14 June 2008

and the SPP energy greenwash awards go to...

Yesterday the "Making the Lakes Great" conference conclusions was posted on the H2O list by Dr. Gail Krantzberg, Director of the McMaster Univ. Dofasco Centre for Engineering and Public Policy, under the subject heading, "energy options to protect Great Lakes waters".
Here were the presentations, including the Canadian Nuclear Assoc., US Dept. of Energy, Suncor, Acelor Mittal, Hydro One.
check out the merged US-Canadian flags on slide 3 of
the rest of that slideshow is also instructive, eg. slides 21 and 22, and 55 (arms, and happy face nuke towers- seriously) !!!
or how about the rebranding of James Lovelock, author of "The Gaia Hypothesis" as nuclear advocate on slide 9 at:
And the conference conclusions, translated, mean a US-Canada integrated power grid, based on primarily carbon sequestered tar sands and coal sources, and nukes, with some wind, sun, and geothermal thrown in for PR. The dirty sources are to be heavily subsidized by government, with high consumer pricing supposedly for energy and water 'conservation' (of course while industry gets bulk reduced rates, and while shareholders make record gains). Measured by an integrated metred system with data collation, analysis, and all policy formulation to be carried out by a new 'government' structure, no doubt to be a P3 as other new federal and Ontario infrastructure boards are, heavily embedded with the same players that gathered at this conference.
We can do better.
Dust off the better studies sitting on the shelf that show there's enough wind and sun on the planet to fuel 6X our current use, and conserve by getting rid of dirty industries, with transition programs for unionized workers to build the renewables, rather than mainly the nonrenewables and nukes. Do all of the above with public power, not the exorbitant costs of privatized P3 power. Eliminate speculation, and pull self-governance from industry heads and investors. Roll-back NAFTA and put a moratorium on further entrenching of the SPP, TILMA, and bilateral deals.
Do not use 'renewable energy' to mean building more hydro dams and canals to channel more Hudson Bay Basin water down to the Great Lakes, killing what's left of our wild north for the sake of profiteers who don't have the smarts and humility to shift gears.
And above all, read beyond 'green' headlines to expose and reject policy which would entrench the problems.
Thanks to all activists for your work for real change, inspite of the kind of nonsense noted here, tossed from various quarters.
Our words and actions, of critique and substantive alternatives, are the change we want to see.
Leigh Thompson

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