The letter "Canada Needs the Northern Gateway" appearing Feb. 23 in The Okanagan Saturday is missing the point.
Canada does not need the Northern Gateway. The fossil-fuel industry needs it.
Each country on our planet is interconnected through a common atmosphere.
Carbon dioxide, derived from the combustion of fossil fuels anywhere, ultimately resides within the common atmosphere, warming our planet which in turn produces drought, flooding and other devasting weather events, such as the recent storm "Sandy" in the United States.
The public cost of such events are beyond the affordability of taxpayers.
While the construction and operation of this pipeline is risky enough, the real problem posed is that it will promote expanded development and transportation of tar sands and heavy oil in northern Alberta.
Current green thinking is that the development of renewable energy will displace the burning of fossil fuels. Australians are successfully using wind energy to generate electric power and this is being done on a commercial scale at
a lower price than the former sources of energy - natural gas and coal.
Consider this comparison of the current costs (Australia) of electricity:
$80/Megawatt-hour (wind farm)
$116/Megawatt-hour (gas plant)
Solar, ocean-wave and other forms of renewables are not far behind. Whenever discussing this topic, I am reminded of a famous quip from USA Today: "If we really are wrong about climate change, we will have created a better world for nothing."