Peter Ormond, Candidate for Ancaster-Dundas-Flamborough-Westdale in Federal Election 2011

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Candidate Details (top)

NamePeter Ormond
ElectionFederal Election 2011
PartyGreen Party of Canada
Email peterormondgreenparty@gmail.com
Website http://greenpartyhamilton.ca/adfw/candidate/
BioThe second youngest of eleven children, Peter Ormond grew up in the Durand neighbourhood, attending St. Joseph's Catholic Elementary School and Westdale Secondary School. Peter believes in the importance of community and is a member / past member of many local organizations including the Chamber of Commerce, Conserver Society, Naturalists Club, Earth Day Hamilton, and Positive Power Energy Co-operative. Other groups include Arts Hamilton, the Bach-Elgar Choir, Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, the 2004 Bay Area Leadership Program, and the United Way Year End Campaign.

A Mechanical Engineer with a Masters degree in Environmental Engineering and a Queen’s MBA, Peter has worked in various locations throughout Canada and overseas. This experience includes roles with local companies including Horizon Utilities, Westinghouse Canada and JNE Consulting. At Horizon Utilities, Peter was the Conservation Specialist, bringing conservation initiatives to residential and business customers. Peter has also taught courses related to engineering, business and the environment at various institutions including Mohawk College and McMaster University, and continues to work as a Continuing Education Instructor at Mohawk College.

Nationally, Peter is a past board member of the Canadian Solar Industries Association, and several national sustainability-oriented initiatives. Since 1997, Peter has contributed his experience and knowledge as an environmental consultant to many innovative projects and written documents related to conservation, renewable energy, climate change and sustainability.

Peter was a Green Party of Ontario candidate in Hamilton Centre during the Oct 2007 election. Since that time, Peter has worked with others on a variety of local projects to increase awareness about sustainability. These include an Earth Hour Event, the Ripple Effect Eco-Film Fest, co-writing and performing a play in the recent Hamilton Fringe Festival, being part of the Open Doors green component, and working on Hamilton’s 24 Hour Film Festival. Each project has connected with a different audience.

Sustainability can be achieved by taking real steps that empower citizens and foster local leadership. These actions will benefit the health and vitality of families and communities by acknowledging the interdependency of the economy, society and the environment. Canadians want strong leaders that are able to rethink old habits and welcome new ideas that direct us toward a sustainable future.

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Responses to Questions (top)

QuestionBrief ResponseFull Response
Will your party take steps to make sure the foreign purchase of Canadian companies does not cost Canadian jobs? If so, what will you do? If not, why not? Yes Yes, the Green Party believes in reviewing foreign purchases to ensure that Canadian interests - including jobs - are not compromised. In Hamilton, we've seen how former Stelco employees have been locked out, bullied, and pensions jeopardized. Meanwhile, corporate profits at head office soar.
Will you always vote along party lines, or are you prepared to vote your conscience on a matter in which you disagree with your party's position? No The Greens are not like any of the other three major parties in Canada in that our candidate voices are not censured by the old boys club, and we aren't given censured soundbites to feed to the media. Therefore, no, I would not feel bound to vote along party lines. However, if you review Vision Green, our policy platform available on our website, you'll wonder why Canada, one of the world's wealthiest countries, is not taking steps today by investing in sustainable infrastructure and communities that foster healthy local communities and improve the lives of citizens within in. It will be a great day when elected Green politicians are in a position to vote along party lines.
The House of Commons Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage has recommended that CBC's annual parliamentary grant be raised from $33 per Canadian to $40. Will you support this recommendation? Why or why not? If so, will you advocate for a Hamilton-based CBC radio station? Yes I support this amendment, including a Hamilton-based CBC media presence. Even during this election, I've been dismayed by the lack of coverage for the Green Party, and the superficial coverage of issues in our world today. An election is a chance to educate, and review the current system. Renewable energy, nuclear power phase-out, military obsession, healthy food and sustainable transportation are just some of today's' issues. Remember that the City of Hamilton's annual budget is just over $1 Billion. Right now, Canada is scheduled to spend $35 Billion on nuclear refurbishment, $30 Billion on new warplanes, $10 on new prisons, and countless more on projects that don't consider Peak Oil, Healthy Families Strong Communities. Imagine if those resources were allocated to projects that benefit the community?

In Hamilton, our funds are going toward projects that are funded by the public purse, yet benefit the already wealthy establishment. These include the Pan-Am Stadium, the Aerotropolis airport expansion, and obsession with new roads and highways outside of the existing city. As a result, taxes rise, revenues service the debt, brownfields and inner-city needs are ignored, and the community - despite grassroots efforts - spirals downward.

The Greens will make funding conditional on investment in projects that build social, environmental and economical equity that benefits Hamilton citizens today and into tomorrow.
Do you believe human activity is contributing to climate change? If so, what should we do about it? If not, why not? Yes Yes, we believe the sound science that human activity is contributing to climate change and global warming is a result of human induced climate change. We have the opportunity to capitalize on the single biggest business opportunity of our time - the shift to a low carbon economy. Countries that mobilize resources to develop and commercialize low-carbon technologies will survive the price shocks of fossil fuel volatility and emerge with thriving economies.

All of these climate change solutions would improve your life. That's why the media and conventional party leaders don't want Elizabeth May in the leadership debate... Imagine how these solutions would benefit your life: mass transit systems, reduced energy consumption, less driving, thriving local economies, locally grown produce, community gardens, local jobs, locally owned businesses, cleaner air and water.
Do you believe parliamentary rule has been eroding in Canada? If so, what will you do to reverse it? If not, why not? Yes Yes, The Green Party is very concerned about the growing and undemocratic power of the Prime Minister's office. Through promoting proportional representation and a respectful dialog between the parties, the Greens hope to bring integrity back to our Democratic system.

Although there's a laundry list of boondoggles under Harper's Conservative rule, it's important to note that in order to continue as Prime Minister, the other parties have strategically supported his maneuvers until this time. This is another reason why we need proportional representation, and with that a co-operative parliamentary system in which individual parties and MP's can speak out democratically instead of being muted by the party line.

A few events include:

1. Linda Keen and the Chalk River debacle.
2. Proroguing Parliament twice.
3. Afghan detainee issue.
4. Canada's spin on climate change and energy.

A Green voice is Parliament with improve the political dialogue in Canada.
Do you support Vrancor's attempt to remove heritage protection from 150 Main Street West (the old Revenue Canada building)? Why or why not? No No, I do not support the removal of heritage protection from 150 Main Street West. Canada is a young country and has not done a good job preserving its heritage. The Greens support strong communities. This includes respecting our cultural heritage. Right now, municipalities receive only 8% of the Federal tax that Canadians pay. The Greens will create opportunities for Municipal investment funds that support local investment projects within that community only. One difference is that projects and additional funding must meet a triple-bottom-line criteria to ensure that the investment helps Hamiltonians now and into the future.
Do you believe the Federal Government needs to do more to support cities? If so, what needs to change? If not, why not? Yes Of course! Look around Hamilton - we have so much potential. Instead of airport expansion, develop light rail and strengthen the HSR within the city. Instead of new highways to service the airport, re-establish Hamilton's link with the Canada's coast-to-coast railway - a system that was completed in 1885! Focus on local food, diverse communities, and deployment of renewable energy systems.

The Greens will offer a municipal RRSP that invests in local sustainable projects only. We will also offer pools of funds - for community-building projects only. No more mega-project freebies. The Greens will encourage community-specific projects that can be replicated throughout Canada: rain-barrel neighbourhoods, solar communities, traffic-free zones, bike, transport, integrated retirement communities, and other exciting projects. If we want different results, we can't continue to vote for the same old. Make that statement and vote Green. Whatever the reason - follow through at the political level.
Will your platform promote the growth of manufacturing jobs in Hamilton? If so, how? If not, why not? Yes Yes, We believe that the shift to a low carbon economy provides a huge opportunity for the development of green jobs. One of the first opportunities is in "greening" our infrastructure. Retrofitting buildings to be more energy and water efficient provides income today and reduces our energy requirements in the future.

A smart economy is efficient. It relies on the lowest-polluting systems and energy sources. It ends waste. It reuses and recycles and considers externalities. This greater efficiency will bring greater competitiveness and prosperity to our Canadian Economy. Traditional manufacturing centers like Hamilton will have the opportunity to be re-invented.

Remediation of our brownfields and re-development of lands within Hamilton's established communities is a priority. For Hamilton, this includes Hamilton's waterfront district, abandoned industrial lands, and buildings or parking lots that cover prime land. Where items fall outside of federal jurisdiction, the Green Party will make any federal funds conditional upon completion of projects that re-build and re-establish communities. Hamilton is a city of tremendous potential, and grassroots innovation.

The Green Party does not support expansion around Hamilton's airport and resulting urban sprawl for obvious reasons related to peak oil and the cost of servicing new lands. Unlike other parties that observe silently on the sidelines, the Green Party will continue to voice opinions on such projects as an ongoing education measure. For example: Why invest in a project based on the most inefficient mode of transportation - air transport - when peak oil is upon us?

What are the reasons behind such an airport expansion project - who are the players, landowners, and corporate entities involved? If this project does not align with the interests of the average Hamiltonian, why is this project being promoted when it is based on assumptions from 50 years ago?

This situation is echoed in many communities around the globe. It signifies the control of an old guard or outdated system that needs to evolve if Hamilton, Ontario and Canada are going to ever achieve a low-carbon economy.

Excluding Green Party leader Elizabeth May from the debate also represents the need for system change in the political and media realms. Read our platform Vision Green, and you'll appreciate the need for Canadians to Vote Green.
Will you call for a full public inquiry into the 2010 G20? Why or why not? Yes Of course. I attended the G20 rally, but was not present for the police state crackdown on the crowds. The military presence was alarming, Fake Lake unbelievable, and price tag irresponsible. Yes, I support a full public inquiry into the G20 fiasco. Very recent news releases suggest there were even more issues than the obvious ones. The $1.2 price tag would have been better spent on Hamilton's light rail system, don't you think? To put this into perspective, Hamilton's annual budget is just over a Billion dollars.
Do you believe the Federal Government is doing everything it can to complete the cleanup of Randle Reef? Why or why not? No No, I believe the Federal government is using stalling tactics to avoid participating in the clean up. When an election presents itself, the funding is suddenly on the table again.

At every election, we hear that the Randall Reef toxic hot spot will be addressed this time around. It's an issue that's important to every Hamiltonian who drinks tap water. Imagine if Randall Reef received the same attention as the Pan-Am Games stadium did this past year? The Greens will refocus energy on important issues that affect you. This includes the underlying reasons for a Stadium Debate, and the quiet approval of a massive airport expansion at Hamilton's Airport. With the Green Party, projects such as these that are paid for by the public, yet benefit already wealthy private interests, will be scrutinized thoroughly.

We need a future with more Green, and less Greed.
Do you support some form of proportional representation instead of first-past-the-post voting? If so, what will you do to promote it? If not, why not? Yes Yes, the Green Party definitely supports proportional representation. In the last election almost one Million Canadians voted Green yet the Green Party never received a single seat. Meanwhile, the Bloc Quebecois received 1.4 Million votes in Quebec, and assumed 49 seats in Canada's Parliament. With proportional representation, more Canadians will choose to vote for what they want, instead of voting for the lesser of two evils. Proportional representation will change the entire tone of parliament, and ensure that the important Green voice is represented in both the House of Commons and at leadership debates.
Please explain how the Prime Minister and cabinet are formed in the Canadian Parliamentary system. Yes Right now, MPs are elected using a first-past-the-post system. Around the world, many countries have a more democratic system that allows for the proportion of representatives in government to be representative of the diverse range of citizen voices. Of the five Canadian political parties that receive funding, the Green Party was the only one NOT included in the televised leadership debate this year. Imagine how Elizabeth May's presence would have changed the entire tone of that discussion? The existing main political parties, media conglomerates and corporate stakeholders do not want E-May in the debate because her perspective and maternal voice will shake the very foundation of Canada's current old boy's network. During this election, Canadians aren't learning about real solutions to real issues. Instead, the issues aren't being discussed, media soundbites control the electorate, and the system rolls on unchallenged, and unchanged. That's why we need Green Votes now more than ever.
Do you believe global oil production is at or near an historic peak? If so, what will your party do to prepare Canada for declining oil production? If not, why not? Yes Yes, we have reached the era of peak oil. Look at the prices at the pumps today! Peak oil, like many other issues, is not a surprise. We need leadership today to ensure that our dependency on fossil fuels, and our energy - related strategic military interventions are reduced. Why are we even in Libya today?

Canada is continually sabotaging the efforts of many countries to develop a formula to tackle climate change, which is caused primarily by humanity's uncontrolled consumption of fossil fuels. I have attended several Climate Change conferences, and witnessed Canada's embarrassing stances. The major media outlets have also kept Canadians in the dark.

Addressing peak oil is also an opportunity to improve our lives. Why not light rail instead of traffic jams, or in-home offices instead of daily commutes, or local produce instead of food shipped from lands thousands of miles away?

The increasing volatility of oil in its last gasps will have significant impacts on our social, economic and environmental well-being. It is time to be proactive and look to creating a new industrial revolution based on renewable energy. Canada has significant solar, tidal and wind opportunities that have yet to be developed. The answers will come from a balance of energy and transportation initiatives. The first step is conservation. We waste up to 50% of the energy we create. By promoting conservation and energy efficiency we create green jobs that pay today and reduce our consumption for the future.

The Green Party is the only party speaking against nuclear power. The Fukushima disaster says it all. It's time to phase our nuclear power. The consequences of a nuclear accident are immeasurable. Did you know that nuclear reactors in Canada only require $75 Million in insurance? That's because even the insurance companies understand the catastrophic long-term effects. The main parties downplay the societal costs of uranium mining / processing / refining, nuclear weapons proliferation, and the million year-old nuclear waste management legacy. This is not honest.

Instead of being a global cheerleader for nuclear, Canadians need to stop subsidizing the nuclear supply chain, and begin investing in safe, decentralized renewable energy systems. Simple conservation and renewable energy systems will create local jobs for manufacturing, installing and servicing these systems. In so doing, we'd have a remedy for our current peak oil blues.