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CONTRIBUTION · 17th April 2014
Elizabeth Thorne
Think globally, act locally; it’s been an environmental slogan for years. We recycle locally because we can’t clean up the whole world’s garbage but we can clean up our own. And so forth.

Globally, what I see happening is huge corporations, Monsanto, Nestle and half a dozen oil companies for example, behaving as if they have the right to make money, even if people lose property rights, lose their own livelihoods or even die because of their actions.

I see governments forgetting that they exist to do what is best for their citizens and behaving as if the corporations have every right in the world to do whatever they like. In Alberta, the government quietly passed a law allowing pipeline companies (and others) to build across anyone’s property and the land owner has no say. The company can put a hold on the land for up to 30 years if they think they might need it. Owners can do nothing. In the UK there’s a bill before the House that will allow fracking under a home and the owner would have no grounds for complaint or mitigation.

The Harper Government has spent the last 3 years trying to negotiate free trade agreements with Europe, China, the Pacific Rim and quite possibly the little green men from Mars. A key clause in every one of these deals is that if a company comes into Canada with a development idea, and the locals raise objections and save an ecosystem from destruction say, then Canada will compensate the company for ALL it’s lost profits. I’m not sure for how long but in perpetuity wouldn’t surprise me at all. Such an agreement exists between BC and Alberta by the way.

Globally I see huge oil companies destroying Nigeria, the Gulf of Mexico and northern Alberta in the process of extracting oil.

Locally, I see a large pipeline company and its oil producing partners, deciding to run a line from Alberta to the coast and ship the dilbit to China. I see them throwing money in all directions and running beautiful advertisements to convince the province that it is a good idea.

Locally I saw a group of ordinary, but very intelligent, people begin to investigate Enbridge, its record, its plans, its claims, and I saw them find all those things wanting. They said so, and I saw our elected federal government call them names and tell lies about them.

Locally, our town held a plebiscite to see what people thought about the pipeline. And that, ladies and gentleman, is the first time in history, a huge oil company has been told no, anywhere in the world quite so clearly and quite so effectively.
Ordinary people, all over the world, need to take back control of their land and their lives. We need to be able to control the companies, not vice versa. We need to exchange our politicians for people who are not owned by the companies. We, ourselves, need to start thinking about and understanding what is going on in the world and being politically active and knowledgeable.

I know that sounds like a lot. But we’re not acting locally anymore, we’ve taken the first step to changing the world. Who’s coming with us?
Not going to change world
Comment by Need Jobs on 22nd April 2014
First Block Development in Kitimat then initiate City funds draining Environmental programs to "change the world". Bankrupt Kitimat in short time.
Kitimat Lifer
Comment by sammysmall on 17th April 2014
Since when is 58 percent, regardless what side a "clear and effective message"? Face the facts, the message being sent to Enbridge and the rest of the world is that it is still a divided issue in this town.