I should like to take this
opportunity to make a few remarks on this resolution, and I promise that I shall not be as lengthy or as inaccurate as the member who has preceded me. I should like, however, to direct a few remarks to the minister whose estimates are before us at the present time not particularly with respect to the problem of northern affairs although coming from Nova Scotia as I do I cannot help but remind the committee that Nova Scotia is one of four provinces, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, which should have more to say with respect to the development of our northern resources than we have because at one time we were equal partners in those great resources. However, at the
moment I wish to direct my remarks to the minister in his capacity as minister of national resources.
As I visualize his responsibility in that position, it covers the development of our renewable resources such as our forests, and of course I appreciate that while our forests are renewable they are only renewable within a limited time. You can cut down forests and it takes a good many years before they will reproduce themselves. Then we have water power, another important national resource and one which we must utilize to the fullest extent. Along with our water power we must consider our non-reproducing natural resources such as coal and similar minerals.
I am going to subdivide our water resources into two parts. First of all, I should like to refer to the water resources found in the natural flow of our rivers, and I am going to refer specifically to the province of Nova Scotia. Here I should like to say that in my opinion the development of hydro power on our non-tidal rivers in Nova Scotia is most uneconomical because in order to provide the necessary storage basins and a level flow of water throughout the year it is necessary to flood such large areas of the river basins that the natural growth in those basins, whether agricultural or forest, is destroyed, and the initial cost of such a development is not a true picture of the actual cost to the economy of the country. In other words, we should consider when we flood such tremendous areas of our province what the potential production of those areas would have been in future years and add that to the cost of the development.
We do have one great source of power in our province which I believe has never been actually explored to the hilt. It is true that an investigation was made, and there is one going on now, of Passamaquoddy bay to see just what we could do to develop power from the tides of the bay of Fundy. A few years ago an investigation was also made on the Petitcodiac and the Memramcook rivers, in New Brunswick. At that time I believe a report was brought in that the development of power there was not economical compared with the development of power from coal, but in that regard I want to make this point. The coal of the maritime provinces, Nova Scotia particularly, is expendable but the tides are not expendable. They have been going out and coming in ever since mankind was created and they will go out and come in just as long as humanity exists.
Therefore I am saying that while it might be more economical to develop power from coal in the immediate future nevertheless
Supply-Northern Affairs from a long-range point of view and knowing that our coal supply is exhaustible I believe the whole situation should be taken into consideration with that in mind. I suppose hon. members will say to me: What has this all got to do with the present situation? They may say that power, after all, is a provincial matter and that therefore the Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources should not be concerned with it. However, I have great hopes from the announcement made by our great Prime Minister that he was fully aware of the financial problems some of the lesser provinces have to meet and that the federal government would go along with those provinces in any way possible to secure their development.
There is another feature. The minister is responsible for the tourist industry. I suggest to him that one of the greatest undeveloped potentials in our national production, or whatever you like to call it, is the undeveloped tourist industry in the maritime provinces. It does seem to me to be a crime that Canadians in the central provinces, who have waxed rich from the business they have received from the Atlantic provinces, should go to the United States when they have a chance to go to the sea coast for summer holidays instead of going to the coast of the Atlantic provinces. I suggest it is a responsibility of the minister to see that proper facilities are provided so that the people from the central provinces will come to our great Atlantic sea coast. I should like to go on to try to develop this idea a bit further and I am going to refer to my own constituency. In the area of Minas basin and Cobequid bay tremendous water power is produced by the tides of that great basin which rise 60 to 62 feet from low tide to high tide every day. Do you not agree that there is a great undeveloped water power potential in that tremendous tidal reservoir, one that renews itself every day and is inexhaustible? It will go on into eternity, and I am asking the minister to give consideration to the possibilities there.
As I said a moment ago, the survey of 1945 indicated that the development of power from the tidal waters of the bay of Fundy was not economical compared with coal. Again, our coal supply is exhaustible but our tidal power is inexhaustible. I have another thought to put to the minister, and I appreciate that what I am about to say fall* to some extent within the purview of the provincial government. Nevertheless, I come back to a thought I mentioned a few moments ago, namely, that one of our national resources is the tourist business and therefore so far as the tourist business is concerned it
Supply-Northern Affairs would be quite within the province of the federal government to help along the lines I have suggested.
I am coming now to the problem of highways and transportation facilities into our tourist attractions.
Would you gentlemen around me who are talking kindly go outside and carry on your conversation there while I am trying to talk to the minister?
Topic: PIPE LINES
Subtopic: DEPARTMENT OP EXTERNAL AFFAIRS