Ontario looks beyond the struggling auto sector


Ford Canada St. Thomas Assembly Plant


Ontario’s auto industry is facing ongoing consolidation with the upcoming closing of a Ford Motor Co. plant in St. Thomas in 2011. Last year, General Motors Corp. closed a light truck plant in Oshawa. Auto analyst Dennis DesRosiers, president of DesRosiers Automotive Consultants Inc. in Richmond Hill, Ont., says Ontario’s auto industry has lost 50,000 jobs since 2006 and has been hurt by long-term structural change as well as cyclical issues related to the economy.

It is also becoming increasingly difficult to compete with lower-cost plants in parts of the U.S. and Mexico that are not unionized, he says. As a result, he expects Canada’s share of total North American auto production — virtually all of which takes place in Ontario — to drop to as low as 12% during the next four to five years from its current perch of 16%.

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Understanding Prosperity Without Growth


“The truth is that there is as yet no credible, socially just, ecologically sustainable scenario of continually growing incomes for a world of 9 billion people.”

This rather terrifying quote is from “Prosperity without growth? The transition to a sustainable economy,” published by the Sustainable Development Commission, the U.K. government’s sustainability watchdog. The report is the result of a year-long inquiry by the commission led by Professor Tim Jackson, who has been developing the basic concept across his entire career.
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