The Liberal Party policy amendment that’s causing a buzz this morning

123. Climate Change

WHEREAS:
Scientists confirm that human activity, especially the burning of fossil fuels, is altering the atmosphere, changing Earth’s climate, and damaging the environment; Urgent action is required to combat the adverse effects of climate change; Biofuel production from crops grown for fuel (rather than for food) contributes to higher food prices, and risks increasing poverty and hunger, particularly in the global South.

BE IT RESOLVED that the Liberal Party of Canada urge the next Liberal government of Canada to:

  1. Support unconditionally Canada’s commitment under the Kyoto Protocol by enacting comprehensive legislation designed to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in Canada, including, but not limited to:

    1. establishing a carbon tax, a cap and trade system, or a combination of both, including hard
      limits on the emission of greenhouse gasses for large final emitters;

    2. providing financial support for energy efficiency and conservation measures, generating clean
      energy, and public education on the effects of global warming.
  2. Initiate constructive negotiations relating to the post-Kyoto period intended to build an international climate regime that includes:
    1. deeper mandatory GHG emission reductions for industrialized countries;

    2. expanding the group of countries committed to binding emission reductions;
    3. protection for tropical forests;
    4. prioritizing climate-friendly technologies.
  3. Combat climate change by committing Canada to a 25-40% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions (relative to 1990 levels) by 2020, and an 80% reduction by 2050.
  4. Favour the production of biofuels from forest product and agricultural residues.

Liberal Party of Canada (Quebec)

Questions:
1. Will Michael Ignatieff and his OLO/Liberal HQ team do everything in their power to prevent this policy from making it to the main floor of the convention?
2. If approved by Liberal delegates, will Michael Ignatieff allow this policy to be binding upon the Liberal Party?
3. If not, does this mean that the Liberal Party is ceding environmental policy to the NDP/Greens… to the Conservatives? (the Conservatives have passed legislation on GHG reduction)
4. Will the passing of such a resolution merely reflect the Liberal record of more talk than action on GHGs and climate change?
5. Last month, Michael Ignatieff said “We took the carbon tax to the public and the public didn’t think it was such a good idea”. Does this mean that Liberal Party policy is determined via polling rather than by party principle?
6. Will the Liberal convention (including flights, hotels, presentations and other travel) be carbon-neutral? Will the Liberal Party be buying carbon offsets for the entire carbon footprint of the convention?

Comments

comments

  • Liz J

    Mercy me. Would Iggy, after consulting the polls, insist on the proviso, “if necessary but not necessarily” or is it actually an absolute and taken out of his hands? Sounds like they really were on the same wavelength as the Dion, the leader they deposed.

    This won't fly, and most certainly would contribute to worsening the economy. Green doesn't come cheap, we already know it through our Hydro and water and sewer bills.

    The Liberals may be like the Unionistas, pricing themselves out of business, or in this case power.

  • http://www.othersideboardsports.com/kiteboarding.html surfboards

    This is quite interesting, liked reading it.

  • Durward

    Will the Liberal convention (including flights, hotels, presentations and other travel) be carbon-neutral? Will the Liberal Party be buying carbon offsets for the entire carbon footprint of the convention?

    Why would you even say this? It just reinforces in the minds of fools that so called Climate change is caused by CO2 and that there is a need to do something?

    Not smart.

  • http://www.stephentaylor.ca Stephen Taylor

    If they want to set standards for everyone else, they should live up to them too.

    Practice what you preach, etc.

  • terry1

    Wishful think Liz…Iggy won't get in the Tory trap of doing nothing but he will do somewthing on the environment. After all, defeating the Tories will take a large stink out of the air as a beginning and replace it with fresh winds from the center.

  • MikeW

    Stephen, the math here is stunning! The resolution reads to reduce GHG emissions by 25 – 40 % by 2020 as related to 1990 levels. If I recall corectly we are now almost 40% above 1990 levels. So in 11 years we are to reduce by 65 – 80%? Will the last person to leave Canada in 2020 please shut off the lights!

  • a liberal no more

    Perhaps resurrecting the Green Shift and repackaging it to look and appear like something else was Iggy's deal with Dion to coax him(Dion) to step down?

    Looks like Iggy's still trying to fool Canadians…..again!

    Canadians will NOT be fooled again, and definitely not with the Martin/Chretien old boys calling Iggy's shots and writing his script.

  • Kim Feraday

    So what is the Conservative policy here? Cap and trade. You'll have to move Harper to hard targets not the current intensity based targets particularly if you want to synchronize with the Americans. And if we're moving to cap and trade why haven't we heard more here? Perhaps you could enlighten us on the Conservative plan of action.

    This motion seems to me to be at least the starting point for a discussion on the action that's needed not more hurry up and wait. Carbon tax may well be a needed first step while the infrastructure is put in place. You need more than a place to trade — you also need monitoring and reporting which is probably going to be paid for by tax dollars.

    And as for the dumb comment that going green will worsen the economy (Liz J) well that just doesn't wash. Look at the Interface Group as one example. IBM has also embrace total lifecycle management and other green initiatives (like remote workforce etc) and last I checked they were profitable. So lets get of this dumb notion that going green will hurt the economy. The economy has been plenty hurt by traditional industries that (banking and auto to name two) so lets just stop kicking that dead horse.

  • Liz J

    Yeah, it's very true, they should practice what they preach and lead by example. Having a convention to choose a leader they've already chosen and having everyone travel as far as possible to attend the coronation.

    Of course it's all worth it to them, being Liberals they feel special and exempt. We also know this convention is being held to get the utmost attention from their shills in the MSM.

    Will they buy carbon offsets spewed for the Seinfeld like farcical convention? Who's gonna ask that one? Layton or
    May who are likely in favor of these amendments ?

  • ian

    There must be something else going on here.

    If this motion gets to the floor and is adopted then the Liberals will have saddled themselves with a very unpopular platform plank
    If the motion is defeated then they will be perceived as not/never in favour of GHG reductions.
    Or could it be that the bigger the program the bigger the opportunity for the Liberals to restore the “entitlements” to the Liberal faithful who have been shut out these last 3 plus years

  • Anonymous

    stephen, funny that democracy should raise its ugly head in an open party like the Liberals. I think you are grasping at straws instead of dealing with the ugly stuff going on inside your own party where the right wing nut bars are tring to hang their most successful leader ever. Shame shame.

  • http://www.voterick.com/wordpress R. Fuschi

    Will Liberal hot air emissions put their own targets in danger?

  • paulsstuff

    Hate to burst your bubble Kim, but using IBM as an example of a company going green and being profitable was not the brightest. IBM has cut thousands of jobs in North America, roughly 3000 this year and over 10,000 in the past year ot so. During that time IBM has increased employment in India in the last five years from 6000 to 80,000. Now you should ask yourself, self, why is that? The answer is twofold, much cheaper wages and virtually no worries about enviromental issues from government.

    So if you really want to give an example of a company expanding its worforce and our economy, maybe you should pick something else.

    http://www.eetimes.com/showArticle.jhtml?articl

  • Liz J

    Going green certainly will hurt the economy, it's called adding insult to injury at this juncture. There's nothing cheap or reasonable about going green on anything I've looked at. It's beyond reason for most people living in this Northern climate. In fact it's going to cut into quality of life for many who can't afford the greening fees and put many out of their homes because of the rising costs.
    There may be some willing to bathe once a week and use one sheet of toilet paper per wipe, but it's not for everyone.

  • kferaday

    Paul, I'm well aware of the IBM job cuts. I was one of the casualties. IBM certainly has been one of many companies to outsource skilled white collar jobs to India (SunLife outsourcing actuarial jobs to India is another example). But nowhere in the article you link to does it suggest that one of the reasons for offshoring was to avoid environmental costs. Do you have evidence of this?

    My point was that IBM has been relatively forward thinking in terms of environmental practice including total lifecycle management (which to be fair was thrust on the company by the EU but subsequently embraced corporate wide) and innovation (greener data centres for example). So I still think it's a pretty good example of a company embracing environmental practices.

    BTW I'm still waiting to here from Mr. Taylor on Conservative plans.

  • kferaday

    What are you looking at? Going green can create new jobs and save people money. Let's look at home heating. For a small home (like the 1100 sq foot home I owned in Toronto) you could install a geothermal heating unit for about $25k. This would reduce your heating costs by 60% (conservative). The unit would pay for itself in about a decade. Now if we could get green mortgages that would pay for itself.

    Then there's the auto industry. We should be looking to innovators like Think and Tesla and bringing manufacturing capabilities like that here. That would create jobs. And what about using the manufacturing expertise in Southern Ontario to manufacture windmills or photovoltaic technologies. What about battery technologies. I met a guy out here who is developing a patent for a battery for storing energy from furnaces. We need to start commercializing some of this new technology to create jobs.

    Is it your desire that we simply keep chopping trees and digging for oil? Really?

  • Rural and Right

    “I believe Canada must stay committed to Kyoto and must work towards the 2012 target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 6% below 1990 levels. But I’ve also said that these 2012 targets aren’t enough. We need to go far beyond Kyoto and put Canada on track now to becoming a carbon-neutral economy.”

    Michael Ignatieff – September 28, 2006
    http://tinyurl.com/d4mv6d

    Where does flip-flop Iggy now stand on the Economy killing vision, beyond Kyoto – Carbon taxed – carbon neutral economy ? Seems to me that the LPC thinks that Kyoto is a necessity.

  • Liz J

    Have you ever flown or driven across this vast land and observed the lush uninhabited forests for miles and miles?

    Yeah, I'll keep chopping trees and DRILLING for some sanity to be found in the world of the Green movement which defies common sense and reason for the most part IMO. Yes, really.

  • batb

    Fe, Fi, Fo, Fong,
    I smell the agenda of … Mau-rice Strong.

    'Looks like the Liberals are getting their last shot at trying to harness Canadians' hard-earned tax dollars to the inoperable Kyoto Accord, engineered by Jean Chretien's Liberals and the man behind the curtain, Mo Strong, Bob Rae's “Uncle.” There are more bodies behind that curtain, but I'm dizzy thinking of the circles within circles, within circles.

    Hmm … hard to say what Iggy's going to do with this. Don't the Liberals desperately want to get a hold of Canada's Treasury so they can send carbon offsets, or whatever the arrangement is, to China where Strong, Chretien, and Martin are hanging out and heavily invested in China's manufacturing sector?

    I smell a huge rat here. 'Wonder what dirty tricks these guys are up to now …?

  • Kingston

    Terry, Maybe you should worry less about PMBM and more about Cauchon and his troubles, I do not remember hearing that PMBM was trying to make a political comeback unlike Cauchon who has indicated his desire to run again in his old riding, But I digress, The fact of the matter is, someone is trying to cut Count Iggy’s feet out from underneath him and from what I can see it is wide spread across the country. What is this resolution is passed Terry at the convention, do you seriously propose that Iggy takes it back to the people in what form, the Greenier Green Plan

  • kferaday

    Gee, do all Conservatives share the same sentiments? Anyone else want to chime in here? Do you see any value in bringing green jobs to this country?

  • MaryT

    I wonder how many of those posting how great it would be to reduce our carbon footprint and send billions to China every year have ever lived without power, running water, modern utilities of any kind. Well, many of us have and believe me, we are not going back to those days. As for going back to 6% less than 1990 levels, what have you got in your home or garage that you didn't have then. Will you give all that up. How many industries have started since 1990, and all those jobs. Close them down, no way. My own rebellion against green is to avoid any store or business that advertizes it is green. We grew our own organic food and raised organic beef, pork and chickens for years and all our grain. I will not pay extra for these products now. It was sp interest groups, (like the greens today) that said, that food is dangerous, it must be packaged, it must be inspected, govt passed laws taking away our freedom and raised our taxes. We will not let the liberals do that to us again. If meme tries to win quebec by ruining the west, he will cause the split of Canada. And I doubt Quebec could make it without the west, but we could do ok without Quebec.

  • Norbert

    Does it really matter what comes out of their policy convention? They are quite adept at saying one thing today and doing the opposite tomorrow.

  • wilson

    But in August 2006, when launching his leadership campaign with the 'carbon tax' proposal,
    Iffy said:

    ''Ignatieff, according to a copy of his eight-page proposal provided to The Sun, will throw up the white flag on Canada's commitment under the Kyoto Accord, to reduce emissions to six per cent below 1990 levels, by the year 2012.

    “Canada cannot meet the Kyoto target . . . without spending billions of dollars buying emissions credits from other countries,” declares the Ignatieff plan.''

    http://www2.canada.com/vancouversun/news/story….

  • johndoe124

    You make $25K sound like a drop in the bucket. It's only feasible with government subsidies.

    If the ideas you cite are so incredible they won't need government subsidies nor will the government need to force them upon us. Let the consumer decide. They are smart enough to discern whether or not the superstition of AGW is a reality or not based on objective evidence, evidence that the proponents of AGW, in spite of their proselytizing, have utterly failed to produce.

  • johndoe124

    Do you really expect any conservative to denounce IBM for environmental practices when they've taken these steps of their own free will? Will the rest of us be allowed our freedom of choice or will we be subject to the tyranny of the superstition of AGW?

  • terry1

    Cauchon's issue will disappear as soon s they recognize who made the accusation and why.

    No one is trying to cut Iggy's feet from underneath him. That is going on now in your party by the way. Harper sees banana peels in front of him all the time now.

    The resolution has no chance of being passed as the majority of voting members will go with the leader's recommendation which is sound public policy.

  • terry1

    A liberal no more……..do you mean the same Martin/Chretien gang that gave us over 13 years of solid and very good MAJORITY government with surpluses and very good public policy initiatives.

  • terry1

    LIZ J…your comments are off the wall as usual. Do you now assume that BC is not part of Canada and should not host a party convention. You have the same lack of logic and foot in mouth disease as your leader.

    The Liberals have prorated the convention fees for those who have longer distances to travel.

    Whether or not its a coronation the convention is a part of the party constitution and some inportant democratic updates to the party's constitution will be debated and passed including one that will have a one member one vote change instead of just those selected to go to the convention being the only ones able to vote.
    Your bias is way off base as usual.

  • Liz J

    Silly boy, this is not about Vancouver or BC not being part of Canada. The Liberals are not showing even common sense economics holding a convention for attention in the first place. The leader has been APPOINTED, moved into the house, got a kitty delivered by one of his toadies in the dark of night, all cozy and settled in. Kind of a big splash for the unction.

    Given the financial straights the Libs are in, holding a convention with people from across this vast land attending, it would make sense to meet in the middle.

    Anyway, we look forward to hearing all about the taxing plans of Iggplant, cap'n trade, Kyoto, carbon tax and so on and on.
    However, if I were giving Iggplant a coronation gift it would be flip-flops, he's all over the map. Sort of a SNAFU scenario. Too many people pulling your strings can do that.

  • Kingston

    Terry,, As to the first repose, This guy just made the allegation up for, , why,, he just picked his name out of the phone book. I might of agreed with you until you carefully read the article and it says that this has been buried in court documents for a few years… oh well time will tell, i suspect it will be much do about nothing and another case of he said he said, just as the Conservatives and other parties have put up with .

    As to the policy question, I would not be surprised if it did pass at the convention, it has a lot of grass roots support among liberals and is evident about the polls on it. T

    he problem with conventions for any party, that is when the die hards show up, the are committed to their positions and sometimes the leaders get stuck with them, and the only people who benefit are the press and the opposing parties.

    I think Iggy is about to found out how PMSH feels when his hands are tied by party policy with the difference being, when your in power you can delay the stuff you do not agree with, when your not, well my friend, you have to be more accepting as you cannot afford to in the LPC case drive these supporters to other parties i.e. the Greens or NDP. In all honesty, where does a pissed off conservative go today, no where unless he wants to sit home on election day.

  • Kingston

    Terry,, As to the first repose, This guy just made the allegation up for, , why,, he just picked his name out of the phone book. I might of agreed with you until you carefully read the article and it says that this has been buried in court documents for a few years… oh well time will tell, i suspect it will be much do about nothing and another case of he said he said, just as the Conservatives and other parties have put up with .

    As to the policy question, I would not be surprised if it did pass at the convention, it has a lot of grass roots support among liberals and is evident about the polls on it. T

    he problem with conventions for any party, that is when the die hards show up, the are committed to their positions and sometimes the leaders get stuck with them, and the only people who benefit are the press and the opposing parties.

    I think Iggy is about to found out how PMSH feels when his hands are tied by party policy with the difference being, when your in power you can delay the stuff you do not agree with, when your not, well my friend, you have to be more accepting as you cannot afford to in the LPC case drive these supporters to other parties i.e. the Greens or NDP. In all honesty, where does a pissed off conservative go today, no where unless he wants to sit home on election day.

  • http://vollman.blogspot.com Robert V

    Unconditionally?

    They want to support the Kyoto agreement without any conditions whatsoever? They don't even want “economic viability” as a condition?

    I also notice that the large majority of their policy proposals involve taxing Canadians (“provide financial support to” = taxes).

  • Soccermom

    Speak for yourself. We all know how those surpluses were created. Naughty naughty….

    Oh well, they always made sure they had enough left over to fill all those brown paper bags, didn't they.

  • kferaday

    Actually initially IBM didn't act of their own free will. TLM was thrust on them by the EU.

  • kferaday

    OK then I you will agree we should stop subsidizing big oil companies and simply let the auto sector die. Not to mention forestry and agriculture. And on and on. The reality is that governments frequently act as market makers. I'm surprised that anyone is making the whole “free markets” are best argument given the almost complete failure of the markets over the last six months (banks in particular). I suggest you read Paul Krugman's editorial from yesterday's NY Times (http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/10/opinion/10kru…). As for the whole global warming is not real argument well that's just not worth commenting on.

  • kferaday

    BTW still waiting Mr. Taylor for what the Conservatives are proposing.

  • Jake165

    I wonder if the missing 40 million will come up at their policy convention? Jake

  • Hans Rupprecht

    Speaking as someone with degree in mathematics and physics, the so called assertion that human activity causes climate change and ‘damages the environment’ is patent balderdash.

    This is recycled “Dionky speak” which was roundly rejected in the last election.

    This is like a retread of Mo Strong, Demarais Power Corp, relations with China, redistribution of wealth.

    This is a feel good money grab, plain and simple.

    I want more CO2 in the atmosphere to promote forest growth.

    CO2 is not a poison gas, nor a pollutant. Humans exhale CO2.

    Oh yeah, the enviro extremists want to eliminate about 5 billion people, see Paul Watson.

    Anybody stupid enough to fall for this unadulterated lying just doesn’t know real science.

    Cheers

  • Hans Rupprecht

    Speaking as someone with degree in mathematics and physics, the so called assertion that human activity causes climate change and ‘damages the environment’ is patent balderdash.

    This is recycled “Dionky speak” which was roundly rejected in the last election.

    This is like a retread of Mo Strong, Demarais Power Corp, relations with China, redistribution of wealth.

    This is a feel good money grab, plain and simple.

    I want more CO2 in the atmosphere to promote forest growth.

    CO2 is not a poison gas, nor a pollutant. Humans exhale CO2.

    Oh yeah, the enviro extremists want to eliminate about 5 billion people, see Paul Watson.

    Anybody stupid enough to fall for this unadulterated lying just doesn’t know real science.

    Cheers

  • John

    1. Why would Iggy be involved in determining what gets to convention? I mean unless Stephen you want the Liberals to look at the Conservative party on how to handle grassroots members? I am not sure why the OLO would attempt to stop a proposal from being debated. This is democracy.

    2. Would the Conservative party ever have its policy which is passe by members be binding? I mean if your own party does not respect the views of its own members then you might want to focus on the Conservative party of Canada before going at the Liberals.

    3. Jim Prentice has even mused about a policy of a carbon tax…..

    4. Will Conservatives at some point demand democracy within their own party?

    6. Harper certainly had no issue ignoring the policies which were passed at the Conservative convention….

  • terry1

    JAKE165….what will come up at the convention is the rape of Canadian taxpayers by Harper's completely useless GST cut and even more useless family allowance bonus for cigsarettes and booze. Thy have cost us billions that could have been used to effect a properly managed stimulus package during this recession.

  • terry1

    Norbert..t.his is not the Tory convention we are speaking about.

  • Liz J

    Only a Liberal would bemoan giving taxpayers a break or giving them back some of their own money. If that's called “rape”, you don't know the meaning of the word.

    Liberals tax and spend on whatever special interests will keep them in power.

    Terry onesy, things must be getting desperate, your going back to the beer and popcorn rhetoric.

  • greg

    And dinging us, Terry, with 250+ billion dollars over those 13 years from a tax they said they would no longer collect from Canadians. The GST, don’t forget, is a Liberal tax and not the “Mulroney tax” as some in the MSM like to refer to it. Had the Liberals kept their promise, the tax would be gone. Therefore it’s THEIRS and THEY wear it.

    To Harper’s credit, he actually KEPT his GST promise.

  • greg

    And dinging us, Terry, with 250+ billion dollars over those 13 years from a tax they said they would no longer collect from Canadians. The GST, don’t forget, is a Liberal tax and not the “Mulroney tax” as some in the MSM like to refer to it. Had the Liberals kept their promise, the tax would be gone. Therefore it’s THEIRS and THEY wear it.

    To Harper’s credit, he actually KEPT his GST promise.

  • MaryT

    Seenms no one has noticed that the US congress said NO to cap and trade, and it is probably a dead issue for years to come in the USA.
    I am still waiting for someone to explain to me how much ghg has/will be reduced by Canada sending billions to Mo Strong in China, to buy credits. How is that stopping ghg in Canada.
    Are the liberals and envirowackos so selfish that they would rather us send millions to China and thus deprive the Chinese of clean air, telling them to continue to pollute so we can feel good. Are they just another example of the NIMBY group, saying to the world, do as I say, not as I do. Very selfish of those liberals, wanting to kill the Chinese people so liberals can continue to steal from the taxpayer.
    As for the majority of delegates voting this resolution down, that is wishful thinking. I think Quebec will be the only province that sends maximum delegates/riding. They will be the majority.

  • terry1

    Liz J…..you are simply another greedy Tory. The GST cut has benefitted no one when you consider the deficit spending we are now getting to support the recession. When you cut taxes its because you have a surplus. The harpercrites knew a recession was coming and did nothing to keep rainy day money to prepare for it. So tell me what break you really got when the government just borrowed uncounted billions to support this economic meltdown.

    Your logic is perverse.

  • terry1

    MaryT…You think Quebec will be the only province sending maximum delegates to the convention? You don't think BC the host province will send maximum numbers? Glad to know you have the facts all lined up.

    The voting on environmental issues will be as per Iggy's proposals.

  • Observant

    You have to connect the dots … the Liberal dots that are rife in the amendment and recent history.

    Dion and Ignatieff promoted their Green Shift Carbon Tax that would have collected $50 Billion from Canadians. The Green Shift also pledged to purchase Kyoto Carbon Credits to mitigate any GHG excess that could not be achieved by say the Alberta Oil Sands emissions. And …. we all know that the BQ is trashing Alberta for the oil sands GHGs and promoting Quebec hydroelectric development with the intent of selling Quebec Carbon Credits to the rest of Canada.

    The fact that the Quebec wing of the Liberal party is promoting Kyoto targets and a carbon tax, plays into the greedy Quebec separatist sentiment in Quebec. What better way is there for Liberals to win Quebec seats if not by stealing BQ strategy …. while Iggy is visiting Alberta and proclaiming “oil sands if necessary, but not necessarily oil sands” … because we know the Liberals intend to win back government through Quebec, Ontario and a scattering of seats from the Maritimes and BC.

    After all … it's not pc in Canada to attack Kyoto and climate change or whatever they are calling it now.

    There you have it folks … the Liberal election strategy for the next election obviously due for after the summer recess.