In response to a letter to the Editor, Guardian, November 13th regarding a view that the Canadian Centre for Climate Change and Adaptation in St Peter’s should be located in Charlottetown because there’s more people in Charlottetown thus all things would be closer to more people.

Rural Islanders have lived with this argument of the tyranny of the majority for a long time and it’s part of the discrimination rural Islanders live with. If proponents of eco-centralization really want to remain true to this ideological philosophy then shouldn’t they all move to Toronto and ride bicycles?

While PEI promotes people from all over the world to take planes, ships and automobiles to come to here there are others who decry the trip to St. Peter’s from Charlottetown. Does that 53 kilometres really make a difference to global warming or is it just another way to put down rural Islanders as not deserving to be part of the Island government economy and to advance the argument rural communities should be shunned out of existence?

The reality is rural PEI, especially eastern PEI, is sending tens of millions of dollars in tax revenues to Charlottetown to support the urbanization of things and does not receive fair exchange of government investment in rural communities. More often than not when there is rural investment it supports the urban centre more than the rural community.

Enough of colonial management, rural development corporations should be established so rural communities can be part of the decision making affecting them. For example, despite serious concerns about the environmental impact, health issues, community well-being, and rural land investments, Energy PEI is trying to impose on eastern PEI seven wind turbines twice as high as the Peace Tower in Ottawa.

While supportive of windmill energy, windmills should not be located close to people or sensitive environmental areas. Are these community killers really an investment in rural PEI when they send millions of dollars to Charlottetown but destroy rural land values and communities? Are they good for PEI?

Whether PEI should destroy ecology and rural communities to generate electricity or concentrate on conservation of energy - that might be a good first study for the new institute.

It is long past time government jobs and money come east, particularly to Souris and Georgetown. There were more federal government jobs in Souris when Cardigan MP Lawrence MacAulay first took office than there are today. I do think he got it right in supporting his home community of St Peter’s.

A few of our own rural dollars being spent in our own rural communities is not going to destroy the planet. For those who think all things should be decided and located in Charlottetown, it wouldn’t hurt for them to drive 53 km out of the city and expand their world view a bit.

Alan E. MacPhee,


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