It’s time to vote for climate leadership

Last month, 100 young people were arrested in Ottawa as they were protesting the rumoured approval of the Kinder Morgan pipeline.

Last month, 100 young people were arrested in Ottawa as they were protesting the rumoured approval of the Kinder Morgan pipeline. Their message to Prime Minister Trudeau: climate leaders don’t build pipelines. In the Yukon election, the message could be: climate leaders don’t support new oil and gas development.

While all of the parties on the ballot talk about fighting climate change, some of them are seriously undermining their credibility on this issue by promoting oil and gas development. The top contributor to Canada’s emissions is the oil and gas industry. On what grounds could we justify opening the Yukon to exploration, development, production, and refining of oil and gas, knowing the emissions that would result? We cannot let this kind of climate denial, the kind that recognizes the overwhelming scientific evidence of climate change in words, but then effectively ignores it in action, go unchecked.

We’ve seen this in Trudeau’s approval of the controversial LNG plant in B.C. and in the provincial and territorial pushback against a measly $10-per-tonne carbon tax. Clearly many people have been happy to play along with all of the climate change talk for years as long as it didn’t actually mean leaving fossil fuels in the ground.

We don’t have time for more wrangling or dithering. The Yukon, just like the rest of the world, needs to be a part of the solution on climate change. A recent study showed that emissions from all existing coal, oil and gas operations would be enough to put us over the 1.5C threshold that all nations agreed to avoid in the UN Paris Agreement. Simply put, we have no business drilling for new oil and gas resources in the Yukon — whether they are fracked or not. We must realize that in supporting new oil and gas projects we are helping ensure that the warming, the ice melt, the sea level rise and the droughts only get worse. We are choosing the warmer world that is guaranteed for our grandchildren if our emissions stay on their current trajectory.

Some have bought into the idea that it’s a scandal that we’re importing fossil fuels when we have our own fossil fuels beneath us. But the real scandal is that we would actually consider replacing imported dirty energy with local dirty energy instead of investing in the renewable industries that are going to be a party of our long-term future. Fixing a local problem by adding to a global problem is not the right path.

Jason LaChappelle,

Whitehorse

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Higher camping fees, new campground, reconciliation efforts feature in Yukon parks 10-year strategy

Creating a new campground within two hours of Whitehorse, introducing higher camping… Continue reading

YG and pharmacies preparing for flu vaccine distribution

The Yukon government is preparing for flu season and encouraging people to… Continue reading

Non-resident tests positive for COVID-19

The individual has been hospitalized in Whitehorse

Yukon working with B.C. on COVID-19 “mouth rinse” tests for children

The tests are easier for children than the comparatively uncomfortable nose swab

Throne speech promises COVID-19 support, childcare, internet upgrades

Yukon premier said he is “cautiously optimistic” about many commitments

Hot Hounds bikejor race serves as lone summer competition

Held in Mount Lorne, the race was organized by the Dog Powered Sports Association of the Yukon

Whitehorse operations building officially open

Staff are taking phased approach to moving in

North of Ordinary Experience Centre shutting down

COVID-19 has caused bookings for the space to become almost non-existent, owner says

Canada Games Centre could get new playground

Council to vote on contract award

City hall, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council this week

Harescramble brings out motorcycle community

This year’s event included 67 riders

YG seeks members for youth climate change panel

“Yukon youth deserve to have their voices heard”

Yukon NDP hold AGM

This year’s meeting was held virtually

Most Read