|Print Version||Climate Change|
The government's fourth annual Kyoto Protocol Implementation Report was issued this week. Estimated greenhouse gas (GHG) reductions have been substantially reduced from previous reports, as the Pembina Institute has pointed out. Nevertheless, the net result is roughly the same as that estimated last year – Environment Canada still expects to exceed Canada's 5-year total Kyoto target by just over 800 megatonnes (Mt) of GHGs.
This sleight of hand was made possible by the fact we now have actual GHG emission results for 2008. At 734 Mt, we did much better than anticipated, but only because of "a slowdown in economic growth which began in 2008," according to Environment Canada, as well as "the utilization of greater amounts of hydropower for electricity generation." Presumably that's why it now predicts an even lower number for 2009, which keeps the 5-year total in the same ballpark as last year. Somehow, the whole exercise puts me in mind of the boiling frog syndrome.
Canadians, however, are not reacting complacently. In a recent poll, they rated global warming as their top priority for the G8 / G20 talks later this month. And we've been inundated with emails supporting Bill C-311, a private member's initiative passed by a majority in the House of Commons and now before the Senate. Appropriately enough, it's called "An Act to ensure Canada assumes its responsibilities in preventing dangerous climate change." No matter how hard Mr. Harper attempts to distract us with staged fights over an international bank levy, it's clear that Canadians have no intention of ignoring the climate change issue.
Posted On Jun 07 08:54AM
So...maybe all the fuss over maternal health and abortion was another ploy to detract our attention from the PMO's track record on climate change? It seems to have worked -- on the media front, in any case. And for now.
Sadly, 'the boiling frog' metaphor resonates all too well.
Posted On Jun 04 11:20AM
I spent 20 years in the NWT, part of which includes 5 years in the high Eastern Arctic. I still correspond with friends who keep me abreast of the realities of global warming. Regardless of what comes out of Ottawa, the Arctic is warming up. I'm informed of longer ice free seasons, lots of open water in places where it has been seldom seen and changes in wildlife migrations and birth rates. I totally agree with PenGwen. There is a burning need for the Federal government to take the leading role to unite the various factions looking to solutions. It is obvious our Prime Minister is in bed with oil and gas companies and has no intention to undertake this endeavour. Perhaps when foreign ships are freely plying the open waters of the Northwest Passage and our country's sovereignty is challenged with respect to ownership, will Mr. Harper react. By then, it may be too late.
Posted On Jun 04 07:24AM
I cannot ignore it. Sometimes, I honestly feel as though CC is seeping into my sub-conscience and is always on my mind. I understand that there are pockets of initiatives to address the issue all over the country and the world. From individuals, to orgs and businesses to various levels of government, but they are disconnected, lacking common, definitive goals and targets. I crave for a uniting factor that puts us all on the same page. I think that is where the federal government comes in, to create that umbrella of commonality. But they are not doing it and I resent that. I want to feel and know that we are all working towards the same goal.