‘Greenest neighbourhood’ a fallacy

Gordon Head Green voters appear to not be any more environmentally active as non-Greens

Re: A one-man green machine (Saanich News, May 17)

The first sentence claims “Gordon Head is the greenest neighbourhood in the country.”  What a sad and astonishing statement.

Oak Bay-Gordon Head may have elected a Green party candidate, but there is pathetically little evidence to demonstrate that the residents are “green” in any meaningful way. Just putting a blue box at the curb doesn’t cut it.

I live in the riding and during the election had a close look at the houses that put up Green party signs. One would expect these residences to stand out as examples of environmentally friendly living.

Not so. I have no way of knowing whether Green party voters grow all the food they eat, weave all their own clothes and make their own shoes.

But when it comes to transport, I can verify they get around just the same as everyone else. Many homes I checked had multiple vehicles in the driveway and more than half had an SUV, the most inefficient and polluting class of passenger vehicles. I saw more pickup trucks than hybrids and not one electric car.

It is easy to observe that Green voters behave just like the rest of the population, in which commuters overwhelmingly choose private cars over the bus and only a handful bike to work.

One expects Green party supporters to be avid users of solar power, but I saw only one or two solar hot-water panels and no solar-electric arrays on any of the houses.

Even if they heed Capital Regional District watering restrictions, Green party voters should be keen water conservationists. I saw no evidence of rainwater recovery systems. Planted roofs? Didn’t see one.

The riding is characterized by aging, conventionally built, single-family homes on separate lots, normally kept tidy with highly polluting gas mowers and trimmers. If all this makes Gordon Head “the greenest neighbourhood” in Canada, our species is doomed for sure.

The past 12 years and the recent election have shown that the B.C. Liberals care little about facts, scientific evidence or the truth. In the face of this and as the only MLA for his party, Andrew Weaver may find, ironically, that his speeches in the legislature achieve little more than an incremental rise in global warming.

Don White

Saanich

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