Marvin Caplan's argument in favour of the mid-peninsula highway
is based on two significant errors: The first is that the mid-pen
is needed to stimulate economic growth in Hamilton. The second is
that Vision 2020 is about compromise. Unfortunately, these erroneous
assumptions are held by a majority of Hamilton city council.
2020 is first and foremost about sustainable development, meaning
living within the biophysical carrying capacity of our region, and
ensuring at least comfortable sufficiency for all our citizens.
be sustainable, economic activities must operate within these ecological
and social/moral imperatives. This is not a matter of trading one
area off against another (ecological, social and economic). There
is no compromise with the laws of nature.
is about learning to develop economic activities which neither destroy
the services provided by our ecosystems, nor create unjust inequalities
among citizens. This is possible, but not with the current approach
advocated by council.
development involves a model of economic development based on making
local self-sufficiency a priority and encouraging sustainable (as
defined above) business development. Neither of these approaches
to sustainable economic development requires anything like the mid-pen.
a highway will create more urban sprawl and greatly reduce the biodiversity
of our community. Any short-term economic gain by the few who are
in a position to take advantage of such sprawl will generate enormous
ecological and social/health costs that will be borne by the rest
is an alternative. Let's do it.
Jack Santa-Barbara, Lynden.