Live Blogging the Public Forum on Climate Change in Port Alberni

Echo Center 7PM tonight is the Public Forum on Climate Change in Port Alberni…

I didn’t realise they had Internet in here until now… I’ve missed the 1st speaker, who was amazing… but he will be back for QA and i will start with the second speaker who is talking right now.

The current speaker is talking about a 100 Year plan that was done for Greater Vancouver… for the “Plus Network”. She is a psychologist….

She is part of the Sustainable Cities Network, which is a network of 300 cities including Vancouver and Port Alberni.

A City needs a Plan… for 5 years with financial plan…. a Strategy for 30 years… a Vision for 50-100 years.

Cities Copy each other… large Cities (Calgary) learn from medium cities that learn from small cities… smaller cities can implement change faster because there is less complexity and more attachment to the ground-level.

Lighthouse projects… that might not be economically feasible, like the Million dollar solar bus “Tindo” in Adelaide Australia, “shine a light” for others to follow. Someone has to make a prototype… there needs to be a leader to follow.

Talking about going to Iqualuit… talking to the Elders who are seeing things they have never seen before. Robins, bumblebees. Never seen before that far north, were there in 2007.

……. Now it’s question period…. here are just my notes from the previous speaker, who was incredibly good if a little disjointed due to time.

Bruce Sampson former BC Hydro :

Growth with less Impact…

With worst case (mst likely scenario) Cedar growth on VI is wiped out by 2080.

He just explained Peak Oil in a nutshell

Millennium Ecosystem Assessment Report

Largest basekine study of the pplanet ever done

Over 60% of the planets ecosystems are not sustainable
Among the outstanding problems-dire state of many of the worlds fish stocks; the intense vulnerability of the 2 billion people living in the dry regions.

Put a price on carbon:

We abuse the Earths Natural Capital because we don’t price it

Carbon Offsets —–> Ecosystem Offsets


QA: From Ken Whiteman (Councillor). How do we reconcile Canadian carbon emissions in the world (2%) which 50% comes from tar sands… with China where they are building a coal plant “every day”.

Answer: Burning up natural gas to produce tar sands is like “turning gold to lead”. There has to be a leader in transition coming from Canada. We have to move away from Tar Sand, which is larlgely impossible to due the momemtum, so our only hope is carbon sequestration.

As far as China… we have to be the leader… we can give our technology to China. But the challenge is gigantic. Youre looking at a massive switch to coal as fossil fuels decline…. there has to be a switch in mentality or CO2 will take off in emissions.

One comment from “the psychologist”… Refer to Tar Sands as “Tar” sands.. not oil. It is not Oil. It is a powerful psychological attachment to those words..

BOOK RECOMMENDATION: Agenda for a new Economy – by David Corten… only just published

Mike Carter: Brought up Transition Towns and how Bruce Sampsons talk very much mimics what Transition Towns is all about…. we need to act locally.. we need to act holistically and help everyone through it as well. This is a gigantic change, and it is goin to hurt, economically, socially, and psychologically.

Jen Fisher Bradley: How do we internalize the externalized costs that are manifest in a market based eonomy. (Whoa!)

Bruce Sampson: It comes down to Natural Capital and putting a cost on our effect on ecosystems. Until that is built into our economy by having companies understanding thier impact, and valueing their impact on natural capital. Not just carbon offsets. It is full, natural, ecosystems offsets. Companies have to pay for the impact they have. Not as a penalty, but simply as a matter of doing business.

Group conversation……..

Ken McRae Closing Comments:

– Councils Next Step will be to appoint a Sustainability Committee.