I think the hue and cry about "greenwashing" is generally overdone, for reasons I’ve discussed at length elsewhere. But the Tyee has a great story today that looks like a bona fide example of selling a big infrastructure project as "green" when its consequences will be just the opposite.
It’s about a proposal by Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper to extend the electricity grid up to people up on the Alaska panhandle in northern B.C., so they can stop powering their stuff with dirty diesel fuel. But:
The Highway 37 electrification project, as it’s known, has been on the drawing board for years. It’s still in the proposal stage, although its backers are lobbying the government vigorously and the province seems open to the project.
But calculations by the Dogwood Initiative suggest that the government could get the area off diesel for $22 million or less — as opposed to the $326 million cost of hooking the area up to the grid.
The extra $300 million or so is only necessary if the government intends to open the area up to mining, the environmental organization claims.