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A version of the following letter to the editor appeared in the Globe and Mail, December 12, 2006

Toward greener cars

Ottawa -- Buzz Hargrove is right to demand greener cars and those cars should be built in Canada for Canadians to drive. The problem, however, is not the lack of research and development. All the technologies we need to produce cars that meet California standards already exist.

European and even Chinese standards are better. What we need are tough laws that force companies to constantly improve. In the 1980s, the fuel economy of vehicles improved more than 100 per cent. Since 1990, without U.S. or Canadian laws pushing them, the car companies improved fuel economy only 7 per cent.

Unfortunately, Canada's new government intends to do nothing more than recognize the status quo while sounding tough.

John Bennett, senior policy adviser on energy, Sierra Club of Canada


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