Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.
My comments about this amendment will be even briefer than my colleagues because I'm not sure that at the rate we're going, we'll manage to get through the entire amendment binder.
First of all, we have to remember the discussions that have taken place thus far about the position of Commissioner of the Environment. Obviously, we've had discussions, but not within the framework of our study of Bill C-30. I mention C-30, because I wouldn't want us to bring into the mix the debates that took place in the confines of the environment and sustainable development committee. I want you to recall the debates that took place in the Legislative Committee on Bill C-30. There is not one single member here in this committee who raised at any time the issue of the independence of the Commissioner of the Environment. Yes, the environment committee did hold some discussions following the unfortunate events that unfolded.
We were among those who called for more independence for the Commissioner of the Environment. We believed that the Commissioner should be as independent as possible. The question I have today is this: is Bill C-30 the best vehicle for initiating a discussion on the future powers of a Commissioner of the Environment? I have my doubts about that. Of course, a private member's bill could always be introduced to endow the Commissioner of the Environment with additional powers and we could call in all of the stakeholders who were consulted to discuss the matter. That wouldn't be a problem. We could discuss it and more than likely, I would vote in favour of the amendment. The issue I have today is that we're attempting to use Bill C-30 to modify the duties of the Commissioner of the Environment whereas this is not the place to do that. Moreover, we're certainly going to discuss this matter in the future. Clearly, the Parliament of Canada Act needs to be amended, but Bill C-30 is not the way to accomplish that.
This amendment, which I would qualify as a run-on amendment, is akin to pulling a rabbit out of a hat, when in fact we haven't yet discussed this matter, debated it in a parliamentary committee or heard from witnesses.
In that respect, Mr. Chairman, I respect your assessment of amendment L-2.1.