Posted by: energyblogwalter | August 17, 2006

Oil, water, weather crises will hit cities :: Ottawa Sun August 17, 2006

From the Ottawa Sun:

Municipalities are facing a “perfect storm” once the era of cheap oil, cheap water and altered weather patterns hits with full force, says Ontario’s environmental commissioner.

In a chilling speech to municipal leaders yesterday, Gord Miller said municipalities are not ready for the massive effect on communities.

“We are entering a period of consequences,” said Miller. “Our present public policy is inadequate to deal with these immense problems that are upon us right now.”

Miller said that Ontarians’ consumption is growing by 3% a year. At that rate, the province would have to find four times the current electrical generation capacity to meet consumption needs in 23 years, he said.

“It can’t go on forever. Something is fundamentally flawed,” he said.

Miller said peak oil is going to create major upheavals.

“Our whole economic system is based on cheap oil,” said Miller. “There are 84 million barrels a day of oil consumed. What happens if you only produce 83 million? All of a sudden people start bidding and the price breaks free of the production curve and it gets worse and worse and worse.”

Miller said said the same logic applies to Ontario’s water supply.

And then there’s climate change. Engineers can no longer rely on historical weather patterns to design streets and bridges, Miller said.

“The design factors around these things are changing. Droughts, heat waves, violent storms, forest fires, floods — can your infrastructure handle it?” said Miller. “These are the predicted and actual impacts of climate change.”


  1. Peak oil gets mentioned in an Ontario paper. I wonder if it was only online? But it’s just the Sun, not the Globe.

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