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An Alternative View of COVID 19 in Alberta

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I am Al Poole, retired Site Leader,  NOVA Chemicals, Joffre site. Like everyone else, I’ve been overwhelmed with information about Covid 19. It is in my nature to ask questions – and keep asking until I get a satisfactory answer. As a former Site Leader at NOVA Chemicals, Joffre I am aware of what emergency response plans look like. This isn’t it

Why am I doing this?

  1. I accept that covid may be more contagious than other influenzas and requires thoughtful and well planned interventions to minimize the impact on all citizens (I say “may” as there is considerable disagreement on the PCR test method – even by its founder).. However, I am puzzled as to why the AB government and AHS will not consider the opposing opinions coming from other health and science experts. I suspect the truth is somewhere in the middle.  Why are they so reluctant to engage other opinion to ensure we are on a productive path to protect all Albertans. I am surprised at how willingly many Albertans have accepted the ongoing dogma by our government, AHS and the media. Fear factor is something to worry about. I believe it results from sharing inaccurate models and the constant reporting of cases even though we know cases are not harmful to the vast majority of Albertans.  Clearly – our media people are caught up in the fear factor. I hope people will read this and begin a process to become more informed on – What is And What isn’t –  as it relates to Covid. People need to ask more questions – demand better information.
  2. Read these articles: one by David Redman on a proper Emergency Response Plan – why ignore it? https://c2cjournal.ca/2020/12/every-store-and-school-should-be-open-confronting-the-pandemic-with-confidence/  Second one – Great Barrington Declaration, written by some smart qualified medical people – why it is simply dismissed? https://gbdeclaration.org/
  3. See this article on our freedoms and rights in the National Post from Preston Manning https://nationalpost.com/opinion/preston-manning-lockdown-rules-are-violating-our-rights-im-calling-on-the-justice-minister-to-intervene

Remember:

1) At the outset we were alerted to the fact the virus (like flu viruses) is likely to mutate.  Now – it has and continues to mutate.  Even more concerning is the notion it only happens in other countries and can only enter Canada – versus accepting the mutation can happen here too.

2) Soon after governments accepted Covid was real and in Canada they declared, “we must protect our most vulnerable”.  Everyone agreed! It still makes sense as one of the important objectives – but not the only one.

Perspective:

As of Jan 25rd in Alberta (Based on data from Alberta Gov’t interactive web site on Covid):

  • Over 95% of people contracting the virus have few to no symptoms;
  • Less than 5% are hospitalized;
  • Less than a 1% in ICU;
  • Average age is 82;
  • No one under the age of 20 has died.

Across Canada over 80% of deaths are in Long Term Care Facilities (most vulnerable).

So – how have they done protecting the most vulnerable? They have done a miserable job – and I am not surprised.   They were offered an emergency response plan but chose to ignore it. The plan outlined by Mr. Redman is consistent with my  Emergency Preparedness and Response training and experience.  Further, as soon as you enter the realm of personal protective equipment to protect people from respiratory infection – you are into seriously rigid procedures.  I have seen no evidence of meaningful procedures.

Deaths (using 4,400,000 as Alberta population – actual slightly higher):

  • Covid deaths (1549):  0.04%
  • Annual deaths (from all causes in 2019 – over 26,000):  0 .6%
  • Deaths among elderly continue to rise – no surprise as they did not protect most vulnerable.

Age at death (comorbidities a major factor in most of these deaths):

  • 80+ – 1030
  • 70s – 316
  • 60s – 160
  • 50s – 50

In summary:

I worry the hype of new strains will lead gov’t to more and longer lockdown restrictions with out any realization these same actions  have made it worse for our most vulnerable and have made it worse for so many other Albertans.. A good Emergency Response Plan would have done a better job of protecting our most vulnerable – less deaths – less load on hospitals and much less impact on Alberta citizens and way of life. It is not too late to rethink the covid approach to something more effective in protecting our most vulnerable and getting Alberta citizens and businesses moving back toward normal life and operations. 

In closing, Covid has had an impact on us —  for two of our three children – have experienced work interruptions.  Our oldest is in essential services (Ontario) so continues to work. However, her son, our grandson at 13 is negatively impacted, by isolation and not being in a classroom, during a most important time of his life.  Also, I have a 92 year old mom in good mental and physical health – more negatively impacted by isolation.  As she said to me this summer, “for heavens sake Allan, I am 92 – what are they thinking”.  She was so upset she could not hug two of her children who were allowed a ‘distance visit’.

I am still puzzled and wondering – what are they (gov’t and AHS) trying to protect?  Their actions and decisions to date make no sense.

I encourage everyone to become more informed and start asking a lot more questions. We are entitled to better leadership  and meaningful information from our government. Here are my questions :

  • What is the truth on PCR testing?  We want data not just your opinion.
  • Why is the death rate so high in LTC – from March 2020 until now?
  • Why is most testing related to multiple test for same people – suggests spread is in hot zones (LTC facilities).
  • Why are so many business still under lockdown restrictions?

“What are your questions?”

 

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Alberta

Provincial funds help build biofuel plant at Lethbridge reducing emissions equivalent to 41,000 homes

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Diversifying the economy with cutting-edge tech

The Technology Innovation and Emissions Reduction (TIER) fund is supporting a new facility in southern Alberta that will create jobs and cut emissions by transforming agricultural waste.

Alberta’s government is using $4.7 million from the TIER fund through Emissions Reduction Alberta to create a $28.6-million facility in Lethbridge that will produce an estimated 70 million litres of high-value renewable fuel. This facility will be the first of its kind in Canada, turning local agricultural waste, inedible animal fats and used cooking oil into biodiesel fuel and glycerin.

The facility will buy more than $375 million of local feedstock from farmers over the next five years, generating about $500 million in revenue and supporting up to 130 local jobs in fields like engineering, construction and transportation. It will also cut about 224,000 tonnes of emissions each year – the same as reducing emissions from the electricity used by 41,000 homes.

“Alberta is home to world-renowned expertise on cutting agricultural emissions, and the Canary Biofuels facility is another world-class project Alberta’s government is supporting to diversify the economy and create jobs. I’m pleased to see the expansion of another groundbreaking Alberta-based technology that is cutting emissions and getting Albertans back to work.”

Jason Nixon, Minister of Environment and Parks

The facility’s biodiesel will have up to one-third the carbon intensity of petroleum diesel. The renewable fuel produced at the facility has also been pre-sold to a leading Canadian supplier of biodiesel whose customers include fuel retailers, wholesalers, distributors and fleet managers across Canada and the United States. This builds on Alberta’s strong record of environmental, social and governance actions.

“As world leaders in agricultural emission reductions, Alberta farmers will be key beneficiaries of the renewable diesel produced at this facility. Projects like this showcase the steps Alberta is taking to diversify the economy with cutting-edge technology and to create local jobs and opportunities.”

Grant Hunter, MLA for Taber-Warner

“Emissions Reduction Alberta continues to identify and invest in opportunities that accelerate the innovation required to strengthen Alberta’s economy and reduce greenhouse gases. Canary’s project will create new revenues for western Canadian agricultural producers and help meet the growing North American demand for biodiesel. This project is another example of what can happen when government, industry and entrepreneurs come together to deliver better economic and environmental outcomes.”

Steve MacDonald, CEO, Emissions Reduction Alberta

This funding is part of the province’s commitment of up to $750 million for emissions reduction and economic diversification programs and projects through the TIER fund and other funding that will directly support about 9,000 jobs and inject $1.9 billion into Alberta’s economy.

“Canary Biofuels is Alberta’s first Generation 2 biodiesel producer with its flagship facility in Lethbridge. Canary is excited to lead the path in Alberta in abating emissions through sustainable waste-based biodiesel production that supports the energy and agriculture industries in Alberta and the Prairies. Canary would like to thank all its investors and partners, including the Government of Alberta, for their tremendous support. Canary is proud to support Alberta in creating new jobs and helping Alberta industry on its journey to net zero.”

George Wadsworth, CEO, Canary Biofuels

“Canadian canola is used in biofuel production around the world because it’s a low-carbon, sustainable and renewable resource. We are excited to see more investment in Lethbridge that will directly benefit canola farmers and Alberta’s agriculture value chain.”

Brad Orr, director, Canola Council of Canada

“Canary Biofuels will provide long-term diversified business opportunity for R.K. Heggie Grain and Transmark. Local canola producers will have direct market access to the growing biofuel industry, and the livestock industry will get a much-needed supply of canola meal. Canary Biofuels is natural fit with R.K. Heggie Grain and Transmark to provide the company with feedstock for the plant and rail infrastructure to the get finished product to international markets.”

Brent Peterson, vice-president, Transloading, Transmark/RK Heggie Grains

TIER funding

The TIER system is funded by large industry that pay into the fund when they do not meet emissions targets. Alberta is using the TIER fund for a range of programs that are reducing emissions, boosting the economy and getting Albertans back to work.

Quick facts

  • The new Canary Biofuels facility is expected to be operational by fall 2021.
  • TIER helps industrial facilities, which account for more than 60 per cent of Alberta’s total emissions, find innovative ways to reduce emissions and invest in clean technology to save money and stay competitive.
  • Emissions Reduction Alberta invests revenues from TIER to accelerate the development and deployment of innovative clean technology solutions.
  • Since 2009, Emissions Reduction Alberta has committed $649 million toward 204 projects worth $4.5 billion that are reducing emissions, creating competitive industries and leading to new business opportunities in Alberta. These projects are estimated to deliver cumulative reductions of almost 35 million tonnes of emissions by 2030.
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Alberta

Sentencing delay for men found guilty of flouting Alberta COVID-19 rules

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CALGARY — Sentencing arguments for an Alberta pastor and his brother found guilty of contempt after deliberately violating COVID-19 health orders have been put over until September.

Artur Pawlowski and his brother Dawid Pawlowski were arrested in May and accused of organizing an illegal gathering as well as promoting and attending an illegal gathering.

The arrests came after court orders were granted allowing Alberta Health Services and police to arrest and charge anyone who advertised gatherings that would breach health restrictions.

Last month, Justice Adam Germain ruled that Alberta Health Services had proven “nearly to absolute certainty” that the two Calgary men were “guilty beyond a reasonable doubt of contempt.”

Discussions on possible sanctions were set for Tuesday, but the lawyer for the Pawlowskis asked for a delay since Alberta Health Services was preparing further affidavits against her clients.

The health provider has indicated it will be seeking 21 days of jail time for the two men.

Germain granted the delay to make sure that defence lawyer Sarah Miller had time to prepare her arguments.

“Frankly, on a matter of this nature, where you have what some legal authorities might describe as an almost public contempt, bordering on criminal contempt … I’m going to give her every opportunity to vigorously defend her clients,” said Germain.

Alberta Health Services has indicated it is seeking 21 days of jail time for the two men.

The judge said the delay might give the court a better understanding of COVID-19 in remand centres and provincial correction institutions.

“There are people who doubt the COVID-19. I can look at the death or morbidity statistics as much as any other judge and it’s a real issue,” Germain said.

“If COVID is running wild in the institutions, we don’t want the 21-day jail sentences that you’ve asked for.”

Germain said he might consider the “unique risks” of someone going to jail. He said the Pawlowskis’ lawyer could have a number of arguments for why they’re not vaccinated, including illnesses that prevent vaccinations.

“Maybe there’s an outbreak in the prison system. All of those things may influence the decision.”

The case is to return to court Sept. 13.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 27, 2021.

Bill Graveland, The Canadian Press

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