Comment 5366

By Ryan (registered) - website | Posted February 12, 2007 at 11:11:35

Hi Concerned Observer,

You can see the report here:

(I also added the link to the article above at Nicholas' request).

Re: "balance": Growth in Hamilton has been remarkably unbalanced for the past several decades. We have the highest rate of greenfield development in the Golden Horseshoe and are busy bankrupting ourselves to build a half-billion dollar highway for the sole purpose of opening still more greenfields up to development.

Thanks to the city's tax structure, every house build on greenfields actually increases the city's deficit, since the development fees and property taxes are not enough to pay for public infrastructure to these buildings.

We're investing billions of dollars altogether in a land use and transportation system with very poor long-term prospects. To take one example, if oil prices exceed $75 per barrel, every airline in North America will lose money.

Once global oil production goes into decline (it's been on a plateau around 84 million barrels per day for the past two years), air transport will cease to be a practical mode and the airport will cease to be an engine of economic growth.

In case you conclude that Richard Gilbert is just a peak-oil crank, let me share an anecdote. I met him in the summer of 2005, just after the city hired him, to talk about his approach to the report. he decided that gasolie prices would have to rise above $4 per litre before it forced structural changes to our society.

He was just starting his research, but told me he expected he would find a less than 50 percent chance of this happening in the next 25 years, and that he would probably end up suggesting Hamilton keep energy conservation/production in mind as a "Plan B".

By the time he was finished his research, he concluded that there was a better than 50 percent chance of gas prices hitting $4 per litre in the next 12 years, and he had shifted his recommendation to make an energy policy Hamilton's "Plan A".

Permalink | Context

Events Calendar

Recent Articles

Article Archives

Blog Archives

Site Tools