Monday, July 13, 2015

The Premiers' Pernicious Plot - War On Our Grandkids

So much for "social licence."  The Globe has discovered the underhanded double-dealing our premiers are planning to unveil at their summit this week to fast-track bitumen pipelines and sweep away regulatory protections.

The Canadian Energy Strategy will be finalized and unveiled at a premiers’ conference in St. John’s beginning Wednesday. But The Globe and Mail has obtained a draft of the plan that reveals the key points and stumbling blocks.

The confidential 37-page document lays out 10 goals and dozens of action items as part of a sweeping vision for the future of oil, gas and electricity across the country.

The creation of the energy strategy has been a long and belaboured process. The brainchild of former Alberta premier Alison Redford, it was first conceived in 2012 as a way to plan future oil-sands expansion and address climate-change concerns. The premiers have been crafting it for the past three years. The provincial leaders couldn’t have imagined that the agreement would come at a time of low crude prices, oil sands production cuts and economic angst in Alberta and the rest of the country.

Two sections of the plan commit the provinces and territories to help get more pipelines built, in part by cutting down on red tape to speed up regulatory decisions.

But the strategy contains little firm commitment on battling global warming. Its strongest environmental section – a pledge for all provinces and territories to adopt absolute targets for cutting greenhouse gases – is marked as a point of contention that might be scrapped.

...There is vague environmental rhetoric peppered throughout the draft strategy, but no binding promises on exactly what the provinces and territories will do to fight climate change – only a general pledge to “transition to a lower carbon economy.” One section, for instance, lists a series of possible climate-change policies, including carbon capture and carbon pricing, but does not appear to require that provinces and territories do any of them.

There is also no explanation on how oil-sands production can expand – a likely scenario if more pipelines are built – while the country still reduces greenhouse gas emissions.

Now that we've learned that keeping global warming to 2C - which might enable the survival of our civilization into the next century - demands that, globally, we leave the highest-carbon fossil fuels in the ground, untouched, unburned - Canada's premiers are banding together to ramp up Canada's extraction and export of the planet's filthiest petroleum, bitumen.  For public consumption they'll make the standard promises about cutting greenhouse gas emissions and then ignore their assurances as is now their second nature.

And what will we say as world leaders gather in Paris this December for what many believe is our last - as in final - chance to reach an effective accord to avoid catastrophic climate change?

h/t Marie, @ A Puff of Absurdity and thanks to Bill Longstaff for reminding us that it's not just the Conservatives behind this but the Liberals and New Democrats also.  As Andrew Nikiforuk reminds us, this is the face of the petro-state in the age of neoliberalism.


Lorne said...

I wrote a post on the same topic, Mound. All I can say is that the absolute hypocrisy here should disgust and outrage all thinking Canadians.

The Mound of Sound said...

So, Lorne, got your "Green card" yet? The choice is getting more obvious as it is imperative with every passing day, don't you agree?

Lorne said...

I have to yield to yor logic here, Mound.