Canada’s Climate Policy All Hot Air, No Substance

What the Canadian Government says about climate change:

While the challenges with respect to climate change are great, our responsibility is also clear. We are the stewards of our environment, and we will continue to count it amongst our most cherished and defining characteristics. The time has come for real action. The moment is now and the world must act.” Environment Minister Jim Prentice

What the world says about Canada and climate change:

  • Fossil of the Year goes to CANADA, for bringing a totally unacceptable position into Copenhagen and refusing to strengthen it one bit.  Canada’s 2020 target is among the worst in the industrialized world, and leaked cabinet documents revealed that the government is contemplating a cap-and-trade plan so weak that it would put even that target out of reach.

Canada has made zero progress here on financing, offering nothing for the short term or the long term beyond vague platitudes…

Canada’s performance here in Copenhagen builds on two years of delay, obstruction, and total inaction.  This government thinks there’s a choice between environment and economy, and for them, tar sands beats climate every time. Canada’s emissions are headed nowhere but up.” Climate Action Network, (a group of 500 NGOs) at the end of the Copenhagen Conference, December, 2009

  • Karsten Sach, the head of the German delegation, stated at the Bali Climate Conference in 2007:  “We Europeans don’t see the Canadian position as constructive.”

  • To express their unhappiness with Canada’s position at recent climate talks in Thailand, the South African delegation stood up and led the Group of 77 developing nations (except for a group of small island states) out of the room when Canada addressed the conference.

So  why the discrepancy between the lofty words on the Government of Canada website and the reality of the Canadian government’s policy?

Jim Hoggan, founder of PR firm James Hoggan and Associates and, explains it this way:

“The Canadian government’s climate plan is pure politics – pure public relations. It’s all hot air, with no regulation or legislation to back it up. The government is not passing laws to limit greenhouse gas emissions. It is not setting science-based targets and it’s not financing renewable energy.”

For more discussion of Canada’s policy go to my “What The Heck IS Canada’s Policy?” page or this link.

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