This post is only for those concerned about global warming driven climate change. If that's not of interest to you maybe you would do better moving on.
If you are concerned, don't you think your federal government should be giving you a clear and reliable assessment of what our country and your region can expect from climate change. It's not fair to ask them to look into a crystal ball and see whether we're going to get a meaningful carbon emissions control treaty. But, even if we stop emitting carbon dioxide into the atmosphere tomorrow we won't be able to stop the warming processes already underway.
Our children and especially our grandchildren are going to live with the problems we've already created. Likewise, we have an obligation to start looking at the "best case" consequences so that we can plan and prepare at least some adaptation and remediation measures.
When it comes to the feds, there are no clean hands in this (perhaps except for the Bloc). The NDP and the Liberals have been utterly complacent, even indifferent in getting information out to the public from the climate change specialists we already have on the payroll at Environment Canada. Harper plainly doesn't want us knowing or talking about it and no one from the opposition ranks is putting a boot to Steve's backside over it either.
Maybe it's time you took matters in your own hands. Write to your MPs and demand answers. I've e-mailed my guy, Conservative James Lunney. The text of my message is below in case you might find it helpful in crafting your own e-mail. Feel free to take whatever you like.
Dear Mr. Lunney:
Climate change is already upon us. It's evident in the migration of southern species into the waters of Vancouver Island. Barely a month ago there was an uproar in San Diego over the appearance of Humboldt squid washing up on their beaches. Now they're washing up, by the hundreds, on Long Beach outside Tofino. The giant sunfish used to be a rarity in our waters and is now becoming relatively common. Anchovies are massing where we once saw herring.
Right now we have a new kind of El Nino that's being called El Nino Modoki because, unlike its predecessors it's not just present in the eastern Pacific but extends out far to the west.
What causes me to write is Hilary Benn, Britain's environment secretary.
Mr. Benn could serve as a role model to your government. About a month ago he released to the British public a "best case scenario" report on what they should expect by way of climate change over the next 50-60 years. It was 'best case' in that it was based on current emissions already in the atmosphere. Secretary Benn's report showed that most of Britain can expect an average two degrees Celsius of warming by 2070. Some parts in the south, including the City of London, can expect up to six degrees of heating.
Benn released his report so that the public and their local officials could begin discussing what's coming and then plan and prepare for it. There is much that can be done by way of adaptation and remediation but that's a generational challenge.
This week Mr. Benn did it again. His latest report concerns Britain's food security and the challenges climate change will bring. It calls for a radical restructuring of the way Britain produces and consumes food products.
I think Mr. Benn and his government are doing a wonderful job. They're treating the British public as intelligent and mature enough to handle this information. Mr. Benn is fulfilling his obligation to the British people. Not preparing and releasing this information would be a betrayal of the British people for it would delay the dissemination of knowledge they need now so that they can examine today's options before the passage of time forecloses them.
What is your government doing for the Canadian public? Mr. Harper has paid lip service to global warming as the greatest threat to mankind and then slammed the lid shut on the very sort of information Britons are getting from their government. It's not just Mr. Harper either. Ignatieff and Layton are going along with this approach. They don't want to talk about it either.
The real shame to this silent inaction is that Canada is uniquely positioned on the climate change issue. We're one of a mere handful of nations that has really good options. Compared to most of the world including the Middle East, South and East Asia, Africa, Australia, Central and South America we're positively blessed when it comes to this threat. We have far more possibilities in terms of adaptation and remediation. So why is this Conservative government not capitalizing on all of those advantages, truly looking out for the Canadian public? Why are you not giving us the same sort of information Secretary Benn is giving the British people?
You've got children. I've got children. We'll have grandchildren in due course. The future of Canada we leave to those grandchildren is being written today, written indelibly. We don't have any excuses for putting this off any longer.