Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Victoria's Green Matters - 22nd December 2011

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:
The Durban climate conference ended with a legally binding agreement from all nations to limit carbon emissions. Even China, India, USA and Canada were included. The only drawback is that it will be 2015 before action needs to be taken.

A shock decision by Canada to pull out of the Kyoto climate treaty has been condemned by all the other nations as reckless and irresponsible. The Kyoto protocol was a commitment by nations to reduce their carbon emissions by 6% by 2012 compared with 1990 levels. No surprise really that Canada pulled out because their greenhouse gas emissions have risen by 30% over the last two decades!

Canada has a highly lucrative tar sands operation which it is at pains to protect but which, of course, is highly polluting. This process not only damages surrounding areas but also takes as much energy to extract oil from the sands as burning the oil would produce. The Canadian government is fighting hard against international restrictions on this fuel that produces more carbon emissions than conventional oil. It is deadly for the environment whichever way you look at it.

It is regrettable that the Canadian government finds it more important to protect industries that pollute the world than it does to protect island nations at risk from rising sea levels.

The world cannot afford to continue burning fossil fuels at the rate at which it burns them now. We cannot afford the carbon dioxide it produces that warms the climate.

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