Green economy already eclipses that of oil and gas

To the Editor re: Joseph Nusse’s Oct 31st Letter.

Rachel Notley calling the Federal NDP’s Jagmeet Singh out for opposing Trans Mountain expansion shouldn’t be surprising to anyone. However, Joe Nusse’s suggestion that this is all about blue-collar job losses is – the way I see it – simply wrong. Notley, Trudeau, Scheer and most of the mainstream press continue to profess the false industry rhetoric that pipelines bring jobs to Canadians, but the National Government’s own website smashes this falsehood: The U.S. imports 84% of Canada’s crude production, while only consuming 21%, meaning that Canada exports 63% of its refining jobs to the Americans. Expect such stats to get worse, not better, with oil sands and pipeline expansion.

Mega-project cash potentially makes election promises shine to some blue-collar workers. The reality is that these jobs are part of a surge and crash economy which does little for long-term socio-economic stability. Canada had only 62,000 permanent oil and gas jobs in 2018, while the clean energy sector employed 268,000. Add to this, the 436,000 existing jobs in energy efficiency, and we understand the Canadian public’s green economic commitment-even before the initiation of any official federal transition from fossil fuels.  Shame on anybody who reports otherwise, and kudos to Singh for not committing to expanding Trans Mountain.

The fact is that some Canadian employment continues to be focussed on exporting finite resources. This reality, however, is largely the product of big business, big government, and big media pushing economics which deplete our land’s biodiversity, clean water, and living soil, while also destabilizing our social and economic future.

Instead of a $4.5 billion pipeline, expanding finite resource extraction economies which have caused massive social and environmental degradation globally, the Liberals would have done our country a much greater service by investing in three small universities: One focusing on clean energy innovation and the others on innovative small scale organic farming and community-based ecological forestry, which both promote ecology and water, while sequestering carbon. These would have created and stabilized more long-term jobs than any pipeline ever will.

If the mainstream media and the political campaigns were truth-searched on their facts the past few months, I doubt the Greens or N.D.P would have polled so poorly, or that the Conservatives and Liberals would have done so well.  The problem is not really the left’s demographics, as Nusse also suggests, but falsehoods pushed as facts which then distort the way people vote.

Rob Mercereau,
Dunster, B.C.

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