillis, meanwhile, will take the audience on a visual tour of northeast BC – featuring (Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: David Suzuki: Energy shift requires shift in conversation

The infrastructure already developed to accommodate cheap fossil fuels creates a psychological barrier to rational discourse on energy issues, says David Suzuki.

The post David Suzuki: Energy shift requires shift in conversation appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

The Canadian Progressive: New York State Bans Fracking

After years of delays and debate, New York State Gov. Andrew Cuomo finally decided that the risks of fracking outweigh the rewards, bans the practice.

The post New York State Bans Fracking appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

The Canadian Progressive: Groups call on BC and Science World to end LNG promotion

Advocacy groups and concerned citizens have signed an open letter demanding that the British Columbia government and Science World cancel their province-wide community seminars promoting the liquefied natural gas (LNG) industry.

The post Groups call on BC and Science World to end LNG promotion appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.

- Carter Price offers another look at how inequality damages economic development. And the Broadbent Institute examines the wealth gap in Canada – which is already recognized as a serious problem, but also far larger than most people realize:

- Paul Buchheit discusses how the U.S. is turning poor people into commodities or criminals. Chuk Plante reviews some facts about child poverty in Saskatchewan – with a particular focus on the need to measure and reduce the alarmingly high rates of child poverty among First Nations children. Suzanne Moore points out how (Read more…)

CuriosityCat: Oil Price: Has Saudi Arabia gambled and lost?

Is it better to have gambled and lost?

Saudi Arabia is calling the shots in the steep price decline of oil in recent weeks, by refusing to cut its output so as to remove production from the market and increase prices. Why is it doing this? One possible reason is that it is underestimating the remorseless drive for profits (Read more…) . . . → Read More: CuriosityCat: Oil Price: Has Saudi Arabia gambled and lost?

The Common Sense Canadian: Harper: It’s “Crazy” to apply climate laws to oil and gas industry

Read this Dec. 9 story from The Globe and Mail on Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s statement that it would be “crazy economic policy” to apply climate regulations to the oil and gas sector.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has retreated further from his pledge to regulate carbon emissions in the oil industry, saying it would be “crazy” to do so at a time of fallen crude prices.

In the House of Commons on Tuesday, the Prime Minister rebuffed calls for new measures to deal with the country’s fastest growing source of greenhouse gases just a day after an Environment Canada report (Read more…)

The Common Sense Canadian: Alberta won’t appeal Jessica Ernst’s right to sue over fracking: Nikiforuk

Environmental consultant Jessica Ernst on her land in Alberta (Colin Smith photo)

Read this Dec. 10 Tyee story by Andrew Nikiforuk on the Alberta government’s surprise announcement that it will not be appealing a recent court ruling enabling landowner and scientist Jessica Ernst to proceed with her lawsuit over fracking impacts.

Jessica Ernst, the businesswoman and oil patch scientist defiantly challenging the regulation of hydraulic fracturing in Alberta, has scored another legal victory.

The Alberta government will not appeal a recent ruling that allows Ernst to sue Alberta Environment for the alleged negligent investigation of water well contamination during the (Read more…)

The Common Sense Canadian: Clark govt, Science World selling LNG Kool-Aid to kids

Ministers Rich Coleman and Shirley Bond watch a recent demonstration on the “science of LNG” (BC Govt)

The BC Liberal government’s all-out push to build an LNG industry is extending into the province’s classrooms and the minds of its students. The latest partner in this effort, Science World, is co-hosting a series of community seminars in rural communities to educate students “about the fundamentals of energy science.”

Alongside presentations by Science World, an October government media advisory promises:

…young people will be able to talk with government and industry representatives and take part in Find Your Fit, an interactive event where (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: A Dear John & Carole Letter-You Have Lost Me Now.

Dorothy Field

Dear John and Carole,

I have to say you’ve lost me now. There is already much study done on fracking and it shows it’s a bad idea – bad for the environment, poisoning ground water.

And many, many people with rock solid information you could consult — Andrew Nikiforuk is the first who comes to mind but there are others.

I understand your concern that the NDP can’t always be saying NO but there is so much you could be saying YES to:



YES to (Read more…)

The Common Sense Canadian: BC approves Petronas LNG plant and 2 more gas pipelines

Petronas CEO Shamsul Abbas shakes hands with BC Premier Christy Clark

Read this Nov. 26 Reuters story on the BC Liberal government’s approval of multiple LNG infrastructure applications.

VANCOUVER — British Columbia has approved a liquefied natural gas export terminal being developed by Malaysia’s Petronas, along with two pipelines to service Canada’s fledgling LNG industry, the province’s Ministry of Environment said on Tuesday.

A federal environmental review of Petronas’ Pacific NorthWest LNG project is continuing, with the Malaysian state-owned energy firm expected to make a final investment decision on the $11 billion facility before the end of the (Read more…)