Posts by Ben Parfitt

Ben Parfitt

About Ben Parfitt

Ben joined the CCPA staff team as a resource policy analyst in 2005 after years working as an investigative journalist with numerous magazines, and previous to that as a reporter with The Vancouver Sun. He is author and co-author of two books on forestry issues and currently devotes much of his policy research to natural resources, with special attention paid to energy, water, and forest resources and climate change.

Ben values being part of a great team at the CCPA as well as the opportunities provided to meet regularly with First Nations, community leaders, environmental advocates and the many people who work in the province’s resource industries and who are committed to progressive change.

Ben is an avid cyclist and budding day hiker who likes to take advantage of the many outdoor recreation options open to him and others living in Victoria and south Vancouver Island. He is the proud father of a super-talented daughter, Charlotte Priest, who is wise beyond her years and has taught him much. He also loves to listen to music—the good old fashion way—on vinyl. Follow Ben on Twitter

Reinventing the forestry industry: Made-in-Canada masks and much more

May 12, 2020
Canada should seize the moment created by COVID-19 to become self-sufficient in making masks and other essential medical items, and look to new and emerging “bioproducts” to meet the need, not oil-based synthetics, say scientists, who have studied the untapped potential of the country’s forests. They are joined in that call by Quesnel mayor Bob… View Article

This year’s tree-planting seedlings could end up a huge compost pile

Apr 22, 2020
For British Columbia’s tree-planting industry, COVID-19’s arrival came at the worst of times. This year was to be the industry’s great leap forward, the biggest season on record with more than 300 million seedlings slated to be planted. But while the industry managed to get the provincial government to declare “reforestation” an essential service, it… View Article

Time for a forest reserve

Mar 9, 2020
Almost inevitably, when someone suggests that logging of privately-owned lands should be subject to tougher regulations, there is an outcry from landowners. It is “their” land after all. But this ignores important historical realities in British Columbia—realities that are hopefully being considered in a current review by the provincial government.  Up until 2003, a much… View Article

Peace River Frack-Up

Jan 9, 2020
Part 1 of a report on how fracking poses risks to BC Hydro’s Peace River dams Read Part 2 of the report View timeline BC Hydro has known for well over a decade that its Peace Canyon dam is built on weak, unstable rock and that an earthquake triggered by a nearby natural gas industry… View Article

The Well from Hell

Jan 9, 2020
Part 2 of a report on how fracking poses risks to BC Hydro’s Peace River Dams Read Part 1 of the report View timeline BC Hydro was so worried that its Peace Canyon dam could be badly damaged if an earthquake was triggered at a nearby natural gas industry disposal well, that it briefly considered… View Article

An electrifying announcement leads to more questions than answers

Dec 5, 2019
In late August, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau traveled to Vancouver to announce that the federal government had agreed to financially support a new hydroelectric transmission line project in British Columbia’s remote northeast region. In a memorandum of understanding signed with the provincial government, the federal government committed $83.6 million to the project, which will cover… View Article

BC Government Fossil Fuel Subsidy Data Finally Public

Nov 13, 2019
For more than two years, the British Columbia government has vigorously fought efforts to compel the release of information on the hundreds of millions of dollars in subsidies that it doles out to fossil fuel companies each year. It has either refused outright to release documents or it has handed over pages of essentially worthless… View Article

BC’s Oil and Gas Commission: A captured regulator

Aug 14, 2019
In June 2015 “in an effort to expedite” the building of a pipeline by Alliance Pipeline Ltd., a company called Synergy Land Services submitted falsified documents to British Columbia’s Oil and Gas Commission. The documents were deliberately altered to suggest that archaeological work was done at two sites when in fact it had only been… View Article

The time to act is now: Fracking risks do not require further study

Jul 22, 2019
When British Columbia’s new government took office in July 2017, one thing was notably absent in the mandate letter delivered by Premier John Horgan to the province’s new energy minister. Hydraulic fracturing—or fracking—was mentioned not once. Nor did the letter acknowledge that months earlier the New Democratic Party had committed to appoint a scientific panel… View Article

How much is BC giving to natural gas companies?

Jun 24, 2019
All British Columbians have a stake in the pricing of natural resources. When trees are logged, when minerals are mined, when fossil fuels are drilled, the companies doing the extracting pay fees to the Province in recognition that the resources are publicly owned. It is therefore in everybody’s interest to know how the government prices… View Article