National Newswatch

Ontario still needs an electricity policy plan

Apr 20 2017 — — Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne admitted late last year that the provincial government had “made a mistake” and mismanaged electricity prices in Ontario. In doing so, the Premier was acknowledging what many experts had been saying for some time. As Ontario’s Auditor General wrote about Ontario’s electricity system in 2015, “the planning process had … broken […]

The projected BC Hydro Site C Dam is pictured in an artist's rendering. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, BC Hydro.

Site C: It’s not too late to hit pause

Apr 19 2017 — — Site C is an $8.3-billion hydroelectric project in the early stages of construction by BC Hydro, the provincial power utility, on the Peace River in northeastern British Columbia. It is designed to produce 1,100 megawatts of capacity and 5,100 gigawatt-hours per year of energy, starting in 2024. Supporters of the project have promoted it as […]


Climate change causes glacial river in Yukon to change direction

Apr 17 2017 — — Climate change has caused the massive Kaskawulsh Glacier in the Yukon to retreat so much that its meltwater abruptly switched direction, in the first documented case of “river piracy” in modern times. Instead of flowing into the Slims River and then north to the Bering Sea, the water has changed course and now flows south […]


Great Barrier Reef: Two-thirds damaged in ‘unprecedented’ bleaching

Apr 10 2017 — — Unprecedented coral bleaching in consecutive years has damaged two-thirds of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, aerial surveys have shown. The bleaching – or loss of algae – affects a 1,500km (900 miles) stretch of the reef, according to scientists. The latest damage is concentrated in the middle section, whereas last year’s bleaching hit mainly the north. […]


Trump introduces serious headwind to Canada’s competitiveness

Apr 5 2017 — Kenneth Green — To the predictable howls of environmentalists, President Donald Trump has finally turned his pen on Barack Obama’s climate change policies. Signing an Executive Order (EO) titled “Promoting Energy Independence and Economic Growth,” President Trump, surrounded by coal miners at the EPA headquarters in Washington, commenced the unravelling of a significant part of his predecessor’s climate […]


Europe Eliminated the Fossil Fuel Equivalent of Italy With Renewable Energy

Apr 5 2017 — — Europe’s climate strategy appears to be working. For now. The Europeans were the first to embrace comprehensive targets for renewables and carbon mitigation. Although the strategies of individual member countries have been heavily scrutinized (Germany) and widely criticized (Spain), the EU’s early embrace of a low-carbon strategy was influential in bringing other big emitters like […]


FedEx CEO To Trump: National Security Needs Fuel Economy Standards

Apr 5 2017 — — Smith is also heavily involved with SAFE, an acronym for Securing America’s Energy Future, a group is composed of a number of retired generals and admirals. Its primary mission is to reduce America’s dependence on foreign oil. It claims that reliance on foreign oil puts the country at risk and makes America vulnerable to terrorism.

Canada’s niche in the clean energy transition

Apr 5 2017 — — “We are witnessing a transformation of global power markets led by renewables.” Those were the words of Fatih Birol, executive director of the International Energy Agency—an institution often noted for its conservative tendencies when it comes to renewable energy. The global clean energy transition has taken hold. Hundreds of billions of dollars flow into new […]


Great Barrier Reef survival relies on halting warming, study warns

Mar 16 2017 — — Australia’s Great Barrier Reef can be saved only if urgent steps are taken to reduce global warming, new research has warned. Attempting to stop coral bleaching through any other method will not be sufficient, according to scientists. The research, published in the journal Nature, said bleaching events should no longer be studied individually, but as […]


‘Shell knew’: oil giant’s 1991 film warned of climate change danger

Feb 28 2017 — — The oil giant Shell issued a stark warning of the catastrophic risks of climate change more than a quarter of century ago in a prescient 1991 film that has been rediscovered. However, since then the company has invested heavily in highly polluting oil reserves and helped lobby against climate action, leading to accusations that Shell […]


Driving momentum for sustainable transportation

Feb 27 2017 — — Canada has a tailpipe problem. The country’s 24 million or so cars and trucks together generated 23% of Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions in 2014, and were responsible for three quarters of the growth in energy-related carbon emissions since 1990.


Scientists propose refreezing Arctic in battle against climate change

Feb 16 2017 — — A group of researchers has proposed using wind-powered pumps to refreeze the Arctic. The proposal seems ambitious: it involves 10 million devices deployed over 10 per cent of the Arctic, at a cost of $500 billion US. Lead author of the paper, astrophysicist Steven Desch, concerned about what some climatologists predict to be an ice-free […]


Refuelling Alberta coal plants with biomass

Feb 15 2017 — — Using biomass at shuttered coal-fired plants could help provinces meet their climate targets for a lower cost. The Alberta power system is set for radical transformation between now and 2030. According to the Climate Leadership Plan, the province will end all coal-fired power generation and get 30 percent of its energy from renewable sources by […]