John Thompson - Resources for Future Generations

June 15, 2018

Ep 195 John Thompson

Resources for Future Generations

 

French President Emmanuel Macron says, “There is no planet B”, in other words we need to take care of planet A. The statement is offered in the spirit of our environmental performance.

It suggests we need to change the way we extract, use and burn the minerals, elements and fuels of the earth or face an uncertain and potentially dire future.

 

The challenge of our time, however, lies in how to shift from where we are, to where we need to be. And recognizing at the same time the pressure to maintain our lifestyle and protect the economy will be intense as will the growing pressure to stop harming the planet.

Can science and technology provide solutions? How will we build those devices, design the systems and the vehicles we require? Where do the resources come from and are there enough essential elements?--

 

These are the questions that are being asked at, “The Resources for Future Generations” conference, an international event dedicated to the availability and delivery of resources to sustain future generations.

 

We invited John Thompson, the Chair of the conference to join us for a Conversation That Matters about strategies that will identify gaps in our knowledge base ensuring we meet the needs of future generations.

 

Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue presents Conversations That Matter. Join veteran Broadcaster Stuart McNish each week for an important and engaging Conversation about the issues shaping our future.

 

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Taryn Skalbania: Participatory Democracy in Action

June 12, 2018

Ep 194 Taryn Skalbania

Participatory Democracy in Action

 

Margaret Mead said, “never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; it’s the only thing that ever has.”  That statement epitomizes bare-knuckled democracy.

It’s underway right now in 21 communities in British Columbia. Communities that are fed up and they’re not going to take it anymore. They’ve come together to petition the Provincial Government to change regulations that favour resource developers over local citizens, local governments and the environment.

The BC Coalition for Forestry Reform says it’s time to put an end to a Campbell Government regulation that handed land use oversight back to the companies that are logging and mining on Crown Lands. The regulation is called, “professional reliance” or self regulation. Since its introduction more than 15 years ago the coalition says, “watersheds have come under attack and there is nothing local governments can do to stop it.”

The Coalition contends “professional reliance” puts logging companies in a conflict of interest. They say, “how can a company be entrusted to protect that very environment it utilizes to make money. The environment loses”

We invited Taryn Skalbania of the Peachland Watershed Protection Alliance to join us for a Conversation That Matters about the right to roll up your sleeves and make sure your government represents everyone’s interests.

Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue presents Conversations That Matter. Join veteran Broadcaster Stuart McNish each week for an important and engaging Conversation about the issues shaping our future.

Please become a Patreon subscriber and support the production of this program, with a $1 pledge https://goo.gl/ypXyDs

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Tom Davidoff Putting the brakes on Vancouver’s Housing Market

May 31, 2018

Tom Davidoff

Putting the brakes on Vancouver’s Housing Market

 

Vancouver’s housing market is a political and financial minefield. Measures to create housing for those who can’t afford Vancouver’s sky-high real estate appear to have backfired. The target started out as offshore, namely mainland Chinese buyers who were investing in Vancouver real estate. The new rules and taxes, however, appear to be a rich vs poor tax grab.

 

The City of Vancouver jumped in with both feet and created an empty home tax. Then the Provincial Government of Christy Clark was cajoled into introducing a foreign buyers tax.

Once in power, the NDP government decided to go two better. It introduced a “School Tax” and a “Speculation Tax” both with the stated purpose of making housing more affordable.

 

The consequences are doing little to improve affordability at the entry point to the market. The market for homes over $3 million has slowed down and prices of those properties are slipping. Despite the new taxes, those homes are still unaffordable.

 

Potential buyers have instead turned their attention to the lower end of the market and in doing so have set it ablaze. Prices for condos are soaring and pushing those properties out of reach from the very people the new taxes were designed to assist.

 

We invited Tom Davidoff, an Associate Professor at the Sauder School of Business, the man many see as the driving force behind the tax initiatives that have been introduced for a Conversation That Matters on his reasons for wanting to change the real estate market in Vancouver.

 

Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue presents Conversations That Matter. Join veteran Broadcaster Stuart McNish each week for an important and engaging Conversation about the issues shaping our future.

 

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LNG, First Nations - It’s time to decide

May 23, 2018

For LNG in BC it’s crunch time. The LNG Alliance says the time is now – decide to move forward and build and then start selling Natural Gas in 2023 or 2024, which is projected to be the next market window.

 

LNG Canada recently appointed a joint venture engineering firm as the prime contractor for the Kitimat site the company has cleared and is preparing for the building of a $40 billion dollar facility. The company, however, is yet to make its final investment decision. All signs suggest that will happen in late 2018.

 

Unlike Kinder Morgan, the government of British Columbia is firmly behind the project and appears to be going out of its way to accommodate the development of the Liquefied Natural Gas industry. Looming in the background is Green Party Leader Andrew Weaver who is as opposed to LNG as he is to the movement of oil.

 

And what about First Nations? Are they in support of the project? The First Nations LNG Alliance is an organization that represents 15 communities along the TransCanada Pipeline route that support the pipeline and the LNG facilities.

 

We asked Haisla Nation Chief Councillor Crystal Smith to join us for a Conversation That Matters about the risks and the benefits of supporting LNG Canada and other proponents in the development of an energy-based projects.

 

Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue presents Conversations That Matter. Join veteran Broadcaster Stuart McNish each week for an important and engaging Conversation about the issues shaping our future.

 

Please become a Patreon subscriber and support the production of this program, with a $1 pledge https://goo.gl/ypXyDs

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Why We Want Kinder Morgan Built, Cheam, Chief Ernie Crey

May 20, 2018

Why We Want Kinder Morgan Built

Cheam, Chief Ernie Crey

 

 

The Kinder Morgan pipeline is without a doubt the most divisive issue in Canada. It has the potential to tear at the fabric of our Confederation. The Federal Government, the governments of BC and Alberta and First Nations governments are all in a titanic battle.

 

A number of First Nations along the pipeline route do not want to see it built and others are anxious to see the oil flow through their territories.  The Frog Lake Nation of Alberta owns and operates an energy company and it says that without the pipeline, they can’t sell their oil. An outcome they say will doom them to continued poverty.

 

The Tsleil-Waututh Nation in British Columbia is adamantly opposed to the project and recently sent a delegation to Kinder Morgan’s annual general meeting in Houston to voice its concerns.

 

The various positions within indigenous communities reflect the divisions over the pipeline throughout the rest of the country. First Nations like cities and provinces have rights that require consultation, agreement and consent.

 

While many First Nations leaders are opposed to the pipeline, 33 Indigenous communities have signed agreements with Kinder Morgan supporting the project and they are speaking out because they say their position is being misrepresented. Simpcw Chief, Nathan Matthew made it clear his band supports the project and he stated that no other organization or First Nation has the authority to speak on the Simpcw’s behalf.

 

Cheam First Nations Chief Ernie Crey has taken to social and mainstream media to voice his support for the project. We invited Chief Crey to join us for a Conversation That Matters about his Nation’s reasons for supporting the building of the controversial pipeline.

 

Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue presents Conversations That Matter. Join veteran Broadcaster Stuart McNish each week for an important and engaging Conversation about the issues shaping our future.

 

Please become a Patreon subscriber and support the production of this program, with a $1 pledge https://goo.gl/ypXyDs

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LNG = Fracking with Brad Hayes

May 10, 2018

Ep 19o

Brad Hayes

LNG = Fracking

 

Now that the Premier of British Columbia has gone out of his way to accommodate the building of a massive LNG production facility in Kitimat we have to ask, where will the gas come from?

The answer of course is, it comes from under the ground in both BC and Alberta.

Natural Gas is the byproduct of decayed plant and animal life that was compacted and pressurized by layers of sand and rock over millions of years. Deep under the earth’s crust in temperatures that exceed 120 degrees Celsius, the organic matter cooks and eventually the carbon bonds in the organic material break down and fossil fuels are formed. This is known as, "Primary Gas."

Secondary Natural Gas accompanies oil which cooks for many millions of years more.

Getting that gas out of the ground means drilling and it also means hydraulic fractured drilling also known as fracking.

What exactly is fracking? How is the operation carried out and more importantly is it a process we want to be a by-product of the LNG industry we’re inviting to set up shop in British Columbia?

We invited Brad Hayes, the Director of the Canadian Society of Unconventional Resources, an adjunct professor at the University of Alberta and a respected expert on fracking to join us for a Conversation That Matters about fracking.

Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue presents Conversations That Matter. Join veteran Broadcaster Stuart McNish each week for an important and engaging Conversation about the issues shaping our future.

Please become a Patreon subscriber and support the production of this program, with a $1 pledge https://goo.gl/ypXyDs

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First Nations and LNG with Ellis Ross

May 7, 2018

Ellis Ross

First Nations and LNG

 

Liquefied natural gas, LNG, is on the horizon in British Columbia.

 

The BC government supports it, and sees LNG exports as a source of revenue and jobs.

But will LNG plants and their associated natural-gas pipelines get built? If so, when?

There are obstacles along the way, and one is First Nations participation.

 

The public is often told that First Nations in BC are opposed to energy development, that they are in agreement with environmentalists who want to stop the development of carbon fuels in the province.

 

The First Nations LNG Alliance says that perception is both exaggerated and incorrect. The alliance includes communities between the northeast of the province and Kitimat, where two major LNG facilities are in the final stages of making investment decisions.

 

The Alliance is a collective of First Nations that states its objective is to participate in, and be supportive of, sustainable and responsible LNG development in the province.

 

Above all else, they say the creation of opportunities for First Nations men and women to find employment in their communities is a top priority. So is bringing in revenue to close the economic gap between Indigenous communities and the non-Indigenous.

 

We asked former Haisla Chief Councillor, Ellis Ross, now the MLA for Skeena to join us for a Conversation That Matters to talk about why he opposed the Northern Gateway Pipeline but supports the development of LNG in BC.  

 

 

Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue presents Conversations That Matter. Join veteran Broadcaster Stuart McNish each week for an important and engaging Conversation about the issues shaping our future.

Please become a Patreon subscriber and support the production of this program, with a $1 pledge https://goo.gl/ypXyDs

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LNG in an Age of Uncertainty

April 30, 2018

David Keane

LNG in an age of uncertainty

 

The Premier of British Columbia is standing on his head vowing to stop the increase in the flow of oil from Alberta. At the same time he is green lighting the development of LNG in his own province.

 

LNG is considered to be the clean alternative to carbon fuels and the Premier wants to see an increase in the amount of it produced in BC. When Natural Gas prices were high, the tax revenue from natural gas to the province was substantial.

 

Then, just as it seemed the industry was about to make final investment decisions in the development of large LNG processing facilities in BC, two things happened, the market for Natural Gas was flooded with new discoveries everywhere and the cost of production in BC soared.

 

As well, a host of new regulations and taxes were introduced in BC and the prospect of capitalizing on Asian demand for LNG came to an abrupt halt. The window of opportunity closed.

 

Energy experts now predict the next supply opportunity window is set to open in 2023. If BC hopes to be a participant in that market it has to decide now to either go ahead or turn its back on the market.

 

We asked David Keane, the CEO of the BC LNG Alliance to join us for a Conversation That Matters on the state of LNG in BC.

 

Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue presents Conversations That Matter. Join veteran Broadcaster Stuart McNish each week for an important and engaging Conversation about the issues shaping our future.

 

Please become a Patreon subscriber and support the production of this program, with a $1 pledge https://goo.gl/ypXyDs

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Precious Metals in the Green Economy

April 26, 2018

Precious Metals in the Green Economy

 

The world is turning to green technology in an effort to reduce our impact on the environment. It is a global movement moving at different speeds in different jurisdictions. All the same, we are all moving towards an energy transition.

What is rarely discussed is our relationship with the elements that are required to build green technology. Where will these elements come from?

Interestingly, they will come from the same places we currently mine.  We will still need to extract elements from Mother Earth, the difference will be in the end use but not in the source.

Precious metals play a vital role in computing technologies and particularly in cleaning the emissions that exit the tailpipe of gas and diesel vehicles. Platinum and Palladium, for example, is a rare and precious metal that is an absolute requirement in catalytic converters.

Research is underway to determine if palladium can not only speed up the rate of battery charging but also extend the life of the charge.

With more than one billion cars on the road around the world, we sat down with platinum and palladium miner Mike Jones for a Conversation That Matters about the ongoing role of metals in the green economy.

 

Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue presents Conversations That Matter. Join veteran Broadcaster Stuart McNish each week for an important and engaging Conversation about the issues shaping our future.

 

Please become a Patreon subscriber and support the production of this program, with a $1 pledge https://goo.gl/ypXyDs

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Treating Illness with Fecal Transplants: Dr Jeremy Burton

April 5, 2018

Jeremy Burton

Treating Illness with Fecal Transplants

 

What happens when your microbiome goes off the rails?

C Difficile infection is a common problem. What is C-Difficile you ask? Well it happens as a reaction to the consumption of some antibiotics. C-Diff for short, is a species of Gram-positive spore-forming bacteria accumulating in your gastrointestinal tract.

The symptoms can be diarrhoea, fever, nausea and abdominal pain.

There are a number of treatments, some work and some don’t. That’s because the bacteria may have already developed a resistance to antibiotics. That can mean a dramatic intervention may be required and one dramatic treatment option is fecal microbiota transplantation.

You’ve heard about fecal transplantation but that doesn’t mean it’s readily available. And it’s important to note it is filled with a wide range of challenges. Just as in organ transplant, there needs to be a match between the donor and the patient.

Canada has been an early adopter of this procedure and researchers are now asking if it can be applied in a number of other conditions such as diabetes and obesity. Those researchers are trying to determine if you can change the microbiome can you then change the health outcome.

We invited Dr Jeremy Burton the Deputy Director of the Canadian Centre for Human Microbiome and Probiotics to join us for a Conversation That Matters about the exciting research underway in treating your well-being by re-engineering the bacteria in your intestinal tract.

Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue presents Conversations That Matter. Join veteran Broadcaster Stuart McNish each week for an important and engaging Conversation about the issues shaping our future.

 

Please become a Patreon subscriber and support the production of this program, with a $1 pledge https://goo.gl/ypXyDs

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