'Alternative' energy and less energy

Naoibh O’Connor
The Heights, an apartment complex, which is aiming for Passive House certification, is expected to open next year.

The rental building under construction at the corner of East Hastings and Skeena Street looks similar to countless others being built around the city. But one detail, noted in small print on the promotional sign, calls attention to the difference: it aims to be designated a “Passive House,” a highly energy efficient building. It’s one of only a handful of buildings or houses in Vancouver that either have the designation or are targeting it. Once certified, the Heights — as it’s been dubbed by the developer — will be the largest building in Canada that’s met the Passive House standard.

Richard Watts
A crew handles a buoy that measures wave energy. Bryson Robertson, UVic adjunct professor of mechanical engineering, said reduced costs alone make wave energy worth examining for Hesquiaht First Nation, since diesel generators are expensive.   Photograph By University of Victoria

The sinking of a diesel-laden tug near Bella Bella has a First Nations community on Vancouver Island becoming even more committed to renewable energy.

Hesquiaht First Nation, on the west coast of Vancouver Island near Hot Springs Cove, relies on a diesel generator to provide electricity for about 70 residents.

That means the diesel engine runs round the clock. A barge with three tanker trucks carrying full loads of diesel fuel, totalling 45,000 litres, docks at Hesquiaht every eight weeks to replenish the village tank farm.

Peter O'Neil

[Webpage editor's note: Sharing energy infastructure for greater efficiency of supply is good, but not as part of expanding environmentally-destructive projects (like Site C) in order to power other environmentally destructive projects (like the tar sands).]


Nov 5, 2016 - The Trudeau government has sent a “quite positive” signal that it is prepared to help finance a new transmission link to ship clean B.C. hydroelectric power to Alberta, according to provincial energy minister Bill Bennett.

Kyle Bakx

'The writing is on the wall,' says PSAC's president about embracing the green energy industry'

After more than 35 years of lobbying for the best interests of the oil and gas industry, the Petroleum Services Association of Canada is opening its doors to wind, solar and other renewable energy companies.

Call it a sign of the times.

Fred Magdoff
It is my contention that we are not facing the root cause of our problems, and until we do, there is no hope of solving the social and ecological problems confronting the world....the primary problem is the inner moving force of capitalism—its Achilles heel regarding the environment—the unending accumulation of capital, which means perpetual “creative destruction.”
Roger Annis

Author and environmentalist Naomi Klein published a feature article in the Globe and Mail‘s edition of Saturday, Sept 24 in which she defends against its detractors the Leap Manifesto issued in Canada in April 2016. Her unique argument in this essay explains that Canada’s “founding economic myth” has been that of the ‘good’ created by the vast pillaging of the country’s natural resources following the arrival of settlers from Europe.

Konrad Yakabuski

Oct 10, 2016 - Canada’s hydropower producers cheered in June when the leaders of Canada, the United States and Mexico committed their countries to raising the portion of continental electricity generated by clean-energy sources to 50 per cent by 2025, from the current 37-per-cent level.

George Monbiot
 The industrial landscape across the Dee estuary. Photograph: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

It’s a simple choice: stop all fossil fuel prospecting, or break the Paris agreement on climate change.

published in the Guardian 28th Sepetmeber 2016

Do they understand what they have signed? Plainly they do not. Governments like ours, now ratifying the Paris agreement on climate change, haven’t the faintest idea what it means. Either that, or they have no intention of honouring it.


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