Renewable energy is the way to go

The July 16, 2014 edition of the Northern View contained two contradictory articles — coal is good and gas is bad.

Editor:

The July 16, 2014 edition of the Northern View contained two contradictory articles on pages A4 and A5 — coal is good and gas is bad.

Your article on coal exports says that the mining and export of coal is good because it produces jobs and generates tax revenue that supports our life styles. However, no mention is made of the greenhouse gases that are generated in mining and transporting coal, and then burning the coal in steel plants. Possibly we don’t care about burning coal if this occurs in Japan, Korea and China? Furthermore, the open pit coal mines disturb large areas and are difficult to reclaim.

The Guest View by Mr. Corbett says that natural gas is bad because greenhouse gases are produced when it is burned, and that we do not want the jobs and tax revenue produced by the natural gas industry. The paradox in this opinion is that most British Columbians use natural gas to heat their homes, but maybe we do not care about these greenhouse gases because this source of energy significantly enhances our lifestyles. Of course large quantities of natural gas are produced by conventional wells that do not require fracking ­— is this gas acceptable? If natural gas is not an acceptable source of fuel in British Columbia, what alternative fuel is Mr. Corbett suggesting that we use?

My own opinion is that we should take a pragmatic approach to energy, and use the best combination of economy and environmental acceptability.

For example, our climate and topography are ideal for renewable hydroelectric development and if we had plentiful and inexpensive electricity, everyone could join me in driving electric hybrid cars.

Duncan C. Wyllie

North Vancouver

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