Monday, September 8, 2008

Green Shift-How?

We may be missing the most important fact concerning Stephen Dion’s Green Shift Plan.
Most of the attention had thus far been centered on how much a carbon tax will cost us, with almost no attention centered on exactly how the Plan will work to lower carbon emissions.
Seems to me the means is at least as important as the cost.
How exactly does the Green Shift Plan reduce carbon emissions?
Already most of us are buying and driving more fuel efficient cars and trucks on the road, not because of any attempt to lessen the exhaust fumes, but rather to save us a bit of money. The marketplace has been a powerful force in that regard and you can be certain will continue to do so.
How will adding a few more cents in the form of a carbon tax change our driving habits any more than they have been already?
The same question can be asked of increasing the cost of heating fuel and electrical power.
Come on, most of us have already turned the thermostat down as much as we can in winter and thanks to global warming, this past summer was so cool we only needed our air conditioners a couple days. How would adding a carbon tax make any difference?
Please Mr. Dion, and all you Liberals, explain how the Green Shift Plan is going to reduce carbon emissions?
That great Nobel prize-winning God of the environment, Al Gore, has called on the United States to convert from carbon-based to carbon-free electrical generation within ten years. This, of course, was greeted with wild enthusiasm, but there’s a problem. Mr. Gore, tell us please how we could possibly accomplish this feat, in 20 years, let alone ten. Where is this power supposed to come from? Solar? Wind? Apparently mostly wind. But how? This would require vast tracts of land upon which to erect windmills and or solar panels. Would this, as has happened with some farm crops, remove good agricultural land from crop production? And exactly how much energy would be required to build the millions of windmills and solar panels required?
It’s a little bit like this move today to create cars you can plug in. Sounds great, until you ask yourself, okay, if everyone in the country plugs their car in every night, where in the world are we going to get all the electrical power? How is it going to be generated? Coal? No way, say the environmentalists. Nuclear? No way, say the environmentalists. So where and how will the power be generated I ask again?
And furthermore, the electrical grid in this Country is almost at full capacity today. How many more millions of miles of power lines would we have to build and install to accommodate all the cars plugging in each night?
So how is this great Green Shift Plan supposed to work?
Sounds to me as though Stephen Dion has a magic wand someplace. Simply wave it over the country and presto! We all turn green.
Let’s see that wand Mr. Dion.
Where are you hiding it?


xanthippaschamberpot said...

The whole idea behind taxing carbon-producing goods and services is to impoverish us so much, if will reduce our standard of living. Lower standard of living = lower carbon footprint.

It takes a lot less 'energy' to cook Kraft Dinner than to make a roast! And it's not just the 'cooking' at home: producing 1 pound of meat protein has a larger carbon footprint than producing 1 pound of grain protein....and poorer people who can afford meat only once a week eat more grain....

This has not started out as an 'environmental' tax - it started out, and still is, a global wealth re-distribution scheme. Anyone who looks up the history of this cannot be left with any doubt about this.

deneb said...

Dion should have studied the sentiment of the average Joe in BC, who has had to suffer a recently implemented provincial carbon tax. People don't like it there and they won't like it nationally. Is there no foresight in the Liberal party?

Dion's hidden agenda will reveal itself as another tax grab wherein the rich (read: middle class westerners) are made to pay the poor (read: Quebec, Toronto, Maritimes).

Green shift indeed! Green as in the green of taxpayers' money shifted to the parasites.

Tim said...

Hi Lowell
Interesting post - Here are my thoughts on our Green Issue!

1. Canada should look at some of the countries in the world and study/take their methods of "going green". A few countries out of the hat are Germany, Finland and Japan. If we looked at their methods, maybe all political parties would learn a thing or two (and the environmentalists).

2. In reference to power generation; the environmentalists better pull their heads out of their butts soon. At this time, nuclear is the cleanest power generation out there. So our hands are tied and we have to use it. Such is life. Yes Fossil fuels are dirty and the ones we have existing should only be used when required.

3. My idea of fixing the power supply problem comes from the Finn's in Helsinki. Years ago "for me....24 years" I had to do a paper in high school on how to get rid of our garbage. I looked at what the Finn's built in Helsinki. They build a huge recycling plant that incinerates the city's garbage creating steam to generate power. The furnaces also melt down glass and plastics into usable transportable forms. As an extra addition the heated water coming out of the steam turbines at the power station goes under the streets "melting the snow" and then into government buildings for heating and water..... wow, making money and saving money from garbage.

Sooo Lets look at Ottawa & Area, Toronto and Area, and then finally Montreal and Area. Take the incinerator plant idea and build them in these 3 locations. I know the environmentalist will say that the carbon from the incinerators is bad. But when we take the emissions from the plant and then start subtracting the methane amounts from landfills, carbon from all of the trucks going to the land fills, the list goes on, I bet you would find its equal or less. The garbage in these three area’s should generate enough power to remove at least 4-5 coal fired plants. As we Canadians / North Americans are huge garbage generators, there isn’t a problem with supply.

When it comes to environmentalist, I associate the NDP with the environmentalists. The NDP during their rule in Ontario, shut down many of the micro hydro electric generating stations. So when it comes to comments from one the other, I tend to block them out quickly because you’re both so two faced its amazing. And finally, the environmentalist outside of Canada, support nuclear power generation as they have seen the light..... Its all that makes sense at this time.

Sitting and listening in Carleton Place

This is my 5 cents for the day.

djxtreme said...

There is no explanation in how the carbon tax would work. There isn't one. As he has demonstrated by buying "offsets, credits" for his carbon spewing plane one just has to throw money (somewhere) and say it's helping. Trouble is he just wants to use OUR money.He doesn't have to prove it because the global warming fanatics have had 10 yrs to prove it and they have not, but are still claiming it.

Robert said...

Dion was right the first time - a carbon tax is a bad idea.

I do not understand the reasoning behind this tax, and the more I learn about it, the worse it is.

The biggest problem I have is - "What does this tax do, that the market has not already done?". We have seen a 50 cent increase in a litre of gas in one year. I don't know about you, but that is enough to make me reduce consumption as much as I can. I really don't need any more motivation.

This is actually reinforced by the Green Shift. From page 28:

"...while it is true that there will be an increased cost to fossil fuels due to the Green Shift over four years, these are far-outweighed by cost increases that have occurred due to market factors alone since 2006. "

And again, on the same page:

"Experts agree that the cost of fossil fuels is likely to continue to rise for the long-haul."

So why do we need a carbon tax?

Dion is claiming he wants people to shift their consumption. Looking closely at the numbers, his plan does not make sense.

He is going to raise home heating oil fuel 8.9%. I don't know about you, but I don't think too many Canadians can lower their thermostats much further. Retrofitting homes, insulating, etc is expensive and time consuming. Out of reach for many. Taxing their heat is just plain mean.

He is going to raise diesel 4.2%. What do we use diesel for? Buses. Commuter trains. Both things Dion would like us to use more. Farmers. Delivery trucks to deliver the food. That will all increase in price. It is hard to go without food.

The one area we do have some decretion over is vehicles. We can drive less. If we commute to work, we can carpool. If you are in the city, the bus is an option. If you drive a large car, you can downsize. All reasonable options, if we are forced to. Yet what is Dion's plan? Exactly 0% increase in the cost of gasoline!

Revenue neutral? Last week we find out that he has a billion dollars in a contingency fund that he is going to use to help the farmers and truck drivers. A contingency fund? How much more is in this "contingency" fund? And if he is going to give it back, how does that reduce consumption?

Make no mistake. This is just another Liberal tax grab. And a big one. A cynical one. One that will hurt the most vulnerable. Let's hope the people of BC scream load and clear, so the rest of the country can hear.

Carleton Place

djxtreme said...

Rob, he doesnt have the contingency plan yet, they still cant pay off their debt from adscam. The fund will come from US.

Robert said...


I guess in the end it all comes from US.