Showing posts from January 21, 2015

‘It is profitable to let the world go to hell’

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[As politicians and business leaders gather in Davos, climate expert Jørgen Randers argues that democracy will continue to hamper climate action.
Jo Confino, The Guardian, 19 January 2015

How depressed would you be if you had spent more than 40 years warning of an impending global catastrophe, only to be continually ignored even as you watch the disaster unfolding?

So spare a thought for Jørgen Randers, who back in 1972 co-authored the seminal work Limits to Growth (pdf), which highlighted the devastating impacts of exponential economic and population growth on a planet with finite resources.

As politicians and business leaders gather in Davos to look at ways to breathe new life into the global battle to address climate change, they would do well to listen to Randers’ sobering perspective.

The professor of climate strategy at the Norwegian Business School has been pretty close to giving up his struggle to wake us up to our unsustainable ways, a…

Fossil fuel subsidies are starving innovation

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[Harper spends $34 billion in oil subsidies each year and now it's holding our economy back. "Left to the market, the fossil fuel industry could not survive in its current form. The industry only appears strong because of that $2-trillion in public subsidies – public funds awarded by short-sighted governments because of oil industry lobbyists. The success won’t last; the industry is on borrowed time." See also Interest Rate Cut: Bank Of Canada Moves To Stave Off Threat From Sliding Oil Prices. And Harper's policies could mean a $4.7-billion federal deficit. *RON*]

Joel Solomon, Contributed to The Globe and Mail, 7 January 2015

When the Rockefeller Brothers Fund recently announced it would remove fossil fuels from its $860-million (U.S.) investment portfolio, it wasn’t just a PR stunt; it was a smart long-term financial move. Big funds like Rockefeller Brothers see what others have been trying to ignore: that fossil fuels are in…

Noam Chomsky Slams West's Charlie Hebdo Outrage: 'Many Journalists Were Killed by Israel in Gaza Too'

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[When we can blame atrocities on convenient enemies there's a great show of public outrage. Atrocities committed by the West and its allies are ignored, downplayed, or kept invisible. No hashtags for them. "Contrary to the eloquent pronouncements, it is not the case that 'Terrorism is terrorism. There's no two ways about it.' There definitely are two ways about it: theirs versus ours. And not just terrorism." Selective outrage is not a moral stance, it is a justification. *RON*]
By Noam Chomsky / Noam Chomsky's Official Site, AlterNet, 19 January 2015

After the terrorist attack on Charlie Hebdo, which killed 12 people including the editor and four other cartoonists, and the murder of four Jews at a kosher supermarket shortly after, French Prime Minister Manuel Valls declared "a war against terrorism, against jihadism, against radical Islam, against everything that is aimed at breaking fraternity, freedom, solidar…

Burnaby submits 200 more pages of pipeline questions

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[Here's another question for the list. If a student answered only 38% of the questions on their final exam, what would their grade be? See also: Kinder Morgan pipeline: Vancouver submits almost 600 more questions. *RON*]

by Wanda Chow - Burnaby NewsLeader, 20 January 2015

Burnaby city hall submitted another 200 pages of questions to the National Energy Board (NEB) on Friday about Kinder Morgan's proposed Trans Mountain pipeline expansion in a second attempt to get some answers.

In May 2014, the city submitted 300 pages of questions to the NEB but the company did not answer 62 per cent of them. Another 14 per cent were only partially answered, said Burnaby Mayor Derek Corrigan in a press release. The company's own pipeline proposal to the NEB totalled 15,000 pages.

“Because the city has critical questions that focus on the hundreds of ways in which Kinder Morgan’s proposed pipeline and tank farm would threaten our city’s safety, secu…

Falling oil prices pose another delay for B.C. pipelines

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[With the drop in oil prices looking like its going nowhere except even further down for the foreseeable future, the prospects are dim for the vast majority of pipeline projects. *RON*]
Mike Hager, The Globe and Mail, 18 January 2015

Energy economists say that a prolonged slump in oil prices will further slow two proposed pipelines already hamstrung by court challenges and community opposition in British Columbia.

Federal Finance Minister Joe Oliver has maintained that “the strategic need is still there” for both the Northern Gateway and Trans Mountain pipelines to go through the province. But the slumping price of oil has caused enough “market instability,” as Mr. Oliver put it, to prompt Ottawa to postpone its budget to at least April.

Analysts say that kind of instability hasn’t yet changed the economic imperative for Canada’s oil industry to open up its first major conduit to Pacific markets, but most agree that a months-long downturn in oil pri…