Mr. Speaker, I almost rose on a point of order to allow the Conservatives a chance to read the bill that has been rewritten and revised. The parliamentary secretary, who I thought was there during the process, seems to have missed the critical elements, the fact that air pollution standards are set out as national standards, not vague objectives as they were originally written. The national binding standards cannot be undone, for NOx SOx, VOCs, particulate matter, ozone, nitrogen oxide, gaseous ammonia and mercury, all within the bill. Somehow he has invented some new fiction as to what happened and did not happen, but the bill exists. It is in the government's hands.
If he would like to have an option for Parliament to choose between his government's performance on the environment and the one that all parties wrote together, I encourage him to bring both of them forward, but he will not do it.
The Liberal failure on the environment is no longer an excuse for Conservative inaction and delay. That is just not a valid excuse for this. Limiting debate on this most critical issue from eight hours to two hours is not good governance. Canadians want to know what the government's plans are on climate change and they want the government to give Parliament the option of voting for a real climate change act.
The leading threat to our economy right now, as seen by many countries around the world, is the impacts of climate change. When we asked Finance Canada and Environment Canada officials if the government engaged any type of analysis either on the impacts to our economy of climate change or the benefits to our economy in creating a green and truly sustainable economy, it had not done a whiff of it. It has not even looked at the issue. It has not done any serious analysis since 1992.
Could the parliamentary secretary justify not even looking at the issue of the impact of climate change on our economy and the health of Canadians? Second, would he take the time to read the legislation that we rewrote together on air pollution, on indoor air quality and on climate change? All members of the House had input into.
Why has he not bothered to take the time to read it and why does he continue to mislead this House as to what is in the bill? It is there in black and white. It is there for him and all Canadians to read, that the national targets and standards are set. They are put into law. They cannot be undone by cabinet behind closed doors. They must be redone by a Parliament, which no Parliament in its right mind would ever do in the future.
It finally sets Canada on the path so real standards are put in place and so a sustainable economy can be created. The polluter pay principle is enshrined into law in Canada. Polluters can no longer get off the hook, as is the suggestion in the new Conservative plan that allows the oil sands to increase their volatile organic compounds by 60%, when every other industry in the country has to reduce.
There is no more justification for this. Will he bring the bill back for a fair and open debate? If the Conservatives are so into democracy, present their bill. We will present the bill that was issued by all members of the House and will allow a democratic vote to decide. This place exists for that. That is why people sent us here.