My welfare food challenge: Day 1

Oct 16, 2013
Today is Day 1 of my welfare food challenge, during which I will spend one week trying to eat on a total budget of $26. You can read more about the Welfare Food Challenge here. I’ve been researching and writing about welfare policy since the late 1990s (including a major 2008 study entitled Living on… View Article

Why the City of Vancouver should divest from fossil fuels

Oct 9, 2013
This is the text of remarks I made today to Vancouver city council on divestment. Earlier this year, Council requested that staff report back on how the city’s financial investments align with the city’s mission and values, and various ethical programs like the city’s purchasing policy and the greenest city initiative. So the meeting was… View Article

Time to redesign BC’s GHG policy

Oct 8, 2013
No matter where you stand on GHGs and climate change, one thing is very clear. British Columbia GHG policy is a mess. It is not just that GHG reduction targets were legislated without any credible plan to achieve them and, given our current industrial strategy, little prospect of doing so. It is the complete lack… View Article

IPCC: Time for a Global Carbon Budget

Sep 27, 2013
Political commitments on climate action, to the extent they exist, are usually pitched in terms of targets and timelines. BC, for example, has a legislated target of 33% below 2007 levels by 2020; Canada’s official target is a 17% reduction by 2020 relative to 2005 levels. Neither target will be met under status quo policy,… View Article

Stats Can rebuts CFIB on public sector sick leave

Sep 20, 2013
Yesterday Statistics Canada published a nice counterpoint to part of the relentless drumbeat against public employees by organizations like the Fraser Institute and the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB). Last December the CFIB published a report noting the horrifying finding that when it came to sick, disability and personal days off, public sector workers… View Article

Deconstructing BC Hydro’s Rate Increase

Sep 14, 2013
When the government imposed its Energy Plan on BC Hydro it never bothered to estimate the costs (or for that matter the benefits) of what it hoped to achieve. Ardent supporters of that Plan, like my good friend Mark Jaccard, constructed scenarios under which it would make sense to force BC Hydro to buy more… View Article