Archive | Climate Change, Carbon Taxes and ENGOs

Top-five BHP investor Aberdeen Standard piles on climate pressure ahead of AGM – by Barbara Lewis and Simon Jessop (Reuters U.S. – October 9, 2019)

LONDON (Reuters) – One of BHP’s biggest shareholders Aberdeen Standard Investments on Wednesday added to pressure for the world’s leading miner to cut ties with lobby groups it says are at odds with the company’s pledges on climate leadership.

Earlier, the Church of England Pensions Board urged shareholder advisers to review their opposition to a resolution calling on BHP to withdraw from groups that lobby for policies inconsistent with global climate change limitation goals.

Aberdeen Standard Investments, which holds around 3.2% of BHP’s stock, said it was taking the rare step of speaking out ahead of a vote at BHP’s annual shareholder meeting in London on Oct. 17 because of the urgency of tackling climate change, and after its research found the lobby groups were the biggest single obstacle to progress. Continue Reading →

When will we finally admit that electric vehicles aren’t the solution? – by Martin Horicka ( – October 9, 2019)

OPINION: Our civilisation is facing a major challenge. We have to choose the right path to an environmentally more sustainable society. At the same time, we should be sure the measures chosen are indeed the best possible.

Replacing fossil fuel cars with electric vehicles seems to be a logical, correct, and even necessary solution to our climate problem. But the issue is far more complex than our intuition tells us.

The banning of further production of internal combustion engines by 2050, 2040 or as soon as 2030 is talked about, even though it could take us into dangerous uncharted territory we know almost nothing about. Continue Reading →

OPINION: Climate change is the defining issue for Canada, if not yet this federal election – by Adam Radwanski (Globe and Mail – October 10, 2019)

Heading into a pair of leaders’ debates within two weeks of election day, the federal campaign still seems in need of a defining issue. But look past all the candidate controversies, personal attacks and vote-buying “affordability” promises, and that issue is right there in plain sight.

It’s so consequential, with genuine and pronounced differences between parties’ approaches, that it renders wrong-headed and reckless the growing body of weary punditry about this being a low-stakes campaign in which all concerned have failed to distinguish themselves from each other.

On climate-change policy, the world is entering a narrow window in which it may or may not undertake the degree of economic and social upheaval needed to stave off irreversible disaster. When Canadians cast their ballots, they’ll go a long way toward determining what this country’s role in that will be. Continue Reading →

The Liberals’ 2050 net-zero carbon vow is pure delusion – by Rex Murphy (National Post – September 28, 2019)

When leaders and adults willingly give subservience to the frenzy of children, the points of the rational compass are scrambled

It’s good to see the Prime Minstrel, as some wit on Twitter termed him, back on familiar waters. In their desperate fervour to chase away the images of Justin Trudeau in blackface, this week the Liberal campaign brought him out in a more familiar guise, paddling about on some sweet lake, and returning to the one element of his ferociously “woke” brand, P.M. Climate Superman, not in tatters.

The image could not have been more bucolic — the lone Voyager for Global Warming. Add a hooting owl or two on the soundtrack and another loon skipping along on the water and we’d be back to those classic Hinterland’s Who’s Who vignettes of the ’60s and ’70s.

He may have sworn off costumes and cosmetics, but it was clear from this little parable on film that campaigning by photo-op is still very much in the Liberal arsenal. It was the Liberal campaign’s way of signalling that there was still some gas (so to speak) in Mr. Trudeau’s global warming credentials. Continue Reading →

Greta Thunberg joins thousands of Canadians in climate strike today – by Mia Rabson (Globe and Mail – September 27, 2019)

CANADIAN PRESS: Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg says it’s moving to see so many people united “for one common cause.” Thunberg spoke at a rally in Montreal and is expected to take part in a march there at noon.

Thousands of Canadians are hitting the streets Friday demanding “widespread, systemic change” to halt the scary impact of a warming planet.

The massive national protest will see students and climate activists and everyday Canadians who want a swifter government response to climate change marching on legislatures and municipal buildings, schools and parks, from St. John’s to Tofino, B.C., and as far north as Inuvik in the Northwest Territories. Continue Reading →

OPINION: On climate change, humanity is not ‘evil’ – by Bjorn Lomborg (Globe and Mail – September 27, 2019)

Bjorn Lomborg is president of the Copenhagen Consensus Center and a visiting professor at the Copenhagen Business School.

Speaking at the United Nations, 16-year-old Swedish activist Greta Thunberg said that if humanity really understands the science of climate change and still fails to act, we’re “evil.”

This is because climate change means “people are dying.” Helpfully, she also told us what we must do to act correctly: In a bit more than eight years, we will have exhausted our remaining allowance for carbon emissions, so we must shut down everything running on fossil fuels by 2028.

While this claim is not uncommon, it is fundamentally misguided. Yes, global warming is real and human-caused, but her vision of climate change as the end of the world is unsupported. The UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change estimates that by the 2070s, the total effects of climate change, including on ecosystems, will be equivalent to a reduction in average income of 0.2 to 2 per cent. Continue Reading →

From innocents to anxious activists — what are we doing to our kids? – by Terence Corcoran (National Post – September 24, 2019)

At a time when the world is safer than any in history, children are being taught that they live on the brink of a variety of existential threats

Fifty years ago, American TV personality Art Linkletter hosted Kids Says the Darndest Things segments on his House Party show, a CBS radio and television feature that ran for 25 years between 1945 and 1969. During the segments, Linkletter interviewed precocious children under the age of 12, mostly about their family lives and the foibles of their parents.

There were no child climate experts to interview, no nine-year-old boys in drag to document as they participated in pageants wearing heavy eye makeup and lipstick, no F-word spewing and dildo-waving pre-teens in movies like Good Boys to muse about.

Even as late as 1998, when comedian Bill Cosby briefly revived Kids Say the Darndest Things, the result was another stream of often hilarious malapropisms, neologisms, downright silly childish observations along with cloying and sometimes boring repartee on how the world works in the minds of seemingly articulate children. Continue Reading →

‘You have stolen my dreams’: Greta Thunberg condemns world leaders for failing to take action on climate change – by Valerie Volcovici and Matthew Green (Globe and Mail – September 24, 2019)

Teenage activist Greta Thunberg angrily denounced world leaders on Monday for failing to tackle climate change, unleashing the outrage felt by millions of her peers in the heart of the United Nations by demanding: “How dare you?”

The Swedish campaigner’s brief address electrified the start of a summit aimed at mobilizing governments and businesses to break international paralysis over carbon emissions, which hit record highs last year despite decades of warnings from scientists.

“This is all wrong. I shouldn’t be up here. I should be back in school on the other side of the ocean, yet you all come to us young people for hope. How dare you?” said Ms. Thunberg, 16, her voice quavering with emotion. “You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words,” she said. Continue Reading →

‘We can’t be ignored any longer.’ Young climate activists fighting to have their voices heard ahead of election – by Megan Ogilvie (Toronto Star – September 23, 2019)

It began with one teenage girl skipping school on a Friday to push her government to do something about climate change. Thirteen months after Greta Thunberg sat outside the Swedish Parliament, that small act of protest has erupted into the biggest climate demonstration in history and inspired a generation of young people to fight for a healthy planet.

Friday’s global climate strike saw more than a million people flood the streets in more than 150 countries around the world, including 250,000 in New York City, where Thunberg addressed cheering crowds and demanded global leaders act on the climate crisis.

“It felt like history in the making; it we felt like we were setting the tone for what the future holds,” said Caroline Merner, a 24-year-old climate activist from Vancouver who was among those marching in Manhattan. “The momentum young people have is incredible.” Continue Reading →

Salgado’s Amazonia photos beamed on Assisi basilica to warn of threat – Antonio Denti (Reuters U.K. – September 23, 2019)

ASSISI, Italy (Reuters) – Hundreds of people braved driving rain on Sunday night to see pictures of Amazonia by famed Brazilian photographer Sebastiao Salgado beamed onto the Basilica of St. Francis and to hear him talk of the danger facing the area.

The black-and-white photographs showed native peoples of the Amazon as sombre classical music by 20th century Brazilian composer Heitor Villa-Lobos played in what almost seemed like a requiem for the parts of the Amazon that have already been lost to deforestation and mining.

Salgado, addressing the crowd, said it was “the predatory economic model that is everywhere in the world. Our agricultural system, our industrial system, our consumption system that has caused the destruction of the Amazon”. Continue Reading →

Inquiry into foreign funding of anti-Alberta energy campaigns could shake up enviro charities – by Terence Corcoran (Financial Post – September 18, 2019)

In a drive-by take-down editorial this past weekend, the Globe and Mail blasted Alberta’s public inquiry into foreign funding of anti-Alberta energy campaigns. The editorial had few facts on hand to support its claims, but it let loose with a series of cheap shots, glib commentary and a conclusion that fell back on an ancient tribal chant: “For Alberta to create a public inquiry to go after critics is a McCarthyesque misuse of power.”

Ah, McCarthyism, the old ideological cushion of the lazy lefty — although most Canadians under the age of 50 would have to Google it.

Alberta’s inquiry into the foreign funding of Canada’s green anti-oil activist groups is headed by Steve Allan, by all accounts a solid and objective forensic accountant who is as far from being Joe McCarthy as Mr. Rogers is from being Donald Trump. Continue Reading →

Uranium: A 2040 prognosis: Growing energy needs, emissions reduction look positive for the other yellow metal – by Greg Klein (Resource Clips – September 5, 2019)

Oversupplied and under-priced for years, uranium’s forecast now looks good up to 2040, according to a new study. In its latest Nuclear Fuel Report, a study released at roughly two-year intervals, the World Nuclear Association has revised its projections upwards for the first time in eight years.

Demand will come from a growing reliance on nuclear energy thanks mainly to China, India and other Asian countries, said the industry organization. Global warming concerns also play a role. The report presents different data for each of three case studies, explained World Nuclear News, a WNA publication.

The Reference scenario reflects official targets and plans announced by states and companies, and also considers how nuclear can help address climate change. Continue Reading →

How Old Nukes Can Help Green New Dealers – by Liam Denning (Bloomberg News/Washington Post – September 10, 2019)

This is a time of burn-it-all-down politics, and climate change is right in there. Several decades of delay in facing the challenge, and denialism on the part of primarily Republican politicians, have spawned a backlash. Last week’s Democratic climate town halls were notable chiefly for the absence of old debates about carbon cap-and-trade, replaced with more prescriptive proposals (see this).

One issue that causes division within the ranks of climate-change activists is nuclear power. Though it doesn’t emit greenhouse gases, it does produce radioactive waste and carries the potential for rare but potentially catastrophic accidents.

Two candidates, Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, have different plans for nuclear that encapsulate the debate. Sanders not only rules out building new plants, but also wants existing ones to close. Warren’s position, somewhat garbled in her town hall appearance, is similarly down on new plants. Continue Reading →

Canadian Voters Must Treat Climate Change ‘As If It’s War,’ Leading Activists Say – by Mia Rabson (Canadian Press/Huffington Post – September 4, 2019)

David Suzuki, Stephen Lewis are planning events to engage people during the campaign.

OTTAWA — Two leading Canadian activists say voters need to think about climate change as if we are country at war against greenhouse-gas emissions.

“There’s never been a moment quite like this in human history,” said Stephen Lewis, a former Ontario NDP leader, who chaired a 1988 international conference on climate change on the initiative of then prime minister Brian Mulroney.

He said similar scientific conclusions were drawn then as from more recent climate science, but three decades of little action have put humanity in a much more worrying position. Continue Reading →

‘Kids do care’: Teen climate change activists aim for change with weekly protests – by Mike Hager (Globe and Mail – August 30, 2019)

Inspired by the Swedish activist Greta Thunberg, students around the world are pressing for environmental action every Friday. Groups in Abbotsford and Calgary are particularly dedicated

After weeks of demonstrating outside Abbotsford City Hall, the teens have learned not to take it personally when they trigger an outburst of hostility.

So, when a middle-aged driver spots their banners calling for action on the global climate emergency and shoots his middle finger out his window, shouting “I like my car,” Angie Calhoun, 14, doesn’t miss a beat and continues chanting for change.

Up to a dozen other teens have been joining her in this conservative Vancouver suburb for more than five months as part of Fridays for Future, a worldwide movement pushing all levels of government to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees to avoid catastrophic environmental change. Continue Reading →