The General Manager of Sask Pork says an amendment proposed by the Senate Standing Committee on Agriculture and Forestry to Bill-C234 will further erode the ability of farmers to adopt new technology to safeguard the environment and animal welfare. Sask Pork Chair Toby Tschetter has written an open letter to members of the Senate of Canada expressing concern over an amendment proposed by the Senate Standing Committee on Agriculture and Forestry to Bill C-234, the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act, that would remove an exemption for heating barns that was contained in the version passed in the House of the Commons.
Mark Ferguson, the General Manager of the Saskatchewan Pork Development Board, is calling in the Senate to reject the proposed amendment and approve the version passed in the House of commons.
Quote-Mark Ferguson-Saskatchewan Pork Development Board:
The vast majority of barns in Saskatchewan utilize natural gas as a primary heat source.Natural gas is a clean burning energy source.It's abundant in Canada.
It has low emissions relative to other alternatives such as heating oil or coal, so we think we do have a very clean and efficient heating source installed in all of our barns and we are not aware of an emerging technology or viable alternative that can completely replace natural gas as a heat source on the farm.
You can talk about heat pumps, geothermal, solar panels, they just cannot provide the BTUs we that need during a cold Saskatchewan winter so there is no alternative.
We do upgrade the heaters as more efficient units become available.We upgrade insulation in the barns, try to have controllers in the barns that provide an optimal environment while reducing the amount of time the heaters are on.
These upgrades make economic sense because energy has always been one of our most efficient costs and farms will upgrade as they can and as they can afford to.
Ferguson says, ironically, the carbon tax handicaps producers who want to make the upgrades.He says when you're paying 30 thousand dollars a year and more to the government, you have less money to upgrade and that's the legacy of the carbon tax for hog farmers.Source : Farmscape.ca