It Can’t End Like This – A Dispatch from COP26, Glasgow
Jack Woodward, QC
We are a motley crew from British Columbia: young activists, the chief of a first nation, an old lawyer, a young lawyer, some partners, supporters and hangers-on. All at our own expense we made our way to Glasgow to save the world. We couldn’t stay in Glasgow because the city was full so we stayed in Edinburgh, a 50 minute train ride away. They have trains! Beautiful, clean, fast, quiet, electric, zero-carbon trains. We are reminded how surprisingly out-of-step Canada is from the places in the world who are making the necessary transition. From the train we could see ranks of wind turbines stretching into the Scottish highlands.
We started with an apology for Canada’s disgraceful behaviour, building pipelines. With all that we know, still making the problem worse. Our leader is a tall, fit, practical logger and businessman from Vancouver Island who came to Glasgow to be part of the last best chance to save the planet — Chief Jordan Michael from tiny Nuchatlaht, in Nootka Sound.
We met Americans who are fighting a pipeline bringing oil from the Alberta tar sands through their state. We Canadians are not accustomed to being the bad guys. The fact is, Canada is doing the very worst thing: building yet more pipelines, right when all such projects must stop immediately or there will not be a livable future.
COP 26 is not over. Our political leaders can act right now. We need Prime Minister Trudeau to admit that the Trans Mountain Pipeline is a mistake. We need the Horgan government to stop sponsoring the Coastal GasLink pipeline, a climate crime that will spread deadly methane across the Pacific. It can’t end like this.
Jack Woodward, QC, from Glasgow, Nov 10, 2021.