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What Is Canada Really Doing About Climate Change?

What Is Canada Really Doing About Climate Change?

Environment Minister Peter Kent was out last week hailing Canada’s reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and proclaiming that the country is halfway to the targets set for 2020 by the Copenhagen Accord.

Kent failed to mention that the reduction in emissions happened in provinces where large emitters are facing economic challenges that have slowed production. He also left out the fact that development in the Alberta energy sector will cause emissions to rise, and that a report released by Environment Canada actually shows that the emissions reduction have little or nothing to do with anything the federal government has done.

“Over one-third of the reduction is simply an accounting change. And most of the actual progress is the result of provincial and territorial leadership and the fact that we’ve been in a recession.  The Conservatives can’t claim any credit – except maybe for their economic mismanagement,” said Megan Leslie, the Official Opposition Critic for the Environment.

Meanwhile, facing a fight between Alberta and British Columbia, the Prime Minister came out and said that science will be the deciding factor in the Northern Gateway Pipeline project.

Harper also said that it is in the country’s best interests to “diversify” its export market, that it’s important that Canada is able to get our resources to Asia and indicated this is something BC needs to remember.

He noted that the pipeline project is under review by the National Energy Board, but failed to mention that his Cabinet will make the final decision on such projects if they are deemed to be of national importance.

Meanwhile, Postmedia journalist Mike De Souza accessed an internal memo that showed scientists were discouraged from talking about a report linking human activity to major weather events.

With the government push to have Canada become an energy superpower, climate change denial and fudging the truth are both easier than admitting that the country is a major polluter and working to actually green the economy.

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Photo Credit: Eryn Rickard

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57 comments

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8:07AM PDT on Aug 16, 2012

Humankind has not woven the web of life.
We are but one thread within it.
Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves.
All things are bound together.
All things connect.

Chief Seattle, 1854

7:47PM PDT on Aug 15, 2012

Canada doing something about the environment. That is a JOKE. Canadians are maintaining a TERRORIST to be their prime minister who is threatenng the entire earth and he's got a huge following of world environment destroyers, warmongers and child killers protecting the psychopath and supporting his crimes. Harper is far worse than Hitler, a nightmare monster with those bloodsucking "minister" snakes around him. Harper deserves only capital punishment for his crimes.

1:25PM PDT on Aug 15, 2012

: /

7:11AM PDT on Aug 15, 2012

I would have thought they would do better.

5:25AM PDT on Aug 15, 2012

Not enough!

3:51AM PDT on Aug 15, 2012

thanks for posting

1:54AM PDT on Aug 15, 2012

Of course, everything business does is geared to their own profits. When a business provides a worthwhile product to its customers without harming others, I certainly do NOT begrudge them their profits. I believe Galbraith was saying that Supply Side Economics was the start of business taking over government for its own ends. I believe Citizens United completes that takeover. Fossil fuel firms don't need to invent wind and solar power. They already exist. Fossil fuel firms only need to recognize when wind and solar become sufficiently cost-competitive with fossil fuel for fossil fuel firms to diversify into them.

1:48AM PDT on Aug 15, 2012

Of course, everything business does is geared to their own profits. When a business provides a worthwhile product to its customers without harming others, I certainly do NOT begrudge them their profits. I believe Galbraith was saying that Supply Side Economics was the start of business taking over government for its own ends. I believe Citizens United completes that takeover. Fossil fuel firms don't need to invent wind and solar power. They already exist. Fossil fuel firms only need to recognize when wind and solar become sufficiently cost-competitive with fossil fuel for fossil fuel firms to diversify into them.

9:12PM PDT on Aug 14, 2012

Climate change is a serious problem. The world needs to switch to wind and solar energy.

6:56PM PDT on Aug 14, 2012

Hi, Grace A., just to mention, business-supported solutions to industry-created issues generally aren't feasible because they're still geared toward their own profit margins.

Also, why don't these polluting industries sink a little R&D money into sustainable power options so that they don't run out of business as they run out of fossil fuels?

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