This week in Canada there has been a triple blow to the Harper Government’s climate and energy policy – and although many ENGOs knee jerk response was, ‘tell us something we don’t know’ – the messengers in this case are much harder for the government to ignore:
The Harper government's climate and energy policy derided both internally and internationally
1. National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy – this para-governmental institute released a report that estimates that climate change impacts and adaptation costs in Canada have been seriously underestimated and could reach between $21 and 43 billion per year by 2050.
2. Environment Commissioner – the internal government watchdog on the environment released a scathing report yesterday berating the government for basing tar sands projects on, “incomplete, poor, or non-existent environmental information.” To add insult to injury the report said it could find no evidence that the government had any plan that would come close to reaching even its own weak GHG reduction targets.
3. European Commission – after years of aggressive lobbying by the Canadian and Albertan governments, the European Commission is sticking to the science and insisting that their Fuel Quality Directive reflect the high GHG content of the tar sands. This precedent setting decision sends a clear signal that no amount of relentless lobbying can counter the fact that the tar sands are one of the worlds dirtiest fuels. Read Climate Action Network Canada's reaction.
With the proverbial ice melting from under its own feet, the Government is going to have to make some serious leaps and bounds before they show up empty handed again in Durban.
Green energy on the line in the Ontario election
Today is election day in Ontario, and residents are eagerly awaiting the results. Ontario has a piece of world-class renewable energy legislation that has seen investment in wind, solar, and biomass grow exponentially over the last two years. Some parties seem to be missing the boat on the clean energy revolution, but we hope that Ontarians demand that whichever party wins the election continues the success of the Green Energy Act, which has provided income for people participating in the Feed-in Tariff (FIT) program, and has provided thousands of green-sector jobs in Ontario.
Watch this awesome video with Rick Mercer, Mike Holmes, and David Suzuki about how the FIT program can benefit homeowners. More importantly, if you live in Ontario, get out there and VOTE!
Power Workers Union caught using fake grassroots campaign to build a case against clean energy
It has come to light that in the run-up to the Ontario election, the Ontario Power-workers Union has been engaged in some astroturfing. It hired marketing firm M Thirty to create an online voice to promote its anti-renewable energy agenda. Several employees of M Thirty, who did not identify themselves as such nor always used their real names, posted links on a wide range of facebook pages promoting a 'Better Energy Plan' that focuses on coal and nuclear. A probe has been launched by the PWU to investigate whether the tactics used by the marketing firm were appropriate.