Grade deflation?

Provincial New Democrat energy, mines and petroleum resources critic John Horgan took a swipe at the Campbell administration's energy plan in the party's most recent newsletter. According to Mr. Horgan, "Like a lot of what this government has done, the energy plan was mostly a collection of vague assertions. It talked about conserving energy, which on its face is a good thing, but it contains no support for consumers who want to cut back on their electricity usage. And the initiatives that are actually new in the plan rely on technology that hasn't been tested." Continued Mr. Horgan, "What we got was a disappointment, and not a real plan at all." That's strong language - especially coming from a critic who said last week he'd "certainly give (the plan) a B, particularly because of the conservation initiatives." This, according to a report by The Canadian Press's Scott Sutherland. So what does Mr. Horgan have to say about the apparent contradiction between those two statements?

Speaking with Public Eye, Mr. Horgan explained "I gave it a B because of the conservation initiatives. But, upon reading the details, there are no new initiatives. They're all old programs. And the only actual new announceable on the conservation side was a surcharge. So that was my intent. I was trying to be magnaminous because it's kind of flippant to constantly say everything sucks. But I stand disappointed after looking at the fine print. There isn't any other initiatives. It's just we're going to do this. And there's no way to get there." The following is a complete copy of the relevant portion of that newsletter.

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BC NDP Connection Newsletter

Energy plan a disappointment, NDP MLAs say

British Columbians expecting the B.C. Liberals to come up with a plan to meet the province's energy needs were disappointed this week.

The government's energy plan came down Tuesday, and New Democrat MLA John Horgan said it was most notable for what wasn't there.

"Like a lot of what this government has done, the energy plan was mostly a collection of vague assertions," said Horgan, the NDP Critic for Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources.

"It talked about conserving energy, which on its face is a good thing, but it contains no support for consumers who want to cut back on their electricity usage.

"And the initiatives that are actually new in the plan rely on technology that hasn't been tested."

NDP Environment Critic Shane Simpson said the plan is rife with hypocrisy.

"In November, the Premier told business people in Hong Kong that offshore oil and gas exploration is closer than we think," said Simpson, the MLA for Vancouver-Hastings. "Two weeks ago, the same Premier was telling British Columbians they needed to worry about greenhouse gas emissions.

"Now, in this plan, they are maintaining their subsidies to the oil and gas sector, but are providing no similar incentives to green energy projects, such as solar, wind and tidal energy," said Simpson. "This isn't a plan for the future."

Horgan, the NDP MLA for Malahat-Juan de Fuca, said the government is trying to cover the tracks they laid just a few short months ago.

"Only the B.C. Liberals would claim credit for shutting the door on coal-fired power plants," said Horgan, "when the only reason anyone ever considered coal power was because the government opened the door to the idea.

"We've been waiting for more than a year for this energy plan to come to light," Horgan said. "What we got was a disappointment, and not a real plan at all."

3 Comments

Horgan suggests there is no plan and he is right in the sense that the communications plan released averted anything relevant to an "Enrgy Plan" in favour of hyperbole and greenspeak.

The plan however is not in the "energy plan" released by the Libs. The plan is a covert attempt to further integrate our energy resources and output south of the 49th while trumpeting conservation and the demise of Co2 spewing generation. Horgan is absolutely correct to point out how the coal plants so well resemble straw men.

Site C is inevitable now which is welcome south of the 49th as we continue to upgrade Canada as America's Battery.

No exclusion of further environmental decline related to resource extraction both on and off shore. In fact, to the contrary, these processes will be cheaper and easier and will result in more devastation with impunity and less return to the resource owners.

A green surhcarge! Yup not only do British Columbians loose out on realistic royalties while also forking over subsidies to environmnetally destructive industry but we also get treated with another Crown Corporation Cash Grab! The only green about that move is the cash they are grabbing!

Leave it to the American style 'spin machine' Gordon Campbell's Liberals have morphed into to deliver such hollow, meaningless, corporate serving, Bush bootlicking, Arnold Schwarteniggering bunk!

And for those endorsing this plan. Get a grip!


Why is it that so many environmentalists are giving kudos to our government over this? It stinks.

The Liberals are spin-masters, and I'm surprised that well-educated, green-thinking, progressive people are endorsing this plan.

There's certainly a world of difference between Horgan's attempt to analyze the program and comment in a comprehensible way, and Simpson's ideological perorations.

I guess that's the difference between running in a competitive Southern Vancouver Island riding and running in a never-ending party stronghold where the only object is to secure, and keep on resecuring the nomination by preaching a brand of socialism so stilted as to exclude any potential intra-party competition. In a way, Simpson could be seen as Richard Neufeld through the looking glass.

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