Sunday, October 25, 2009

Canada Now a Laughing Stock on Climate Change. We are Deemed Irrelevant.

I don't know how much longer the Reform-Conservatives can drag their heels on addressing climate change, but it would appear that we are now a laughing stock on the International stage. I've always wanted to be a laughing stock.

But did we really expect anything less from a man who called Kyoto a 'socialist scheme'. A man who hired climate change deniers to sit on the board and recently named Nigel Hannaford to write his speeches. Apparently when you plan to do nothing, you must have a speech writer who can sell doing nothing to the Canadian people.

This is Canada? We used to be world leaders. How did we let this happen?

Critics rip Canada's Kyoto failure
Inactivity on climate change turning Canada into international laughing stock
The Ottawa Sun

OTTAWA - If the world successfully hammers out a new climate change deal to replace the Kyoto Protocol in Copenhagen, Denmark, this December, Canada won't be able to claim one shred of credit for the accomplishment.

This is the view held by some academics, politicians and NGOs in Canada who say our failure to develop any climate change policy since the Tories came to power, or make any efforts to adhere to Kyoto, have disgraced Canada on the world stage.

"Canada is the one country that has said it's not going to make any effort to achieve the Kyoto target even though we are still part of the regime," says Douglas MacDonald of the University of Toronto's Centre for Environment.


"Canada is going to be seen in negative terms ... It's a disgrace and it's a national shame this government is putting Canada in this position."

MacDonald says it would be better if the federal government was honest about its intentions, opted out of any further global climate change talks, and refused to go to Copenhagen.

"They won't do that presumably because there would be a political price to be paid, making the failings of Canadian policy much more visible," said MacDonald.

In a newspaper interview published Friday, Environment Minister Jim Prentice said reaching a global deal this December was unlikely.

"The fact that Prentice is pooh-poohing the possibility of a deal in Copenhagen, and still refusing to release any details on what this country's plan is, is just horrific," said Rick Smith, executive director of Environmental Defence.


"The best case scenario is we are irrelevant, the worst case scenario is that we are actively obstructing a global deal. It's a pretty sad state of affairs if the best role we can have is one of irrelevance," Smith said.

Green Party Leader Elizabeth May said she is concerned negotiations leading up to Copenhagen have not been active enough, but she notes that the European and U.S. leadership appear far more keen on a deal.

"If the rest of the world adopted Canada's approach, the future for our kids would be unthinkable," she said.

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