LETTER: Heat pump an efficient alternative to natural gas

Dear Editor:

Your letter-writer on July 10 bemoans “Coun. Megan Curren’s idea to eliminate natural gas heating in the District of North Vancouver.”

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I know that Coun. Curren is very knowledgeable about climate change issues and I’m sure she already knows that electric baseboard heating is the most expensive option and would not recommend it.

 Coun. Curren, unlike the writer, knows that today, electric heat pumps are being installed instead of electric baseboard heating. They are more than three times as efficient, as they use electricity not to generate heat but simply to transfer heat from outside to inside the house – and in the opposite direction for summer cooling, like a two-directional refrigerator.

Using a heat pump is no more expensive that heating with gas, and will become less so as increasing carbon taxes raise the price of gas – not to mention the dropping cost of solar panels that can significantly offset our electricity costs.

 As for the “small” greenhouse gas footprint, clearly the writer has not travelled through northern B.C. to see the massive scale of fracking and its devastating effects on the natural environment, communities and wildlife. Natural gas is methane with a greenhouse effect 80 times that of carbon dioxide over a 20-year period. Not so small.

And definitely not sustainable nor inexpensive: we can all now see the costs of climate change on society, with rising sea levels, forest fires, floods, threats to the world’s food supplies.

 So kudos to Coun. Curren and all councils and staffs of our North Shore municipalities for acknowledging the world climate emergency and joining with other cities worldwide to take positive steps for a brighter future.

Jon and Simone Carrodus
District of North Vancouver

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