Born and raised British Columbian wonders if the rhetoric of fossil fuels being for all Canadians rings true on the West Coast, and if those driving the biggest vehicles are the same who are crying loudest about the carbon tax online. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

Fossil fuels future provoke provincial political prelection

Dear Editor,

I recently read yet another Albertan letter-writer published in a B.C. metro-daily newspaper threatening B.C.ers with his province’s imminent shutting off all fuel flow to this province. Such missives only prove that the oil sands product is not for all Canadians, as the Alberta government and Trans Mountain propaganda ads claim.

Perhaps the latter-two entities’ best hope of tripling their diluted bitumen flow (and maybe proportionately so their profit margins) is to not just exploit some Aboriginal Nations’ desperation for capital, and thus full political independence by allowing the company access to their territory, but instead to practice both greater environmental stewardship and to fulfill domestic consumption requirements.

Oil-export expansion supporters claim that increased pipeline flow is equally beneficial to all of Canada, and therefore it should—nay, must—go ahead as planned.

Perhaps the project would meet considerably less resistance if B.C.—and every other province, for that matter—was provided with enough crude to process and supply its own gas-station pumps thus proving that the oil is for all of Canada and every Canadian. Only then might I, as a life-long British Columbian, begin to consider politically supporting the significantly increased risk to B.C.’s far-more valuable (at least to us) tourism, food and sports fishing industries—not to mention pristine natural environments and ecosystems themselves—in the case of a major oil spill, which many academics believe is inevitable.

But, sadly, it seems to be irresistibly more profitable to simply more rapidly export Canada’s crude—like the lumber barons apparently do with our soft lumber—in bulk internationally, along with so many value-added jobs that rightfully belong to Canadians, before much of it is sold back to us as processed product.

And it doesn’t stop there, either.

Shortly after reading even more social-media bellyaching about the recent fuel carbon tax, I walked into town and witnessed the usual large number of parked vehicles idling for multiple minutes. Particularly noteworthy were the exhaust-spewing vanity vehicles, a couple of which had the signature superfluously, very large body, and wheels that don’t at all appear used for work or family transport. Indeed, they’re the same gratuitously tall monsters that when parked roadside hazardously, block the view of short-car operators turning or crossing through stop-signed intersections.

Inside were their operators staring down into their laps, probably their smartphones, and I couldn’t help wondering whether they’re some of the people posting carbon-tax complaints onto various social media platforms?

Frank Sterle, Jr.

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