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City lacks toxic plan

Sophie Gaska's Oct. 11 letter, Ignoring the residents, sums up another concern in the ongoing discussion on fire safety in industrial areas of the city as well as heavy-truck traffic to and from these areas.

Many cities (Brandon being one) regulate hazardous materials travelling through their communities. The simple explanation for such laws is to control toxic and flammable substances that move through neighbourhoods and to plan for emergencies should the worst happen.

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As far as I know, Winnipeg has nothing like this. There are no signs at entry points to the city advising truckers of routes or even providing information on who to contact for information if they are hauling a haz-mat cargo.

Consequently, the heavy-truck traffic along streets like Provencher, or any other regional street, is an unknown factor.

Any regulation on zoning for heavy industry must contain language on how to get these substances to and from the supplier and end user. Semi-trucks carrying thousands of gallons of fuel should not be thundering through residential neighbourhoods.




Treaties are forever

People like Cal Paul are afraid of the truth (Student indoctrination, Letters, Oct. 11). I can only refer to Treaty No. 10 of 1906, as I belong to that treaty.

The word "forever" is used in that treaty in regards to the lands we, the Dene, gave up to the Government of Canada. Maybe Paul should study contract law and see who got the advantage and the better deal from these Indian treaties.

I get $5 per year in perpetuity and some promises of help for all the lands and resources that we gave up forever. Every red cent that all Canadian governments collect as taxes comes from the lands and resources that aboriginals gave up to the government for the amount quoted above.

The Dene have lived up to our agreements but the governments have not. The European immigrants to Canada, especially between 1896-1921, were not exactly the cream of European society. They were the poor, the destitute, the homeless and, as Archie Bunker once said, the deadbeats of Europe.

I will suggest to Paul (to whom I am no relation, thank the Great Spirit) that he study history and stop promoting his brand of thought about the aboriginal people of Canada. I have taught history for many years to high school students and my major at the University of Manitoba was European history.




Ludicrous agenda

I was born and raised in Winkler and am offended that Peter Neufeld (Disrespecting Winkler, Letters, Oct. 8) could use this tragedy to set forth his own ludicrous agenda.

Much could be said of his unintelligent and antiquated comments, but I will reserve further judgment. I have always been proud to be a Mennonite, but to be associated with this thinking saddens and embarrasses me.




Resources already exist

Letter writer Candice Bodnaruk (A way to help homeless, Oct. 5) thinks everyone can somehow be saved only if the business community would "quietly pay for their fair share of personal and corporate taxes," which in turn "would ensure our provincial government is better able to deliver social programs to the homeless and those on the margins."

I believe that most people, including myself and those in the business community, already think we are taxed to the limit, and there are plenty of social programs in place for the people who really want to better themselves.

Winnipeg's business community raised $191,644 to help the homeless obtain employment, but Bodnaruk still criticizes. She believes "food and shelter" come first, but she has it backward: an income from a job guaranties food and shelter. If one is given one before the other, it will surely invite more abuse.

The provincial government spends enough money delivering social programs to those who truly want help and could do more for them if they were more diligent in prosecuting the abusers. But for the likes of Bodnaruk, enough is never enough.




A panic response

Re: Temperatures have risen (Letters, Oct. 10). Stephen Berg's attempt to ridicule Gerald Machnee's excellent, scientific and thought-provoking letter is the usual panic response from the global-warming religion.

Machnee states the response to the International Panel on Climate Change's own report was politically charged, and it was. The IPCC concluded there had been no global warming for 15 years. The actual time is closer to 17 years.

But even with this scientific truth staring them in the face, the IPCC continues with the charade of global warming and climate change with carbon dioxide as the culprit. But CO2 has increased at least 2 1/2 times since 1997. A rational person, especially a scientist, would surmise that CO2 has little or nothing to do with global warming.

The ice caps in the Arctic and Antarctic are now expanding. Since 2002, 60 per cent of ice mass has returned to the North. The Antarctic's ice has been growing for a much longer period. We are actually in a cooling period now, not a warming period.

This has much to do with solar cycles. The Earth has had them before. It is having a cooling cycle now and the Earth will have them in the future.




Gerald Machnee's letter panning climate change is inaccurate, according to anyone who has passed Grade 4 science. Stephen Berg's response earns him a straight pass to post-secondary school.

The science-based realities are: the global temperature is increasing; polar and glacier ice is melting; and the oceans are warming, water levels rising, and their acidity is increasing. Even if greenhouse gases were eliminated today, the planet is committed to more warming and related impacts. Reducing carbon-based emissions is a tough thing to do as we gobble fossil energy. As Kermit the frog reminds us, "it ain't easy being green."



Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition October 15, 2013 A10

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