How many times will the Yukon Party government play “smoke and mirrors” with Yukoners?
On June 28, 2013, both of Yukon’s newspapers carried Yukon Energy’s advertisement of three open houses to take place this week under the heading “Let’s make sense of LNG.”
Once again the Yukon Party government, operating this time through its agent, Yukon Energy, is going through the pretense of a consultation with Yukoners about changing the back-up generators at the hydro dam from diesel to liquefied natural gas.
We maintain this is a pretense because they have given Yukoners less than one week to think about this change and then provide their thoughts. As well, they have once again chosen the summer holidays, when many families will be off travelling, enjoying the good weather, not paying attention to what will be a significant change in how their power is provided.
In addition, using the format of an open house does not allow for group discussion with question-and-answer type responses. People who attend information sessions want group dynamics to take place so we can learn from one another. The open house format has been chosen so Yukon Energy can control the final message, which will be, “We need LNG.” Then minister Brad Cathers will tell the public that the Yukon Party government has consulted with Yukoners.
Yukon Energy will assure us that LNG is greener and cleaner than diesel, ignoring the energy used in converting natural gas to LNG, the diesel used by trucks to carry the LNG north, and the energy used to convert LNG back to natural gas for use in the generators. Secondly, as surely as night follows day, within two to four years the cost for trucking LNG will be so high that the Yukon government will encourage gas companies to drill in the Yukon so the supply will be closer at hand.
The only way to extract gas in Yukon’s shale geology is by fracking, with all of its well-known risks to the environment and human health. This, we believe, is the actual objective. The government wishes to have in place the conditions that will make possible the development of oil and gas through hydraulic fracturing.
Yukoners must not allow this to happen. We should attend these meetings and tell Yukon Energy to go back to the drawing board, and be honest about their justifications for wanting to switch to LNG.
In our view, Yukon Energy should be using alternative energy such as energy conservation, initiatives for using less power during peak hours, wind, solar, bio-mass, geothermal etc. to supplement our energy needs. These forms of energy are truly green and will be sustainable for the next 50 years.
Yukon Energy has planned the following meetings:
July 3 – 6-9 p.m. Old Fire Hall
July 8 – 4:30-8:30 p.m. Mount McIntyre Recreational Centre
Don Roberts, chair
Yukoners Concerned About Oil and Gas Exploration