The nephew of a former U.S. President says he thinks too many corporations are being allowed to pollute North America while reaping huge profits.

Bobby Kennedy Jr. took the floor at the FSIN Economic Development Conference in Saskatoon today.

An Environmental lawyer, Kennedy says the public is often blind to the amount of money being taken from them to pay for the costs associated with mining and resource development.

For example, he says in West Virginia taxpayers are footing the bill for hundreds of kilometres of road that are mainly used by coal-trucks:

“And I knew why the road has 22 inches of asphalt, because the coal-trucks weigh 40,000 lbs and a less-robust road would be pulverized by them.  So there’s 3,000 miles of coal roads in the state of West Virginia and the coal companies aren’t paying for those roads, the tax-payers are.”

Kennedy argues wind and solar energy make more sense because when the facilities get built they result in free energy forever.

Today’s conference runs through until tomorrow.