Powder River Basin Coal-train
BC's Coal Follies, like the LNG boondoggles, smell like crap because they are. Why? First, in capitalist framing, it's a total financial loser for everyone involved except the construction industry and its suppliers who stands to make multi-million$ building the FSD coal facility Why? Because by the time it's built China will already be well on its way out of the thermal coal and into nuclear power for their electricity generation. Further, as Asian demand for the Powder River Basin's type of coal plummets so will its price and Australia, Russia and Mongolia, who all have shit-loads of the stuff, that's far closer to Asia will be the supppliers.
Coal has two main uses in Asia and beyond - steel production and electricity generation. BC mines and exports metallurgical coal. which is used to produce steel. The Powder River Basin, where FSDs exported coal would come from, mines and ships thermal coal which is used almost exclusively in power production, is the single greatest source of deadly local pollution in Asia, and a huge contributor to trans-ocean pollution as well.
Sunrise in Bejing
As The Dogwood Initiative's article 'Coal, BC's Dirty Secret' says, "Canada's justification that this coal is being burned elsewhere is disingenuous, the accounting rules veil which jurisdictions are truly responsible for producing and exporting toxic products that warm the planet and threaten the future of our children and grandchildren. It’s similar to Colombian cocaine cartels or Asian heroin growers claiming they have no responsibility, because most of their addictive products are consumed in other countries. Imagine if they said, 'We don’t use it, we just sell it.'”
Coal is a toxic product. Its mining, transport and combustion create grave risks to human health, to quality of life in communities surrounding mines, rail lines, port facilities and power plants and to the global climate. The FSD expansion would be built to handle up to 4 million metric tonnes of this crap every year [the proposal is only projected to create 25 new jobs at FSD]...every year until it goes bankrupt, that is. When that happens guess who's gonna pay? The BC taxpayers that's who.
Just like in the LNG boondoggle, the BC guberment will be guaranteeing the loans to FSD 'investors. and other related connivers, as an inducement to invest their dough. Otherwise the investors would run away from it as fast as possible. The same consumers buying China's needless crap, in addition to putting their neighbors out of work from what was once a decent paying domestic manufacturing job, in addition to all of us breathing the polluted air coming back across the Pacific from Asia's 'low cost' production facilities, in addition to the all the other nightmares engulfing fair Gaia that economists call externalities, BC taxpayers will get to bail out their poison-ers. Ain't neo-liberal capitalism grand!
Christy Clark and her henchmen know all this, they aren't innocently putting forth a mistaken viewpoint they honestly hold, they are deceiving people. They, like politicians everywhere, do it because it works. The few who profit, including the market's short sellers, love neo-liberal policies, how about you?