It is funny (peculiar) sometimes how a number of things can come together to create the proverbial “perfect storm”.
Chatham-Kent council recently supported a motion, the premise being that our constituency is suffering economically and environmentally, threatening the quality of life for every citizen in Southwestern Ontario, if not all of Canada .
Locally, based on both long-term and immediate impact, council proclaimed a Climate Change Emergency throughout our riding.
Culverts, drainage ditches, riverbanks, lake shores, beaches, bridges, roads, water quality – you name it – weather, flooding and erosion are doing long-term damage.
Coincidentally, CTV News out of Windsor the other night reported on the wind and high water levels in Rondeau Bay creating a “floating island” of marsh and reeds. Apparently, it’s causing havoc to beach-front property and destroying docks, boat launches, etc. The segment I found the most alarming was that the federal and provincial representatives from our area both claimed it was not in their jurisdiction.
As a citizen of Chatham-Kent-Leamington, I have difficulty with MP Dave Vankesteren and MPP Rick Nicholls, both Conservatives, simply washing their hands of any responsibility. It reminds me of the Pontius Pilate story or perhaps where Nero fiddled, sitting high above the city, as Rome burned.
At the very least, you would think they’d say something to the effect that “I’ll see what I can do” or “I’ll look into this and get back to you.” It would be a typically shallow response, but at least it would be something.
Do they both assume the various municipal governments, with their limited tax base, will take care of all of these flooding, air quality and weather-related problems.
This week’s edition of Maclean’s magazine is devoted to the theme of the Canadian environment, air quality, pipelines, carbon tax, etc.
Needless to say, there is a federal election pending in a couple of months that will focus on these issues. Like everyone else, I am concerned about the future of Canada, but right now, as a citizen of Chatham-Kent, I’m worried about our local members doing nothing to address our immediate problems.
Wash your hands gentlemen, if you like. Just don’t use the polluted water from the Thames, the Great Lakes shoreline or the water wells from North Kent.