Conservation good, carbon tax bad

David Suzuki recently wrote in the News: “It’s past time we started conserving energy and shifting to cleaner sources.” I agree.

David Suzuki recently wrote in the News: “It’s past time we started conserving energy and shifting to cleaner sources.” I agree. I wonder how we came to our current wasteful habits given that many of us were raised by parents who lived through hard times, respected a dollar, knew how to live efficiently, taught their children not to waste anything, and still managed to live satisfying lives.

I remember putting storm windows on our house every fall and puttying every crack to reduce winter heat loss. Quilts kept us warm in bed, we wore underwear and sweaters, turned out lights and closed registers in rooms not being used, and we walked summer and winter instead of using a vehicle to go six blocks. We saved everywhere we could.

Today’s cost of living provides as much incentive to cut waste and reduce expenses as it did then, and individuals and jurisdictions are looking for ways to do so, yet Trudeau shut down discussion on how it may best be done. Instead he dictated a carbon tax beginning in 2018. He should start by finding efficiencies in the federal government before he hammers the rest of us.

Regardless, the issue of conservation remains, and we will have to use less energy if we are going to make a difference nationally. But a one-size-fits-all carbon tax does not in fact fit all, and may even be less effective than other options.

Among the suggestions Keith Halliday offered in his recent column was a home energy assessment which determined his house was losing heat equivalent to leaving a medium sized window open all winter. Keith’s house was average, meaning half are worse and half are better. Assuming burning an extra 700 litres of fuel per year and estimating 15,000 homes in Yukon, closing that window in all of them would result in 10.5 million litres of fuel saved per year, surely sufficient for an energy saving award rather than a kick in the financial pants from Trudeau’s carbon tax.

How do we close all those open windows? It could easily be done by amending building codes to require all new buildings to meet R2000 as a minimum standard coupled with generous maintenance and retrofit incentives for all existing homes and buildings that can reasonably be expected to generate ongoing savings above costs. Add to that design elements that would make it easy for later upgrades like adding solar panels and credits for other options like those supported by our Energy Solutions Centre, and a tax would not be necessary at all.

Moreover, I simply don’t trust what the government will do with carbon tax revenue. Do you?

Rick Tone,

Whitehorse

Just Posted

Yukon Fish and Game Association opposed to moose management proposals

Executive director Eric Schroff said he thinks Yukon government needs to be more transparent

WYATT’S WORLD

Wyatt’s World

Casino taking more time with mine proposal

Statement not expected to be submitted to YESAB until Dec. 31, 2021

New act allows Yukon College to become Yukon University

The official launch of Yukon University will happen May 8 with a convocation ceremony

Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in to hold general election in April

On top of voting for chief, three councillors, citizens will vote for a deputy chief for first time

Yukon’s minimum wage set to increase by $1 to $13.71 in April

The increase will make the Yukon’s minimum wage the fourth-highest in the country

City news, briefly

Some of the decisions made at the Whitehorse council meeting on Feb 17

Yukonomist: Three questions on Yukon Zinc and China

The case heard recently in Yukon Supreme Court is particularly troubling

Commentary: Highway plans will negatively impact safety

The proposed Alaska Highway work will impact our safety, our communities and our environment.

Olivia Webster is the final musher to finish the Yukon Quest

‘I guess I’ve always been a grandpa’s girl and he’s my best friend, so I kind of wanted to be like him and so I did it’

Yukon’s Rob Cooke and company finish 10th in the 2020 Yukon Quest

Cooke and his 14 Siberians crossed the finish line at 9:07 a.m. on Feb. 15 in Whitehorse

Lights Out Yukon Invitational Basketball Tournament bigger than ever in sixth year

“Honestly, it was the smoothest tournament I think we’ve run yet”

Most Read