Wednesday, April 13, 2011

GHG Election Tracker - Debate Disappoints

If you tuned into the debates to follow-up on any of the party's policies regarding ghg emissions or climate change, you'd be forgiven for thinking these issues didn't matter to the leaders, to the debate hosts, or to Canadians. Questions or comments on those topics were sadly lacking last night.

The only appearance by climate change or carbon policy was the reference to Canada's sliding reputation on the international stage. The fact that Harper tried to defend his position by trumpeting involvement in the weak and defunct Copenhagen Accord would be laughable if I thought Canadians would see through the lie.

The irony of Harper's citation is beyond laughable, however. The Accord was a political back room agreement among a few advantaged nations, and was soundly rejected by many poorer countries who were shut out of the process. Typical of Harper's contempt for process and rules that he would laud this political and slanted Accord.

Even more ironic, however is the fact that Canada was shut out of the negotiation of that Accord. A fact that our negotiating team cried foul about at the time.

It is a sad fact that most Canadians will not know the back-story of Harper's reference and how cruelly ironic it was. He knew he could count on Canadians' ignorance and knew that he could get away with presenting a falsehood straight-faced in order to score a debate point.

I would have liked to have heard a debate about climate change targets and the cap-and-trade programs of the parties. I certainly did not find enlightenment on those topics. However, Mr. Harper's contempt for Canadians' knowledge of international politics and the democratic process of the United Nations was brought into sharp focus by my subject matter knowledge of the finer points of international climate change policy. Perhaps that was the strongest learning point of the evening.

NEXT UP: The Platforms are out. I will post my findings on the Conservative and NDP platforms in the next few days. Stay tuned!

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