LETTER: Irrational to invest in new fossil fuel sources

While a weather event cannot be ascribed to global warming, it is becoming clear human activity has caused the weather dice to be loaded

The sad news that Hemlock Resort has given up any hope of opening for this ski season, and the seemingly endless string of “pineapple expresses,” are warnings of the kind of events we can expect as a consequence of climate change.

While it is true that any particular weather event cannot be ascribed to global warming, it is becoming clearer that human activity has caused the weather dice to become loaded in favour of extreme weather events and changing patterns.

We have done this by burning fossil fuels and changing the composition of our atmosphere.

At 400 ppm, CO2 the greenhouse effect is now stronger than it has been for millions of years. Even if we were able to turn off all fossil fuel burning tomorrow, global warming would continue until CO2 levels returned to a more typical 250-300 ppm which would take decades.

The most hard-core environmentalists recognize that an immediate shutdown of fossil fuel consumption is neither practical nor desirable, but they would be right to question why we continue to invest in expanding our fossil fuel infrastructure rather than building our renewable capacity.

With our understanding of the harm we are doing and the cost of adaptation to a changing climate, it seems irrational that we would invest in new sources of fossil fuels and the infrastructure needed so we can burn it.

Typewriter manufacturers in the early years of computers didn’t build more typewriter factories, they changed to products appropriate for the computer age or went out of business.

As the heirs to the Rockefeller fortune, built on Standard Oil, have been able to divest from fossil fuel, surely it is time for the fossil fuel corporations to change their business model and move into renewables.

If this were to happen maybe there would still be some hope for the climate, and Hemlock as a ski resort.

Neil Smith

Mission

 

Just Posted

Trial begins for man charged with 2010 murder of Mandy Johnson

Langley single mom was fatally shot while in vehicle in Abbotsford

KPU campuses go smoke-free starting Jan. 21 – and that includes vaping

‘We didn’t make this decision lightly’ says prez of the Surrey-based institution

City wants to know about danger quakes pose to Abbotsford’s dike system

City commissioning report to examine seismically unstable flood protections

Woman charged in Abbotsford mall stabbing served time for 2001 killing

Victim in Edmonton killing was stabbed eight times with kitchen knife

Trial date scheduled for man charged with killing Abbotsford officer

Oscar Arfmann slated to go to trial in New Westminster in January 2019

VIDEO: Orcas put on a show near Hornby Island

Louis Jobodin shares photos and video of his experience

LIVE: Solitary confinement in Canadian prisons unconstitutional: B.C. Supreme Court

Associations argued that solitary confinement was inhuman

Girl, 15, killed in Burnaby crash

RCMP say female pedestrian was struck on Cariboo Road

1 in 4 B.C. consumers unable to pay bills, debt repayment: poll

Since interest rates first rose in July, poll suggests households across B.C. have had to tighten budget

Pipeline company questioned about Fraser Valley aquifer protection at NEB hearing

‘We want to be sure that this is safe’ lawyer for City of Chilliwack tells Trans Mountain brass

SOGI rally disrupts school board meeting, but business carries on

Chilliwack school board makes statement in support of B.C.-wide gender identity teaching resource

B.C. husband and wife honoured for saving each other’s lives

Couple presented with Vital Link Awards for quick use of CPR

154 remote B.C. communities to get high-speed internet

Government funding to bring subsea fiber optic cable to connect people on the coast

Kelowna West byelection called for Feb. 14

Four candidate race to replace departed former B.C. premier Christy Clark

Most Read