In his recent letter to the editor, MLA Pat Bell compared the Liberal governments bold strategy for the development of LNG projects with W.A.C. Bennetts vision for the development of hydroelectricity projects in BC.
The Bennett dam projects were long term in nature. Fifty years later, B.C. residents continue to reap the benefits and will continue to do so into the future. LNG projects are short term. According to budget documents, the proposed accelerated pace of natural gas exports could see our gas gone in as little as 30 years. The budget fails to mention how most Prince George residents will heat their homes once the gas is gone.
LNG will provide direct benefits to little more than a generation of B.C. residents. The recently released budget talks about how to get our gas out of the ground as quickly as possible in order to provide maximum benefit to today's generation. It makes no mention of what jobs our children will pursue in the future once the gas is gone. Perhaps they will survive on handouts from the ill defined "prosperity fund." Nor does the budget mention what will happen to resource based towns that experience boom, and then bust.
Bell extols a project lacking vision for the future, and compares it with one whose vision was all about the future. He compares a project that produces long term energy for use in B.C. businesses with one which ships our energy overseas for businesses elsewhere.
Bells attempt to compare plans for LNG exports with the hydroelectric dam projects of the past demeans the forward thinking nature of past governments while underlining the lack of vision in the current one.