David Suzuki is a key environmental leader whom I trust and look to for clarity in these days of muddy commentary. The David Suzuki Foundation is Canada’s most effective environmental education and action center. The essay today poses a critical question relevant to these United States. We share the contiguous natural land, waters, and air that prevail on our shared continent and border.
More than 13 per cent of Canada’s gross domestic product depends on healthy ecosystems, according to Environment Canada briefing notes obtained by Postmedia News. By contrast, the Harper government’s pet economic project, the Alberta oil sands, represents a mere two per cent. But is 13 per cent a reasonable estimate of the “value” of nature? With the current perspective that elevates the economy above all else, it’s important to find ways to include nature’s value in our calculations so it doesn’t get ignored in decision-making. At the same time, it seems absurd to try to assign worth to something so vital we can’t survive without it.