Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Bill Bennett gets to stay

Bill Bennett, the former minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources now the minister of Energy policy issues, criticized the premier quite severely about the changes in the ministries.   He has been allowed to stay on as minister.

Public dissent seems to be allowed by the BC Liberals but not by the BC NDP.   It once again highlights one of my major concerns about the BC NDP at the moment - there is no space for anyone express independent thoughts if there is any potential to disagree with the leader.

For the record, I like Bill Bennett and I like the fact that he speaks out honestly.    I am glad that he was not removed from cabinet or the government caucus.  


Unknown said...

Bill Bennett has a lot of the right stuff.

He called the "post-progressive" anti-democratic entitlement-seeking environmental activists (many of whom are funded by public unions) as "eco-fascists". He is absolutely right.

Unknown said...

Thanks Bernard on your clarification on ILMB.

However, I am not so pessimistic because from my neck of the woods (power), the previous setting was untenable - in particular regarding FN and EA matters. The power and mining sectors have very different dynamics as compared to forestry (your side) or agriculture. Little EA and FN happens on the forestry ends. When a power producer wants to cut a few trees to open half a hectare for the powerhouse, you need to see the kind of hoops he has to jump through (how about setting up radar stations to track marbled murrelets - or how about getting the band to OK that there are no graves in that half a hectare).

I doubt the forestry folks have any of these problems and issues for cutting down half a hectare of 2nd growth, much less thousands of hectares.

I will write more of my thoughts regarding your interesting analysis on the restructuring later. Suffice it to say that the FN unit (if there was ever such a thing) at MEMPR (Energy) was disfunctional and non-impacting. Same with MARR (their IPP unit). So FN matters were being resolved at Agriculture which owned ILMB. That is how spirits were discovered in Fries Creek and ILMB went along with it, naturally without evidence, and decided to cancel the IPP project (which had spent years and millions) because someone's great great grandma had seen spirits dancing.

Bernard said...

The First Nations consultation is an area where the government long ago could have come up with a better model and approach, I am not at all convinced this new MNRO will make that happen because of the nature of the focus of the Ministry.

As to FN issues and forestry, there is lots going on all the time.

Mining remain primarily in trouble due to the environmental assessment process and the need for a social license to operate, not a legal requirement, but a defacto need.

I know that IPPs have been consistently running into problems with getting even the smallest thing done and then being blackmailed by local governments for Impact Benefit Agreements. There is a world of issues going on there that I am not convinced this new structure will have any impact on.

Bernard said...

Sia, if you read this, drop me a direct line as I would be interested in a much more detailed conversation with you.

bernard at shama.ca