Shawnigan Lake – It was interesting to read letters about the hypocrisy in the environmental groups. I am not sure that it is hypocrisy. I believe they truly are committed to what they do, but in reality they do not represent the views of very many people. Below is some data that seems to support that observation. The environmentalists are in the minority and out of touch with reality and they really offer no solutions merely lots of nice Pollyanna sayings, etc.
The bestselling vehicle in North America is the Ford F-150 and of all the sales in 2014 in Canada the half ton truck was among the top sellers. Here is the data total car sales: 763,792, total truck sales including the top selling F-150: 1,087,910 (this includes Ford, GM, Chrysler, Toyota).
This is the reality; even those who do not need a truck for work are buying big gas-guzzling trucks. It is highly unlikely that those are environmentalists and do not see this as an issue despite the claims being made by the environmentalists.
All of the heating oil, gasoline, diesel, etc. gets to the Island via tanker or on the ferry but either way it crosses the channel to the Island to one of the terminals, where large tanker trucks move the product to gas stations and bulk terminals for distribution to homes.
Assuming our buying pattern for large trucks is similar and our need for heating oil, it is not deceasing (given the continuous Hydro increases it is unlikely to change). We clearly depend on petroleum products on the Island that allow us to travel on the Island and to heat our homes. Surprise, even the environmentalists rely on this as well.
I do not know the actual number of people who live on the Island and work in the oil patch or out of town. They all fly to where they are working or drive if feasible.
I would estimate based on an interview with an employment agency in Victoria that there are several hundred people working in the oil patch who live in our region. They pay income taxes, sales taxes and property taxes as well as shop here. So we want to be real careful about throwing rocks at those folks by criticizing the companies that employ them. We may see the impact of the low oil prices in the Valley, i.e. cheap gas and fewer people are working up in the oil sands. But have no doubt that the prices will rebound and projects will go a head as planned maybe a few years later.
Finally, just to put this in perspective, any time I have gone past Timmies in Duncan or anywhere in the Valley and there are a large number of single passenger trucks and other vehicles in the drive thru – oops, idle lane. I am sure there are no environmental protesters in that line.
So there really is no hypocrisy on the Island, there are just some vocal, everyday, ordinary environmentalists who may or may not walk the talk. The rest of the world; in the words of the famous movie Gone With The Wind “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn”. Most of the people here are going to drive our gas or diesel engine cars and trucks and they will continue to go to Timmies’ idle lane. Sorry environmentalist.