Once again, Tom Fletcher opines about “activist efforts” by 16 B.C. municipal councils who have voted to send letters to fossil fuel companies requesting financial assistance for said municipalities’ costs that are a direct result of climate change caused by the burning of fossil fuels.
Raising dykes and seawalls, re-building electricity transmission lines, replacing drought-killed urban trees, fighting urban wildfires … these are just a few of the costs facing virtually all municipalities in B.C. that are a direct result of climate change, caused by carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel use.
Rather than inform readers of some solutions to these challenges, Mr. Fletcher chooses to quote Walter Cobbs, an ex-BC Liberal MLA (now Williams Lake mayor) writing about “hardcore green councils enthusiastically signing up for this financial shakedown [of fossil fuel companies].”
Vancouver Island may be dependent on fossil fuel for transportation, as the photo caption accompanying Fletcher’s column stated, but the 99 MW Cape May Wind Farm has been in commercial operation since January 2014, generating enough clean, endlessly renewable wind power to serve the electricity needs of approximately one in eight Vancouver Islanders. This may seem insignificant, but it’s a start.
Denmark, a country only 30 per cent larger than Vancouver Island but with a population seven times higher, had 4,855 MW of wind generation installed by 2014. With additional capacity added since then, Denmark’s wind turbines produced over 43 per cent of the country’s entire electric consumption in 2017!
A pioneer in wind energy technology, home to Vestas, the world’s biggest turbine maker, and Orsted, the world’s biggest operator of offshore wind parks, Denmark is cashing in on billion-dollar global opportunities that British Columbia is missing out on, in part because of the reactionary political stances viz. addressing climate change at all levels of society that is displayed by politicians like Mayor Cobbs and columnists like Mr. Fletcher.