Public to judge government’s action on climate change
Climate Action Network-Reseau action climat
The Climate Action Network-Reseau action climat (CAN-RAC) today launched www.takerealaction.ca to give Canadians an opportunity to speak directly to the federal government about its ongoing refusal to meet Canada’s environmental obligations under both Canadian law and the Kyoto Protocol.
The Kyoto Protocol Implementation Act became law on June 26, 2007. This law requires the federal government to meet Canada’s Kyoto target, first by producing a plan to honour Canada’s obligations under the Kyoto Protocol and then by putting that plan into effect through regulations and other measures.
Under the terms of the law, the government had 60 days to produce a plan to meet Kyoto. Sadly, the government’s 37-page report merely re-iterates the flawed proposal the government announced in April – a proposal that would not reach Canada’s 2008-2012 Kyoto target until sometime after 2020.
“The government opposed this bill from the beginning, voting against it at every stage in Parliament”, said Graham Saul, Executive Director, CAN-RAC. “Now, instead of releasing a Kyoto plan, they’ve merely re-packaged the initiatives they announced this spring, which will allow emissions to rise and keep rising for many years to come. Our website, www.takerealaction.ca, will provide Canadians with a convenient forum to voice their concern directly to a government that simply isn’t living up to its international obligations and the law of the land.”
Despite Environment Minister John Baird’s commitment to make “best efforts”, the government’s “Climate Change Plan” failed to announce a single new measure to bring Canada closer to the Kyoto target. (1)
“If you or I violated a federal law, the police would be knocking at the door”, said John Bennett, climateforchange.ca. “Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way when it’s the government that breaks the law.”
A number of environmental organizations plan to ask the federal courts to rule that the government has failed to comply with the law. The courts have the power to order the government to live up to the requirements of the Kyoto Protocol Implementation Act.
The deadline for submitting public comments on the plan is September 20.
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Contact: Andrew Dumbrille, Climate Action Network-Reseau action climat (CAN-RAC), 613-862-1852
(1) Testimony to the Senate committee on Energy, the Environment and Natural Resources on April 19, 2007. The Minister’s statement was, “We accept our international obligations and will make our best efforts.”