Backing down

It’s interesting that the Kenney government has backed down on the coal lease issue. More than merely interesting, of course, for those who so vehemently opposed coal mining in the Eastern Slopes. It appears that cherished landscape is mostly safe from being torn apart. For now.

Politically, though, it’s a weird situation. That makes two or three times now the current government has proposed something and then backed down in the face of loud outcry. It probably doesn’t want to get too much into the habit of doing that. It’s a hell of a way to govern. Run up a flag to see which way the wind is blowing, and how briskly it blows. Then haul that flag down and head back to the drawing board.

How to get the fiscal house in order remains one of the big questions for the government. Broadly speaking, the plan is to stimulate the economy (so as to generate more revenue), along with cutting government spending. Basic stuff. How to do it, though. Apparently approving coal leases isn’t one of the acceptable methods. Then what is?

Alternative, low-impact energy development seems an obvious thing to explore. It is being explored, but perhaps not enough by a government obsessed with exposing the enemies of fossil fuels.

There is some sort of balanced approach possible. There must be. But finding it is the trick. The way things are going it will take more than one term. And (let’s go out on a limb here), the next provincial election will not be another cakewalk for the United Conservatives.

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