The Nova Scotia government is again soliciting the views of residents on topics like climate change and renewable energy sources.
Dalhousie University oceanographer Bob Fournier chaired the first of 12 public meetings Monday in this town.
The sessions will help the Nova Scotia Energy Department update the provincial energy plan of 2001.
Mr. Fournier chaired a series of public workshops back then that preceded the development of that strategy.
Things have changed since, Mr. Fournier said Monday.
“The first energy strategy that was put together in 2001 was the result of changes that were occurring in energy in North America at the time.
“Climate change has gone from an issue of some concern in 2001 to . . . the top of everybody’s agenda right now.”
And in 2001, there were no wind turbines operating in the province.
“In 2007, there are 40, I think, and we’re looking at maybe 250 in the next five to 10 years,” Mr. Fournier said.
Information gathered this fall from public sessions and written submissions will help the province create a revised energy strategy and climate change action plan, expected to be released in the spring, says the Energy Department’s website.
“This session is an attempt to bring people in a room and to provide them with a series of options and to hear them out, so that their response . . . can be folded into the ultimate strategy,” said Mr. Fournier.
He said. the province has committed itself to meeting a 2020 deadline to cut greenhouse gas emissions to 10 per cent below the 1990 level, while continuing to expand the provincial economy.
The next public meeting is today in Digby, beginning at 4 p.m.
Sessions will continue around the province, ending Dec. 6 in Halifax.
Submissions may also be made in writing to the Energy Department.
For details and a schedule of workshops: www.gov.ns.ca/energy/energystrategy.
By Brian Medel
20 November 2007
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