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I disagree with Bev Bell about the City Hall reno. Sure the price was hefty, but it seems a good deal compared to how city councillors spend some of my tax money! Tear it down? It is a historic building, 113 years old, one of a few of its kind left! Why use substandard material and have a hodge-podge mess that will look terrible and probably fall apart on its own. I’d rather have a beautiful City Hall than some of the “art” our taxes are wasted on.
Doreen Templeton, Calgary
Oil economy on downside, Alberta innovation needed
Re: Growth from innovation requires risk, Sept. 18
Our fossil fuel extraction-based economy puts many eggs in a fraying basket. From well to wheels, oil emits climate-changing greenhouse gases. Climate change is causing many economic side effects, mostly negative, none borne by oil producers.
But since oil “powers everything,” we need a transition. Some people argue we should give more money to the oil industry to fund it. This has it backwards: it would be more efficient to invest in technological, architectural, and urban planning reforms. By their actions, oil companies have also proved that they don’t deserve it. Exxon and Shell scientists predicted impending, serious climate change in internal reports in the 1980s, but the companies did not merely ignore the reports; they funded organized climate change denial.
Business as usual will be at least as expensive as a transition. Climate change has consequences and poor people suffer the most from it, so we should fix the problem. If increased oil exports add $20 billion to Canada’s GDP one year, but food prices rise due to scarcity and the government must subsidize farmers, most of us have not become appreciably better off. I am confident that Alberta’s proud entrepreneurial community can work up a solution.
The new session of Parliament is an opportunity for the government to show it is committed to a healthier, more sustainable future for all Canadians.
Michael Bagamery, Winnipeg