Editorial: Walking on thin ice

Canada’s Arctic sovereignty may be threatened

The Canadian government has routinely been criticized for not being aggressive enough in curbing greenhouse gas emissions.

Now a University of Victoria report shows Arctic permafrost is thawing and billions of tonnes of carbon dioxide, previously unaccounted for, is being released into the atmosphere, helping raise global temperatures. This news comes on the heels of a report from the National Snow and Ice Data Centre which found that the Arctic sea ice cover melted to its lowest since 1979 last month.

What these two things have in common is that they are both caused by global warming – along with natural weather patterns – and both increase global warming.

The warming trend in turn creates strange and devastating weather patterns including tornadoes in Brooklyn, droughts in Texas and flooding everywhere from Pakistan to Montreal. These severe weather events cause billions of dollars in damage, not to mention hundreds of thousands of deaths each year. In 2011, the cost of weather disasters worldwide was an estimated $150 billion.

Scientists are now reporting that severe weather events that usually occur every 50 to 100 years are appearing in shorter cycles. Our warmer atmosphere creates heat waves, more water evaporation from the oceans adds up to heavier rainfall, rising winds occur and atmospheric chaos ensues.

These dramatic weather events are another indication that global warming is real and all levels of government need to take it seriously.

The federal Liberal government that agreed to the Kyoto Protocol to restrict greenhouse gas emissions, lacked the enthusiasm to meet its targets and since the Conservative takeover, the level of apathy has risen to new heights. The Harper government decided it would never meet the targets so why try?

Perhaps the steady erosion of Canada’s Arctic is reason enough.

As the ice and permafrost melt, and the water rises, Canada will no longer have to worry about Arctic sovereignty as there will be no Arctic land mass left to protect.

 

 

Just Posted

Saanich’s 20-year-old acting mayor encourages other young people get involved in politics

There is a ‘hunger for young voices’ in politics right now

VicPD catches impaired driver near elementary school

Citizens alerted police to driver near James Bay Community School

Victoria’s Belfry Theatre hosts its first ‘relaxed performance’ for a diverse audience

Performance of Every Brilliant Thing is first to pilot the option

VIDEO: B.C. couple creates three-storey ‘doggie mansion’ for their five pups

Group of seven, who Kylee Ryan has dubbed as the ‘wandering paws,’ have a neat setup in Jade City

Greater Victoria 2019 holiday craft fair roundup

Get a jump on your holiday shopping

MacKinnon powers Avs to 5-4 OT win over Canucks

Vancouver battled back late to pick up single point

Port Alberni mom takes school district to court over Indigenous smudging, prayer in class

Candice Servatius, who is an evangelical Christian, is suing School District 70

Family of B.C. man killed in hit-and-run plead for tips, one year later

Cameron Kerr’s family says the driver and passengers tried to cover their tracks

Princeton couple pays for dream vacation with 840,000 grocery store points

It’s easy if you know what you are doing, they say

Chilliwack family’s dog missing after using online pet-sitting service

Frankie the pit bull bolted and hit by a car shortly after drop off through Rover.com

B.C. wildlife experts urge hunters to switch ammo to stop lead poisoning in birds

OWL, in Delta, is currently treating two eagles for lead poisoning

Most Read