Repair regional relations in Canada before it’s too late

If we want Canada to add up to more than the sum of its parts, we need to get our regional house in order

Repair regional relations in Canada before it’s too lateCanada is a big and diverse place. People, power, economic opportunities, public policy priorities, language and cultural nuances are not evenly spread from sea to sea to sea. It’s always been a struggle to make sure the various regions are working together, treated fairly and adequately represented at the national level. Lately, however, serious efforts…

Investor confidence plummets for B.C. energy sector

Tanker moratoriums, LNG plant cancellations, fracking reviews, government pipeline obstructionism are all taking their toll

Investor confidence plummets for B.C. energy sectorBy Kenneth P. Green and Ashley Stedman The Fraser Institute Investor confidence in British Columbia’s energy sector is crucial, since the province is rich with vast natural gas resources. But according to this year’s Fraser Institute Global Petroleum Survey, B.C. ranks dead last among Canadian provinces in investment attractiveness in the oil and gas sector.…

Civic renewal that drains the soul – and people – from communities

When investor neighbourhoods replace residential ones, civic sustainability is the big loser

Civic renewal that drains the soul – and people – from communities“We are basically not a self-sustaining society. There is no other way to provide amenities we need … currently land and development is one of Canada’s biggest exports,” Ian Egloff of Creekside Architects is quoted as saying in Kerry Gold’s real estate column in the Globe and Mail on Nov. 25. What a great oxymoron.…

Keystone XL approval errs on side of safety

One spill is too many but pipelines are much safer than rail for transporting oil

Keystone XL approval errs on side of safetyBy Kenneth P. Green, Elmira Aliakbari and Ashley Stedman The Fraser Institute State regulators in Nebraska recently approved the Keystone XL pipeline, ending nine years of regulatory and political limbo across multiple jurisdictions. TransCanada Corp. can now build its pipeline. That’s welcome news for all Canadians, especially those concerned about oil transportation safety. More Canadian…

Fossil fuels remain key to energy future, according to report

The U.S. is eager to grab new business, which underscores the urgent need for Canada to secure access to offshore markets for our oil and gas

Fossil fuels remain key to energy future, according to reportBy Jock Finlayson and Denise Mullen Business Council of British Columni The International Energy Agency (IEA) World Energy Outlook 2017, released in early November, provides a useful update on the shift to a lower carbon global energy system. The stepped-up deployment of clean energy technologies and moves toward electrification continue in many nations. At the same…

Seniors migration costs B.C. $7.2 billion in health-care expenses

Migrating seniors are likely to have paid most of their lifetime taxes in one province while consuming most of their health care in another

Seniors migration costs B.C. $7.2 billion in health-care expensesBy Ashley Stedman and Jason Clemens The Fraser Institute An imbalance in health-care funding caused by the migration of seniors is penalizing British Columbia’s taxpayers. Canada’s health-care system has lots of problems, including its comparatively high cost, long wait times and middling performance among universal health-care countries. One largely overlooked problem is how Canada’s financing…

Attacks on hydraulic fracturing in B.C. defy settled science 

A public inquiry will simply play into the hands of those who oppose energy production in B.C., depriving the province of significant economic benefits

Attacks on hydraulic fracturing in B.C. defy settled science Hydraulic fracturing, a well-studied and long-used method of producing oil and gas, has again come under attack in British Columbia. A coalition of environmental groups, community groups and Indigenous bands are calling for a “full public inquiry” to “investigate the risks and harms associated with fracking.” A resource analyst with the Canadian Centre for Policy…

Moving on: nature migrates as winter closes in

On the Pacific coast, the fascinating fall movements of whales, salmon and sea ducks have begun

Moving on: nature migrates as winter closes inOne evening recently at about 6 p.m., I heard a familiar sound from the sheltered bay just in front of our house at Skelhp. If you’ve never heard it, it can be bewildering, even frightening. It’s very loud blasts of air – sometimes two or three in succession, sometimes with about a minute’s silence before…

Ramping up immigration without a broad-based plan disastrous

The federal government's plan to substantially increase new arrivals requires close co-ordination with provincial and municipal officials

Ramping up immigration without a broad-based plan disastrousWith a falling birth rate, an aging workforce and a shortage of skilled workers, Canada depends  on immigration. Instead of talking about building walls like our U.S. neighbours, Canadians acknowledge that immigration is essential to our prosperity. So few dare question the official immigration policy, even as it becomes increasingly apparent that strong criticism is…

Stick to the facts to protect old-growth forests in B.C.

Debate on Vancouver Island’s old growth forests must be based on facts, not just conjuring up feelings of nostalgia, awe and respect

Stick to the facts to protect old-growth forests in B.C.By Mike Larock and Megan Hanacek Association of BC Forest Professionals Forest professionals believe that British Columbia’s old forests are important. Old forests are ecological reservoirs of genetic variation, a record of ecological history, habitat for specialized species or predators, recreation inspirations and complex buffers to change. That’s why when it comes to managing B.C.…