Skip to content

COLUMN: Trudeau's agricultural transition horror show

Often government schemes are simply irritating. Occasionally however, they are truly frightening.

It’s hardly surprising our prime minister’s vacuous plan to decimate the country’s energy industry by transitioning to some pie-in-the-sky, post-industrial future is causing ructions in Alberta.

We’ve seen versions of this Ottawa overreach before, so we instinctively understand Justin Trudeau’s convenient ‘save the planet’ excuse to hobble our provincial economy is simply suitable cover for yet another central Canada power grab.

The opposition to such a callous and economically ludicrous move is already forming and the battle ahead promises to be a humdinger.

Yet, there’s another part of the Grits’ transition ponderings that could have even more worrisome results if implemented by the sheep that form his caucus and those duplicitous NDP MPs who once claimed to stand for the rights of ordinary Canadian workers. (Today, the Dippers would prefer us all to be victims so they could subsequently appear our worthy saviours.)

Because, what’s even more troubling is the Liberals’ plan to transition away from agriculture, at least in the way we’ve grown stuff for about as long as the great northern plain was transformed into one of the globe’s most productive landmasses.

The plan, according to the Grits' own internal discussion notes, would affect 292,000 agriculture workers. Now it won’t come as much of a surprise to learn most of these threatened jobs currently exist in western Canada.

But we don’t have to wait for the eventual roll-out of this great transitioning to understand how little Trudeau and his hangers-on care about those who toil in the fields, orchards, and farmyards of our great country.

Nope, we’ve already seen their disregard for those who feed us with the decision to force farmers to curtail fertilizer use by a whopping 30 per cent in order to reduce emissions of nitrous oxide, a byproduct of nitrogen-based products.

Now it must be admitted when it comes to spreading manure, the Liberal government is indeed somewhat proficient. But that’s as far as it goes. Having politicians in Ottawa dictate how to grow crops is a recipe for disaster at a level that boggles the mind. (If you think food cost inflation is bad today, just wait until this stupidity kicks in.)

As Western Canadian Wheat Growers President Gunter Jochum rightly pointed out: “Farmers don’t need the government to tell them how to properly use fertilizer.”

A recent independent analysis of such a reduction estimated the result would cost Canadian farmers more than $48 billion in reduced canola, corn, and wheat sales over the next eight years. Ouch.

Somehow this is supposed to help make our entire planet greener and safer for generations to come. Really? Are these people completely bonkers?

Let's look back to 1968, when Stanford University biologist Paul Ehrlich famously predicted the booming global population would ensure hundreds of millions would starve in the forthcoming decade because we just couldn’t produce enough food to feed all those extra mouths.

Not surprisingly, panic ensued. But, as we now know, Ehrlich got it wrong. Thanks to what was eventually termed the Green Revolution, the amount of food production worldwide exploded.

And why was this? Well, one of the most pivotal changes in global agriculture was in the expert and widespread use of new, more potent fertilizers, boosting yields across the great growing areas of Planet Earth, including here on the Canadian Prairies.

But now, our federal government wants a green revolution of its own – one that would reverse those massive gains in productivity by reducing fertilizer use, a move guaranteed to lower yields in addition to making food much more expensive.

Often government schemes are simply irritating. Occasionally however, they are truly frightening.

push icon
Be the first to read breaking stories. Enable push notifications on your device. Disable anytime.
No thanks