Re: Brian Smith’s letter (Coast Reporter, Nov. 30).
The letter implies that grey-haired Coasters who support the environmental movement are selfish. I am one of those people, and I don’t believe I’m being selfish by coming out in support of the environment.
It’s true that my generation has depleted the world’s resources and damaged the environment. But to accuse us of being selfish just because we’re trying to save what’s left of the environment is out of line. I’m someone who works hard to earn my modest salary, pay my taxes, manage my debts, try to minimize my own pollution of the world, take care of my plot of land, eat as little meat as possible, etc.
I’m not against the industries that create jobs. But it is we, the people, who own the natural resources. The people have a right to say “no” to the wanton destruction caused by projects like the tar sands, and to demand that a tiny patch of Sunshine Coast forest be set aside from the thousands of hectares that are being logged.
The best way to ensure that there will be jobs in the future is by preserving our natural environment. We have a responsibility to counterbalance the profit incentive of the companies by factoring in the staggering environmental costs of projects like the tar sands. Who’s going to pay those costs? Our grandchildren?
Fortunately, the environmental movement is more than just a few old guys on the Sunshine Coast. It includes thousands of young people. They’re the ones who most acutely feel the impact of our society’s excessive lifestyle. And they’re the ones who will eventually replace our generation of short-sighted politicians and climate change deniers, and find ways to build a greener future.
Robert O’Neill, Roberts Creek