Canada and global warming: a state of denial

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Martin N.

Well, jerry, You cant solve the problem by text-bombing the reader with virtue signalling either. If every individual made a slight sacrifice or installed a home solar system etc, you will not have to save the planet by boring it to death.


When the facts are presented to you that the fossil fuel industry has engaged in forty years of denying the existence of climate change and that the countries that have been most successful in reducing carbon dioxide emissions are the European nations that have used government regulation, rather than providing evidence that this is not the case, you attempt to distract readers from this with personal attacks. 


Martin N.

Jerry, what you call evidence, I call empty posturing designed to hector, lecture and indoctrinate anyone who dares to stray away from orthodox climate change dogma.

You simply play a blame game that has no useful purpose. The inclination you have to assume the high moral ground and claim moral superiority is not useful or helpful. I don't care what happened forty years ago. I don't care about the scientific fabrications or disingenuous extrapolations of scanty data or the resulting recriminations.

what I care about is finding simple solutions to complex problems in a manner that will effect the societal change required without leaving the vulnerable behind. Reforestation, grid-tied home renewables, carbon sequestration, rapid transit, urban density with livable public spaces.

In other words, solutions, not an attempt to use climate change as a vehicle to push a globalist political agenda. Perhaps you should reflect upon the unintended irony of your choice of title.


Martin N. wrote:

what I care about is finding simple solutions to complex problems in a manner that will effect the societal change required without leaving the vulnerable behind. Reforestation, grid-tied home renewables, carbon sequestration, rapid transit, urban density with livable public spaces.

These kinds of solutions sound good to me. I wish our governments were supporting these kinds of policies much more than they are currently. Also, I think putting a fee on carbon would support some of these policies. A carbon fee and dividend would also return much of the money raised from a carbon fee to vulnerable Canadians. Here's a web page explaining a "carbon fee and dividend":


Martin N. wrote:

Jerry, what you call evidence, I call empty posturing designed to hector, lecture and indoctrinate anyone who dares to stray away from orthodox climate change dogma. ...

 I don't care what happened forty years ago. I don't care about the scientific fabrications or disingenuous extrapolations of scanty data or the resulting recriminations.

In other words, solutions, not an attempt to use climate change as a vehicle to push a globalist political agenda. Perhaps you should reflect upon the unintended irony of your choice of title.

The state of denial title was intentional because the Liberal and Conservative federal governments, like those of the US, have either ignored the problem or denied it existed for forty years, allowing Canada's carbon dioxide emissions to grow while governments in Europe have made major reductions in their emissions. 

Climate change denial by the fossil fuel industry did not end forty years ago. " the Heartland Institute, which actually puts on climate “conferences” and publishes materials that appear at first glance to be scientifically sound ... – their veneer of scientific credibility is very thin. ... The (2016) report was entitled “Why Scientists Disagree about Global Warming” ... The central theme of this manuscript is an attack against the expert consensus on human-caused global warming.(")

ExxonMobil contines to fund global warming denial. Trump's Secretary of State until recently and former ExxonMobil CEO, Rex Tillerson, and Scott Pruitt, head of the Environmental Protection Agency, led the way in bringing the fossil fuel industry denial approach into government. 

ExxonMobil and the climate science denial machinery that it has helped to build over the years are now under more scrutiny than ever before. ... But the latest disclosures on donations by ExxonMobil, reported publicly here for the first time, show it continues to support organisations that claim greenhouse gases are not causing climate change, or that cuts to emissions are a waste of time and money.

Organisations including the American Enterprise Institute, the American Legislative Exchange Council and the National Black Chamber of Commerce — all organisations with a record of misinformation on climate science — all received grants in 2015 from ExxonMobil. The 2015 tally brings the total amount of known Exxon funding to denial groups north of $33 million since 1998. (

The Koch brothers have spent at least $100,343,292 directly to 84 groups on denying climate change science between 1997 and now. (

In Canada, Friends of Science, based in Calgary, "takes a position that humans are largely not responsible for the currently observed global warming, contrary to the established scientific position on the subject. Rather, they propose that 'the Sun is the main direct and indirect driver of climate change,' not human activity. They are largely funded by the fossil fuel industry." (


Here's a fact that is not "dogma", Martin. Canada has the longest coastline by far - 202,080 km. The next longest is Indonesia - 54,720 km. (

As sea levels rise due to melting of glaciers and water expansion caused by global warming, Canada is already having major problems dealing with its effects - effects that will only get worse. 

Martin, the First Nation people of Lennox Island, Prince Edward Island, do not sea level rise as what you call "scientific fabrications or disingenuous extrapolations". Lennox Island is disappearing right now due to sea level rise. 

Lennox Island is a small Mi'kmaq community of 450 people off the coast of P.E.I. It's also a kind of canary in the coal mine when it comes to climate change.

Rising sea levels, storm surges and coastal erosion threaten its very existence; an estimated 300 football fields of land have already fallen into the sea.

In Canada, Lennox Island is a place where you can see the effects of climate change happening right now — and it's a community preparing for a changing world.

The CBC National url below contains a 11 minute video on the loss of land on Lennox island and the First Nations community that lives there.




 The Vuntut Gwitchin, People of the Lakes First Nation, in the community of Old Crow and the surrounding area in northern Yukon are already also suffering the consequences of climate change.

Martin, they do not see it as a scientific fabrication or think the topic of global warming is boring.

Temperatures have increased 2 degrees Celsius over the past 50 years — twice the rate they've increased in southern Canada. And in northern Yukon, winters are warming even faster: on average, winter temperatures have jumped by 4 C in the last half century. That's making it difficult for the community to safely build the winter roads they rely on for access to their traditional hunting and fishing grounds. ...

Some animal populations, like birds and salmon, seem to be shrinking, Josie says. And he's observed changes in caribou migration patterns this year, which he suspects could also be linked to climate change.

Permafrost thaw, combined with heavier rainfalls, are causing soil erosion and landslides around Old Crow. In some cases, the erosion has caused entire lakes to dry out. In 2007, the six-kilometre-long Zelma Lake, one of the largest in the Old Crow Flats, lost 60 per cent of its water in a month.

The following website has several videos showing the damage being done to the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation ofOld Crow.



However, this problem is not confined to Canada's North. 

Nova Scotia is facing a major problem as sea levels rise due to global warming bringing high risk of flooding along its coasts. Since 70% of Nova Scotians live at or near a coast, many of them are likely to face flooding problems if global warming continues and the government does not spend enormous sums on sea dikes. 


The province of Nova Scotia has 13,300 km of jagged coastline that includes some 3,800 coastal islands, bays and estuaries. Development in Nova Scotia tends to be clustered with a high intensity of residences along the coast. It is estimated 70% of the province's population lives on or near the coastline.

Much of Nova Scotia is considered highly sensitive to SLR (sea level rise) and has been experiencing extensive construction and creation of parcels in scenic coastal locations – many of which will be in hazard zones in a few decades. The south coast and eastern shores of Nova Scotia have been shown to have significant sensitivity to SLR and associated storm impacts.


Martin, you accused BCers of NIMBYism. Besides the costs associated with increased forest fires, flooding from increased torrential downpours and rapid snow melts, destruction of forests and the forest industry caused by pine beetle infestations, reduced salmon spawning and fishing brought about by fossil fuel emissions, its coastal regions also face major costs associated with sea level rise from global warming. The costs far outweigh the meager benefits of pipelines to BC.

And the costs of combatting climate change are substantial. According to a report prepared for the BC Liberal government in 2012, the province will need to spend an estimated $9.5 billion to prevent flooding in the Metro Vancouver communities of Richmond, Delta, Surrey and Vancouver. 

However, the BC Liberals were willing to let the fossil fuel industry continue increasing emissions through adding pipelines and its trillion dollar LNG fantasy while the fossil fuel industry wants to continue exponentially increasing its carbon dioxide emissions but avoid paying the enormous costs associated with them. 

Combating rising sea levels due to global warming could cost $9.5 billion in flood-protection improvements in Metro Vancouver — including sea gates at False Creek and Steveston — by 2100, according to a report released Tuesday by the B.C. government.

The report, Cost of Adaptation - Sea Dikes and Alternative Strategies, covers the Metro Vancouver coastal shoreline and the Fraser River downstream of Port Mann Bridge — an area with more than 250 kilometres of shoreline.

The $9.5-billion cost estimate includes design, project management, land acquisition, environmental mitigation, impacts on utilities and pump stations and earthquake-resistant construction methods.

The Delcan report singled out three areas in the region for potential special protective measures:

- False Creek: A $25-million sea gate would allow the movement of water and boats through during normal water levels but would be closed during storm conditions to limit sea levels and reduce the height of shoreline defences needed around the perimeter of False Creek.

- Steveston: Use Shady Island as part of a breakwater/barrier with a sea gate to protect a densely developed waterfront with historic buildings at an estimated cost $10 million.

- Mud Bay, Surrey: Sea gates at the mouths of the Nicomekl and Serpentine rivers at a cost of $10 million each, along with a "managed retreat" or gradual decommission of development in the area.



Of course, when it comes to NIMBYism, fossil fuel executives and their political allies not only do not want to pay the costs of the damage produced by global warming, they do not want their projects in their own backyard. 

In 2012, (ExxonMobil CEO Rex) Tillerson, his wife and their neighbors in Bartonville, Texas, sued to block the construction of a 160-foot water tower in their luxury community. The tower would, in part, supply water for hydraulic fracturing — which injects pressurized water as well as sand and chemicals under shale rock formations to extract natural gas. The lawsuit contended the project violates the town’s zoning ordinance and will also be an "unbearable nuisance." ...

In addition to joining the lawsuit, Tillerson sat for a three-hour deposition in May 2013 and protested the project at a town council meeting that November, according to the Journal’s report in February 2014. But the newspaper noted that Tillerson wasn’t "the most vocal or well-known opponent of the tower." That distinction belonged to the lead plaintiffs, former U.S. House Majority Leader Dick Armey and his wife.

Rev Pesky

It isn't the 'fossil fuel industry' that is using fossil fuels. It is individual consumers. Convince people to stop using fossil fuels and the problem is solved. When people stop buying fossil fuels, the fossil fuel industry comes to an end.

But that's the problem, isn't it? People like the convenience of being able to drive where they want to drive, when they want to drive. They like being able to go to the store and buy oranges in the middle of winter. They like being able to buy a cheaper home out in the suburbs and commute to work. They love all the doo-dahs and gadgets that industries - made possible by fossil fuels - have created for them.

Take a look around the world. The relationship between fossil fuel consumption and living standard is direct. The wealthiest countries create the most CO2 emissions, and the poorest almost none. That is the real problem you have to confront. The wealthy don't want to live like the poor, and the poor want to live like the wealthy. 

Find some way to detach living standard from fossil fuels, and you've solved the problem.


Rev Pesky wrote:

It isn't the 'fossil fuel industry' that is using fossil fuels. It is individual consumers. Convince people to stop using fossil fuels and the problem is solved. When people stop buying fossil fuels, the fossil fuel industry comes to an end.

As I said in earlier posts on this thread, individuals, governments and the fossil fuel industry all need to play a role in stopping carbon dioxide emissions. The fossil fuel industry does not get a free pass because it has followed the same path as the cigarette industry of denying their is a problem, raising doubts about solutions when denial no longer worked, manufacturing confusion about the issue by throwing anything and everything it can into the air much like Guiliani is about the Trump investigation, deliberately not following regulations meant to reduce environmental harm, and successfully lobbying to slow down and/or halt the regulatory/legislative process and the shift to renewable energy. The fossil fuel industry could also have been proactive by redefining itself as an energy industry and led the way in the change process.

Kodak invented the digital camera but decided it would interfere with its film business and never went forward with the product. Kodak went bankrupt in 2012. (

The fossil fuel industry in its own scientific research showed global warming was occurring in the 1970s, long before most people knew, but instead of warning the public and dealing with the problem it engaged in denial. The tragedy of this is that the costs associated with these decisions will not end with the possible bankruptcy of the industry, but with an astronomical cost to life on this planet. 

Just like Big Tobacco. Leading fossil fuel companies—like Big Tobacco companies before them—are noteworthy for their use of active, intentional disinformation and deception to support their political aims. Major fossil fuel producers like ExxonMobil have employed the same strategies pioneered by the tobacco industry to deceive the public and policymakers. There are important lessons from the campaigns to hold Big Tobacco accountable, which feature many key similarities—and important differences—from the effort to hold major fossil fuel producers accountable.


Rev Pesky

jerrym wrote:

The fossil fuel industry does not get a free pass because it has followed the same path as the cigarette industry of denying their is a problem, raising doubts about solutions when denial no longer worked, manufacturing confusion about the issue by throwing anything and everything it can into the air...

But you're not confused about the issue. Do you imagine the fossil fuel industry has been any more successful with others than they have been with you?


Kathy Mulvey discusses some of the ways in which ExxonMobil and the rest of the fossil fuel industry have led the attack on climate science below, leading many people to question its findings:

I’ve recently completed an in-depth analysis of the climate-related positions and actions of ExxonMobil and seven other leading fossil fuel companies. Our study focused on the period from January 2015 through May 2016, so let’s fact-check ExxonMobil’s claim that it now acknowledges climate risks. ...

ExxonMobil stands out for actively disparaging climate science in its public statements. While the company makes a clear statement acknowledging climate science and the risks of climate change on its website, CEO Rex Tillerson has repeatedly misrepresented basic climate science in public statements by casting doubt on the accuracy and competency of climate models.

At the company’s 2015 annual meeting, Tillerson argued that the world should wait to improve its understanding of climate science before taking action. At its 2016 annual meeting, Tillerson repeated his assertion that climate models are not accurate. Tillerson’s argument—that uncertainties over specific model projections should serve as a rationale for inaction in reducing emissions—belies ExxonMobil’s claim that it accepts the scientific evidence on climate change.  ...

ALEC is a lobbying group that brings together state lawmakers and companies to draft sample legislation that can be introduced in state legislatures across the country. Many of these bills have been aimed at dismantling effective state policies that reduce carbon pollution and accelerate the transition to clean energy, and at obstructing state compliance with EPA limits on carbon emissions. ...

API (American Petroleum Institute) is the largest oil trade association in the United States and has a long history of communicating climate science disinformation, as exemplified by the notorious internal strategy memo written by an API task force in 1998—a roadmap of the fossil fuel industry’s plan to deliberately cast doubt on the public’s understanding of climate science. The API’s  online briefing on climate and energy emphasizes uncertainties in climate science. ...

The US Chamber of Commerce is an umbrella business association that claims to represent the interests of the business community. Few companies publicly agree, however, with the group’s controversial positions on climate change, including its refusal as recently as 2015 to acknowledge that global warming is human-caused. The US Chamber’s priorities include opposing the EPA’s efforts to regulate heat-trapping emissions under the Clean Air Act and challenging the science-based finding that global warming pollution endangers public health, on which the legislation rests. ExxonMobil reported contributing $1,000,000 to the US Chamber in both 2014 and 2015, and has not taken any steps to distance itself from climate disinformation spread by the group. ...

WSPA (Western States Petroleum Association) is the top lobbyist for the oil industry in the western United States and the oldest petroleum trade association in the country. WSPA serves as a key organizer of opposition to California’s groundbreaking climate policies, including the state’s low-carbon fuel standard and its AB32 plan that requires a sharp reduction in carbon emissions by 2020. ... WSPA  made headlines in summer 2015 for spreading blatantly false statements about California’s proposed limits on carbon emissions from cars and trucks. The association employed deceptive ads on more than one occasion to block the “half the oil” provisions of a major clean-energy bill enacted by California lawmakers.



The fossil fuel industry also often does not follow the regulations meant to reduce its emissions and other forms of damage to the environment.

The lead article on the front page of Monday's May 28th 2018 Vancouver Sun discusses how the fossil fuel industry, BC Liberal government and its regulatory agency, the B.C. Oil and Gas Commission kept secret a 2014 audit of the environmental effects of oil and gas drilling in the Fort Nelson region that was never released publicly but was obtained by an advocacy group in a brown envelope. This is the third time in less than a year that the advocacy group has obtained publicly withheld information on environmental problems caused by the fossil fuel industry. The other two withheld documents involved the fracking industry failing to follow safe water practices and the numerous leaks of methane gas, which produces at least thirty times the warming effect per molecule as carbon dioxide, from natural gas wells.

How many more such reports are hidden away here and elsewhere thanks to the collusion of the fossil fuel industry, a government and its regulatory agency?

The B.C. Oil and Gas Commission knew in 2014 that gas drillers weren’t consistently following rules to protect threatened boreal caribou herds, but has held the audit report showing those results under wraps, the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives alleges. ...

“It’s no surprise, given the circumstances of the audit’s ‘release,’ that the suppressed document shows that, over and over again, companies broke the very modest rules to protect the caribou,” Parfitt wrote in a briefing document.

The region around Fort Nelson was heavily drilled earlier in the decade using techniques of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, to establish gas reserves in anticipation of a potential, liquefied-natural-gas export industry. ...

And Parfitt said the leaked report marks the third time in less than a year that the CCPA has gleaned information about concerns with industry operations through Freedom of Information requests or other means that the commission has withheld or delayed releasing.

In the first case, Parfitt, through an FOI request, unearthed documents showing that drilling companies were building unauthorized dams to store water for fracking, including inspection reports and enforcement orders. Parfitt said the documents were posted to the commission’s website “belatedly,” subsequent to his FOI request.

In the second case, the commission, in late 2017, posted the results from a 2013 investigation into the prevalence of methane leaks from natural-gas wells.

Commission spokesman Phil Rygg, in an emailed statement to Postmedia News last fall, said its officials had tightened up regulations as a result of the probe.

Parfitt, at the time, said the multiyear delay in making its results public also withheld potentially damaging information about the industry at a time that the government was promoting the potential for an LNG export sector. And in his paper, Parfitt argues that the incidents help make the case that responsibility for enforcing rules of the oil and gas industry should be separated from the commission.



Trudeau's decision to buy Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain pipeline for $4.4 billion will not be the end of subsidization of the fossil fuel industry, as building the pipline is estimated to cost at least another $7.5 billion. 

The Straight outlines the numerous individuals, indigenous and environmental groups are already protesting this decision including Protect the Inlet, an Indigenous initiative of Tsleil-Waututh members and their allies, Greenpeace, Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson, the Wilderness Committee, the David Suzuki Foundation, Stand.Earth, and the Rainforest Action Network.

Stand.Earth highlighted the role the deal will give Canada's government in harming the environment.

“Today we found out that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau lied when he declared to the world he was a leader on climate change and reconciliation with Indigenous peoples," said deputy director Tzeporah Berman. "Instead, he wants to spend billions of taxpayer dollars to bail out a declining industry—ignoring the thousands who have pledged to block the pipeline and sidestepping more than a dozen outstanding legal challenges.



Besides the environmental damage the Trans Mountain pipeline will cause, there is growing evidence it does not make economic sense. In February 2018, the first supertanker able to hold 2,000,0000,000 barrels of oil sailed from the Louisiana Offshore Oil Port (LOOP) to China. The following article suggests that Kinder Morgan wanted out of the pipeline because it knew it would be a major financial loss for them and now the Trudeau government owns it. 

The LOOP bi-directional pipeline can pump oil at a mind-bending 100,000 barrels per hour, supertankers can arrive with one load for refining and take off with another, by barely dropping anchor. That will likely prove fatal to Alberta’s plans to expand unrefined bitumen exports either by the proposed Trans Mountain pipeline to the British Columbia coast, or the proposed Keystone XL pipeline because:

• Potential foreign refiners and customers will demand that future oil price, quality, shipping costs, and delivery speeds match those that LOOP can offer.

• For marine safety reasons, the maximum oil tanker cargo allowed through B.C.’s Burrard Inlet is an Aframax class ship at 80 per cent capacity carrying 550,000 barrels, only about one-quarter the load of a Very Large Crude Carriers (VLCC). That means a refiner in Asia would need to book and pay for four tankers to ship the same amount as from the LOOP terminal, then wait longer for the full order to arrive.

• The diluted bitumen Alberta wants to export has chemical and combustion properties that make it far inferior to the higher-quality oil LOOP has access to from U.S. formations in the Dakotas and Texas, or OPEC countries, or North Sea producers. Tar sands/oil sands bitumen can be upgraded and refined, but that adds significant costs and requires dedicated facilities.

• The terminus of the Keystone XL will be refineries on the Texas Gulf Coast near Houston which are not connected to the LOOP. Even if future Alberta bitumen were to be refined there, it would take three fully-loaded Aframax tankers leaving Texas for ship-to-ship transfers to each VLCC.

These important changes in tanker and terminal technology and scale are no secret in the oil industry outside Canada. Nor is the dirty chemical composition of tar sands/oil sands bitumen. Nor is the cutthroat competition among global oil producers, refiners, shippers, and speculators, in which nickels per barrel of oil delivered are fought over fiercely.

In fact, the bad news for Alberta’s oilpatch has been building for a decade. That’s when shipbuilders in South Korea, China and Japan began constructing what has become a global fleet of about 750 VLCCs (with 50 more ordered for 2018), and the scrapping of smaller Aframax class tankers began accelerating. This in turn drove down the benchmark price for ocean oil shipping, triggered the LOOP terminal upgrade, effectively consigned oil terminals like those in Burnaby, B.C. to minor league status, and left oil deposits far from deep port tidewater at a significant cost disadvantage.

When the undeniably dirty content of Alberta’s bitumen deposits is added into these negative cost equations, global oil players know when to cut and run. Compared to conventional heavy crude, bitumen contains 102 times more copper, 21 times more vanadium, 11 times more sulphur, 11 times more nickel, six times more nitrogen, and five times more lead, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. It also has a much lower ratio of hydrogen to carbon, which degrades combustion efficiency.



Unifor, Canada's largest private sector union with 310,000 members, and the Alberta Federation of Labour, which represent the two largest labour organizations in Northern Alberta where the tar sands are located, oppose the Trans Mountain pipeline for economic, environmental, employment, sustainability and security reasons, as the following Unifor press release indicates. 

Unifor is disappointed with the National Energy Board's (NEB) short-sighted decision to support the Trans Mountain Expansion Project, one that poses risks for the economy, Canadian jobs, and food security. 

"The Kinder Morgan expansion project is all risk and no gain for the public or our environment," said Joie Warnock, Unifor's Western Director. "Despite applying conditions for approval, in the absence of any realistic, enforceable regulations, the NEB failed to consider the very serious risks a project of this magnitude has for residents and our economy." ...

The National Energy Board (NEB) should have put our community, and the environment first, instead this is a helter skelter approach to expansion and with only exacerbate problems that have already been created that risk the kind of sustainable future, jobs and type of economy we want and need in Canada," said Warnock.



ETA: In addition to opposition from Unifor and the Alberta Federation of Labour, Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain claim that it will create 15,000 jobs has been called a scam by BC economist Robyn Allan, more examples of the fossil fuel industry denying reality in Canada when it comes to global warming.

In the NEB Kinder Morgan hearings, the largest union in the oilsands, Unifor, intervened. You might be forgiven for assuming that a union, interested in jobs, intervened to ensure Kinder Morgan got built. You would be wrong.

Unifor attempted to enter evidence that building Kinder Morgan would cost jobs. The Alberta Federation of Labour represents 170,000 workers in Alberta. The AFL is also against Trans Mountain’s expansion because of the jobs and economic wealth lost down the pipeline. ...

The claim that the Kinder Morgan expansion would create 15,000 jobs is thrown around in the cloud of confetti. Kinder Morgan’s submission to the NEB said it would employ an average of 2,500 construction workers a year for two years (Volume 5B of its application). ...

B.C. economist Robyn Allan went on a quest for the source of the claim. (“15,000 Trans Mountain jobs an illusion,” Aug. 31, 2017.) She concluded: “Trans Mountain’s 15,000 construction workforce jobs are a scam. The more realistic figure is less than 20 per cent that size. It is a betrayal of the public trust that [Justin] Trudeau, [Jim] Carr and [Rachel] Notley so eagerly got behind Kinder Morgan’s manipulated jobs figure without checking to make sure it made any sense.”


Trudeau's decision to buy Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain pipeline is highly likely to cost the Liberals seats in the Lower Mainland, where they hold 16 of their 17 seats in BC and where BCer opposition to the pipeline is greatest, and cost them support in Quebec. 

In a new poll set to be released Thursday, 75 per cent of B.C. respondents said they would be “uncomfortable” with the idea of the federal government using taxpayer dollars to “subsidize a foreign company.” Forty-nine per cent of respondents said they would be less likely to vote for the Liberals in the next federal election. The online poll was conducted by Research Co. between May 25 and May 28, ahead of the government’s announcement Tuesday but after the government said it would compensate Trans Mountain for delays. 

The results are based on an online poll of 1,255 adults in B.C. and has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.8 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. “This is definitely hurting them,” said Mario Canseco, the president of Research Co. It will be “tough” for Trudeau to hold onto the support he garnered in B.C. after campaigning “so mightily on environmental issues.”

In 2015, there was a concerted effort to shift the vote by people who didn’t want to see Stephen Harper’s Conservatives win another term, Canseco added, but those ridings could be back in play. After winning just two B.C. seats in 2011, the Liberals won 17 ridings in the province in 2015, nabbing another in a 2017 byelection. The NDP came second in five of those ridings, while the Conservatives were second in 13.

Every party has something on the Liberals now, he said.  The Greens and NDP will say Trudeau isn’t environmentally friendly, while the Conservatives will say his government used taxpayer dollars to buffer a project that came out of Texas.

“There will be a political price to pay for the Trudeau government in 2019, but I think the real big question is how much of a price,” agreed Shachi Kurl, executive director of the Angus Reid Institute.


The purchase of the Trans Mountain pipeline by Trudeau in order to try to ensure it gets built has raised widespread concerns in Quebec. 

Joel Denis Bellevance of La Presse said on CTV's Power Play that after he wrote an article in French on Trudeau's purchase of the pipeline, he heard back from a very large number of readers via email, with the overwhelming majority against Trudeau's decision. Those against the pipeline opposed to the decision divided into two large camps: the hard core and soft nationalists who oppose any interference into provincial affairs and those who oppose the pipeline environmentally and feel betrayed by Trudeau following his enviromental promises in the 2015 election.

Even Liberal Premier Couillard, the most federalist provincial premier in over fifty years, has expressed concerns over the precedent this sets for federal intervention in areas of provincial jurisdiction. 

In April, Couillard cautioned Justin Trudeau that overriding concerns in B.C. over the project's environmental impact was "not a good sign for federalism."

Earlier today, the premier said the pipeline debate shows that "even in projects that are federally regulated in terms of final authorization, there should be room for the expression of provincial jurisdictions."



Here's more evidence that the Liberals purchase of the Trans Mountain pipeline from Kinder Morgan is likely to cost the Liberals votes, especially in BC and Quebec. 

Angus Reid Institute executive director Shachi Kurl and Nanos Research chair Nik Nanos both said they had polling figures that showed a government investment in the pipeline would be divisive, at best, among Canadian voters.  Ms. Kurl’s firm asked Canadians in April how they would feel about the federal and Alberta governments investing in Trans Mountain, and 56 per cent agreed it would be a “bad idea” and “poor use of taxpayer funds,” while 44 per cent agreed it was a good idea and good use of tax dollars. In B.C., 70 per cent agreed it was a bad idea, as did 70 per cent in Manitoba, 53 per cent in Ontario, and 56 per cent in Quebec. The positive outlook was more popular only in Alberta, at 52 per cent, and Saskatchewan, at 51 per cent. The online survey of 2,125 Canadian adults was equivalent to a poll with a margin for error of 3 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.


Ms. Kurl said the Liberals will likely lose seats in Vancouver or Burnaby because of the decision, and the serious concerns for many voters there about an increased risk of an oil spill off the B.C. coast because of the pipeline.  “It will definitely lose them some seats in British Columbia,” she said, later adding, “it seems doubtful that the Trudeau Liberals will be thanked for their troubles on the file in Alberta.”

The Liberals currently hold 18 seats in B.C. The move will also be unpopular in Quebec, said Mr. Nanos, a bastion for environmentally-conscious voters, where the party has 40 seats.  “There’s a difference between approving a pipeline and investing in a pipeline, and I think they’ve crossed a line that it will be difficult for them to reconcile, for those voters where the environment is very important,” he said.



Rev Pesky wrote:

Well, kropotkin1951, we know you're hiding your head in the sand, but that's not providing an answer.

Just to give a bit of context, Canada creates 1.54% of the total world CO2. So if we stopped producing CO2 completely, the total CO2 production of the world would drop by 1.54%. Unfortunately, as noted by Martin N. the rest of the world is producing CO2 at a faster and faster rate, so within a couple of years, that 1.54% would have been surpassed, and then some, by other CO2 producers. Which would make the net effect of Canada halting CO2 production pretty much zero.

Running around shouting, 'the sky is falling!, the sky is falling!' is kinda fun, and it does attract a certain amount of attention.  It does nothing to solve the problem of how to prevent the sky from falling. I think we're past the stage of recognizing the problem, and are now at the stage of finding a solution. Hiding your head in the sand isn't going to help.

The 1.54% does not include land-use, changes to land-use and forestry. That is related more to the geographical size of Canada than it's popuplation. Nor does it include emissions from burning end-use products of fossil fuel production in other countries.


Rev Pesky wrote:

Canada's apparent target agreed to in the Paris Climate Accord is to reduce CO2 emissions by 30% from 2005 levels by 2030. To give a little context, emissions were about 10% higher in 2007 - at a peak of economic activity - than they were in 2010, the lowest point after the crash of '08.

What that means is we will have to constrain the economy by at least three times the amount of shrinkage between '07 and '10. No one knows how that might be done without serious consequences for the poorest in our society. 


That assumes no changes to the carbon intensity of the economy. Your apparent ignorance of proposals to decrease income and wealth inequality at the same time is also clear. And no-one knows how adaptation (if we as a species can adapt) will be done without serious consequences for the poorest in society. That is not a longer term problem, as the impacts of climate change (and ocean acidification) are occurring now.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Canada talks green while financing climate disaster

There were fireworks and fury, no doubt. There were tweets, memes and photos too of course, some surely quite historic. But as the G6’s hair-pulling and the world’s temporary rank-closing around Justin Trudeau fades into history, what will be left for us to tell today’s and tomorrow’s children?

We could say that the world’s richest countries, minus the United States, issued a great communiqué.

In it, they “reaffirm their strong commitment to implement the Paris Agreement,” which means “ensuring a just transition, including increasing efforts to mobilize climate finance from a wide variety of sources.”

And they reaffirm the Paris Agreement’s crucial goal of reaching “a global carbon-neutral economy over the course of the second half of the century.”

How wonderful. And how curious, our progeny might remark, that according to research released a week before the Charlevoix summit, the G7 countries continued to pour at least $100 billion of taxpayer-funded subsidies into fossil fuels annually.

How curious, to say the least. And how plainly unconscionable.


The true scale of Canada’s fossil fuel support

Even amid so sorry a field, it requires a special kind of cynicism not to blink at the latest display of cognitive dissonance from the Canadian government.

Few distracted by the high-flying rhetoric of the Trudeau Liberals on climate change would guess that even prior to the $4.5-billion government bailout of the Trans Mountain pipeline, Canada’s $6 billion in annual subsidies to oil and gas companies in 2015 and 2016 placed us first in the G7 for public support of fossil fuels once adjusted to the size of our economy.

Fewer still would imagine that the Canadian state, through the financial colossus that is Export Development Canada, continues to finance oil and gas projects around the globe to the tune of $10 billion on average each year. EDC is a notoriously opaque Crown corporation with a trail of unsavoury clients blotching its resume, many of whom have been tied to serious human (often Indigenous) rights violations. It is the second- or third-largest export development bank in the world, boasting more than $100 billion in global investments in 2017, much of them in mining, oil and gas.

Even in absolute numbers, Canada ranked sixth in the G20 for annual public finance of fossil fuels from 2013 to 2015, according to a separate report released in 2017. And EDC’s own figures show that its ironclad support for oil and gas has not faltered a bit since the Liberals rose to office. On the contrary, the Trudeau government has conscripted the EDC to help finance the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline, which independent analysts have estimated could cost another $10 billion or more.....


Martin N.

In any event, Hansen’s predictions have all bombed and he has not recanted. His polyglot and multi-motivated echo chamber, including Dr. Michael Mann and his infamous “hockey stick” of sharply rising temperatures, have had their noses rubbed in the fiction of increasing world temperatures throughout this new millennium. Every sane person is opposed to the pollution of the environment and there is a practically universal consensus to reduce automobile exhaust emissions, ensure industrial smoke goes through scrubbers, and that all contaminated water is thoroughly treated before being returned to nature. Every serious person agrees that we must, as a species, show extreme vigilance in exercising man’s unique ability to tamper with and alter the environment. We are the stewards of the world and its environment and there are few who would dispute that until comparatively recently, we have not taken that responsibility very seriously. The Industrial Revolution had been thundering in Europe and North America for nearly a century, and in Japan for half a century, before even basic conservation, such as national parks, got its green foot in the public policy door.

Martin N.

But there is no justification whatever for the self-punitive nonsense of the Paris climate accord, where the administration of president Barack Obama committed to garrote American industry with costs of tens of billions of dollars to reduce carbon emissions, even as the world’s principal offenders, China and India, and most other countries, solemnly declined to moderate their darkening of the skies and their putrefaction of the waters until their economic revolution, involving billions of people, had been completed. The lessons of all this are clear, but most of our political and academic leaders are so far over-invested in defending against something that is not happening, they continue to call for the sacrifice of others, the deindustrialization of the West, the self-imposition of a holy economic torpor so, in the post-industrial silence we can all contemplate the pristine serenity of self-impoverishment (and the joys of Chinese world domination).


Same article

progressive17 progressive17's picture

Martin N., do you know where Galt, Ontario is?

Martin N.



Martin N. wrote:

But there is no justification whatever for the self-punitive nonsense of the Paris climate accord ... 

The lessons of all this are clear, but most of our political and academic leaders are so far over-invested in defending against something that is not happening,

You sound like King Canute commanding the waves to stop. 

Unfortunately, the waves of sea level rise due to global warming are already having drastic effects. And this is just one effect of global warming. 

Climate change may seem to be a distant, far-off-in-time phenomenon to those in the developed world, but for millions it is already a bitter reality, especially for small island countries whose very culture and even existence is threatened by the sea level rise brought about by global warming. 

Island nations are well aware that global warming is already hitting them hard. They had alredy formed the 44 member Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) in 1990. It includes low-lying coastal nations, such as Bangladesh, as well as small island nations in the South Pacific, Indian Ocean and Carribbean, such as Micronesia, Tonga, the Marshall Islands, Palau, Kiribati, Seychelles, the Maldives, Barbados, Bahamas, Jamaica, Trinidad, and Haiti.   (  

AOSIS focuses on dealing with member countries "concerns about the environment, especially their vulnerability to the adverse effects of global climate change" because of the threat to the very existence of their countries that global warming brings. (

On CBC's Sunday Edition this week, the threat to these island states was discussed. A MP for the Legislative Assembly of Tonga discussed the exponential increase in cyclones in the South Pacific that has produced many homeless people and the movement of inhabitants from some of the outer islands of Tonga because they are no longer inhabitable due to sea level rise to the main islands and the movement inland on the main islands as the coasts erode away. As the years pass they fully expect that the population will become climate change refugees. (



The Tongan MP mentioned in the last post also discussed how the island nation of Kiribati is dealing with the threat of climate change. 

Kiribati has already seen three of its uninhabited atolls disappear under the waves by 1999 and is negotiating the purchase of 5,000 acres in Fiji to resettle its entire population of 102,000 (


Here are some other examples of island nations and low lying coastal nations that have been severely impacted by sea level rise due to climate change. 

The Marshall Islands are currently trying to figure out if they will remain a country when their island nation disappears underwater. They may be forced to flee even before their land is lost, due to predictions of dangerous tropical storms and rising salt levels in their drinking water.


Bangladesh has a population of more than 140 million with 20 million the facing becoming flood refugees due to global warming if sea levels rise one metre - .

Already half a million people on Bhola island in Bangladesh have been flooded out of there homes and more than one million  face bleak future as climate refugees as level of water wipes out villages. The Al Jazeera website below describes their plight.

A 2013 Aljazeera reported that more than 1,000 schools in Bangladesh have been closed due to rising sea levels and their students forced to go school on boats because of sea level rise from global warming.


The Maldives are another example of an island nation whose existence is threatened. 

The small island nation may be the first country in the world to be entirely swallowed up by rising sea levels caused by climate change. Those rising sea levels are already endangering the nation's cherished beaches, and will before too long render many parts of the country inhospitable. 

The country has established a sovereign wealth fund, drawn from its tourist revenue, to be used to buy land overseas and finance the relocation of the country's population of 350,000.


Nothing focuses one's mind on what is important in life more than the prospect of death, whether it be of the individual, the culture or the nation. 


Global warming is also increasing both the number and intensity of hurricanes, cyclones and typhoons, that are bringing more devastation to island nations and coastal regions. It's even bringing about the creation of a new term - supertyphoon. In 2013, supertyphoon Haiyan reached a global wind speed record of 315 km/hr (since surpassed) when it hit the Philippines and killed 6,300 people. These superstorms also have a drastic effect on the economy. 

The chief Philippine negotiator, Nadero Sano, at the climate change conference points out that

 Each destructive typhoon season costs us 2% of our GDP, and the reconstruction costs a further 2%, which means we lose nearly 5% of our economy every year to storms. We have received no climate finance to adapt or to prepare ourselves for typhoons and other extreme weather we are now experiencing. We have not seen any money from the rich countries to help us to adapt.


More than a decade after the 2005 Hurricane Katrina, more than 100,000 residents have not been able to return to New Orleans, showing how long a climate change intensified hurricane can impact a community in a devastating way.

On Aug. 29, 2005, it all seemed lost. Four-fifths of the city lay submerged as residents frantically signaled for help from their rooftops and thousands were stranded at the Superdome, a congregation of the desperate and poor.

Ten years later, it is not exactly right to say that New Orleans is back. The city did not return, not as it was.

It is, first of all, without the more than 1,400 people who died here, and the thousands who are now making their lives someplace else. As of 2013, there were nearly 100,000 fewer black residents than in 2000, their absences falling equally across income levels. The white population decreased by about 11,000, but it is wealthier.( )


The World Resources Institute has concluded that

Evidence is mounting that human-induced warming is contributing to increased frequency and intensity of several types of extreme weather events, including heat waves, torrential downpours, and coastal flooding. These trends are expected to continue – with associated damages worsening – in an increasingly warmer world. (


 Global reinsurance firm Aon Benfield determined that the largest global disasters of 2012 in monetary terms occurred in the United States. They were

Hurricane Sandy (with cost of $65 billion) and the year-long Midwest/Plains drought ($35 billion), according to the company's Annual Global Climate and Catastrophe Report, which was prepared by Aon Benfield's Impact Forecasting division. ( )


While wealthy countries have some capacity to deal with such catastrophes, poor ones cannot afford to spend these kinds of sums on global warming induced disasters. However, even wealthy countries will not be able to fund the rebuilding costs of a long string of catastrophes occurring over relatively short periods as temperatures rise higher and higher. 


Hurricanes in the United States and Carribean during the last year have shown how global warming fed superstorms are causing more and more damage. Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands are still far from fully recovered from these superstorms. 

Summer and fall 2017 saw an unusual string of record-breaking hurricanes pummel the U.S. Gulf Coast, eastern seaboard, Puerto Rico and the Caribbean.

Hurricane Harvey brought unbelievable floods to Houston. Irma, one of the two strongest hurricanes ever recorded in the northern Atlantic,wreaked havoc on Florida and many Caribbean islands. Maria devastated Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. The destruction begs the question: Has climate change influenced these extreme events? Hurricanes can be difficult to decipher, but experts are gaining a sense of what our warming world might mean for monster storms in the U.S. and worldwide.

Many experts are confident that a warmer world will create stronger storms—and already is doing so. Since 1981 the maximum wind speed of the most powerful hurricanes has risen, according to research (pdf) by Jim Elsner, a climatologist at The Florida State University. That’s because higher ocean heat provides more energy for storms, fueling their intensity. Hurricane Patricia, in 2015, set the record at the time for top wind speed—215 miles per hour—in the north Atlantic. The next year Winston shattered