Given Stephen Harper's most recent demonstrated indifference to climate change, I report the following with no surprise, only a degree of tired resignation:
Environment Canada appears to have quietly ended key discussions that were intended to tackle carbon pollution from the oil and gas industry.
A committee made up of representatives from Environment Canada, the Alberta government and oil and gas companies was created in the fall of 2011 to develop options to reduce industrial greenhouse gases from the oilsands sector, the country’s fastest growing source of carbon emissions.
But the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP), which was part of the committee, says it stopped getting invitations to meetings in 2013.
“We have no knowledge of the group having met since March 2013,” said Alex Ferguson, the vice-president of policy and performance at the association, which represents Canadian oil and gas companies, in an email to the Star.
The most discouraging aspect of the report is this:
The Harper government has estimated it won’t achieve the prime minister’s international climate change commitment to reduce emissions by 2020, mainly because of rising pollution from the oil and gas sector.
While most Canadian industries have reduced their carbon footprints, the oilsands sector has moved in the opposite direction increasing its emissions by 307 per cent between 1990 and 2012, Environment Canada estimated in a report submitted to the United Nations earlier this year.
Once again, under this administration Canada is proving to be one of the West's most egregious climate-change outliers. It is not a distinction any of us should take pride in.