A lot of the criticism of the Occupy phenomenon has centred on its general incoherence on substantive policy. What do the Occupiers want? The movement started with Occupy Wall Street, which might suggest disapproval of the Wall Street bailouts from 2008 and 2009 and a belief that the Street brought the financial calamity on itself.
But walk through an Occupy site and you’ll see placards and slogans that indicate Occupiers are concerned with much more than just Wall Street. Anybody familiar with the organized street protests that have occurred in North American cities in the last few decades will see familiar themes: the environment, poverty, general inequality. They’ll also notice the same alleged culprits: big business, oil companies, banks, government. Occupy Ottawa is no different in this respect.
This is why I shook my head at the irony of a placard reading “Protect the Environment” while a gasoline-powered electricity generator noisily ran only a few meters away.
It is true that the occupiers had their power cut by the NCC, which owns the site.
But cutting the occupiers off the electricity grid doesn’t automatically force them onto the gasoline grid. There is equipment available that could easily wheel clean, cheap grid power to the Occupy Ottawa site.
This equipment is the chargeable lead-acid battery. Grid-charged batteries could easily meet Occupy Ottawa’s electricity demand.
As I pointed out on November 16, if the batteries are charged from the Ontario grid, then Occupy Ottawa could meet its electricity needs far more cheaply and cleanly than by using gasoline.
Even more so if the batteries were charged right across the river, in Quebec, where electricity is the cheapest and cleanest on the whole continent.
Come on, Occupy Ottawa. Show some due diligence. The sign says “Protect the Environment.” So practice what you preach. Prove that those who say you have no policy coherence are wrong.