Yu: Canada, a carbon neutral country


Greenhouse gases and the associated problem of global warming can not be solved with a fossil fuel-free Canada.  We can stop using fossil fuel and regress to a Third World country, but global warming would still happen. Global warming is a global problem. If other countries do not step up to reduce GHGs, no amount of carbon reduction program in Canada will make a significant impact on global warming.

China is the number one producer of greenhouse gases because it still burns coal to supply its domestic demand for electricity. China’s air is so dirty that merely breathing it in the cities is now equivalent to smoking two packs of cigarettes a day. 

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China would not want its urban population dying of lung cancer or forever breathing air that they could actually see.

Carbon neutrality is defined as having a net-zero carbon footprint, and achieving net-zero carbon emissions by balancing a measured amount of carbon released with an equivalent amount sequestered, or offset, or buying enough carbon credits to make up the difference.

B.C. natural gas transported across the Pacific Ocean could cut Chinese GHG emissions by more than what Canada produces. With Canada claiming credit that B.C. LNG and B.C. natural gas shaving just 1/13th off China’s GHG emission, we offset our domestic GHG production with what is not released in China. Carbon neutrality by the very definition of the term.

Japan has been importing LNG from Alaska for almost 50 years and this has helped Japan reduce its GHG emissions, yet this tiny country emits more GHG than the entire nation of Canada. Natural gas releases 50 per cent less GHGs than coal; after all, natural gas is the cleanest-burning fossil fuel.

The Kenai LNG plant in Alaska, just north of where the Pacific Northwest LNG plant on Lelu Island would be built, continues to export LNG to Japan to this very day. In Louisiana, a newly opened LNG plant started exporting LNG. In four years, four more American LNG plants will go into production, exporting more overseas, contrary to the statements that there is no money to be made by exporting LNG.

The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency  (CEAA) has said there will be no significant effect on the salmon around Lelu Island. But environmentalists still insist otherwise. They even imported Russian scientists to claim that LNG has drastic effect on the salmon in the area of Shakalin LNG plant. However, the Wikipedia page of Shakalin LNG plant states that after the dredging done for the LNG plant, a record harvest of salmon was recorded. And this first record harvest was broken two years after.

With science, economics, and the labour market on the side of having an LNG industry in Canada, opponents of the industry have resorted to delay tactics until foreign investment gets fed up and leaves Canada.

They have succeeded in delaying the CEAA decision by three months. A so-called victory on their side, an act of economic sabotage done to Canada. Progress Energy recently pulled a $5 billion in developmental investment over three years in Northeast B.C. due to this delay. Prior to this investment pull-out, Northeast B.C. had the highest unemployment rate in B.C. This pull-out means that the bad economy in the region will take a turn for the worse.

Fort St. John for LNG has done what it could do in the north and it is time for us to make our voices louder so we could be heard in Ottawa. FSJ for LNG has always been in the red financially, but thanks to people like Gordon Green and his seed money, our MP Bob Zimmer, our MLA Pat Pimm, and our Mayor Lori Ackerman, who just went to Ottawa, our voices of YES to LNG are being heard in the nation’s capital.

I have no doubt that the environmentalists will not stop their delay tactics until they drive Canadian economy into the ground. But FSJ for LNG is fighting  back. We are  fighting for our economic survival, the re-hiring of laid-off and under-employed workers, the creation of at  least 40,000 more new jobs, and a more stable and vibrant Canadian economy.

Say Yes to an LNG Industry in Canada!


Alan Yu is a Fort St. John resident and founder of FSJ for LNG.

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