Mass starvation is humanity’s fate if we keep flogging the land to death

The Earth cannot accommodate our need and greed for food. We must change our diet before it’s too late

lustration: Thomas Pullin

George MonbiotBrexit; the crushing of democracy by billionaires; the next financial crash; a rogue US president: none of them keeps me awake at night. This is not because I don’t care – I care very much. It’s only because I have a bigger question on my mind. Where is all the food going to come from?

By the middle of this century there will be two or three billion more people on Earth. Any one of the issues I am about to list could help precipitate mass starvation. And this is before you consider how they might interact.

The trouble begins where everything begins: with soil. The UN’s famous projection that, at current rates of soil loss, the world has 60 years of harvests left, appears to be supported by a new set of figures. Partly as a result of soil degradation, yields are already declining on 20% of the world’s croplands.

Now consider water loss. In places such as the North China Plain, the central United States, California and north-western India – among the world’s critical growing regions – levels of the groundwater used to irrigate crops are already reaching crisis point. Water in the Upper Ganges aquifer, for example, is being withdrawn at 50 times its recharge rate. But, to keep pace with food demand, farmers in south Asia expect to use between 80 and 200% more water by the year 2050. Where will it come from?

The next constraint is temperature. One study suggests that, all else being equal, with each degree celsius of warming the global yield of rice drops by 3%, wheat by 6% and maize by 7%. These predictions could be optimistic. Research published in the journal Agricultural & Environmental Letters finds that 4C of warming in the US corn belt could reduce maize yields by between 84 and 100%. 

The reason is that high temperatures at night disrupt the pollination process. But this describes just one component of the likely pollination crisis. Insectageddon, caused by the global deployment of scarcely tested pesticides, will account for the rest. Already, in some parts of the world, workers are now pollinating plants by hand. But that’s viable only for the most expensive crops.

Then there are the structural factors. Because they tend to use more labour, grow a wider range of crops and work the land more carefully, small farmers, as a rule, grow more food per hectare than large ones. In the poorer regions of the world, people with fewer than five hectares own 30% of the farmland but produce 70% of the food. Since 2000, an area of fertile ground roughly twice the size of the UK has been seized by land grabbers and consolidated into large farms, generally growing crops for export rather than the food needed by the poor.

While these multiple disasters unfold on land, the seas are being sieved of everything but plastic. Despite a massive increase in effort (bigger boats, bigger engines, more gear), the worldwide fish catch is declining by roughly 1% a year, as populations collapse. The global land grab is mirrored by a global sea grab: small fishers are displaced by big corporations, exporting fish to those who need it less but pay more. About 3 billion people depend to a large extent on fish and shellfish protein. Where will it come from?

…There are no easy answers, but the crucial change is a shift from an animal- to a plant-based diet. All else being equal, stopping both meat production and the use of farmland to grow biofuels could provide enough calories for another 4 billion people and double the protein available for human consumption. Artificial meat will help: one paper suggests it reduces water use by at least 82% and land use by 99%.

The next green revolution will not be like the last one. It will rely not on flogging the land to death, but on reconsidering how we use it and why. Can we do this, or do we – the richer people now consuming the living planet – find mass death easier to contemplate than changing our diet?

MORE

 

Conscious Waste: how we slashed our year’s garbage to 1.5 kg

So you may have heard there is a global waste crisis and plastic is killing our oceans, and we are ALL contributing to it, through the stuff we buy, how we buy it and what we do with our waste.

Globally we generate over 2 BILLION TONNES of waste each year. The average Australian household produces around 1.5 tonnes a year and much of this, like plastic packaging and food waste, is avoidable.

How much waste do you generate? (image © Alan Levine, reproduced under license) 

But the good news is, by following the nine tips below and making a few simple changes to slash your waste you can simplify your grocery shopping, simplify your kitchen (and your home), save money, save time AND save the planet!

It doesn’t have to be zero…

I was always kind of proud of myself that we had such a small kitchen bin — it was only the size that fits a standard plastic shopping bag and that was all the waste our two-person household generated in a week. That was until last year, when I heard about this thing called zero waste, where people are fitting their YEAR’S waste in a small jar! While I wasn’t sure we’d ever manage to get our waste down to that tiny amount, I was inspired to start reducing it. And so, by taking a less daunting Conscious Waste approach, in just a few months with a few simple changes, we cut our weekly plastic shopping bag of waste down to < 1/10th full (and reduced our recycling as well!).

Eventually we realised we no longer needed such a large bin, so we down-sized to 10 litres (using BIO-degradable liners). However, we found that even these bags were mostly empty when bin day came around, so I thought “Hang on, our bin doesn’t include any food waste, so maybe we don’t need to empty it each week”. So we don’t. And that means we no longer have to remember to take our bin out by 4.30pm every Thursday, no more unlocking the gate, wheeling it out to the kerb, then wheeling it back in again a couple hours later. So we’ve reclaimed some time and effort we can now spend on other things! After 3 months our 10-litre bin did eventually fill up, and based on this I worked out we’re generating around 40 litres (4 buckets) of waste a year (uncompacted). In terms of weight this is about 1.5 kg. It’s more than a small jar but it’s still WAY better than 1.5 tonnes!

Our 10L bin that we empty 4x /year 

So how did we do it? Well it was a combination of things, including substituting over-packaged products (e.g. plastic meat trays) with less packaged alternatives, buying in bulk and recycling stuff we didn’t previously (e.g. soft plastics). While I’ve always composted food waste, I also started composting tissues (and started using hankies) and personal care products (which were made from organic cotton and biodegradable materials, though I’ve now switched to reusable ones). So if you’d like a smaller bin and all the benefits that go with it, keep reading…MORE

Action on climate change can build national unity

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney announces the launch of a public inquiry into foreign-funded anti-Alberta energy campaigns. Image: Government of Alberta/Flickr

Image: Government of Alberta/Flickr

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney warned that the worst election result would be a Liberal minority backed by the NDP. On October 21, his nightmare came to pass.

Rather than accept the will of the 63 per cent of Canadians who voted Liberal, NDP, Bloc and Green for climate action, Kenney fans the flames of western separatism to try to overturn the election results.

Canadians feel sympathy for the plight of Albertans who are hurting from the 2014 oil price bust.

But be careful not to fall for Kenney’s emotional blackmail.

The high Conservative vote in Alberta was normal, not a blow to Canadian unity. Conservatives got 69 per cent of the vote, 5.5 per cent above their average in the five previous federal elections, when their vote ranged from 60 to 67 per cent. Federal Tory dominance in Alberta dates from John Diefenbaker in the 1950s.

Many Albertans have lost their jobs, their homes, fear for the future and are angry. But, many misdirect the object of their anger. Big Oil hasn’t been their friend.

Kenney portrays himself as Albertans’ champion. He isn’t. His government is spending $32 million on a war room and public inquiry to combat what he calls a foreign environmentalist conspiracy against Alberta. Kenney is right about a foreign campaign, if not quite a conspiracy. And it harms Albertans.

But Kenney gets the culprits wrong. Big Foreign Oil, not foreign environmentalists, have harmed Albertans by locking Alberta into narrowly exporting oil derived from oilsands bitumen, one of the world’s most toxic, high carbon-emitting resources.

Since the 1970s and ’80s, Shell and Exxon knew their business plan caused climate change. Yet they and other Big Oil corporations talked Alberta and Ottawa in the 1990s into giving them a sweetheart, next-to-zero royalty regime and low corporate taxes. It left Alberta’s finances in a lurch and an undiversified economy.

Alberta’s oil sands are a very poor job creator. $1.3 million in investment in the oil sands produce one job. The oil industry across Canada directly employs only 63,000 workers, 0.3 per cent of all Canadian jobs. Indirect jobs from the oil industry are double that number. Thus the oil industry accounts for about one per cent of all Canadian employment.

Now Big Oil corporations are shedding workers to maximize profits. Cenovus Energy executive vice-president Kiron McFadyen wants to “de-man” the entire industry to achieve “zero manning.”

Alberta’s oil sands have no future. Big Foreign Oil knows it. In 2016, they began to cut and run. Norway’s Statoil and U.S.-based Devon Oil fully pulled out. Other foreign corporations partly pulled out: France’s Total S.A., Holland’s Shell Oil and U.S.-based ConocoPhillips, Koch and Murphy Oil.

Divestment from the oil sands and many conventional oil sites and pipelines within Alberta have stuck Albertans with over $250 billion in environmental liabilities — orphan wells and toxic tailing lakes. If they fail to make Big Oil polluters pick up the tab for the mess they created, Albertans and other Canadians will have to clean it up at public expense.

This year more wells were decommissioned in Alberta than new wells drilled.

Companies and industries that aren’t moving toward zero-carbon emissions, warned Mark Carney, governor of the Bank of England, will be punished by investors and go bankrupt.

As the world awakens to the climate emergency and moves off fossil fuels, the Kenney government and Big Oil hold Alberta in a fossil-fuel belt. It may soon resemble the rust belt — that swath of Midwest U.S. states of abandoned factories and broken dreams.

If he truly advocates for Albertans, Kenney will embrace the future by joining with Ottawa to manage a rapid phase-out of the oil sands in ways that support oil workers and their communities’ shift to new industries and jobs. Canadians everywhere would support that.

The best way to forge national unity is around a plan to get Canada to a post-carbon future, not by holding on to the fossil-fuel past. SOURCE

 

 

Pattern Energy to be acquired, taken private by CPPIB in $2.63-billion deal

The irony! Now the old timers who have been fighting renewable energy here in Prince Edward County and across Ontario will be reliant on wind energy in their CPP cheques each month.

Shareholders of Pattern Energy — a renewable energy company, which owns wind and solar projects in North America and Japan — will receive US$26.75 per share

The silhouette of a wind turbine operated by Pattern Energy Group Inc. stands at the Amazon Wind Farm Fowler Ridge, operated by Pattern Energy Group Inc., in Fowler, Indiana, U.S.Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg files

Renewable power producer Pattern Energy Group Inc said on Monday it agreed to be taken private by the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) for US$2.63 billion.

Shareholders of Pattern Energy, which owns wind and solar projects in North America and Japan, will receive US$26.75 per share, according to a statement announcing the deal, a discount of about 4 per cent to the stock’s close on Friday.

Pattern’s stock traded at US$27.08 on Nasdaq around midday ET, down 2.6 per cent from Friday. While the deal is subject to a 35-day go-shop process, which would allow another suitor to outbid CPPIB, Pattern Energy Chairman Alan Batkin said there had been a robust sale process ahead of Monday’s announcement.

The company said in August that it had drawn interest from potential third parties, prompting it to form a special committee to review various bids.

Pension and infrastructure funds have been investing more in the renewable energy space, given the steady returns such assets generate.

For CPPIB, this includes deals in 2018, when it bought Canadian assets from NextEra Energy Partners LP and agreed with Enbridge Inc to acquire stakes in North American and German power projects concurrently and establish a joint venture for future European investments.

For the renewable firms involved, such ownership provides a regular flow of cash to fund growth and new developments.

Once the Pattern Energy deal with CPPIB closes, the statement said, it will be combined with Pattern Development, a company backed by private equity firm Riverstone Holdings LLC, to create an integrated renewable energy company that both builds and operates power assets. MORE

 

‘Deep state’ lobbying a growing tactic of fossil fuel industry, report finds

Since Justin Trudeau’s government took power in 2015, lobbyists in Ottawa have focused more attention on the nation’s bureaucrats, rather than elected office holders, representing what one researcher is calling a troubling ‘fusion of private interest and public bodies’


Public officials faced ‘organized and sustained’ oil and gas lobbying on pipelines in recent years: study. Lobbying contacts by industry groups far outnumbered contacts by environmental NGOs. 

A new report from the Corporate Mapping Project documents the reach of the fossil fuel industry when it comes to lobbying the federal government, raising red flags about what it calls a “troubling shift in lobbying patterns.”

The report’s findings suggest that industry lobbyists are increasingly focusing on developing closer, long-term relationships with federal bureaucrats rather than elected officials, especially since Prime Minister Justin Trudeau took office in 2015.

The report tracked fossil-fuel-industry lobbying over seven years, from 2011 to 2018 — finding that the fossil fuel industry vastly outnumbered other resource sectors, including the forestry and renewable energy industries — and analyzed how lobbying activities changed with prime ministers.

The result, the report found, is lobbying that’s increasingly focused on “deep state” connections, rather than elected officials, meaning the power of the fossil fuel industry lasts far beyond a federal election, regardless of voter appetite for climate action.

What that means, according to Nicolas Graham, a sociologist at the University of Victoria and lead author on the report, is there’s evidence of a sort of “elite policy network,” of long-lasting connections between high-powered and well-connected lobbyists and bureaucrats, “one that outlasts election cycles and develops over time.”

Proponents of the fossil fuel industry, like Alberta premier Jason Kenney, have long made a point of accusing environmental groups of being behind a “campaign of lies and defamation” against the province’s energy industry.

When it comes to lobbying, the report found that the fossil fuel industry reported far more lobbying of the federal government than did environmental non-governmental organizations —  five times more.

“This idea that there’s a really, really well funded — disproportionately funded — environmental campaign defies the facts of a [fossil fuel] industry that is extremely well funded and very active politically,” Graham told The Narwhal.

Top Fossil Fuel Lobbying Organizations Canada

Top fossil fuel lobbying organizations. Source: Corporate Mapping Project

‘Co-writing of policy’

Elected officials were the most-lobbied group when Prime Minister Stephen Harper was in office, according to the report. That started to change in 2015, when Justin Trudeau was elected prime minister. Then, the focus of fossil-fuel lobbyists shifted — to bureaucrats.

The report, “Big Oil’s Political Reach: Mapping fossil fuel lobbying from Harper to Trudeau,”  dubs this a shift to “deep state” lobbying, “whereby key government institutions and actors become integrated with private firms and interest groups that together co-produce regulation and policy.”

“It becomes this kind of a fusion of private interest and public bodies.” — Nicolas Graham

The result, Graham said, could suggest a kind of “co-governance and co-writing of policy,” in which industry groups take on an increasingly important role in influencing policy.

“It becomes this kind of a fusion of private interest and public bodies,” he added

Elected officials, Graham said, could be “seen as potentially not as amenable to influence from the oil and gas sector.” A strategic approach for the industry could be to integrate more deeply in government, lobbying bureaucrats rather than elected officials.

The report finds a network of well-connected senior public servants and mid-level staff who are in frequent contact with industry lobbyists.

Among the top 10 senior federal bureaucrats identified by the Corporate Mapping Project — each of whom remained in their positions after the 2015 election — the number of annual contacts with fossil fuel industry lobbyists increased from an average of around 145 contacts per year under the Harper government, to approximately 229 per year under the Trudeau government — nearly one contact per work day.

Pierre Gratton, president and CEO of the Mining Association of Canada, doesn’t think that’s newsworthy. “Anyone who does government relations knows that you work at all levels,” Gratton told The Narwhal.

“If you’re leaving it to parliament, you’re going to be disappointed in your outcome. Because the public service is the body that generates the ideas that cabinet and ultimately parliament end up deliberating upon,” he added.

“They’re often looking to us for ideas of how certain policies can work effectively.”

Gratton is also not surprised that there would be an increase in lobbying under the Liberals. “There would be a very simple explanation for that, I think — the Liberals’ approach to public policy was far more open than it was under Harper,” he said.

“Under the Liberals, I think probably everybody increased their amount of lobbying, particularly with public service. But that’s because the Liberals fundamentally changed how public policy was developed.” The Liberals, Gratton said, took public officials “off the leash” and made them more accessible to all groups.

But Graham is concerned that increased lobbying of non-elected officials could mean that lobbying efforts can far outlast election cycles and that electing new politicians may not be enough for voters to cast aside deep relationships between industry and government — something the report calls “the close coupling of federal policy to the needs of extractive corporations.”

“For people who voted in the federal election for some kind of increased action on climate change, I think it would be potentially eye-opening to think about the way policy is formed,” Graham said.

Six lobbying contacts per day

The reports finds the fossil fuel industry reported 11,452 lobbying contacts with government officials over a seven-year period — more than six contacts per work day.

A full quarter of those stem from two major industry associations: the Mining Association of Canada (MAC) — which represents a variety of mining interests, including four companies with interests in Alberta’s oilsands — and the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP).

CAPP declined The Narwhal’s request for an interview about its lobbying activity, but sent a statement by email.

“It is not surprising CAPP is among the most active lobbyists in our sector,” Jay Averill, a spokesperson for CAPP, wrote in an email. “In effect, we are the main representative for Canada’s oil and natural gas industry.”

Federal Institutions Lobbied

Federal institutions lobbied between 2011 and 2018. Source: Corporate Mapping Project

“It is our job to work with local, provincial and federal governments to find the best way to encourage investment in our industry while upholding the high social and environmental standards Canadians expect,” he added, noting that the industry contributes $8 billion in annual revenues to all levels of government.

“Our oil and natural gas industry benefits all Canadians and CAPP will continue to work with the federal government on making those benefits even greater.”

Gratton, of the Mining Association of Canada, rejects the notion that his organization represents the interests of the fossil fuel industry, saying his group advocates on a narrower subset of issues and was the first industry association that came out in favour of a carbon price.

Gratton told The Narwhal that one of the reasons his organization is top of the list in lobbying activities could be because it is diligent in reporting.

“We report everything. We’re very careful about living up to the intent and spirit of the act,” he said.

 “I have trouble believing we are much more active than other industry groups active in Ottawa,” he added, pointing to a “grey area” in when meetings with public officials are reported.

The Corporate Mapping Project report points to numerous flaws in Canada’s lobbying rules — vague information about what was actually discussed at lobbying meetings, lack of names of lobbyists present, imprecise dates, no disclosure of fees paid to lobbyists.

“There are fairly straightforward ways transparency could be improved,” Graham said.

Lobbying windows

Lobbying efforts increase in what are known as “lobbying windows,” according to the report.

One such lobbying window was during debate leading up to changes to Canada’s environmental assessment process under the Harper government. The report found that — of the years included in the report’s analysis — the year between November 2011 and November 2012 was the highest recorded year of lobbying from the sector.

The report’s findings on lobbying windows are in line with a previous investigation by The Narwhal, which found that 80 per cent of Senate lobbying over Bill C-69 — the act to reform Canada’s environmental assessment process, that passed in June —  stemmed from industry and related groups, primarily from the oil and gas industry.

The Corporate Mapping Project report found just 10 fossil fuel industry lobbying contacts with the Senate in 2016-2017. The Narwhal found the oil and gas industry met with individual Senate members 224 times over a 16-month period beginning when Bill-C-69 was first introduced in February 2018.

“In 2018–19 big carbon saw an opportunity to block mild reforms to environmental assessment and its Senate lobbying went into overdrive,” the report notes.

As The Narwhal reported in June, CAPP had described, in its lobbyist registration, one of the topics it planned to address a “grassroots lobbying campaign to ask Senators to make sure [Bill C-69] does not pass as it stands today.”

Leaders of major energy companies have acknowledged increasing their lobbying efforts during times like these in the past.

Speaking to CBC in June, Cenovus CEO Alex Pourbaix noted that the industry had ramped up activities to “an almost unprecedented effort with government,” in order to come up with what he had hoped would be “a workable bill.”

Not all industry groups opposed the bill. The Mining Association of Canada has supported Bill C-69 since it was introduced, telling CBC in June that it would provide more certainty and was an improvement over existing legislation.

Public interest?

Graham is quick to point out that not all lobbying is negative, and that it can play a legitimate role in advancing the public interest. What’s missing, he said, is an equalization of influence, or “equalizing access” to politicians and bureaucrats.

The report documents a “core of a small world of leading industry associations and targeted offices and individuals within government that are in regular contact with each other” — just 20 organizations accounted for 88 per cent of the total lobbying contacts by the fossil fuel industry, according to the report.

“Policies that would proactively support more equal access to political influence are needed to ensure industry is not over-represented when shaping policy,” the report notes.

Gratton of the Mining Association isn’t concerned about the state of lobbying activities in Canada, saying critics may be presenting “a sensationalized view that’s really not really a truly representative accounting of how things function.”

“Canada’s [lobbying] is very different from lobbying in the United States,” he said. “It doesn’t happen in darkened corridors.”

Gratton views Canada’s lobbying rules as robust, and says he supports multi-stakeholder engagement. “I’ll be honest, in this age of sort of populism and Trumpism, I worry that that unique Canadian way of doing things is under threat,” he told The Narwhal.

“I would hate to see a day when in the public policy is developed differently than it has been traditionally in Canada,” he said. “It’s a better way of doing things that’s better for the country.”

But Graham told The Narwhal that he’s concerned about the ways in which corporations can influence public policy in Canada.

“The economic power of industry ends up reaching into political society,” he said.

And without equal access to influence political decisions, the report warns that meaningful action to reduce fossil fuel consumption may be that much more difficult.

“In this time of climate crisis, transitioning away from fossil fuels in a rapid, democratic and socially just manner is essential,” William Carroll, a co-author of the study said in a press release.

“If we do not acknowledge and address the influence that the fossil fuel industry holds over government policy, we will not be able to take the steps necessary to adequately address the crisis with the urgency it requires.” SOURCE

Trans Mountain project: A timeline | Vancouver Sun

 

Big Oil’s Political Reach

Mapping fossil fuel lobbying from Harper to Trudeau

Image result for stephen harper justin trudeau
IMAGES VIA CP. 

In Canada between 2011 and 2018 the fossil fuel industry was one of the most active industry groups lobbying the federal government with over six contacts per working day made with government officials. During this period, the intensity of lobbying increased when salient policy issues—like the Environmental Assessment Act—arose or when there were big stakes for industry such as major pipeline decisions and approvals.

This study provides a network analysis of federal lobbying by the fossil fuel industry in Canada, covering both the Conservative government of Stephen Harper and the Liberal government of Justin Trudeau.

The network this research uncovers amounts to a small world of intense interaction among relatively few lobbyists and the designated public office holders who are their targets.

In comparing lobbying across the Harper and Trudeau administrations, we find a pattern of continuity-in-change: under Trudeau, the bulk of lobbying was carried out by the same large firms as under Harper but focused more on government bureaucrats rather than the members of Parliament who were more frequently contacted under Harper.

The shifting pattern in focus is concerning as it indicates that elite policy networks outlast election cycles and potentially the stated platforms of elected officials. The study also examines lobbying in relation to specific projects such as pipeline proposals and decisions.

The lobbying period under examination coincides with a period during which climate change was acknowledged as an increasingly urgent threat and one in which the Canadian economy became focused significantly around carbon intensive resources.  SOURCE

This report is part of the Corporate Mapping Project, a research and public engagement initiative investigating the power of the fossil fuel industry in Western Canada. The CMP is jointly led by the University of Victoria, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives and the Parkland Institute. 

In Ontario, the Fraser Institute is not telling the truth. In Prince Edward County, it’s the Wellington Times


Hydro lines run along the St. Lawrence River in Quebec. The utility company is launching new research projects to keep up with what it calls an “energy revolution” in North America. File photo by Canadian Press

This simply is not true

For years Rick Conroy has vigorously campaigned in  the  Welliington Times against solar and wind energy. For Rick, nuclear energy has provided affordable, reliable and sustainable energy and baseload power.

This simply is not true.

It takes time to shut down nuclear reactors for mandatory yearly safety inspections. It takes more time to do the inspections. It takes still more time to restart nuclear reactors. All that time nuclear provides no energy.

Then, we have to import energy from the United States to maintain baseline power. On the other hand, when nuclear is up and running it often provides a glut of power; we then take a hit trying to sell it back to the Americans, often at a discount. Sometimes we are forced to give the surplus away free.

OPG’s ‘buy high/sell low’ business plan means we pay the highest rates for electricity in North America, all the time using the most dangerous energy on  the planet.

Fraser Institute is not telling the truth

In its latest “fun with numbers” report, the Fraser Institute claims that renewable energy is the single largest cause of Ontario’s rising electricity rates. This is simply not true.

The truth is clearly stated in the Ontario Energy Board’s (OEB) Regulated Price Plan Price Report (October 22, 2019) which shows that nuclear power is the single largest cause of our rising electricity rates. Specifically, according to the OEB report, nuclear power is responsible for 45% of the rise in the price of electricity generation. Wind and solar generators are responsible for 15% and 13% respectively of our rising electricity generation costs.

Let’s be clear. The real story is that Bruce Power’s and Ontario Power Generation’s (OPG) nuclear rates have risen by 84% and 109% respectively between 2002 and 2019.

To add insult to injury, according to OPG, its price of nuclear power must rise by an additional 83% to 16.5 cents per kWh by 2025 to pay for the Darlington Re-Build.

While OPG is at least transparent about its future rate increases, Bruce Power and the Government of Ontario are refusing to state what Bruce Power’s annual rate increases will be pursuant to its 49-year sole-source contract negotiated with Premier Wynne’s government in 2015.

If Premier Ford wants to keep his promise to lower our electricity costs by 12%, he must say “yes” to Hydro Quebec’s repeated offer to sell us water power at a price of 5 cents per kWh. It doesn’t make sense to re-build 10 aging nuclear reactors when we can import clean, safe, renewable electricity from our next-door neighbour at less than one-third the cost.

Please sign the  Ontario Clean Air Alliance petition asking Premier Ford to make a deal with Quebec to lower our electricity bills:www.BuyQuebecPower.ca.