Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Calling All Radicals - Now is the Time for Good Folks Like us to Show Joe Oliver & His Motley Crew What we are Capable Of! Sign the Letter!

Sierra Club Canada
Dear Larry ,
I don't know what it is about today but I'm feeling slightly, 
well … radical. How about you?
When I wrote before Christmas about an impending government 
attack on Canada's environment movement, I wasn't expecting 
a formal Declaration of War just 9 days into the New Year. It 
came in the form of an "open letter" from Natural Resources 
Minister Joe Oliver that’s receiving heavy media coverage all 
across the country.
The open letter is in response to public hearings into the 
Gateway Pipeline that got underway earlier today in BC. The 
Gateway project consists of two parallel pipelines between 
an inland terminal at Bruderheim, Alberta, and a marine 
terminal near Kitimat, British Columbia, each a length of 
1,177 kilometers.
The plan to build pipelines over mountains to ship Tar Sands 
oil to China will put some of our most pristine forests, lakes 
and salmon rivers at risk (not to mention the impact of climate 
change when the dirty oil is processed and burned). If the scheme 
goes ahead, the moratorium on oil tankers off the BC coast 
will be lifted. The moratorium has been in place since the 
1970s. Successive Liberal, NDP, Conservative and even 
Social Credit governments have kept it in place because 
the people in BC support it.
So, here is a little of what Minister Oliver (read Federal 
Cabinet) had to say in his open letter about people like 
you and me:

“Unfortunately, there are environmental and other radical groups that would seek to block this opportunity to diversify our trade. Their goal is to stop any major project no matter what the cost to Canadian families in lost jobs and economic growth.”
“No forestry. No mining. No oil. No gas. No more hydro-electric dams.”“These groups threaten to hijack our regulatory           system to achieve their radical ideological agenda.”
Radical ideological agenda? Highjack the system?
Do you agree environmental groups and supporters who make 
their work possible are "radical?"
Are you pushing an ideological agenda when you express 
concern over environmental impacts from mega-projects like 
Gateway? Is it "radical" to participate in open public hearings 
meant to gather input toward a thoroughly studied, transparent 
and politically neutral decision?
I say if this is the government's operating definition, then 
absolutely—I AM A RADICAL.
I know the Exxon Valdez story so I know the facts don't support 
lifting the moratorium on oil tankers along the BC coastline. I 
know there are real, legitimate concerns about moving Tar Sands 
bitumen through 1177 kilometers of pristine wilderness and First 
Nations territory. And I know investor impatience is no reason to 
try to fast-track Mother Nature.
So … let's get a little radical! We e think Joe Oliver, Environment 
Minister Peter Kent, Prime Minister Harper and Opposition Party 
Critics will all appreciate hearing from you! Send them a letter 
explaining why you are a radical. Change it around to make it your own.


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