moved that Bill C-229, An Act to repeal certain restrictions on shipping, be read the second time and referred to a committee.
Mr. Speaker, I stand today to speak to my private member's bill, Bill C-229, which I think frames a very, very important issue for our country.
On June 21, 2019, the Liberals celebrated victory in the passing of Bill C-48 in this chamber. The Oil Tanker Moratorium Act was celebrated in Ottawa while thousands of Canadians in western Canada, in those two million square kilometres to the left of Ontario on the map, were grieving over yet another blow to their way of life. It was another blow to the economy of my home province of Alberta and ultimately to the entire Canadian economy.
This was an election commitment by the Prime Minister in 2015, and it was in ministers' letters less than a month after the election. There was no time for due diligence, which would set the precedent for a lack of due diligence for years to come.
Bill C-48 prohibits oil tankers carrying more than 12,500 metric tons of crude or persistent oils as cargo from stopping, loading or unloading at ports and marine installations in northern B.C. The bill was never about marine traffic, nor about transportation safety or the ecological life of northern B.C. It was the first step in the Prime Minister's singularly focused goal of phasing out the country's strong oil and gas sector.
Since 2015, Canada's energy industry has been repeatedly attacked by the Liberal government. There has been a mass exodus of billions of dollars of energy projects because of the government's anti-energy policies, such as Bill C-48, the shipping ban, and Bill C-69, the pipeline ban. By 2019, 100,000 jobs in this sector had already been lost because of Liberal policies. Capital investment in Canada's oil and natural gas sector has dropped by over half since 2014. I cannot imagine what these statistics would mean in other industries and what the reaction of the government would be.
It was looking like every attempt to get oil out of Alberta was being choked, whether it was by pipeline, by ship or by rail. It was looking like the only way we could get oil out of Alberta was to buy a barrel of oil a ticket on an airplane. That is why in February of this year I introduced my private member's bill, Bill C-229, an act to repeal certain restrictions on shipping. Once COVID-19 hit, it was all hands on deck and the bill was put on the shelf, but I am just as excited as ever to reintroduce the bill and am more excited than ever help our oil and gas sector and our economy.
In retrospect, the dismal outlook of the economy in 2019 was the calm before the storm that nobody could have predicted. Here are some facts, and quite frankly, they are not pretty.
Today, our federal debt-to-GDP ratio is at 50% and climbing. We are on track to reach a federal debt in excess of $1.2 trillion by the end of the fiscal year. We have the highest unemployment rate in the G7, with pretty much the highest level of spending, and we lag in productivity and innovation when we compare ourselves with our peers. On top of this, we do not have a robust plan for the economic recovery, unlike in the fantasy world the Minister of Finance spoke about when she said that we took on debt so Canadians would not have to. Frankly, someone is going to have to pay it back.
What do we do? I painted a very grim picture of our economic future, but the good news is that to find a solution, we only need to look within. In 2019, mineral fuels, including oil, accounted for 22% of our country's total exports. They are the number one exported product. Granted, most of this goes to the U.S. In addition, we have the third-largest proven oil reserve in the world and are the third-largest exporter of oil.
In poet William Blake's Songs of Innocence, he writes:
How can the bird that is born for joy
Sit in a cage and sing?
With that, I ask this: How can a country with the ability to raise the economic well-being for all allow our resources to go to waste?
Our country is blessed with an abundance of natural resources, an abundance that can make all of us prosperous beyond our wildest dreams. This pandemic has decimated our economy, and we owe it to our children and grandchildren, particularly my new grandchild, to take care of this financial mess. One of the ways we can do this is by exporting our natural resources to new markets.
All credible climate-science experts, clean-tech innovators and scholars in the field acknowledge that as we undergo a global shift to sustainable energy, the world will still require oil for decades to come. Renewables are nowhere near ready for sole use and right now are only a marginal energy source. In Canada, petroleum and natural gas account for 73.9% of energy use; followed by hydro and nuclear at 22.3%; coal at 0.5%; and other, wind and solar at 3.3%. The switch to clean energy, ironically, is not going to be a clean break. As we invest in and grow our still undeveloped renewable sector, we can think of oil and gas as the training wheels we need for propping up our sustainable goals.
The Canadian energy sector has already started to innovate and make some green moves. The intensity of greenhouse gas emissions per barrel of oil produced in the oil sands in 2018 was 36% less than in 2000. Natural gas emits 50% to 60% less carbon dioxide than coal, which countries like Russia, China and the United States still depend on. On average, coal-to-gas switching reduces emissions by 50% when producing electricity, and about 33% when providing heat. We can think about how much lower the CO2 levels would be if everyone switched from coal to natural gas.
Private sector innovation is what is going to lead us into the future and provide us with the technology we need to shift to global sustainability. Our strong Canadian energy companies see the global demand and are responding with hundreds of millions of dollars in renewable investments. Different energy projects are funded by oil and gas companies, and to kill this industry will kill investment. Believe me, government is not the solution to innovation.
Here are a few projects to talk about.
Enbridge is one of Canada's leading suppliers in renewables. It committed more than $7.8 billion in capital for renewable energy. It has 22 wind farms, six solar energy operations and a hydro facility.
Suncorp completed Canada's electric highway project in 2019, a coast-to-coast EV charging network positioned no more than 250 kilometres apart. It also created four wind power stations.
TC Energy supported the Ontario elimination goal of coal-fired power generation through its 48.5% ownership of the Bruce Power nuclear facility, which provides emission-free electricity to roughly one-third of Ontario.
Global oil demand has grown by about 11 million barrels between 2010 and 2019 to above 100 million barrels pre-COVID. The fact is the world needs oil, and Canada is the only country on earth that can deliver this product in the most energy-efficient and ethical method.
Let us talk a bit about that. On the world democracy index, Canada came seventh, tied with Denmark. Our competitors in this industry are Nigeria, at 109th; Russia, at 134th; Venezuela, at 140th; and Saudi Arabia, at 159th. Between 2009 and 2017, greenhouse gas emissions intensity in mined oil sands fell by more than 25%. That is innovation.
These are GHG emissions by country in 2016. China is at 25.8%, and its natural gas industry produces 0.911% of overall global GHG emissions. U.S.A. is at 12.8%. Iran is at 1.7%. Russia is at 5.3%. Canada is at just under 1.6%, and of that, Canada's oil and natural gas industry produces about 0.29% of overall GHG emissions.
In switching from coal to LNG, there is 50% to 60% less CO2 from combustion in a new efficient natural gas plant compared with emissions from a typical new coal plant. From 1990 to 2018, China increased its coal consumption from 0.99 billion tons to 4.64 billion tons. In 2008, coal made up 59% of China's energy use. Since 2011, China has consumed more coal than the rest of the world combined. These are staggering numbers.
Some are referring to this time, and the economic recovery to follow, as the great reset. The inconsistencies, inadequacies and contradictions of multiple systems, from health to finance to education, are more exposed than ever, and there is great concern for the future of lives and livelihoods. This pandemic has shaken our country. There is no doubt about that. As we head into recovery, I would urge the government and my colleagues from both sides of the aisle to think very carefully about what a fair and equitable recovery is going to look like.
Never has the integrity of our country's Confederation been more threatened. From west to east and north to south, our country is bruised. It is bleeding. Some may even say it is on the brink of broken. Political stability cannot be sustained in the absence of economic growth, nor can economic growth be sustained in a state of political instability. To this end, including indigenous Canadians in the economic recovery space will be crucial and, if done correctly, will forge stronger, more understanding relationships among all Canadians.
The energy sector is the largest employer of indigenous people in the country, with about 6% of the sector's workforce identified as indigenous. In 2015 and 2016, $48.6 million was invested by oil producers into indigenous communities. Coastal GasLink has awarded $620 million in contract work to indigenous businesses for logistical operations, there was significant support for the Northern Gateway pipeline, and the Eagle Spirit proposal is indigenous-led.
Global context aside, I urge all Canadians, with the government at the helm, to hail this great reset as a call to action. Going forward, I urge the government to administer neither special treatment nor punitive action on any province or territory in its approach to economic recovery.
The punitive and retaliatory measures taken by the government are eerily reminiscent of what many Albertans believe: that the national energy program was an unjustified intrusion of the federal government into an area of provincial jurisdiction, designed to strip the province of its natural wealth. Investors need to know that they have access to markets, and Alberta should have access just like every other province. We cannot move oil by pipe. We cannot ship it. We have been left with no options, and what used to be a few marginal murmurs has become full-blown western alienation.
We need to get our product to market. There is no way around that. Bill C-48 is an overt attack on Alberta's resource sector. Some have suggested that my bill, Bill C-229, is a waste of a private member's bill, but frankly, given the absolute sorry state of this country, it is anything but a waste. This bill would right a wrong and fix an incredibly discriminatory piece of legislation. This bill is essential for an industry that has helped fuel the economy for decades. This is essential for the thousands of workers who are proud of their work in this sector and the product their efforts produce. It is essential for manufacturing across the country. It is essential to the environment, as Canada has the opportunity to displace other world players that do not produce products to the same stringent environmental standards.
Canadian oil is in everything. It is not just what we put in our cars: the hydrocarbons we use to make the green upholstery in these chairs, the glasses members wear, the shoes on my feet, the capsules that vitamins are put into and the ink in my pen contain oil, and it can all be Canadian.
I am a proud Canadian and a proud Albertan who recognizes the important part the resource sector has played in our country's economic successes. I have lived through many of the ups and downs, and firmly believe we can gain market share, grow the economy and continue to reduce global emissions. Canada has led before and continues to do so. All the sector needs is to be given the opportunity to have access to markets so that we can compete and grow.