GuelphToday received the following letter criticizing Ontario's climate-change policies.
A global climate strike occurred Sept. 15-17. Severe suffering from fires, floods, storms, and drought demands immediate action. Per capita, Ontarians emit among the highest amounts of greenhouse gases in the world. But the Ontario government is striking out.
Doug Ford rejected cheap, clean renewable energy, instead boosting polluting gas and expensive nuclear power. Generating electricity with natural gas can be worse than coal for potent greenhouse gases over the next crucial 20 years. The culprit is super-pollutant methane leaked during gas processing. Nuclear plant building and refurbishment are very slow just when speed is vital.
All nuclear reactors may not be commercially viable for years. Toxic waste is an ongoing dilemma. Both gas and nuclear divert effort from the much cheaper and faster wind, solar and storage.
With up-to-date policies, Ontario could score a home run. Solar, wind and battery costs have plummeted in the past decade to become by far the cheapest options. Even Texas is switching. The Great Lakes are wind-rich: millions of roofs could add solar panels. We already benefit from peak and carbon pricing to encourage efficiency. We have huge potential in energy conservation, starting with retrofitted buildings. All new devices and transport should be electric.
Such a system can be stable and save money, using less and cheaper energy while slashing prohibitive climate and health costs. It would bring many good-paying jobs. Cheaper, faster, safer, more effective, more jobs. Mr. Ford, you’re living in the past. Please catch up to today’s realities and change your game.