Dokie Ridge wind farm near Chetwynd B.C. in 2010. B.C.’s existing wind energy is mostly near the Peace River dams in northeastern B.C. (Black Press files)

LETTERS: Student demand to stop carbon fuel use can’t be achieved

Nuclear power is the only technology that would do it quickly

Re: The hijacking of our education system gathers speed (B.C. Views, March 24).

I agree with Tom Fletcher that green energy alternatives can’t meet our growing energy needs. Not even close.

The problem is that to the uninformed public, green energy looks seductively doable. Plunk wind turbines off-shore and on mountain ridges. Use hydrogen to power vehicles. Place solar panels on rooftops, etc.

Of course, the uniformed public has no idea how much their energy bills will increase if some populist government actually tried to bring about a green energy utopia. Nor do they understand the huge land areas required for wind turbines or the extra expense and decreased efficiency of hydrogen-powered vehicles.

The fickle public screams for adopting green energy, yet protests the Site C dam project. So we’re stuck with fossil fuels, which is a necessary evil in a rapidly warming climate.

READ MORE: LNG Canada gets its tax breaks from B.C. NDP

READ MORE: Q&A with Premier John Horgan on LNG taxes

However, we’ve known the answer to this conundrum for decades – nuclear power. It’s the only green energy source that can provide us with all the electricity we need to power a first world economy. Modern designs are much safer than early designs (especially thorium-based nuclear plants).

With excess power to spare we could make all the fuels we need by combining oxygen and hydrogen from water into long-chain alkanes. We could desalinate ocean water for drinking and agriculture. But there is no politician or party willing to push for nuclear.

Both Elizabeth May and Andrew Weaver are fully versed on nuclear technology, but would never endorse it. But India, China and several other nations have plans to build them. Some day they’ll be looking at our sad energy policy and wonder why we didn’t use the power of the atom to get us out of this mess.

Robert Laidler, Victoria

• • •

Thanks to Tom Fletcher for illuminating the improper behaviour of students in recent demonstrations about climate. Besides the immorality of indoctrinating students in their personal ideology, many B.C. teachers flunk science.

The physics of greenhouse gas molecules limits the amount of temperature rise that CO2 can cause to a small amount, most of which has already been realized. That’s because of the ‘saturation’ effect of energy flow from overlap of absorption-emission spectra of carbon dioxide and the most common greenhouse gas, dihydrogen monoxide (water vapour).

Reality is that the climate is not warming at an alarming rate, and sea level is not rising at a rate significantly faster than it has been since the end of the long cool period around 1750AD. (See PSMSL.org for government databases.) Records of surface temperatures are incomplete and contain unexplained ‘adjustments.’ I’ll instead go with traditional weather balloon thermometers and satellite sensors. Climate was stable during the Mycean, Roman, and Medieval warm periods (during which Vikings farmed southwest Greenland).

Climate has always been changing, warm is better for us and our food source (which also benefits from more CO2). Hopefully Earth won’t slide into another ice age.

Keith Sketchley, Saanich

Just Posted

‘A really kind person’: Parksville’s Nick Major remembered by instructor

Outpouring of support in the days following death of young man

Island residents team up on beach cleanups, call for government regulation

‘It’s way beyond what we can deal with’: Lasqueti, Texada, Denman islanders

Banners could add pop of colour to Parksville business district

District includes businesses between the Orange Bridge and McVickers Street

Last call for the ever-vanishing payphone in Parksville Qualicum Beach

Where many phones once resided, only memories remain

Developers go back to drawing board after high-rise application deferred by Parksville council

IAG Developments has proposed a multi-building development on city’s waterfront

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

Canadian high school science courses behind on climate change, says UBC study

Researchers found performance on key areas varies by province and territory

Six inducted into BC Hockey Hall of Fame

The 26th ceremony in Penticton welcomed powerful figures both from on and off the ice

RCMP investigate two shootings in the Lower Mainland

Incidents happened in Surrey, with a victim being treated at Langley Memorial Hospital

CRA program to help poor file taxes yields noticeable bump in people helped

Extra money allows volunteer-driven clinics to operate year-round

Recall: Certain Pacific oysters may pose threat of paralytic shellfish poisoning

Consumers urged to either return affected packages or throw them out

How a Kamloops-born man helped put us on the moon

Jim Chamberlin did troubleshooting for the Apollo program, which led to its success

Sexual harassment complaints soaring amid ‘frat boy culture’ in Canada’s airline industry

‘It’s a #MeToo dumpster fire…and it’s exhausting for survivors’

Most Read