“You are capable of more than you know. Choose a goal that seems right for you and strive to be the best, however hard the path. Aim high. Behave honorably. Prepare to be alone at times, and to endure failure. Persist! The world needs all you can give. “
-E. O. Wilson-
My letter is ready to email.
Dear Prime Minister Harper:
I am a citizen with serious concerns about your lack of effective action to address climate change. Scientific reports make it clear that climate change is the most serious environmental problem facing our planet. Our country has one of the worst records in the world in terms of per capita contributions to the problem, with much higher emissions than citizens in other nations. We cannot continue to use the Earth’s atmosphere as a dumping ground for emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases.
I would like you to do everything in your power to take the following actions:
- Impose a carbon tax on all fossil fuels and use the revenue generated to ensure the rapid development and adoption of renewable energy.
- Place strict limits on carbon dioxide emissions from industry.
- Enact the world’s strongest standards for the energy efficiency of vehicles, buildings, and all consumer products that use energy.
These policies have been successful, environmentally and economically, in other western industrialized nations, including Norway, Japan, and Germany.
Further, I have the following specific questions:
- Does the government have a detailed plan of action, with laws and policies to support it, to lead us to a sustainable future?
- Are targets set to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and reduced emissions of sulphur dioxide, the use of highly toxic pesticides and the amount of garbage going to landfills and are yearly reviews being done by an expert environmental committee to keep it on track?
- Does the government have any solar initiatives or any Feed-in tariff innovations as successfully implemented in Germany to replace Fossil Fuels with renewable energy?
- Does the government have laws and policies in place to move us as a nation toward a waste free economy such as laws of extended manufacturer responsibility or laws for absolute elimination of hazardous substances, including mercury, lead, cadmium and toxic flame retardants?
- Why is Canada still mining and producing asbestos and coal for export when these hazardous substances are banned for use in Canada?
- Is there a mandate for safe substitutes for health harming chemicals as that in Europe to protect the citizens of Canada?
- Has the government set high environmental standards such as zero emission standards for all products, new construction to produce zero carbon dioxide emissions by 2016, zero energy building codes and a manufacturing ban of incandescent light bulbs, plastic bags, and low efficiency furnaces?
- When will the Government halt industrial subsidies which are incentive to grow harmful production of harmful products and redirect the funds to programs that promote sustainable alternatives?
- Will the Government consider cutting taxes on employment, investment and raise taxes on pollution and waste as is done in Europe?
- What is the Government prepared to do to encourage people to work in their own community which lowers emissions of car travel such as give buses priority, lower or eliminate fares, tax drivers of cars through tolls, eliminate free parking and redirect parking fees to offset cost of public transit?
- Does the government have laws and policies in place to address serious health concerns such a ban on junk food from all schools, a ban on ads directed at children, heavy tax levies for junk food producers, reallocation of subsidies from bad production practices to organic and local production, levy fines against deceptive and noncompliance in manufacturer labelling, and a ban, as is done in Europe, on the use of antibiotics to promote faster animal growth and feeding arsenic to chickens?
- Is the government going to provide the children and young people of all ages and all grades plus post-secondary with the proper and accurate knowledge of environmental concerns by increasing the budget for environmental education?
- Does the government understand that the Gross Domestic Product is lacking as measurement because it does not take into account trust, respect, community, clean air, clean water, beauty and compassion but rather equates crime, cancer, environmental destruction and war as positive due to expenditure and is it prepared to move away from an economic paradigm that has proven dysfunctional in measuring the true wealth of Canada?
I would appreciate a written reply outlining your response to these proposals and questions.