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University Sustainability Initiative Saves Climate And Its Bottom Line, While Canada’s Economy Suffers From Lack of Green Practices

2012/05/16

New Jersey’s William Paterson University adopted a climate action plan in 2009 that puts the university on a path to becoming carbon neutral by 2065 – and to reducing their baseline by 50 percent by 2025. A cornerstone of that work is their 3.5 MW solar array that snakes around parking lots and buildings.

*Budget conscious universities take heed: the university has spent less than $250,000 on their energy reduction projects and has saved $10.5 million in energy costs. That’s a tremendous amount of saving for doing something that’s good for the planet and enrollment numbers.*

*

Meanwhile here in Canada, thanks in large part to our federal government’s single-minded preoccupation with the exploitation of fossil fuel resources at any cost, our economy is expected to face “significant economic repercussions”  because of large-scale neglect of green practises. A Post Media article by Mike DeSousa states that a recent National Roundtable on Energy and the Environment (NRTEE) report asserts:

“Canada risks serious harm to its national economic interests by not proactively developing frameworks nor engaging in initiatives related to Life Cycle Approaches domestically and globally,” said the report.

It also warned that forcing companies to comply with regulations requiring a life cycle approach to their operations in a short time frame would require “larger and more immediate investments” to either respond or “risk losing market share.”

“This risk is real and Canada must act now to maintain its competitiveness,” said the report. Read more here.

No wonder the respected NRTEE’s entire budget was just cancelled by the Harper government, which has demonstrated a distinct penchant for shooting messengers. Interestingly, on Monday, Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird stated that the NRTEE’s demise was directly tied to its recent reports supporting a carbon tax, but the Harper government has been backtracking since then on Baird’s statement. But judge for yourself – Baird stated in the House of Commons:

“It  [the NRTEE] should agree with Canadians. It should agree with the government. No discussion of a carbon tax that would kill and hurt Canadian families.”

Wow – a carbon tax will “kill and hurt Canadian families”!  Has anyone told the citizens of Alberta and British Columbia this?  Time to head for the hills!

More links:

Power and Politics Video: Environment Panel’s End Blamed On Support For Carbon Tax

Pushing Carbon Tax Cost Research Agency Its Funding, Tories Confirm

Canadian Economy Facing “Significant Economic Repercussions” By Neglecting Green Practises

William Paterson Wins! Sustainability Initiative Boosts School Pride

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