Bring the power of value added to the north

Dear editor,

I would like to comment on the economic diversity of Ontario in general. It is no secret that much of the wealth of Ontario has come out of mineral and forestry resources extracted from Northern Ontario then sent to Southern Ontario which has enriched those who live in the south of our province. Today the Federal and more importantly provincial government announced that Volkswagen has announced they will open a battery manufacturing plant in St. Thomas in the heart of South Western Ontario.

This is good news for Ontario in general – especially the mining sector here in the north who will supply the raw materials used in battery manufacturing. There will be thousands of jobs created in the building of the manufacturing plant as well as the jobs that manufacture the batteries. On top of this the service industries that supply the plant will create jobs.

The gleeful Mayor of St. Thomas where the plant will be built stated today he and everyone in St. Thomas area could not keep the smiles off their faces even as they slept. Prosperity for sure! So on top of the plant in St. Thomas a battery plant will come on in line in Windsor in the next few years. Oakville will produce electric vehicles. Ingersoll my home town is now producing electric vans all through the support of Federal and Provincial governments at our expense in tax dollars given to these industries . All of this wealth is being generated in the heart of S.W. Ontario.

Doug Ford and his government has also bragged that we in the north will benefit from the extraction of the wealth from where we live. Shipping those resources to the south will benefit those who live there multiple times over.

During the Second World War, Thunder Bay produced aircraft that were crucial to the war effort. More recently Thunder Bay produced high tech rail cars that are in Toronto,s transit systems. Thunder Bay is the hub for rail and marine shipments of natural resources all over the world. There is no shortage of electrical energy here in the north. So you have to ask the question if we can ship raw materials to S. Ontario why can’t we manufacture batteries here in the north and ship them to world markets? The answer is clear if you look at political demographics.

With less than 300,000 people here in Northern Ontario the Ford government has nothing to lose by exporting wealth from here to enrich those in the south. And if that is not a kick in the rear to those who live in here in the north it gets worse. The economy Doug Ford and our Federal Trudeau government offer us is a $24 billion dollar industry nobody in the south wants. Ford and Trudeau are pumping billions of dollars into the nuclear industry. The nuclear industry produces some of the most toxic radioactive waste known to mankind with know known way to neutralize it except to bury it in the ground and hope it does not find it’s way back into the environment. Will they be around to be accountable for anything that goes wrong? No.

So their political gain is at the expense of those who live here in the north. They take riches from here in the north and give us back their garbage.

If people who live here in the north aren’t insulted by this they should be. We could be a lot better off economically in the north if those who are elected to represent us cared about their constituents instead of their careers and towing the party line.

When was the last time you heard Kevin Holland or Greg Rickford announcing a manufacturing industry here in the north? Mines and exporting our wealth are the headlines of the day.

Thank you for the opportunity to comment.

James Kimberley