Jeffrey Simpson nails the Canadian stance on climate change

Jeffrey Simpson explains very well what the Canadian government strategy on climate change is – say something that sounds good to Canadians and stay very quiet in international negotiations, where everyone knows that we have no leg to stand on.  We have arguably the worst record of fighting climate change, or even taking it seriously, on the planet.

Even before his departure, Mr. Baird began blaming China, India, Brazil and others for not doing nearly enough to bring down greenhouse-gas emissions. It was largely the fault of developing countries such as these that the Kyoto Protocol failed, he claimed, and why a new climate-change agreement wouldn’t work.

Canada is right to urge big developing countries to do better and more than what they’ve thus far proposed. Canada also would be right to do something serious itself before lecturing others, since Canada has the worst record in the advanced industrialized world.

Mr. Baird’s aggressive message – a classic instance of throwing stones at glass houses – was designed entirely for Canadian consumption, since Canada long ago lost any shred of credibility on the world stage for climate change.

2 responses to “Jeffrey Simpson nails the Canadian stance on climate change”

  1. klem writes:

    ”Canada long ago lost any shred of credibility on the world stage for climate change.”

    A completly idiotic comment from comrade Jeffery Simpson. Canada has 3 million sqkm of boreal forests, without doing anything at all Canada has reduced more carbon from the atmosphere than almost any other developed country in the world other than Russia and the USA. Ever been to the EU? Sometimes you can drive all day there and not see a single tree. What, did Jeff forget we have so much forest? I wonder if Jeffery would have been so critical if a Liberal had been attending the conference in Cancun. Well done comrade Simpson. Lol!

  2. Adriana Mugnatto-Hamu writes:

    Hi Klem,

    I find your comment truly perplexing. Maintaining forest doesn’t reduce atmospheric carbon much. Plants can absorb somewhat more carbon in a carbon-rich atmosphere, and grow bigger, but this is pretty trivial, and often offset by acid rain, pollution and other factors. Boreal forest also has the quality that the year-round darkness of the trees absorbs so much solar radiation that the net effect is temperature neutral. Finally, Canada’s boreal forest is being devastated by the pine beetle (itself due to climate change) so it is a rapidly growing carbon emitter. And if you’re counting non-fossil carbon exchanges, you should include Canada’s methane emissions from permafrost, and perhaps Arctic ice melt, which would make Canada appear positively criminal.

    Forests throughout Europe and most developed countries are actually growing. Even in developing countries, the rate of deforestation is slowing. So forestry is not an area where Canada shines anyway.

    Your recognition that Canada has done nothing should be the giveaway to why we’ve lost credibility. We’re hiding behind our forests to say they give us an excuse to do nothing about automobile and other emissions and to allow tar sands to grow.

    And I can assure you that in international negotiations, such shell games are much more apparent than they are to the Canadian public. Canada looks bad because we act badly and everyone knows it.

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