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Duly Quoted: Norm Kelly on Climate Change

Parks and environment committee chair tells city council that climate change is really not such a big deal after all.

“There are people who believe that the conclusions of this report are apocalyptic in their character. In fact, they’re saying life is going to be a little more comfortable in this city.”

—Norm Kelly (Ward 40, Scarborough Agincourt), chair of the City of Toronto’s parks and environment committee, on the long-term effects of climate change in Toronto. Kelly was addressing council this morning; among the items that will be debated is a study meant to help council develop a strategy for managing the effects of climate change.


  • Hollow Island

    The problem with democracy is that people with the negligeable intelligence of Norm Kelly can attain positions of power.

    • Geoff Gilmour-Taylor

      Sadly, that’s a problem with any real-world political system.

      • HotDang

        Not in Harrison Bergeron.


    Oh, where to begin.

  • HotDang

    He’s actually right. Toronto is in a sweet spot for climate change. We wouldn’t have the coastal flooding, there’s very little evidence of increased droughts (if anything it’s the opposite), and aside from more extreme heat days our climate would actually become more productive.

    A lot of people elsewhere will be fucked though. That’s why we should care.

    • Kate Roberts

      For sure, I mean why don’t you ever see Canada in a disaster epic movie – because nothing bad will happen to us – lol :P

      • HotDang

        The Last Canadian, while not a movie, was mainly set in Canada. It was certainly a disaster epic.

    • Lee Zamparo

      I don’t think he’s right. The ‘benefits’ claimed are just major disasters avoided. If you look back at last summer, there were a lot of problems keeping Toronto parks properly hydrated, possibly due to the number of extreme heat days. Norm Kelly should be concerned with figuring out how to mitigate this effect in the present, and make Toronto Parks and our urban canopy more robust to climate change. Claiming that climate change isn’t a big deal for the city (as if we live in some vacuum), is really counter productive.

      • HotDang

        You raise a good point. The city will certainly have to adapt to our new climate, but it’s not as bad a future as the countries around the equator have to look forward to, or the crazy changes in store for the arctic regions.

        My point was just that things here should get slightly better, rather than the possible loss of entire biomes.

        • blearghhh

          Exactly. In the very narrow view of what does it mean for the city, and ignoring everything else in Canada and the world, and ignoreing the indirect costs of higher immigration from environmental refugees and higher cost of many goods and loss of ecosystems, yeah, it may very well be beneficial for Toronto. Maybe not even a net benefit, but certainly we’ll spend less on snow removal.

          Which doesn’t mean that Toronto doesn’t have a responsibility to do what it can to reduce emissions and all that stuff.

  • Kate Roberts

    Oh lord.

  • tyrannosaurus_rek

    Toronto couldn’t keep its parks green last summer, Norm, so you might want to consider what climate change means for the areas of Ontario and the rest of the world that grow the food that feed Torontonians.

  • dsmithhfx

    We own the podium at the Stupid Olympics.

  • OgtheDim

    On an aside, is keeping parks green in the summer really a worthy use of resources? The grass, or least what there is of it that’s not dandelions, isn’t designed to stay green in heat. Why are we bothering?

    • tyrannosaurus_rek

      If it gets hot enough that the grass actually dies and needs to be replanted ($), we could start losing topsoil ($) in parks. Watering is, therefore, a form of preventative maintenance.

      Grass will stay green longer if it’s allowed to grow higher than the 2-3 inches Toronto Parks seems to like, as it holds more water and the increased length shades the soil from the drying effect of the sun.

      • Paul Kishimoto

        Well, the City could do as UofT aims to with Back Campus and replace all grass with Astroturf in order to save further on maintenance costs.

  • vampchick21

    Oh ye gods. More stupid on Toronto City Council. Yay us.

  • MrFlagg

    ITP: a bunch of idiots confuse weather for climate and discuss how a .05 degree rise in temperature over the previous year has caused all their lawns to brown.

  • mememine

    Former believers are better planet lovers:

    *Occupywallstreet does not even mention CO2 in its list of demands because of the bank-funded carbon trading stock markets run by corporations because the exaggeraton of “crisis” is unsustainable for another 27 years of wrong predictions.

    So how close to unstoppable warming would these lab coat consultants have taken us before they said the worst crisis imaginable “WILL” happen, not just might happen?
    He’s correct I’m afraid; climate blame was as total exaggeration akin to being the new Reefer Madness. As much as we wanted this crisis to be real it can’t be as long as the scientists refuse to say it is “imminent” and not just “might” happen and “likely”
    happen. Not ONE single IPCC warning from the last two decades of research is not qualified with “maybes”. Help my house is on fire maybe?
    You can’t have a little tiny catastrophic climate crisis outside of Harry Potter movies.
    Science gave us pesticides as well and besides, would you deny what you are being paid to study the effects of?
    Be a better planet lover and join the majority voting ranks of “Former Believers” who refuse to issue these needless CO2 death threats to our own children. Be happy not disappointed that science chose to perpetuate the exaggeration of “crisis”.

  • mememine

    This wouldn’t be an issue if there were real legal consequences in a real civilized society for threatening billions of helpless children with a planetary climate crisis simply on the basis of a headline. You remaining believers don’t even know what you believe in as science has NEVER said climate change was a real crisis, only that it was “real and happening”. (so are sunrises) There was never any consensus because they all had their own different views on climate change’s effects. How is that consensus of anything?
    It was you lazy copy and paste news editors, fear mongers and pandering politicians that ever said any crisis would ever happen. Science milked this Reefer Madness because it’s not a crime to study the effects not causes of an assumed to be real crisis.
    But it has made us all end of the world freaks in the history books; “I see the signs of change…..!”

    • vampchick21

      Ummm….while you may have valid points, you come across as a crazy person. Are you sure you aren’t on Toronto City Council?

  • Paul Kishimoto
  • mememine

    REAL planet lovers didn’t WANT climate change crisis for our kids to be a real threat. Former Believers know it was a tragic exaggerataion and REAL planet lovers are happy not disappointed a crisis wasn’t real, for whatever reason.

    • tyrannosaurus_rek

      Stop babbling and start speaking coherently.

  • mememine

    Remember, it’s not WHAT is being said, it’s WHO is saying it. We NEED climate crisis to be real to teach us all a lesson. We be bad!

  • milanista1

    Is he a scientist? No? He studied political history at university? Then he doesn’t get a say.
    You don’t see me, a finance guy, voicing my opinion on brain surgery.

    • mememine

      Who’s the fear monger? Who’s the ignorant neocon?
      Deny this:
      Not one single IPCC warning is without “maybes”. Help my planet is on fire maybe?
      The scientists have NEVER said any climate crisis “will” happen, only “might” happen so it’s not a matter of trusting science, it’s about calling out the lying news editors that claim the scientists are saying a climate crisis is imminent and will happen for sure. Science has never said a crisis was imminent or “WILL” happen and 27 years of science only saying “maybe” proves it “won’t be a crisis. Be happy a crisis was avoided and if it were a real crisis they would have said so by now. REAL planet lovers are happy a crisis was just a sick and tragic exaggeration but
      our fear mongering has made end of the world freaks out of all of us for the history books. We were another Reefer Madness.
      How many climate change believers does it take to change a light bulb?
      None, but they “DO” have full consensus that it “WILL” change, maybe.

  • mememine

    Find me just one single IPCC warning that has been issued without “could bes” in the report and I’ll believe again.

    Stop defending and attacking the scientists because they are not the one’s doing the scamming and lying. It’s you believers and media and politicians that are lying by saying a crisis “WILL” happen. Not one IPCC warning in two decades has said it “WILL” happen nor has been issued without being qualified with “maybes” and “could bes”……. A real “crisis” would be deserving of a real warning.

    Help my planet could be on fire maybe?

  • Grammar Nahtzi

    We could ban all fossil fuels and cars in the entire USA and it would make no difference. China is spewing double the CO2 into the atmosphere that the US is and it growing exponentially. How do we stop China?

  • mememine

    If condemning your kids and billions of other helpless children to the greenhouse gas ovens of a climate change crisis comes so easily and casually to you, maybe you just hate humanity more than you love the planet. At least Bush didn’t issue CO2 death threats to my kids with “his” Iraq False-War without a real enemy.