Open letter to Prime Minister Stephen Harper

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Open letter to Prime Minister Stephen Harper:

I am writing in response to your request that the provinces and territories work with Minister John Baird to identify specific projects in each jurisdiction that would contribute to stimulating the economy in the next two construction seasons.

As the Conservative candidate in the last election, I supported a project that would not only provide immediate benefits to Yukon but would contribute to the longer-term economic future of the territory.

The project I supported, as opposed to the Liberal carbon tax proposal, was the extension of the Whitehorse-Aishihik-Faro electrical grid from Pelly to Stewart Crossing and the upgrading of the Mayo hydro dam known as Mayo B.

This estimated $140-million project is being proposed by the government of Yukon and should be a collaborative effort involving the federal government, the territorial government and First Nation governments to work in partnership to achieve a common goal — cleaner, renewable energy production that supports economic development in Yukon. Everyone wins with this proposal.

Residential electrical consumers win by paying less for electricity costs that are kept in line with BC Green power rates of .08 to .10 cents per kWh. The environment wins by having an additional 40 GWH/yr of new green energy, which will offset energy requirements for diesel and its associated 28,000 tonnes/yr of C0² emissions.

As well, this project will reduce the need for diesel generation that will be otherwise required for new mines such as Alexco at Elsa and Carmacks Copper. First Nations will win by having the opportunity to partner in a profitable economic venture with Canada and Yukon in the development of clean, renewable energy.

The economy wins because this initiative will support economic growth especially for Yukon’s mining sector which will yield substantial returns to Canada and Yukon in the form of royalties and taxes.

In the short term, Yukoners win with the creation of many jobs during the construction phase of this project, giving more strength to our economy quickly. Construction of the grid extension could begin soon and the line extension and upgrading of the Mayo hydro dam could be completed within two years.

I urge your government to give favourable consideration to this most worthy project.

Darrell Pasloski, candidate of record, Conservative Party of Canada

Whitehorse