Tuesday, December 8, 2009

A open letter to PM Harper - fasting for Copenhagen Summit

Right Honourable Stephen Harper
Office of the Prime Minister
80 Wellington Street
Ottawa, K1A 0A

SJ: Fasting for progress in reducing GHG Emissions at Copenhagen

Dear Prime Minister Harper,

I am writing to thank you for attending the UN Climate change summit in Copenhagen. I also want you to know that thousands of Canadians, including myself, are united in fasting and prayer on your behalf. As a Christian, I believe the Copenhagen summit is a call to honour and respect God’s creation. This call was originally given when God created Adam (Humankind) and put him in the garden to tend and care for it (Gen. 2:15).

I also understand that the negotiations will be difficult and there are many competing interests. According to media reports, it seems that you believe climate change legislation will damage Canada’s economy. Please rest assured that this need not happen. TD bank economists recently forecast (Oct. 29, 2009) that Kyoto-style emission reductions (25% below 1990 levels by 2020) are achievable even if Canada acts without our trading partners. The report forecasts a modest reduction in GDP growth (about 0.4% per year from 2010 to 2020) but it also predicts that this will result in improved public transit, better electricity infrastructure, investment in domestic agriculture, refunds to homeowners to offset higher energy costs, lower income taxes and improved job creation over the “business as usual” case.

If you don’t believe these predictions are possible, please take the opportunity to tour the city of Copenhagen. While the Danish people enjoy a very high quality of life, often ranking above Canada in the UN “happiness” index, they emit about 1/2 the CO2 and use about 1/2 the energy per person as the average Canadian. This is due to the far-sighted action of the Danish government during the late 1970s. After the Arab oil embargo and increasing energy prices devastated their economy, the Dane’s chose to artificially inflate energy costs through taxation and use the resulting funds to become world leaders in energy efficiency and renewable energy.

As Canada slowly recovers from the economic collapse that was caused - at least in part - from 2008’s record high oil prices, we have the same opportunity to act by implementing realistic carbon taxes and using the revenue to make our economy more energy efficient. This will prepare Canada for the future, where the 2009 US Department of Energy forecasts that oil prices could reach $200/bbl before 2020.

I realize that it will be difficult to make commitments that will lower CO2 emissions and many people will be unhappy with this decision. Nevertheless, reducing emissions and conserving non-renewable resources is the right thing to do for Canada and for the world. While it won’t be easy, please be confident that I, along with my family and countless other Canadians, are fasting and praying on your behalf. May God grant you the wisdom, courage and foresight to respond appropriately at this critical time.


Keith Hirsche
1161 Chapman Rd.
Cobble Hill, BC
250 929 5586

cc: Jim Prentice Min. Environment
Lisa Raitt Min. Natural Resources
Jim Flaherty Min. Finance
Jean Crowder MP Nanaimo-Cowichan
Jack Layton Leader NDP
Michael Ignatieff Liberal Leader
Ed Stelmach Premiere Alberta
David Swann Liberal Leader Alberta

No comments: