Published by Senator Grant Mitchell on 02 March 2009
There is a distinct lack of research funding in the 2009 budget. When the rest of the world is investing heavily in research, particularly research into climate change and other environmental issues, Mr. Harper is cutting research operating grants. We need stimulus for our economy now and also to build an economy of the future.
There is a recent report in the Vancouver Sun pointing out that the drain of Canadian scientific brains is already starting to quicken. One young and accomplished scientist at University of Victoria is going to Australia against her original intentions. Funds are running out at the Canadian Foundation for Climate and Atmospheric Sciences and many scientists across the country will see their work evaporate. Many will and are moving elsewhere. One project has been preparing for the country’s next water crisis. The last major drought in Canada cost $6.0 billion and 41,000 jobs.
While infrastructure remains an important investment, we must focus on brain power as well as buildings.