Thursday, October 19, 2006
go back to the drawing board
I will be 77 when the Conservative's cut the Greenhouse emissions by 45%.
Thanks for nothing.
Emissions goal decades away
Proposed law makes no mention of Kyoto Protocol
Oct. 19, 2006. 11:22 AM
OTTAWA — The Conservatives released the centrepiece of their "made-in-Canada" environment agenda Thursday — a Clean Air Act that would cut greenhouse gas emissions in half, but not until 2050.
The bill, aimed at dispelling the notion that Tories are soft on the environment, sets no short-term targets for cutting greenhouse emissions. In the long term, it says the government will seek to cut emissions by 45 to 65 per cent by 2050.
In the interim, the government will set so-called "intensity targets" which would require industry to reduce the amount of energy used per unit of production, without placing a hard cap on emissions.
Regulations for large polluters would begin in 2010 and the government is giving itself until 2020 to set national emissions-cutting targets for the pollutants that cause smog.
The proposed law, which is certain to get a rough ride from opposition parties who say it's far too weak, makes no reference to the Kyoto Protocol even though Canada remains a party to the treaty.
In the coming year, the government will introduce regulations to reduce emissions from motorcycles, outboard engines, all-terrain vehicles and off-road diesel engines. Officials were unable to say what proportion of Canada's emissions come from those sources, or by how much they will be reduced.
The intention will be to synchronize Canadian regulations with those of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. New rules for the fuel efficiency of cars and trucks will be established by 2010.
On the sensitive issue of targets for large industrial emitters, the government is moving cautiously, with a three-phase consultation process in coming years.
The previous government already held three years of consultations on regulation of large emitters, which account for about half of Canada's greenhouse pollution.
The Clean Air Act will transfer a number of substances that were previously defined as toxic under the Canadian Environmental Protection Act to a new category labelled "air pollutants."
Critics say this shift is almost certain to result in a constitutional challenge. The wording used in the act had been tested before the Supreme Court, while the new wording has not been tested.