Canadian Senate Kills Climate Bill

by: EJ on 11/19/2010
Posted in: Climate Change

As most of you already know, the Harper government in Canada made an unprecedented move this Wednesday when it voted to defeat the Climate Change Accountability Act (Bill C-311) before the bill was even debated. Bill C-311 had already passed through the House of Commons to the Senate in the spring of last year. The government-appointed senators have voted against the will of the majority of Members of Parliament and the Canadian public.

“This manipulation of the democratic process is irresponsible and goes against the campaign promises that Stephen Harper made on accountability, transparency and democratic fairness, not to mention Senate reform,” says Steven Guilbeault of Equiterre in a press release from Climate Action Network Canada. You can read the complete release here.

This comes on the eve of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change in Cancun, Mexico, and does nothing to improve Canada's tarnished international reputation. We are left with no climate change action plan to put forward at the talks. In this press briefing, UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres explains the goals and challenges of the coming Convention - in particular the difficulties of dealing with the targets of industrialized countries.

"Governments need to be clear in Cancun on how and when national targets will be anchored." she says. "There is still a lot at stake if the world is going to stay below a two degrees temperature rise". Calling climate change "humanity's biggest long-term challenge" she hopes that the Convention "can set a new pace for negotiations, where governments lock in better agreements every year, never ruling out new possibilities or ignoring existing needs for the future." Go Harper Go. I feel like we are sending our team captain out on the playing field dressed in his pajamas.

New Society author, Albert Bates, will be in attendance and will be posting to Facebook and Twitter (@peaksurfer) as often as he can. "Cancun is no Copenhagen" he told me. "But I will post as often as I can." Albert Bates' most recent book The Biochar Solution: Carbon Farming and Climate Change deals with the issues of biochar and climate change.

The Biochar Solution


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