It’s nice to know that someone is paying attention to my column in the TJ. It would be boring if everyone agreed with me all the time, wouldn’t it? I have met Dr. Moir on several occasions and find him to be a smart and engaging fellow but we are just going to have to disagree (agreeably) on this issue.
My point in the column was that I wished environmentalists would agree that using our indigenous natural gas resources, is a good thing that will bring economic value to New Brunswick. If they started at that point, and then went on to discuss how this development could occur with minimal environmental impact, that would be – I think – the basis for a good development path. But, as I said and Dr. Moir confirmed in his op/ed, they adopt an aggressive, anti-company stance and that is not conducive to working together. He says:
However, it is fundamentally unfair to let companies simply reap the cash rewards – often with government inducements like tax incentives, royalty breaks, subsidies, and variances – while expecting the rest of us to pay. Indeed, in New Brunswick our business mantra seems to be “privatize profit and socialize risk.”
If Dr. Moir wants to engage and be a partner in this does he think this statement is conducive to working together? If I said “all environmentalists are trying to empoverish our communities” would that set the good will to work together?
If environmentalists want to be at the table (and Moir says that is true), they should admit these companies have a right to exist and New Brunswick has a right to use its natural resources for the betterment of the society.
Park the rhetoric and build goodwill.