It would seem that Harper and co don't consider the G8 climate change deal achieved today. Even though the deal requires that our emissions be reduced by 80% by 2050, Jim Prentice, the environment minister, has declared that these new goals will not require changes to policy direction. In other words, we are doing just fine.
But we are not doing just fine, and Prentice knows it. How can being so far behind on our Kyoto requirements and being last in the G8 on climate change action constitute "just fine"? It is anything but just fine.
There are two ways to take this unashamed lying to the public, both of which are unsettling. Either the minister is incompetent, and sincerely believes that our policy direction will lead us to all the international goals on climate change we have signed up for. Or, and this is much more likely, he, along with his Prime Minister and the rest of the Conservative government, hold the public and the issue in disdain.
One can just see how this course of events is going to play itself out. The Harper government is going to stall on taking any concrete policy measures to move us towards these goals. In essence, they will do just what Jim Prentice has described: continue their policy.
Once we discover a lack of policy is no way to address climate change, it will be too late. If Harper is still in power, we will be told it's too late, and that we need an exception for Canada, so that we can meet our goals.
To sum it up, with Harper in power for much longer, we have no hope of moving anywhere concrete towards the goals set out today. He will stall, and make it overwhelmingly difficult for any government after him to meet emissions targets.
So, the sooner Harper's gone, the sooner we will meet these targets. Or else, be ready for more straight-faced lying from your Conservative government.
And remember, any trouble on the environment, it's all the Liberals fault.
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