New Car Idling Law Solves Nothing: WHOPPER WATCH .12.26


“I think it’s excellent.”

Angela Keller-Herzog, executive director with Community Associations for Environmental Sustainability, on the proposed City of Ottawa one-minute limit on car idling.


World coal consumption has reached an all-time high powered by demand from China and southeast Asia.

The Third World uses the atmosphere as a latrine and we are tap-dancing around whether idling bylaws should be changed to one minute. In terms of world greenhouse gases, this means nothing.

We are unlikely to stop a climate-change catastrophe. New York, the business and media capital of the world, has flooded twice and what resulted from that? Nothing.

Climate activists are focusing on their own little part but their own little part is just that. Not enough. It’s a shame. Good intentions won’t stop climate change which is here now, not coming. Witness two seasons of virtually no skating on the Rideau Canal, choking forest fires and tornadoes.

The Third World won’t stop polluting because it just says you First Worlders polluted like mad to get rich but now you want to hold us down. It’s an understandable argument.

We all share the same climate. Our little bit of action means nothing in the big scheme of things. We need to stop thinking locally and start thinking practically.

This idea doesn’t originate with me but it’s worth repeating. Rather than spending time and money on a bylaw that won’t be followed or enforced, let’s prepare for the inevitable. We will have weather extremes, flooding and huge economic changes. As a friend of mine said recently talking about Halifax when asked what people there should do, he responded: “Build a sea wall.”

So rather than design a worthless bylaw, let’s not build in flood plains anymore. Let’s strengthen our infrastructure to stand up to new rigours. Let’s discover how we can expertly respond to weather emergencies. The list goes on. These are things the city can address and much more worthwhile than a silly bylaw.

We need to start thinking about how to adjust to the inevitable. We need to start thinking about getting the rest of the world on board this vital issue. Something like: “If you don’t meet acceptable climate goals, we’ll stop buying your products.”

Worthless efforts and puny bylaws are good intentions just whistling past graveyards.

Ken Gray


Change Ottawa City Hall’s Ridiculous Culture: BENN

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Sorry David White, But Before You Go … : THE VOTER

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1 Response

  1. Doug says:

    Does anyone remember Earl McRae’s rant about drive through coffee outlets? His point was to park your car, go in and order and possibly meet some neighbours. A prophet in his own land?

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