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House of Commons Hansard #98 of the 39th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was seniors.

Topics

Aerospace IndustryOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, this government intends to rebuild the Canadian Forces. We are in the process of negotiating contracts for several types of equipment for the armed forces.

Our government intends to secure benefits for every part of Canada. It does not intend, however, to interfere in the contract award process, which is based on the contractors and their relationships within the industry.

Aerospace IndustryOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the government does not interfere in the process, does not go to tender and selects a company that will decide under which conditions the government will be purchasing aircraft. The control is in Boeing's hands, not the government's. That is flying pretty low.

If the auto industry can be concentrated in Ontario, then it should be possible to respect the fact that 60% of the aerospace industry is in Quebec. Why was that not part of the terms and conditions?

Aerospace IndustryOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, Boeing is the only company in the world with a certain type of large aircraft.

I can say with certainty that Quebec and the other regions will derive benefits. Should the Bloc Québécois achieve its goals of separation, however, I can assure the hon. member that the benefits to Quebec will be nil.

Aerospace IndustryOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Gauthier Bloc Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, we will no longer have to pay for Canada's planes, we will buy our own and have them made where we see fit.

The Minister of Industry and the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities have refused to stand up to protect Quebec's aerospace industry.

By refusing to impose conditions, does the government not realize it is leaving it up to Boeing to use our money and decide for itself where aerospace development will take place in Canada over the next few years? This is unacceptable.

Aerospace IndustryOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Beauce Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, I want to remind my colleague that on January 23 last year, Quebeckers and Canadians voted to change the former government. They had had enough of the previous Liberal government's policy of interference and patronage.

The current government is being asked to engage in patronage and to dictate to the contract winner where the contracts should go. We are not in politics to interfere in private contracts. I assure you that all the Canadian companies will benefit from these military contracts.

Aerospace IndustryOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Michel Gauthier Bloc Roberval—Lac-Saint-Jean, QC

Mr. Speaker, how can a Minister of Industry come and tell us here in the House of Commons that he is not interfering in a $3.4 billion contract that he handed out without a call for tenders?

He chose Boeing and told it that it could develop where it wanted. That is not what we would call responsible. It is irresponsible and that is not what Quebeckers expected of him.

Aerospace IndustryOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Beauce Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, I would like to remind the hon. members of the opposition that our priority is to give the Canadian Forces the equipment they need at the best possible price. That is what is important.

Furthermore, thanks to these military contracts, we will have industrial spinoffs throughout Canada that will benefit the country's entire aerospace industry.

However, let us be clear, this government and the Minister of Industry will not interfere in decisions of a private nature.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton NDP Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, according to Environment Canada, in Canada the temperature is warming up twice as fast as in the rest of the planet. The year 2006 is the second warmest ever in Canada. Over the last nine years, the temperature for all the seasons, except for one, was above normal.

Will the Prime Minister finally take quick action to speed up the process involving the special committee on climate change, yes or no?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, our government has already taken urgent action regarding climate change through our ecoenergy initiatives, the development of renewable fuels and also, as I just mentioned, the investments we made in public transit in our first budget.

We are taking action and we hope the House will help us do our job.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Jack Layton NDP Toronto—Danforth, ON

Mr. Speaker, the announcement of initiatives of such a pathetic nature, because they were drawn, frankly, from the terrible record of the previous administration, does not amount to rapid action.

In fact, what we are seeing from the Conservatives right now is exactly the same strategy we saw from the previous government. They brought forward 40 witnesses to tie up the committee for months and the Liberals have brought forward 41 witnesses. They both should get a delay of game penalty, for Heaven's sake. Let us get moving.

Will the Prime Minister instruct his team to get moving on real action on climate change?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I can just mention that this government has recently put $230 million into clean technology with the ecoenergy technology initiative, $1.5 billion for the ecoenergy renewable initiative for renewable energy technologies, $300 million for the ecoenergy efficiency initiative, and $30 million to help protect the Great Bear Rainforest. These announcements were all well received by Canadians, by stakeholders, and this government will continue to act.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

David McGuinty Liberal Ottawa South, ON

Mr. Speaker, Canadians have been demanding action from the government over here for at least a year. It is now clear that the Prime Minister did not have the political will to do anything. He was even prepared to sacrifice his first Minister of the Environment to disguise his own failures. It is pathetic.

Thanks to the former Liberal government, the new Minister of the Environment has every tool he could conceivably want at his disposal to fight climate change. Will the minister act now and not wait for a so-called clean air act and declare greenhouse gases to be toxic and strictly cap all of these emissions in Canada immediately?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, we realize the urgency to act on the issue of greenhouse gas emissions. We believe that climate change is a huge environmental challenge facing the world. That is why this government is the very first government in Canadian history to come forward with a notice of intent to regulate industry, to ensure that we deal head on with the challenges of greenhouse gas emissions. We can also at the same time work to reduce pollution and smog, another example of the Liberal government's inaction over the last 13 years.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

David McGuinty Liberal Ottawa South, ON

Mr. Speaker, it looks as though the Minister of Natural Resources is trying to rebuild his image. However, Canadians will remember that it is this same minister who abolished the EnerGuide program and who is now proposing a watered down version. It is this same minister who also abolished the incentives to produce wind energy and who is now coming up with a weaker version of the program.

When will the minister stop being arrogant and admit that he was wrong to abolish all these programs last spring?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Saanich—Gulf Islands B.C.

Conservative

Gary Lunn ConservativeMinister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, let us just look at the record. I have the budget of 2005 which shows $200 million for wind energy. How much of that was delivered? Not a dime. It shows $200 million for sustainable energy, for technology. How much of that was delivered? Not a dime.

The old Liberal government had 13 years to deliver. It did not get the job done. In less than one year this new government has delivered action for Canadians to reduce greenhouse gases.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Mark Holland Liberal Ajax—Pickering, ON

Mr. Speaker, the only thing they have done is reintroduce Liberal programs that were working which they had frozen for a year.

In a rush to please the Bush administration, the Prime Minister has offered up an expansion of the oil sands. On October 28 he said that oil sands production was on its way to three million or four million barrels a day. At that rate experts predict that oil sands production will account for roughly 25% of Canada's greenhouse gas emissions by 2010.

While the Conservatives went on a two week regifting spree, giving back some of the environmental programs they had slashed, their “hosed in Canada” plan was revealed.

Given his oil sands plan, will the Prime Minister now acknowledge that even his pathetic targets cannot be met?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Saanich—Gulf Islands B.C.

Conservative

Gary Lunn ConservativeMinister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, the programs were not working. Let us just listen to the Commissioner of the Environment. On the EnerGuide for existing houses, we found that they were complex and confusing. We found a number of Treasury Board decisions. The programs were not working. We are delivering initiatives that are delivering concrete results on greenhouse gas emissions.

I know the new leader of the Liberal Party pretends holier-than-thou that he is a great environmentalist. Why did he not do something when he had a chance?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Mark Holland Liberal Ajax—Pickering, ON

Mr. Speaker, the only thing the Conservatives have done is reintroduce Liberal programs.

While our then environment minister was bringing the world together to work on the post-Kyoto environment, they were sitting there pretending that climate change did not exist. In fact, the only thing the Conservatives have done is to copy Liberal programs. If they are going to keep copying us, they should just put on a green scarf and get out of the way.

Two weeks ago the natural resources minister stated that his carbon bingeing was simply not aggressive enough. He said the oil sands should see a potential increase of four or five times. Will the Prime Minister admit his real priority--

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

The Speaker Liberal Peter Milliken

The hon. Minister of the Environment.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, there is a lot of discussion on this side of the House as to whether a Liberal plan actually existed. I am pleased to tell the House today that they did have a Liberal plan. The plan was to host a $50 million talkfest. The plan was to spend $5 billion on buying hot air credits in Russia while not improving our environment today. Finally, buy a dog, name it Kyoto, and call it a day. That is not good enough for Canadians.

Aerospace IndustryOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Louise Thibault Bloc Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Michael Fortier, wanted at least 40% of the contract awarded to Boeing to come to Quebec. That was not a lot, considering that nearly 60% of the aerospace industry is based in Quebec and that this reflects the demand in Quebec.

How can the Prime Minister justify so disrespectfully undermining his minister, thus confirming that the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, like his colleagues from Quebec, has no real power in important decisions made by this government?

Aerospace IndustryOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Beauce Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, I will repeat this once again. The Liberal Party's culture of political interference is not a culture that is shared by this new government.

We award contracts to the best possible bidders and they will respect our industrial development policy in order to ensure the best results for Canada.

Aerospace IndustryOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Louise Thibault Bloc Rimouski-Neigette—Témiscouata—Les Basques, QC

Mr. Speaker, it definitely does not offer contracts to the best because it does not even have the chance to choose. It awards them without tenders.

In the mid 1980s, Brian Mulroney's Conservative government made sure that the spinoffs from the F18s went primarily to Quebec, thus reflecting the fact that Quebec played a major role in the aerospace industry.

How can the current Conservative government simply refuse to do justice to Quebec in this contract, as the Mulroney government did? Should this be seen as unwillingness or a flagrant lack of courage?

Aerospace IndustryOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Beauce Québec

Conservative

Maxime Bernier ConservativeMinister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, unlike the members of the opposition, I believe that the Quebec aerospace industry is made up of competent businesses and credible people who have proven themselves on the international stage. I am certain that Quebec, in the long term, will reap the necessary benefits from the contracts.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

January 29th, 2007 / 2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Claude DeBellefeuille Bloc Beauharnois—Salaberry, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister complained to CBC Radio-Canada after it aired a report criticizing the Minister of Natural Resources' intention to increase the Alberta oil sands production fivefold.

Instead of getting angry at the CBC Radio-Canada, can the Prime Minister tell us if he agrees with the working group's conclusions, which recommended not only extracting five times more oil, but also simplifying environmental regulations to make it happen?