Latest posts in Climate & Clean Energy

Take an MP on your commute

September 19, 2016

HERE ARE SOME TIPS FOR THE CALL

Use a headset or hands-free — This will give you both hands to take notes about what was said.

Think about what you will say — Consider how better transit will make a difference in your life or that of your family members. Some examples include minimized congestion, shorter commuting times, more comfortable rides, more affordable service, better quality of life, helping to fight climate change, better air quality, etc. Even if you think your transit commute is pretty good, there is always room for improvement, and increased transit funding will help more people get out of their cars.

Look at your calendar — Be ready to schedule a date and time with your MP the week of October 10 to 16 or November 7 to 13. Be open to other times the MP's staff may suggest.

Be polite — MPs are our elected representatives. They will likely be happy to hear from engaged constituents. Most MPs will be very receptive to investment in transit, so we want to ensure we are encouraging them to support further investment, rather than being confrontational.

Be direct — Political staff can be skilled at avoiding making commitments. After you've explained what you are calling for, ask them directly whether the MP can join you on your commute or when to expect an answer.

Is Ontario's surplus electricity a problem?

September 1, 2016 | Leave a comment
Photo: Is Ontario's surplus electricity a problem?

(Credit: Douglas M Paine via Flickr)

By Glen Estill, Energy expert and DSF supporter

Supply and demand in an electricity system must always be the same. When you produce too much, you have to figure out how to curtail production or export the excess. In Ontario we often curtail nuclear from the Bruce plant. To do this, we simply send the heat from the nuclear reactor into Lake Huron, but we don't save any nuclear fuel. We curtail wind. And we pay generators to not produce. In 2014, Ontario paid them $200 million to not produce. Sometimes we pay neighbours to take it. Or we sell it to them real cheap — under two cents/kWh. Ontario exported 12 per cent of what it produced last year, and sold much of it at very low prices.

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Ontario's Oxford County a renewable energy pioneer

August 22, 2016 | Leave a comment
Photo: Ontario's Oxford County a renewable energy pioneer

(Credit: Eric Malette via Flickr)

By Gideon Foreman,

Jay Heaman is passionate about renewable energy. An electrician by training, he worked for the local electricity distributor in Woodstock, Ontario, for 27 years. The job he now holds — manager of strategic initiatives for the County of Oxford — allows his passion free range.

In June 2015, Oxford (which is between Hamilton and London) passed a motion committing itself to 100 per cent renewable energy for electricity, heating and transportation by 2050. It's the first municipality in Ontario to make this promise. (Oxford won't ban fossil fuels but any used will be offset by renewables, resulting in net-zero carbon emissions.)

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David Suzuki Foundation's Olympics campaign lives on in Rio

August 16, 2016 | Leave a comment
Photo: David Suzuki Foundation's Olympics campaign lives on in Rio

Credit: Fernando Frazão/Agência Brasil

By Paul Lingl

Last night, while watching the Rio 2016 Olympics, I was reminded that the David Suzuki Foundation's work can sometimes have unexpected ripple effects. A case in point: DSF's 2010 Olympics campaign, and how it's influenced subsequent Olympics, large companies and even governments.

Our goal in 2010 was to not only make the Vancouver Winter Olympics carbon-neutral (i.e., no net climate impact), but to use the unparalleled platform of the games to inspire Canadians — as well as a global audience numbering in the billions — with climate solutions.

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Green Timiskaming and SolarShare turn marginal land into power

August 11, 2016 | Leave a comment
Photo: Green Timiskaming and SolarShare turn marginal land into power

(Credit: Endura Energy)

By Gideon Forman, Policy Analyst

Investing in community-owned solar power "really pays off." So says Ambrose Raftis, board chair of Green Timiskaming, a renewable energy co-op north of Sudbury near the Quebec border.

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