Opinion

Climate change reality demands new leadership

The first time a Prime Minister comes to Cowichan in 60 years, yet ordinary citizens were not even told of his visit, not invited to ask questions, and protected from view by police officers?  Wow, is this a democracy?

When I learned the prime minister was coming, I asked carbon busters to come.  And come they did — between 200 and 300 met me at the Brentwood entrance to ask questions to Stephen Harper about climate change.

I am so ticked off! I have worked for many oil and gas companies  only to quit when I realized greenhouse gases will destroy my kids’ future. But Harper has not changed his life or his climate change policies one bit.

Brentwood College is a school for goodness sake — are students not encouraged to ask questions? What a farce! Shame on Harper.  Shame on Brentwood for supporting this travesty of a democracy. And shame on us if we let it happen without protest.

Since I did not contribute to Harper’s campaign, I was not invited to see Harper. Instead, I gave his well-heeled guests a list of questions as they drove in. Questions like: when will you understand Canada cannot have a strong economy if our climate, and society, is destroyed by greenhouse gases — and that local renewable energy sources, not pipelines, will provide more long term jobs for Canadians than fossil fuel?

But we all know Harper’s real purpose in coming was to rub the back of his financial supporters, and to bolster support for this new riding. No questions allowed.

But speaking of democracy on a positive note, local politicians did come to protest; including CVRD directors Loren Duncan, Lori Iannidinardo and Ian Morrison, as well as Duncan Councillor Michelle Staples — big thanks for their political courage. And thanks also to the RCMP for protecting our right to protest.

Local politicians at our rally helped demonstrate Harper is the real anti-democratic radical. His support for oil pipelines companies will contribute to the destruction of our climate and society. Hey, how radical is that?

Ironically, protesters are the conservatives; in the sense that we want to “conserve” our climate. We call it climate justice.

Millions of lives are being destroyed by the lack of action on climate change. But instead of acting on this historic crisis, Harper visits rich Brentwood supporters and thanks them for their money and for ignoring this very apparent tragedy. You have to be really uncaring, or delusional, not to see what is happening in the world. I am really angry!

Let’s use our anger constructively to elect politicians who will phase out the fossil fuel industry.  And yes, for all those critics out there, those of us who consume fossil fuels (like all of us) also need to conserve and switch to renewable energy as quickly as possible.

First item on our agenda, get rid of Harper as prime minister.

Cowichan Carbon Buster Peter Nix is a Maple Bay resident and climate change activist.

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