If premier Christy Clark wants to continue to draw a distinction between herself and past premier Gordon Campbell, she should trash the lunatic set-up her predecessor put in place during his “green” period.
As a result of his Road to Damascus conversion on all things environmental, Campbell decreed that all schools had to become carbon neutral.
And if they couldn’t meet the target reduction in emissions, they had to purchase carbon credits from the Pacific Carbon Trust, a newly created Crown corporation.
If school districts were rolling in money, it might have made some sense.
If school districts had the authority to levy taxes and therefore the ability to raise the money needed to follow the premier’s green brick road, it might have made some sense.
But neither was the case.
As a result, our Coast Mountains school district, the one that’s continually closing schools and couldn’t even find the money to maintain tennis courts at Mount Elizabeth Secondary, had to hand over $65,000 to the Pacific Carbon Trust to atone for its sins of emission (Sentinel, April 6).
Now, if you have put together a system that says schools failing to hit the target have to pay up, seems to me you must know from the start that the schools will never be able to achieve that target – otherwise, what would be the point of setting up the trust?
But here’s the even dumber thing: if you really wanted the schools to green up, why not just give them the money to carry out specific projects to achieve that goal?
Too simple, perhaps?
Well then, the schools could just apply to the trust for money to carry out those projects, couldn’t they?
Nope – they are not eligible for funding.
But, as was announced with great fanfare by the trust last week, an energy giant like Encana is. Effectively, that means money that should have been spent in our schools has instead been handed over to industry.
Regardless of how much green good Encana’s proposed emission reductions at its Northeast BC operations may do, financing such projects with education dollars is absurd.
Madam premier, if you really mean it when you go on about putting families first, and recognizing that school-aged children are part of those families, then surely you will be eager to dismantle such a system.