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ENVIRONMENT

 

 

9 WAYS   TO  A  HEALTHY 

AND SUSTAINABLE

ENVIRONMENT

 

A LETTER TO ALBERTA PREMIER RACHEAL NOTELY AND HER RESPONSE  

 

 

MYRTLE MACDONALD—VOICE FILE PHOTO

PUBLISHED TUESDAY—MARCH—59

 

1.  I am not in favor of natural gas produced by fracking.  Earth quakes and sink holes have resulted.

2.  Increasing sale of crude oil overseas is very wrong.  You should quickly taper off sale immediately.  China is making rapid strides at building solar energy and soon will not need Alberta crude oil or coal.  Short term gain is long term pain.

3.  In Alberta, hiring of unemployed and underemployed people to produce alternate energy (solar, wind, geothermal etc)  should be increased rapidly.  Quadrupled by 2025 is not good enough.  This is the route to economic success in Alberta.

4.  Building a network of Tram-Train railways for freight, fruit and vegetables and passengers would greatly improve the economy, provide jobs, and remove air pollution and smog.   More tanker cars on the overcrowded rail lines are not safe.

  1).  Freight gets priority above passenger trains, which have to stop or slow down to let long freight trains pass. 

  2).  Oil tankers and coal cars on highways increase air pollution and makes highway maintenance and widening costly. 

  3).  Marketing of fruit and vegetables by light railway between provinces, would bring prosperity to small farms and orchards, that are dying out.  

  4).  Imported produce form USA and Mexico costs less than locally grown, due to lack of refrigerated railway cars and enough train lines.  

5.  The majority of indigenous people in BC are against pipe lines being built, and misappropriating of land to change routes. Stop now!  It is very wrong to go against them.  Approval by some of the elected chiefs does not represent the majority of indigenous people. 

6.  Many of the elected chiefs have become rich at the expense of the people living on their reserves.  The majority have poor housing, unsafe water supply, child care and poor education.  Having lived on reserves as Public Health Nurse, I saw in elections that the majority, not understanding democracy, voted for rich relatives rather than for wiser people.

7.  It is very disrespectful to build pipe lines through burial sites.

8.  An increase in oil tankers in BC coastal waters will cause:

  1). water pollution from untreated human sewage,

  2). disease to farm fish and wild fish,

  3). death of water mammals,

  4). beaches contaminated for swimming and tourism.

9.  The federal government are too slow and poorly equipped to clean up oil spills. 

  1).  Ottawa has not budgeted for an increase in shipping traffic from new or enlarged pipe lines. 

  2).  The Exxon Valdez is not cleaned up yet and there have been many spills since. 

  3).  Much oil sinks quickly and permanently destroys the eco system.

 

“I care even as you care, but please have a wider, wiser perspective.  SHORT TERM GAIN IS LONG TERM PAIN.

 

I have worked in 6 provinces from coast to coast and in four countries overseas.  December 1988 at 67 years of age, I retired in BC to help my aging mother and two disabled siblings.

 

From Alberta Premier Rachael Notely for Myrtle:

I care even as you care, but please have a wider, wiser perspective.  SHORT TERM GAIN IS LONG TERM PAIN.

 

I have worked in 6 provinces from coast to coast and in four countries overseas.  December 1988 at 67 years of age, I retired in BC to help my aging mother and two disabled siblings.

 

Thank you for advocating for the development of more renewable energy. I share your concerns for the future of our province and our planet, and I’m glad you reached out to me.

Our government understands that climate change is one of the biggest threats to our planet today and that the future of Alberta’s energy sector depends on adapting to that challenge. To help Alberta reduce emissions, we developed the most comprehensive Climate Leadership Plan in North America.

Alberta’s plan will reduce harmful carbon and methane emissions and end pollution from coal-generated electricity. We have imposed a hard cap on greenhouse gas emissions produced by the oil sands, and we’re reducing methane emissions by 45 per cent by 2025. By 2030, one-third of Alberta’s coal generating capacity will be replaced by renewable energy, and two-thirds will be replaced by natural gas.

I’m pleased to report that we have already made significant progress towards achieving this goal. Three companies were chosen in the opening round of the Renewable Electricity Program in late 2017, which will result in about $1 billion of private-sector investment in green power generation in Alberta. The successful bids have set a record for the lowest renewable electricity pricing in Canada, and will add approximately 600 megawatts of renewable power--enough to power up to 255,000 homes, through wind projects throughout the province. Because of our work, we now rank third in the world for wind energy.

Funds raised through our carbon levy are also helping us diversify our economy through investments in solar power, micro-generation, energy efficiency programs and green infrastructure like public transit. In fact, we have quadrupled Alberta’s solar capacity since 2015.

By using our energy efficiency programs, Albertans have saved $414 million in energy costs so far—that’s enough money to power 850,000 homes for one year. Businesses in Alberta have saved $36 million in energy costs, reducing emissions by the same amount as taking 78,000 cars off the road.

We are also continuing to broaden our energy sector, thanks to new incentives we have introduced for petrochemical diversification and partial upgrading. And in response to the strong encouragement we’ve received from industry, we are seeking expressions of interest from the private sector for building a new refinery. This diversification, like our fight for better market access, is another way that we are working to get more value for the resources that every Albertan owns.

While this is immensely encouraging, the carbon levy alone is not enough to provide the revenue we need to develop our green energy industry and broaden our economic base. Without the revenue provided by our existing resources, we cannot hope to accomplish our goals for a cleaner, greener future. That is why we are fighting so hard to get pipelines built, and it’s why we are resorting to crude-by-rail to get our product to market. Leveraging the traditional energy industry is the only way to guarantee the future we all envision, for your family and for mine—one that gets us off the boom-and-bust cycle, and one that is sustainable and prosperous for every Albertan. 

The truth of the matter is that the world will rely on fossil fuels for some time. Other jurisdictions can either buy oil from Alberta where we take climate change and environmental protection seriously, or from places with runaway emissions like Russia and Saudi Arabia.

I’m confident that a balanced approach is our best way forward. We will continue to implement Alberta’s climate plan that creates jobs, lowers emissions, and sets our economy on a stronger, more secure foundation. Alberta has been a leader on climate change, and we will continue to balance the needs of working families with the need to pursue meaningful climate action while nurturing our relationships with Indigenous communities.

I’m proud that we have positioned Alberta as one of the hottest markets for renewables on our continent, and I assure you that we’re going to maintain this important momentum. Under our government, Alberta is and will remain committed to taking meaningful action to diversify our energy economy and address climate change.

Thank you again for reaching out to me.

 

 


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