Letter: Is this climate change fight too big?

The Editor, I fear the climate change challenge is too big for the world to handle.

The Editor,

I fear the climate change challenge is too big for the world to handle.

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Improved vehicle mileage has contributed the most toward reduced vehicle carbon usage. Despite this, fuel used for motor vehicles was up by 5.2% in B.C. from 2013 to ’17, according to Statistics Canada. The carbon tax on vehicles has not resulted in a drop in the use of vehicle carbon.

We are such a small part of the world that any reductions in carbon we bring about will have no meaningful effect on climate change. We use about 1.6% of the world’s total carbon fuel emissions. If we all used bicycles instead of gas-burning motor vehicles, it would have a minuscule affect on the world’s use of carbon.

China, which emits 16 times more carbon fuel emissions than Canada, will not peak its carbon usage until 2030. India’s carbon usage increased 4.8% in 2018 alone. Any reduction by us is inconsequential in terms of combatting climate change.

Canadians can take some satisfaction that we are doing something, but that must be qualified. During 2016 to ’18, our federal government missed its targets by 44, 66 and 78 million tons, respectively, of CO2.

People use carbon. The more people, the more carbon usage. Government responses to this are to force increasingly less carbon usage on each individual. Therefore, as the population grows, the individual’s quality of life continually decreases. This is not sustainable. It is a bad strategy breeding future unrest.

When Canada increases its population, it increases its use of carbon. That boosts climate change. B.C. boosts climate change with a population growth of about 1% each year.

B.C. greenhouse gases are trending upward. Most B.C. government talk and attention is about future targets but the walk doesn’t match the talk.

Governments are reasonably good at identifying problems and challenges, less so when it comes to solutions. Technological advancements are necessary but the key driver behind climate change is population size, here and worldwide. As such, the greatest boost to continued climate change is population growth, yet it is not considered to be a problem.

As a result, my fear is that the climate change challenge is too big for the world to handle. Show me my fear is misplaced, if it is.

Brian Bastien, Coquitlam 

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