Once again the silence was deafening. One might recall that in March of 2007 the Canadian census report was released and revealed that immigrant-driven growth made Canada the fastest growing country in the G-8 at a ruinous pace of 5.4% in 5 years. 70% of that portion was attributable to immigration and its effects were evident in farmland and species loss as well as pollution and pressure on landfills and fisheries, among other things. But not a single environmental organization chose to counter what became a cheerleading chorus amongst editorialists and commentators across the country for our record growth.
Now it seems that the cat still has environmentalists’ tongue. On Saturday July 26th, 2008, in a story that was repeated in many other news outlets, The Canadian Press reported that a Romanian immigrant couple in Abbotsford, British Columbia had their 18th child in 23 years, 13 of whom have been born since they came to Canada in 1990.
They explained that they “never planned how many children to have…we just let God guide our lives, you know, because we strongly believe life comes from God and that’s the reason we did not stop life.”
Seeing how it is God’s personal choice, apparently neither the Sierra Club, the David Suzuki Foundation, or the other major environmental groups are making mention of the environmental impact that this Romanian couple, the “Ionces”, are having on the planet. Even so, by living in Canada rather than Romania, each Ionce child is , by 2003 footprinting data, contributing 2.73 times more GHG emissions to the atmosphere than he or she is had he or she stayed in Romania. The total cost to the planet for God’s personal choice, and the Immigration Minister’s decision to let the Ionces emigrate to Canada, is 314.82 metric tonnes per year for the 18 children.
British Columbia Premier Gordon Campbell and his Environment Minister Barry Penner just finished spending a bundle of taxpayer money on glossy propaganda pushing his fancy “carbon tax” scheme which is supposed to do wonders to counter climate change in this province. Oddly, no comment issued forth from his office about God’s personal choice in Abbotsford to thwart the good effects of the carbon tax scheme.
I think that could be for the very good reason that neither the Premier of British Columbia nor any politician in Canada nor any environmental organization in our country will ever acknowledge a link between population growth via the maternity ward or the airport and increased greenhouse gas emissions.
As could be predicted, the CBC, the public broadcasting network that we are constantly told is necessary to give us a critical perspective that commercial broadcasting doesn’t give us, failed to offer any critical commentary of the story, but just parroted what the Canadian Press already provided, as a heart warming human interest tale.
Didn’t Simon and Garfunkel do a song called “The Sounds of Silence”? Could have been the theme song about our population debate.