Harper Conservatives’ Emission Cuts Are Just More Hot Air

The Harper Conservatives released their updated Canada’s Emissions Trends Report yesterday and, true to form, Environment Minister Peter Kent is determined to take credit for the fact that Canada is apparently halfway toward reaching its target of cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

“It’s become a joke in the international environment and scientific community as they watch the antics of the Harper Conservatives who want to have it both ways – aggressively pushing non-renewable energy sources and taking credit for CO2 emission cuts,” commented Green Party Leader Elizabeth May, MP Saanich-Gulf Islands.  “No other government has managed such a combination, and the facts show the Conservatives haven’t either.”

Under the Copenhagen Accord, Canada committed to lowering its greenhouse gas emissions by 17 percent from 2005 levels by 2020.

May pointed out that it is the provinces which deserve the credit for greenhouse gas emission cuts registered since last year – as they try to fill the sustainability gap left by the federal Conservatives.

At the same time, it is very important to realize that the Harper Conservatives actually adjusted the emission accounting rules this year.  They changed the “baseline” or goalpost in such a way that it appears they have made more progress than they have.

“Again, the Harper Conservatives aren’t playing by the rules.  Imagine a Canadian Olympic contender who cheated in order to look good – in front of the world.  This is what we are witnessing in the area of greenhouse emissions cuts by this gang,” said May.

“As Canadians experience the hottest summer on record, I’m sure they will not be convinced that Mr. Harper is making real progress in trying to avoid climate catastrophe – no matter how much they change the rules, twist the facts, and puff themselves up.”