Unconventional thought required regarding oil

Dear editor,

We have all seen images this summer of record ice retreat on the Arctic Ocean.

Dear editor,

Garry Brown’s Plan B letter Jan. 11 regarding alternatives for exporting tar sands oil to Asia through Tsawwassen instead of the extremely risky (both overland and offshore) Kitimat route is by far the most rational note we have seen, as regards conventional oil-resource thinking.

In a similar vein, in the same issue, Henry Irizawa proposes an alternative, and to me, more rational coal-exporting route, by ship, using Texada as a staging-base.

But both schemes are anchored in conventional thinking about energy use and trading.

We have all seen images this summer of record ice retreat on the Arctic Ocean.

The extra exposed open water will absorb more of the sun’s heat, causing even more rapid melt-back, and erosion of the thawing shores, and hence the release of ever-more methane, a potent greenhouse gas.

Even more frightening is the graph of loss of summer sea-ice volume, which is plummeting from values of 16,000 cubic kilometres in 1980 to near zero in 2015. (It was about 4,000 cubic km this summer.)

The fall is exponential — picture a baseball arcing down from the apex of its flight, against a headwind. (Those who argue selectively about climate change may quote the increase in Antarctic sea ice. The volume of new ice — caused by changes in wind patterns — is a small fraction of the loss of Arctic ice. Likewise, some parts of Antarctica are seeing an increase in snowfall — but the overall mass loss, measured by satellite technology, is much greater.)

Ice changes are of course only one of the effects of climate change.  Humankind, and our fellow inhabitants on this planet are in serious trouble.

Thus, both writers concerned with the means of export of fuels miss the crucial point. We should not be exporting this stuff.

Furthermore, in the case of the oil-supply in particular, once this Asian supply is turned on, it will be near-impossible for either party to turn it off.

It is far past time for people, energy companies and governments to change their thinking.

Colin Park,



Just Posted

Comox Legion celebrates Robbie Burns day

The Comox Valley Pipe Band Society is celebrating Robbie Burns on Jan.… Continue reading

VIDEO: École Puntledge Park Elementary celebrates winter solstice

The event was a part of the school’s Indigenous education curriculum

Valley company reaching out to women near and far

Three Comox Valley business women know firsthand what good menstrual products can… Continue reading

B.C. storm totals $37M in insured damages

The December storm wreaked havoc on B.C.’s south coast

Miniature horses visit Glacier View residents

Glacier View Lodge residents had a couple of special visitors on Wednesday… Continue reading

Fashion Fridays: Inspirational gym outfits

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

B.C. minister fears money laundering involves billions of dollars, cites reports

The government had estimated that it was a $200-million a year operation, instead estimates now peg the problem at $1 billion annually

BC Hydro scammers bilked customers out of nearly $45,000 in 2018

Nearly 2,000 people reported scams to the utility, as they continue to be more common

Overworked and understaffed: More than 300 vacancies in Vancouver Island nursing

Tentative deal with province includes ‘working short premium’ to encourage hiring

Olympian snowboarder Max Parrot diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Each year in Canada, approximately 900 people are diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma

‘Prince of Pot’ Marc Emery accused of sexual assault, harassment

Emery denied the allegations, but a Toronto woman says she is not the only one speaking out

Vancouver Island photographer makes National Geographic’s 2018 elite

Rare double honour for Marston from the 36 best Your Shots out of nearly 19,000 photos

Ex-Liberal candidate in Burnaby, B.C., says volunteer wrote controversial post

Karen Wang dropped out following online post singling out NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh’s ethnicity

Asteroids are smacking Earth twice as often as before

The team counted 29 craters that were no older than 290 million years

Most Read