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After enjoying several days of golf in warm Arizona, I returned home to hear about people hand shovelling their driveway five times a day after the heaviest snowfall of the season. I must admit I felt no guilt that I had coincidently escaped this event. But I couldn’t help wondering if this was part of that ‘existential climate emergency’ we have been warned about that has led to paying for substitutes to ‘plastic bags’ and ‘single use utensils.’ Why did I think the emergency was to be all about the sun, supposedly too much sun, and high temperatures that led to what appeared to be cloud seeding before I left for Arizona? 

The Globe and Mail carried an Andrew Coyne article that headlined ‘Canada is no longer one of the richest nations on the Earth’ as our GDP had suffered further decline in the fourth quarter of 2023. We ‘dodged a recession’ for the time being. Coyne further stated the economy is growing slower than the population which accounted for the decline in our living standards. 

2023 wasn’t the most comfortable time for Prime Minister Trudeau – nor for Canada – for too many reasons, and 2024 isn’t starting out to be much better! New challenges, along with ‘skeletons stepping out of the closet’ seem to occur daily. In 1981, Canada ranked sixth among OECD countries and has now dropped to 15th. Among the richer countries, and according to Coyne, we are on our way to becoming one of the poorer and the only way out is faster growth. This is the crisis – not the climate! Our net federal debt is at $1.2 trillion and provincial debts are around $800 billion. We also have similar unfunded liabilities in the Canada Pension Plan and relatively fewer people of working age. 


Shane Wenzel

Shane is the President & CEO of the Shane Homes Group of Companies and the namesake. Shane's responsibilities include strategic direction for the companies, policy advice for the building industry through BILD Calgary, and political involvement through the Alberta Enterprise Group on the economy, making him an industry leader in his field. Shane's sales and marketing background comes from growing up with two entrepreneurial parents, Cal and Edith, and participating in a business advisory group. On the personal side, Shane considers himself a bit of a "tech junky" and social media influencer on various platforms. He's also proudly apart of the LGBTQ community.