When oil prices were high, successive governments spent freely as though the good times would never end.
Where there’s hunger, it’s typically due to politics, not because the global food supply is depleted.
The real “resource curse” is the way successive Alberta governments squandered revenues from resource development.
B.C.’s LNG industry has the potential to supply 11 to 20 per cent of the Asia-Pacific LNG market by 2020.
Last summer, I wrote that the Supreme Court’s Tsilhqot’in decision, which for the first time granted Aboriginal title outside an Indian reserve, was going to be a real game changer and would “increase uncertainty in Canada’s natural resource sectors in areas lacking treaties with First Nations.”
As Albertans approach another provincial budget, the usual fables about Alberta's finances often crop up. To inoculate ourselves in advance, let's ponder two myths.
Myth Number One: Alberta's wealth is a result of luck.
This tall tale assumes that the existence of natural resources automatically results in wealth creation, jobs, and a higher standard of living. That's hardly the case. Plenty of jurisdictions have little in the way of natural resources but prosper, while others have plentiful natural resources yet flounder.
After more than a decade of war and nation building, members of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan are heading for the exits. Although what ISAF will leave behind is better than what was there in 2001, Afghanistan remains a battered land. However, the resources Afghanistans land holds copper, cobalt, iron, barite, sulfur, lead, silver, zinc, niobium, and 1.4 million metric tons of rare-earth elements (REEs) may be a silver lining.
Quebecs political leaders seem to have fallen for the Great Green Dream of economic prosperity without energy or natural resource production. Its a magical vision of a world powered by unicorns and rainbows, where consumer goods are somehow conjured out of thin air rather than being manufactured with resources extracted from the ground. But experience in Europe as well as in Ontario show that chasing the green dream is a path to financial ruin, not utopia.
On November 6, 2012, the citizens of the United States decided to maintain, essentially, the status quo: they re-elected Barack Obama as President, left the United States House of Representatives solidly in Republican hands, and left the United States Senate under the control of the Democratic Party. But as with all U.S. elections, there are implications for Canada, which, for better or worse, is usually pulled by the tides of American regulation and economic prosperity or the lack thereof.