Connecting the dots in the summer of smoke

Right across Canada, dramatic signs of climate change are casting a pall on the landscape

Connecting the dots in the summer of smokeThe last five summers at Skelhp, on B.C.’s Sunshine Coast, have been progressively drier. We’ve had one significant wildfire nearby, in Sechelt Inlet, which wafted ash in a big brown plume over our regional air shed. The smoke from this fire three years ago caused us to close all the windows in the July heat…

Fairness should be at the heart of electoral reform

Every argument in favour of our current flawed system is either easily rebutted or simply untrue

Fairness should be at the heart of electoral reformIn a recent address on proportional representation (PR), Guy Giorno, one of Stephen Harper’s former strategists, said, “The unassailable moral high ground we (supporters of PR) hold is the people and a result that fairly reflects their will.” This caused me to pause and reflect. I’ve long been a supporter of PR and now I…

B.C. and Alberta to lead country in salary increases in 2019

Alberta recorded the fastest economic expansion last year and B.C. posted its strongest pace in more than a decade, says Morneau Shepell report

B.C. and Alberta to lead country in salary increases in 2019If you’re working in British Columbia and Alberta, a new report by Morneau Shepell contains good news. The company’s annual survey, Trends in Human Resources, released on Tuesday, says the two provinces will lead the country in expected salary increases in 2019. B.C. will lead the pack at 2.8 per cent, followed by Alberta at…

Canada’s oil and gas industry faces dramatic shift

A new report by PetroLMI, a division of Energy Safety Canada, details the changing face of the energy workforce

Canada’s oil and gas industry faces dramatic shiftCanada’s oil and gas industry has undergone a significant transformation in the past decade. And as the industry has adjusted to the ups and downs of the economy, there were corresponding shifts in the distribution of the industry’s workforce and the daily experiences of those workers, says a new report by PetroLMI, a division of…

Ontario should look to B.C. as a model for education reform

The province needs to remove religious schools from the public system while introducing partial funding for independent schools

Ontario should look to B.C. as a model for education reformProfessors from Western University recently renewed calls for the Ontario government to change the way kindergarten-to-Grade-12 education is delivered. Most Ontarians live in areas served by four distinct public school boards – English public, English Catholic, French public and French Catholic. If you live in Penetanguishene on the Georgian Bay, a fifth school board operates…

In Greyhound’s wake, government should stay off the bus

When governments run transportation services, more tax dollars make trips than people. Let private business fill the gap

In Greyhound’s wake, government should stay off the busWestern Canadian bus riders have received an early Halloween scare: as of Oct. 31, 2018, Greyhound won’t offer passenger routes west of Ontario. For the company, it means 415 fewer employees and two million fewer passenger rides each year. For bus riders in remote areas, a vital link has been cut. Some advocates want the…

Adrift and perilously close to abandoning ship

After more than a little high-seas misadventure, the Frankie finally proves seaworthy – and sanitary

Adrift and perilously close to abandoning shipBack in 2012, we had a dreamboat, an 18-foot Hourston Glascraft. It was brand-new, had a magnificent 150-horsepower Yamaha four-stroke outboard, and quickly became the envy of the Skelhp government wharf. We paid monthly wharfage dues all summer and used it to fish and cruise. We christened her the Francine, after my then 90-year-old Mom.…

B.C. falling short of its considerable mining potential

B.C. miners face more onerous permitting process compared to other provinces. Adding another layer will only make it worse

B.C. falling short of its considerable mining potentialBy Ashley Stedman and Elmira Aliakbari The Fraser Institute To encourage natural resource development and the prosperity that comes with it, mining investors need more certainty about exploration activities – not less. It's an issue that deserves immediate attention in B.C. According to a recent Fraser Institute survey of senior mining executives, British Columbia’s regulatory…

Psst … want to buy a pipeline?

Pierre Trudeau would be proud. His son, – albeit unwillingly – has achieved a measure of nationalization the old man never could

Psst … want to buy a pipeline?An important date passed recently in the ongoing Trans Mountain pipeline saga, but one could be forgiven for missing it. That’s because the federal government had been working with operator Kinder Morgan to flip the controversial project to a third-party buyer before July 22. There were no takers. That means Canadian taxpayers are the proud…

B.C. can spur entrepreneurship by cutting personal income taxes

The downward trend in entrepreneurship could have negative and widespread effects on B.C.’s economic well-being

B.C. can spur entrepreneurship by cutting personal income taxesBy Ergete Ferede and Charles Lammam The Fraser Institute Entrepreneurship remains a vital source of innovation, which helps grow economies and provide employment opportunities for British Columbians. Unfortunately, several recent studies have found fewer businesses are being started in B.C. (and Canada as a whole), pointing a long-term decline in rates of entrepreneurship. This down­ward…

Education reform must be on the table in Ontario

The delivery and financing of education could produce better results for students and their families while saving money

Education reform must be on the table in OntarioBy Jason Clemens and Sazid Hasan Fraser Institute As the new Ontario government begins to fully grasp the enormity of the task it faces to return the province to prosperity, education reform must be front and centre. The need to balance the budget while introducing tax relief to make the province more competitive and attractive…

How to remedy poor health outcomes created by poverty

Social assistance programs in Canada are falling behind. It's time we expanded basic coverage to include drug and dental care

How to remedy poor health outcomes created by povertyBy Arjumand Siddiqi and Odmaa Sod-Erdene EvidenceNetwork.ca Public health researchers have long known that poverty and poor health are linked, but new evidence suggests that social assistance – the government system designed to provide those in poverty with income support – is not succeeding at protecting health.  Using data from national government surveys, we studied the…

The heavy footprint of climate change can be seen everywhere

I've been alive to observations and anecdotes of climate change for years. I now have hundreds of them stored in my memory

The heavy footprint of climate change can be seen everywhereImagine drilling into the accumulated layers of ice on Mount Logan, the highest peak in Canada at 5,959 metres in Yukon’s Saint Elias Mountains, to extract ice-cores for scientific study. Dr. Gerald Holdsworth, expeditionary climber and climate scientist at the University of Calgary’s Arctic Institute of North America had been doing it for years when…

Young, educated Indigenous talent is ready

Canadians are retiring in unprecedented numbers and young couples are having fewer babies. Here's how we can fill the workforce gaps

Young, educated Indigenous talent is readyBy Jock Finlayson and Kristine St.-Laurent Business Council of B.C. The latest Canadian census revealed three major population trends: we’re having fewer babies, progressively more baby boomers are transitioning into retirement and most people are living longer. Together, these trends point towards a population that’s greying faster than at any time in Canadian history. Overall, it’s a good…

B.C. moves to embrace the essence of good government

As our country has evolved, dialogue is encouraged in education and the media, but is stymied in our highest law-making institutions

B.C. moves to embrace the essence of good government“I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.” Though the origin of this statement is debated, its essence beautifully summarizes the ideals of our democracy and the importance of freedom of speech. While I have my opinions on certain issues, I thoroughly enjoy and appreciate…