Harper's Closing of the ELA is an Example of Christian Fundamentalism's War on Science

The remote Experimental Lakes Area in northwestern Ontario.

Marguerite A. Xenopoulos of Trent University's Department of Biology wrote a letter to the DFO recently that's been widely published saying in part, "I hope you [DFO] also appreciate that my group at Trent is working diligently to improve Canada's environmental protection." For the Trent University group, which was awarded an $800,000 federal research grant from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada in 2011, the closure is devastating. .“This decision is totally unnecessary,” she said, “We have our own research funding. I don’t know what they’re thinking.”

A University of Regina biogeochemist, Britt Hall, who is a director of a group dedicated to saving the ELA, said, “The Department of Fisheries and Oceans has declared that the Experimental Lakes Area will be mothballed on March 31st. Scientists won’t even be able to visit the facility, and only a site manager will be on location after that date." But a leaked letter sent from the DFO to the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources showed that the Memorandum of Understanding to operate the Experimental Lakes Area won’t come to an end until September 2013.

The Harper government says the decision to close the facility, part of last year’s budget cuts, will save it about $2 million a year, although sources say the actual operating cost of the facility is about $600,000 annually, of which a third comes back in user fees. The Conservative war on science knows no bounds. With logging companies revving up their chainsaws, the ELA could be transformed from a unique space for scientific experiments to a clear cut.

Stephen Harper, like any good Christian Fundamentalist, doesn't need the advice of scientists because he already knows 'The Truth'. He knows that the imaginary being he calls God is sovereign over creation and therefore humans can do no permanent damage. Harper gets all the advice he needs from the Cornwall Alliance, a coalition of right-wing scholars, economists and evangelicals. The Alliance church informs him that the free market is divinely inspired and that non-believers are "lost." Harper knows that as The Cornwall Declaration on Environmental Stewardship says environmentalist's and scientists are evil.

A book published by the Alliance called Resisting the Green Dragon: Dominion not Death even portrays environmental groups as "one of the greatest threats to society and the church today." One passage in it reads, "The Green Dragon must die... [There] is no excuse to become befuddled by the noxious Green odors and doctrines emanating from the foul beast..."

Harper and his Christian Fundamentalist ilk believe the Bible is without error. They, like other religion's fundamentalist fanatics, are the greatest danger our species faces today because they cannot be reasoned with, no new information can sway them because any deviation from their church's teachings would, in their minds, condemn them to an eternity in hell. What Canadians, and others everywhere, face is nothing less than a philosophical war for the future of the planet.