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Steering Ourselves

Letter from Andrew O’Kane, Warfield

Sometimes it feels like everything is on hold lately but there has been some interesting and even surprising work going on behind the scenes here in the Kootenays.

When it comes to action on climate change we tend to think of the big players like the United Nations and the Paris Agreement or the Canadian government’s commitment to net-zero emissions by 2050.

Meanwhile, 17 cities and towns across Canada have passed their own resolutions to transition to 100 per cent renewable energy by 2050 and of these, nine are right here in the West Kootenay!

Thank you to the West Kootenay EcoSociety and the municipal councils of Kaslo, New Denver, Silverton, Slocan, Nelson, Castlegar, Rossland, Warfield and the RDCK for bringing these resolutions and working together on the regional action plan.

Kaslo has already voted to accept the action plan, Warfield will vote on Monday, Dec. 14 and the others will follow over the next couple of months.

So, maybe the big players are us.

The rest of the country may scratch their heads about how a group of small communities hidden away in the western mountains could lead the way like this but we know, we read Dr Seuss: “You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose.”

Andrew O’Kane


‘Let’s Save the Planet …’

Two headlines hitting the papers tonight push me to rail again against an unneeded, very expensive, and totally useless effort to “save the planet.”

“Expensive” Trudeau is planning on adding, by 2030, at least $25 to every gas fill-up and thousands of dollars to our heating bills.

He promises that we will get rebates but I expect that he will need the revenue in order to reduce the deficits he is busy compiling for our grand kids.

I recognize also that there is no such thing as a politician who wouldn’t rather spend my tax dollars rather than give them back in rebates.

These are the direct hits to our wallets but let’s also not forget the increased cost of living when industry and transportation get hit.

Good luck to the retirees on fixed incomes.

But take heart.

He says if we can’t afford the increased taxes then we should be buying electric vehicles and wind mills.

He might be right for those that can afford it.

The other headline is a little tougher to sort out.

“Nine” local councils, West Kootenay EcoSociety “partners”, are planning on taking their Renewable Energy Plans to a vote to “adopt and implement.”

It is likely that these councils will just push any real impacts down the road so it is hard to say what these costs will be.

At least Trudeau is straightforward about letting us know what his plans are for “kicking the *#&! (heck?)” out of our income.

But that gets me wondering whether or not any of the councils would have the courage to submit their plans to a referendum for input from the “silent majority.”

Somehow I wouldn’t bet on it.

Given that council knows what is best for us, they and their “focus groups” will make the decision on our behalf.

Renewables are the “politically correct” thing to do so deciding on our behalf must be making sense to them.


Do you know how many coal plants are under construction or planned for China, India, and Southeast Asia?

Their annual emission increases will more than cancel any savings Canada hopes to make.

Trudeau will tell you that these countries have all signed on to the Paris Agreement so they will be cutting back soon.

To expect that these countries will hamstring their economies by buying in to the Net Zero fantasy pushed by the UN and “at a boy” Trudeau (and locally by the West Kootenay EcoSociety), it just ain’t going to happen.

But if you feel the need to do everything you can to “save the planet,” then by all means, I urge you to keep voting for Trudeau and the Liberals and our local “nine” councils.

And some final food for thought:

1. Do you find it ironic that distribution of the Covid19 vaccine, needed to save millions of lives, requires dry ice (solid form of CO2) to keep it cold enough for distribution?

2. Unlike real scientific theories, the “catastrophic global warming theory” cannot be disproven because it’s conclusion lies somewhere far off in the future.

Is this not more than a little convenient for all the scientists, politicians and the media.

Robin Siddall, retiree


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