Atmosphere & Energy
Protect yourself from black-legged ticks this summer, but also understand how disregard for the environment helps them spread, say local scientists.
Ticks bearing the bacteria that causes Lyme disease, such as those that have infected six people near Admiral’s Cove Park in Bedford – including a 13-year-old boy – have appeared in Nova Scotia as "part and parcel of the migration of the northern limits of these creatures," says meteorologist and science writer Richard Zurawski.
Gretchen Fitzgerald of Sierra Club Atlantic argues that although people in Halifax Regional Municipality must deal with the current tick problem, more should be done in order to understand and mitigate further such problems in the future.
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OTTAWA—The federal government is adopting tough new regulations aimed at cleaning up coal-fired electricity generation.
Thirteen per cent of Canada's total greenhouse-gas emissions come from coal-burning electricity-generation plants.
The proposed regulations will impose stringent performance standards on new coal-burning power plants, as well as older ones that are looking to extend their operating lives.
“Environment Canada’s announcement is a joke. It would be funny if the situation weren’t so serious,” said John Bennett, executive director of Sierra Club Canada, in a statement issued after the Prentice announcement.
“Canada needs to commit to phasing out coal fired plants and replace them as Ontario has done,” Bennett said in the release. “Regulations for new coal plants are meaningless.”
The energy used to drive our economy has a huge impact on our atmosphere.
The drastic increase in fossil fuel combustion over the last century has led to a corresponding increase in air pollution, poisonous mercury emissions from coal plants, acid rain. In addition to these more obvious impacts, the accumulation of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere has led to climate destabilization. In the prairie region this destabilization will likely lead to increased occurrences of drought and higher temperatures year-round.
Given these severe environmental and human health impacts it is imperative that we move toward sustainable energy production. Sierra Club of Canada advocates a sensible mix of solutions: reduced consumption combined with the highest possible energy efficiency, the deployment of renewables (wind, geothermal, biodiesel and solar), and a shift to the new, innovative technologies to move people and goods around.
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More than 200,000 green jobs could easily be created in Alberta if the government made renewable energy a priority.... Read more »
Seeking to burnish Canada’s environmental reputation before world leaders gather in Toronto, Environment Minister Jim Prentice announced on Wednesday a $400-million contribution to an international climate change fund and plans to phase out coal-burning electricity at home.
Mr. Prentice said the $400-million investment represents “Canada’s fair share” of a $10-billion (U.S.) per year fund to help poor countries combat climate change. The “fast start fund” was negotiated at the Copenhagen climate-change conference in December as a $30-billion, three-year effort that will grow in future years.
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