Carbon tax won’t solve environmental problems

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Alan Spiller wants us to believe that carbon taxes will solve all environmental problems. Green house gas emissions include harmful pollutants like CO2, methane, nitrous oxide, perflurorocarbons, hydroflurorocarbons and hexofluride generated by industries on a global scale. Airborne pollutants and emissions have no regard for borders. Until every country commits to effective emission reduction, to claim that a carbon tax will reduce pollution is a lie. The Paris Environmental Accords cannot stand because no world compliance protocol was established.

Mr. Spiller is wrong to claim Canada is one of the worst polluters in the world.

Here’s why. Of the top dozen GHG emitters, Canada sits at number 11 at 1.63 per cent with China at the top with 25.9 per cent. Taking every harmful emission of every type into account, Canada’s overall pollution index stands at 85 out of 98 countries. Of the top 10 CO2 emitters in the world, Canada sits at number 9 with emissions of 1.71 per cent, with China and the U.S. at numbers 1 and 2 with combined emissions at 44.2 per cent.

Since the 1980s, sulphur dioxide and oxides of nitrogen have been emitted by industrial activity including coal burning causing our waters to become acidic, particularly those with no natural alkalinity. This condition continues with some 70 per cent created by U.S. industry. Only about 2 per cent of North America’s acid rain is generated in Canada. Alberta is shutting down 9 coal fired power plants, the Americans are closing none. A worldwide count of existing coal fired power plants stands at 4100, while China and India plan to build 1100 and 400 respectively for a total of about 5600. Do Mr. Spiller and his socialist friends realistically believe that a Canadian carbon tax is going to make a difference?

I sympathize with Mr. Spiller regarding his family’s asthma. According to my family’s research (my grandfather emigrated from Eastern Europe in 1905 suffering from asthma), the exact cause of this condition is unknown. Genetic (inherited) factors, allergies and certain infections are considered causes, while pollen, irritants from tobacco smoke, air pollution and even cold weather can trigger the condition. Before the socialists challenge my reference to air pollution, let me explain the results of my research. The World Health Organization collects air quality data from some 3000 locations all over the world looking for concentrations of harmful fine particulate matter, including sulfates, nitrates, mineral dust and carbon black. According to WHO, levels considered safe for breathing are 10 micrograms of particles per cubic meter. Canada’s air pollution level sits at 7, or 174th out of 183 countries. Even the CBC that socialists love to love, reports that Canada ranks third in the world air quality index. Contrary to Mr. Spiller’s assumptions, Canada is close to the cleanest country in the entire world.

Personal experience supports this statement. While serving in the Canadian Army, I spent time in the Middle East and Eastern Europe. During visits to Cairo Egypt and Bucharest Romania, the air was so polluted you could you couldn’t see across streets and it isn’t getting better. As late as the 1990’s, I witnessed industrial plants in East Germany dumping used chemicals directly into Europe’s rivers.

Canadians bought the lie that the imposition of a carbon tax would encourage citizens to reduce consumption of gasoline, diesel fuel and other carbon emitters. Mr. Spiller brags about the carbon tax success in BC. Again he’s wrong. According to Statistics Canada, the use of gas and diesel in BC has increased by some 3.85% while Washington State has emphatically rejected any consideration for a carbon tax. The BC politicians knew it wouldn’t reduce consumption but the lie worked and Washington’s pollution floats across the border.

Finally, Mr. Spiller’s statement; “the NDP had no choice but to get us into debt to clean up the mess and this debt will be quickly repaid when the oil and gas wealth is restored to the Lougheed levels” is the epitome of hypocrisy! Without foreign investors (whom Spiller refers to as no less than thieves), how does he expect us to regain our oil wealth? Government policies have driven Canada’s investment levels to new lows in the last three years. Where does Spiller think this repaid oil wealth will come from unless government policies are reversed to encourage investors to return? The mess we’re in now is the direct result of the Liberal government’s refusal to build our previously approved pipelines and the NDP carbon tax theft was a “social licence” lie.

With respect, I challenge Mr. Spiller to refute my research. I welcome his call.

L. Leugner

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