Just when observers thought they were going wobbly, the European Union overcame British opposition to implement a deal that commits the member states to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2030. The deal also requires the E.U. to generate 27% of its energy from renewables by the same deadline.
The EU is now the first to set out emissions reduction targets ahead of a crunch meeting of world governments in Paris in 2015 that will decide a global framework for avoiding dangerous levels of global warming. Every other major developed and developing economy is expected to set out its own binding national emissions target within the next year, for the United Nations talks to go ahead.
Harperland, by contrast, has told the U.N. that Canadian emissions will soar by 38% by 2030. You guessed it. The culprit is Tar Sands expansion. To make matters worse, Harper is being fingered for cooking the books on Canada's reported GHG emissions from the natural gas sector.
In a new report (pdf) to the United Nations, the Harper administration says it expects emissions of 815million tonnes of CO2 in 2030, up from 590Mt in 1990. Emissions from the fast-growing tar sands sector is projected to quadruple between 2005 and 2030, reaching 137Mt a year, more than Belgium and many other countries, the report shows.
Worse, Canada is likely under-reporting its emissions. An investigation in 2013 found that Canada's reported emissions from its natural gas sector, the world's third largest, could be missing as much as 212Mt in 2011 alone.
And, this being Canada, and the Liberals and New Democrats being the spineless opportunists they are, ever ready to place their political aspirations well beyond the interests of the country, are continuing to ignore Harper's admission.