Archive for Scaremongering

Durban climate negotiations update

I’ve been following the COP17 climate change conference in Durban, South Africa from right here in Riverdale.  This will be a long, rambling omnibus post on my thoughts and concerns.     Read more »

From the grandparents

The Toronto-based group For Our Grandchildren has produced this wonderful video:

For Our Grandchildren – Something Must Be Done from Stephen Best on Vimeo.

If the video stutters, click on the HD in the lower-right-hand corner.  Even in “low-def”, it’s quite high-definition.

Wide agreement that energy must be expensive

Today, Ontario’s Environmental Commissioner Gord Miller slammed the Liberals for cutting hydro bills by ten percent, identifying the measure as a perverse subsidy.  He stated:

The problem with the 10 per cent (cut) is it means the people who use the most energy get the most money back and that is a disincentive, a perverse incentive.  It rewards and encourages increased consumption.

He then went on to criticize both the NDP and Conservatives for pledging to remove the HST from hydro bills.     Read more »

Bill McKibben’s alarming new video

If you watch through to the end of this short video, it covers why I entered politics. What is now at stake is food security, water security, and the ability to deliver the fundamentals of decent civil society. All of these are already stressed and becoming more so. Concerns about things like gas prices, while important in our current state of addiction, nonetheless need to be contextualized in a world of threats that are far, far greater.

More nuclear woes

The news from Japan keeps getting worse.  Now it is reported that not only did the reactor core melt down, not only did it breach the pressure vessel, but it now appears that the material has penetrated the reactor building itself and seeped into the ground.  That is close to the worst case scenario.  Clean-up costs are now estimated at $250 billion, and that will not bring things back to normal.  It will still mean living with elevated cancer rates, particularly in Japan, but spreading all over the world.  And Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan has asked to close Hamaoka, another nuclear power plant that has been deemed not to be earthquake safe.

All of the costs for this disaster are being borne by the public.  The Japanese government will absorb all the costs of clean-up, relocation and health impacts.  Governments throughout the world will also be paying for the elevated health care costs arising from the increased rates of cancer in their countries.  These will continue for many decades.  Every other form of power generation is self-insuring.  The nuclear industry clearly does not deserve this free ticket as nuclear power is inherently dangerous.