Mr. Speaker, it is very fortuitous to join the debate at this particular moment. The very topic we need to discuss in this next moment is around the environment and the somewhat confusing and often contradictory messages we have been from the new government.
Out of the intensity, action and vitriol of question period, the parliamentary secretary will be rising in his place with thoughts and innovative ideas to help clear away the confusion that so many Canadians are left facing after announcements go sideways and meetings have been disturbed. The message to the world has been embarrassing for all Canadians.
The government has potentially signed on to the Asia-Pacific accord, the AP6 as it is called, while this week in the United States even Republican legislators did not find any need to fund the program any more. It has been one of the greatest advocates of this program.
The minister, through the parliamentary secretary, hopefully will have some clarity on what the government intends to do about the most daunting environmental crisis our country and planet have ever faced. Those are words have come from the government itself.
In the face of such an incredible crisis, the government has signed itself up to a non-bonding, voluntary program, which one of its key initiators has backed out of and has abandoned.
I was in Bonn for the initial stages of the new negotiating round for 2012. The Canadian delegation showed up with the most confusing notion of having Canada refuse to sign up to any targets and commitments or push for voluntary mechanisms. The developing world showed up with plans and programs that far exceeded anything Canada could offer. It offered up some vague notions and allocated some money in the budget without any programming, something that the Conservative, Reform and Alliance Parties all spoke out against in this very House: never associate money without a proper plan in place. Then lo and behold in the Conservatives first budget, on one of the most critical issues, we have the money and no idea how to spend it.
The Conservatives have been much vilified in this place for having cancelled such programs like the EnerGuide. More than a year ago I stood in this place and challenged their former environment critic. The NDP had produced its own climate change plan, fully costed and run through economists. I offered it up to the then government of the day and the other parties in this place so we could debate the different initiatives. The Conservative critic of the environment at the time stood in his place and said that the Conservatives had a plan. After many years as a so-called government in waiting, they arrive in this place as the government. Lo and behold we have to wait more because they do not have a plan. They are consulting and looking around to stakeholder groups to somehow put some kind of voluntary initiative together that will not arrive.
I know the parliamentary secretary has an excellent speech that has been prepared for him. However, for our economy to have any sense of economic certainty going forward, his government needs to table a plan for us to debate and add to. His government, which waited so long to form the government, stated that it had a climate change plan. When can the House expect to see this plan and begin to debate its merits?