Prime Minister Harper says the world must recognise the economic impact of dramatically reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the short term, while driving technological innovations that will reduce emissions in the long term.
It has to be recognized that the current technological mix leads to a certain levels of emission, and that is what has to be changed. And that is going to take some time.
It has to be done, but it will not be done by simply trying to pretend economic imperatives don’t exist, because all that happens when that happens is people set targets, and then don’t meet them.
- Stephen Harper
President Obama and Prime Minister Harper answer questions from the media during Obama’s first foreign visit to Ottawa.
Free Trade and Economic Integration
The five federal party leaders debate the election issues in the English language debate.
Liberal leader Stéphane Dion announced details of the Liberal Party’s Green Shift carbon tax at a party rally in Ottawa.
The plan includes a tax on carbon emissions against big polluters with tax cuts and rebates for individuals intended to offset increased energy prices caused by the tax.
Dion later challenged Harper to a public debate saying he wants a substantive discussion on the issue.
- Video: Harper promotes Canada’s emission reduction plan in Europe
- Video: Stéphane Dion proposes carbon ‘tax shift’
- Liberal Party website: The Green Shift
Prime Minister Harper promotes Canada’s plan for reducing greenhouse gas emissions at the Canada-UK Chamber of Commerce in London, England.
Stephen Harper says Canada will be a world leader in the fight against global warming and in the development of clean energy technology.
Harper chose climate Change as the topic of his address to the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Sydney, Australia. He stressed the need for an inclusive approach to reducing greenhouse gas emissions that involves all countries working toward common targets.
Harper outlined Canada’s approach, saying the plan could be model for a new international agreement. The plan includes:
- Mandatory targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 18% per unit of production over the next 3 years, and then a further 2% reduction in intensity each year thereafter
- Macro GHG reduction targets of 20% by 2010 and 50-70% by 2050 over 2006 levels
- Domestic carbon market and emissions trading regime
- Clean Technology Fund for developing new technologies
- Use of international credits such as the Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism
We want to be a world leader in the fight against global warming and the development of clean energy technology, we want to lead not by lecturing but by example, we want to share our knowledge and experience, and we want to work with the entire international community in the quest for clean energy.
APEC leaders agreed to common “aspirational targets” at the close of the summit the following day, representing the first time both the United States and China have participated in an international climate change declaration. However, the declaration quickly rejected by environmental groups for not including legally binding targets.