House of Commons Hansard #31 of the 40th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was industry.

Topics

Environmental Enforcement Act
Government Orders

6:25 p.m.

NDP

Jim Maloway Elmwood—Transcona, MB

Mr. Speaker, this is another example of the government introducing a huge omnibus bill with a whole bunch of different items in it. Bill C-16 is 216 pages long.

The member red-flagged the Fisheries Act. Why does the member think the Fisheries Act was not included in the bill? It seems to have everything else.

Environmental Enforcement Act
Government Orders

6:25 p.m.

Liberal

David McGuinty Ottawa South, ON

Mr. Speaker, far be it for me to apply a divining rod to the government or to find the water. I do not know. It might be that the government is embarrassed by the fact that twice in a row it announced that by now it would already have a national water strategy for our country.

There is no national water strategy, which is why the Minister of the Environment, having cut the funding for the GEMS project with the University of Waterloo in water testing, reinstated it the day before World Water Day, Saturday past, to perhaps pick up the slack there.

I do not know why the Fisheries Act was an omission. It certainly would be interesting to hear from the minister himself. Given the powers the Fisheries Act officers have and the impact on fresh water, it will be very important to see whether this omission can be addressed and whether the bill can be amended.

Environmental Enforcement Act
Government Orders

6:25 p.m.

Liberal

Paul Szabo Mississauga South, ON

Mr. Speaker, the member has put it in context in that we have a bill that will deal with environmental enforcement issues and fines and penalties. When it gets down to it, I think Canadians want to see that we support our laws and that the penalties and the fines are appropriate, but in its essence it totally ignores the environmental risk in the history of humanity, the threats to the planet. We also have, as examples in the budget, changes that will affect the effectiveness of our federal Environmental Assessment Act, which would in fact weaken existing legislation.

There seems to be a contradiction in the agenda of the government. Would the member help us to understand how we should move forward on these matters?

Environmental Enforcement Act
Government Orders

6:25 p.m.

Liberal

David McGuinty Ottawa South, ON

Mr. Speaker, we need good environmental enforcement. We need proper fiscal signals being sent to the marketplace. We need new creative approaches like eco-covenants. We need to reward good voluntary behaviour. We need to provide the demand pull that only a federal government can with procurement systems. There is a whole suite of measures that will actually drive up environment performance. As of now, we do not see a coherent approach.

Environmental Enforcement Act
Government Orders

6:30 p.m.

Conservative

The Acting Speaker Barry Devolin

When debate resumes on this matter, the member will have four minutes remaining in questions and answers.

The House resumed from March 12 consideration of the motion.

Foreign Affairs and International Development
Committees of the House
Routine Proceedings

6:30 p.m.

Conservative

The Acting Speaker Barry Devolin

It being 6:30 p.m., the House will now proceed to the taking of the deferred recorded division on the motion to concur in the third report of the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development.

Call in the members.

(The House divided on the motion, which was agreed to on the following division:)

Vote #30

Committees of the House
Routine Proceedings

6:55 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

I declare the motion carried.

The House resumed consideration of the motion that Bill C-9, An Act to amend the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act, 1992, be read the third time and passed, and of the amendment.

Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act, 1992
Government Orders

6:55 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

The House will now proceed to the taking of the deferred recorded division on the amendment to the motion at third reading of Bill C-9.

(The House divided on the amendment, which was negatived on the following division:)

Vote #31

Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act, 1992
Government Orders

7:05 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Peter Milliken

I declare the amendment lost.

A motion to adjourn the House under Standing Order 38 deemed to have been moved.

7:05 p.m.

Liberal

Kirsty Duncan Etobicoke North, ON

Mr. Speaker, climate change is the defining issue of our era, with its impacts on our economy, health and security potentially large and irreversible. Climate change is a comprehensive challenge. There is no silver bullet solution.

The Conservative government must build partnerships with national governments worldwide, business, consumers, local authorities and the energy sector. It must find abatement solutions and increase incentives for climate friendly research and development to protect Canada's competitiveness.

Unfortunately, Canada's research and development has now fallen to just less than 2% of GDP, below the OECD average. Our country's number of triadic patents also remains under the EU-25 and OECD averages. In stark contrast, our country's scientific and technological workforce experienced steady growth in research personnel between 1995 and 2004, with annual growth over 4%, well above the OECD average.

Today, Canada is falling behind its international competitors. The U.S. stimulus plan allocates six times more funding per capita on science and technology research, renewable energy and energy efficiency development than Canada.

Just four days ago, Minnesota's largest private foundation, McKnight, announced that it will spend an unprecedented $100 million over the next five years to address global climate change. McKnight is joining forces with other large U.S. foundations, including the David and Lucile Packard Foundation and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, in pledging more than $1 billion to prevent climate change. McKnight's president, Kate Wolford, called climate change an “extraordinary challenge” that must be addressed within the next decade to prevent irrevocable harm to the planet.

What specifically is the Conservative government investing in climate change innovation from people to process to research to marketing? Was there an increase to the Canadian climate and atmospheric science fund? The Liberals had a strategy in 2002.

Research and development is a key driver of long-term sustainable economic growth. The past experience of countries such as Finland and Korea shows that reforms aimed at strengthening innovation can help countries emerge stronger from a crisis and help put them on a more sustainable growth path.

What is the government investing in climate change innovators, as most knowledge is embodied in people rather than the firms and institutions that employ them? What action is the government taking to prevent climate researchers from leaving Canada as their funding dries up? What investment is the government making to expand the number of available climate friendly technologies and their mitigation potential?