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House of Commons Hansard #114 of the 40th Parliament, 2nd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was copenhagen.

Topics

Question No. 459Questions on the Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Calgary Centre-North Alberta

Conservative

Jim Prentice ConservativeMinister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, with regard to the proposed Mealy Mountains national park, in response to (a), meetings of the Steering Committee were held in Happy Valley–Goose Bay on March 21, 2002, April 18, 2002, April 30, 2003, September 29 and 30, 2005, February 2, 2006, March 9, 2006, May 10 and11, 2006, April 8, 2008, and May 6, 2008.

In response to (b), with respect to the size of the proposed park, the two governments are reviewing the recommendations of the steering committee including a recommendation on the park boundary, and following this review the size of the proposed park can be determined.

In response to (c), the outstanding issues that remain to be settled are: the proposed park boundary; the approach to the management of traditional land use activities by Labradorians; other issues that may be raised in negotiation of the required agreements or in consultations with aboriginal organizations.

In response to (d), with respect to dealing with these outstanding issues, the Government of Canada will: work with the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador to reach a joint decision on the proposed park boundary for the purposes of negotiating the land transfer agreement; develop an approach to the management of traditional activities by Labradorians, including a review of the recommendation by the steering committee, as part of the work to negotiate a land transfer agreement; establish a national park reserve, pending the resolution of outstanding aboriginal claims.

In response to (e), the next steps in the park establishment process are: continue to work with Newfoundland and Labrador to respond to the recommendations of the steering committee; begin negotiation of a federal-provincial land transfer agreement, the timing of which is subject to negotiation by the parties; begin negotiation of impact and benefits agreements pursuant to land claim agreements, the timing of which is subject to negotiation by the parties; continued consultations with aboriginal groups.

In response to (f), since 2006-07, the annual expenditures for this project have been: 2006-07, $251,773; 2007-08, $218,286; 2008-09, $263,500; 2009-10, $126.422. Note that the figure for 2009-10 includes expenditures to October 22, 2009, and funds that have been committed but not yet spent.

Question No. 476Questions on the Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Liberal

John McCallum Liberal Markham—Unionville, ON

With respect to the National Capital Commission, what payments, including the amounts, the dates and the reasons for payment, have been received from the Conservative Party of Canada between February 1, 2006 and October 19, 2009?

Question No. 476Questions on the Order PaperRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Pontiac Québec

Conservative

Lawrence Cannon ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, On December 5, 2007, the National Capital Commission received a payment in the amount of $5,300. The reason is that on October 13, 2007, the Conservative Party of Canada made use of the Prime Minister's residence at Harrington Lake as a backdrop for filming advertisements.

On September 3, 2008, the National Capital Commission received a payment in the amount of $5,250. The reasonse is that on August 23, 2008, the Conservative Party of Canada made use of the Prime Minister's residence at Harrington Lake as a backdrop for filming advertisements.

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

November 20th, 2009 / 12:15 p.m.

Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre Saskatchewan

Conservative

Tom Lukiwski ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons

Madam Speaker, if Questions Nos. 454, 455, 456, 458, 461 and 538 could be made orders for returns, these returns would be tabled immediately.

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

The Acting Speaker Ms. Denise Savoie

Is that agreed?

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

Question No. 454Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Liberal

Anita Neville Liberal Winnipeg South Centre, MB

With regard to the Action Plan of Status of Women Canada (SWC): (a) in what cities and towns did consultations take place; (b) how many consultations took place in each city and town with (i) individuals, (ii) groups; (c) what dates were the consultations held in each city and town; (d) what are the names of the individuals and groups with whom consultations took place; (e) what handouts and presentations were given to individuals and groups consulted with in each city and town; (f) what issues were identified for the purposes of consultation and what criteria was used by SWC to develop consultations; (g) what communications were received from the individuals and groups with whom consultation took place; (h) who did SWC approach to consult with in each city and town; and (i) who came forward voluntarily in each city and town to participate in consultations?

(Return tabled)

Question No. 455Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Liberal

Anita Neville Liberal Winnipeg South Centre, MB

With regard to the Partnership Program of Status of Women Canada (SWC): (a) with whom does SWC currently have partnership agreements; (b) how much money has been allocated to those partners; (c) how has the funding been broken down; (d) how many and which organizations were denied partnership agreements and what reasons were provided to each organization denied; (e) how much money remains in the partnership program compared to other years; and (f) how is SWC planning to allocate money from the fund in the coming years?

(Return tabled)

Question No. 456Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Liberal

Kirsty Duncan Liberal Etobicoke North, ON

With respect to the current pandemic of new influenza A (H1N1): (a) what specific healthcare professional stakeholder groups have been consulted since the beginning of the H1N1 pandemic, what was the consultation process, and what concerns were raised; (b) what concerns from the consultation process have been addressed, what concerns are remaining, and by what date will they be addressed; (c) what, if any, additional funding was requested to address identified challenges; (d) do identified stakeholder groups report there are sufficient human resources and supplies to meet the need during a second wave of H1N1 and, if not, what are the identified gaps; (e) what, if any, additional education and training was requested by stakeholder groups; (f) what procedures are in place to ensure applicability, consistency and clarity of protocols to healthcare professional organizations, and do stakeholders report that they are receiving clear, concise, timely messaging; (g) what, if any, differences exist in how healthcare professionals will be protected among provinces and territories; (h) what specific agreements have been made in respect to assuring sufficient human resources during a second wave; (i) what, if any, differences exist between the national guidelines and those of the provinces and territories, with respect to antivirals, N-95 masks, vaccines, and other personal protective measures, and how should healthcare professionals address any discrepancies; (j) what are the known and suspected benefits and risks of the H1N1 vaccine; (k) what non-clinical and clinical trials have been or are being undertaken regarding the H1N1 vaccine, on what dates were they completed, and what are the outcomes of these trials; (l) what possible side effects, including rare events, might be expected with the H1N1 vaccine; (m) what are the possible legal risks associated with an H1N1 vaccination programme, and what efforts have been taken to reduce these risks; (n) what, if any, plans exist for rapid distribution and administration of vaccines for the first mass vaccination effort; (o) what special efforts are being made to reach out to young adults, minorities, and other at-risk groups to get vaccinated, and what languages and media outlets are being used; (p) for how long will vaccination campaigns continue past the fall in case of a possible third wave; (q) how do hospitals across the nation vary in their ability to bear the burden of H1N1 cases; (r) what percentage of hospitals are operating at their limit today; (s) what percentage of hospitals will be able to accommodate the predicted surge capacity if 15%, 35% and 50% of the population is impacted by H1N1; (t) what percentage of hospitals will be expected to meet intensive care unit (ICU) and ventilator surge capacity if the above percentages of people are affected; (u) do any hospitals or provinces and territories had difficulty meeting surge capacity in the spring and summer; (v) what, if any, surge capacity challenges existed in the spring and summer in terms of hospitalizations, ICU stays, and ventilator use, and what measures have since been taken to address these challenges; (w) what, if any, funding has been given to address surge capacity challenges; (x) what specific efforts are being taken to help reduce the burden on hospitals by distributing high profile messages about when to seek medical care for pandemic H1N1 infections; and (y) what is being undertaken to reduce the risk of resistance (i) in patients with severely compromised or suppressed immune systems who have prolonged illness, have received oseltamivir treatment, but still have evidence of persistent viral replication, (ii) in people who receive oseltamivir for post-exposure prophylaxis, and who then develop illness despite taking oseltamivir?

(Return tabled)

Question No. 458Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Liberal

Todd Russell Liberal Labrador, NL

With regards to Aboriginal affairs: (a) what is the government’s rationale for generally opposing the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples; (b) what is the government’s rationale for voting against the said Declaration in a vote of the United Nations General Assembly on September 13, 2007; and (c) what specific measures has the government undertaken since January 1, 2006, to engage and consult with the Aboriginal peoples of Canada concerning the Declaration and the position of the government towards it?

(Return tabled)

Question No. 461Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Liberal

Todd Russell Liberal Labrador, NL

With regard to government advertising for the Home Renovation Tax Credit: (a) how much did it cost to produce, print, and distribute each of the green envelope and door knocker direct-mail pieces; (b) which departments procured the printing and distribution; (c) what are the contract numbers of the printing and distribution contracts; (d) when were these products distributed; and (e) how many households received the products (i) in each of Canada’s Forward Sortation Areas, (ii) in each province and territory?

(Return tabled)

Question No. 538Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Liberal

Larry Bagnell Liberal Yukon, YT

With regard to funds allocated over the last four fiscal years, for each territory, by the National Research Council: (a) what is the breakdown of the amount allocated for (i) staffing purposes, (ii) administration, (iii) travel expenses, (iv) programs; (b) what is the breakdown of the staffing costs for (i) staff situated in each territory, (ii) staff situated outside the territory they provided a service for; (c) for each allocation, how much was actually spent per fiscal year; and (d) how many projects falling under the Industrial Research Assistance Program were approved and how many other projects were approved?

(Return tabled)

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Conservative

Tom Lukiwski Conservative Regina—Lumsden—Lake Centre, SK

Madam Speaker, I ask that the remaining questions be allowed to stand.

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

The Acting Speaker Ms. Denise Savoie

Is that agreed?

Questions Passed as Orders for ReturnsRoutine Proceedings

12:15 p.m.

Some hon. members

Agreed.

The House resumed consideration of the motion.

Opposition Motion--Climate ChangeBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

12:15 p.m.

Liberal

David McGuinty Liberal Ottawa South, ON

Madam Speaker, it is an honour to rise this afternoon.

It is a privilege for me to be here today to participate in this very important debate on a Bloc Québécois motion that addresses an issue of critical importance to Canada's future. This is critical because it deals with not only our ecological integrity, but also our economic prosperity.

I want to begin by saying that Canadians continue to be disappointed by their government's lack of initiative and ashamed of its failure to take action at the international level. The government's record is 4-3-0: four ministers, three ministers and zero plan for the environment or climate change since the Conservatives came to power. They have nothing to show and only themselves to blame.

Liberals believe the scientific evidence for global warming. They want Canada to show the rest of the world the way, and they want absolute reduction targets to ensure that global temperatures do not rise by more than 2oC.

The Reform-Conservative government has shown no initiative at all with respect to Copenhagen. On the contrary, as I hope to show this afternoon, it has constantly impeded international progress on climate change issues.

The Prime Minister's irresponsible approach to climate change has become one of the greatest obstacles to Canada's economic growth.

Let us then turn to the facts and the history of four years of Reform-Conservative government. That is, in fact, what the government is: the coming together of the Reform-Alliance movement of the West and the common sense revolutionaries here in Ontario. Defeated in Ontario years ago, having set their own province on fire, they have now come to the federal scene to continue their works, tactics, tone and character.

Four years after we were promised, in an election campaign, a “made in Canada climate change plan”, we have seen it go from made in Canada, to delayed in Canada, to made in the U.S.A. Now, the Minister of the Environment, blessed by the Prime Minister, says that we will take no action unless there is an international agreement first. That is more than preposterous. That is incompetent, irresponsible and very dangerous to our future and our well-being, environmentally and economically.

Here is why. Canada's Export Development Corporation now tells us about the global marketplace for environmental and clean energy technologies and the opportunities around the world on an annual basis. These are opportunities for Canada to go and seize our entrepreneurs, investors, risk-takers and companies while working with government. The Export Development Corporation tells us that market is worth $1 trillion a year. That is $1 trillion for Canada to participate in.

Just a year and a half ago, one of Canada's top accounting firms, Ernst & Young, revealed that Canada is badly slipping behind other countries in our ability to attract investment. We are not getting the share that we should be getting in the international marketplace or the opportunities that are out there for things like water and waste water technologies, clean energy technologies, new scrubber systems for electricity generation, light rail or transit, and the list goes on and on.

Not only are we compromising our ability to compete in that race, but Ernst & Young is telling us that we are falling way behind other countries in our ability to attract capital into Canada, capital to invest precisely in the clean energy technologies of the future. We are now behind Germany, the United States, Italy, France and Spain. We are now even further behind India and China. That is important to raise in the context of the Prime Minister's trips right now, first to India and now to China.

I want to pause for a moment and speak specifically to those trips in the context of Copenhagen. I have a few remarks. First of all, the Prime Minister's approach to China for the past four years has been to use circumscribed language that is immature at best. He has compromised two decades of careful relationship building with the Chinese people and Chinese authorities in an understanding that Canada has a special relationship with China.

China would be an emerging economic superpower expected to displace the United States by 2020 as the world's largest economy. China is going to need an awful lot of Canadian know-how, solutions and technology. The Prime Minister begins by compromising our relationship with China.

More recently, just three weeks ago, when China announced that it was going to take some tenuous steps to enter the climate change tent and the international community with a willingness to talk about targets for the Chinese people, the Minister of the Environment launched an all-out attack on China in the media while he was in New York City participating in United Nations meetings.

The situation now is we are falling behind India and China. The Prime Minister was just in India, and I read the communiqué issued by both governments. Seven words out of some eight hundred and some twenty five words in the statement referred to climate change. It was a passing reference, barely addressed. What is rich about it is the Prime Minister keeps telling the Canadian people and the world that we will not do anything in Canada until, first, as I said earlier, the Americans do something. Then it is until the Indians and Chinese do something. Now it has evolved into a until there is an international treaty, not of our making.

Let me get this straight. The Prime Minister is in India and China representing us and he does not raise, in a very serious, straightforward way, the climate change crisis with Indian and Chinese authorities. It is ironic, it is rich and it is beyond belief. What it really shows is that it is incoherent, and it has been for four years. We have asked repeatedly of three successive ministers of the environment for a plan. Where is the made in Canada plan?

Recently I was asked by a national media outlet what the Minister of the Environment should be doing in Copenhagen. My response was he should come home because he had nothing to negotiate from. We do not enter into international negotiations with a blank sheet of paper. Anybody who understands international negotiations knows that. We simply do not waltz into a room and tell people to go ahead, that we will observe, that we will watch from on top and afar and when they come up with a deal, we will consider it. Then we will bring the deal back home and consider whether it fits into an ultimate Canadian domestic plan, a plan for Canada.

What do we have? We do not have a plan. We have no regulations for climate change. We have no emissions trading system for climate change. We have no price on carbon emissions to deal with climate change. We have no analysis to tell us what the role of conservation will be in sequestering carbon for a climate change plan. We have nothing.

The European Union ambassador to Canada testified yesterday in committee. He told us that there were over 1,000 pages of analysis and planning on the Internet sites of the European Union and all its 27 countries, detailing a very well thought out and well balanced plan. In contrast Canada has nothing. It is important for Canadians to know that as we come to the important moment of Copenhagen.

Made in Canada was the first announcement. Then it was to be delayed in Canada. Then it was to be made in the United States. Now it will be made elsewhere. It is not responsible because nobody will design a climate change plan for Canada for our benefit, for the planet's benefit, yes, but for our benefit as well. The only strategy the Reform-Conservatives seem to have with respect to Copenhagen is a public relations strategy.

Let me recap. We have no plan, no emissions trading system, no price on carbon emissions and no North American target.

Let us stop to speak about that for a moment. The government now has evolved its messaging in another way. It now claims that Canada is part of a North American agreement on climate change. Let us just look at that for a moment.

My sources in Washington tell me that nobody on Capitol Hill in Washington is talking about a North American plan. The folks I spoke to in Mexico City, who are seized with climate change in Copenhagen negotiations, asked me if I had misunderstood something when I spoke to them. Officials there said that they had no idea what I was talking about when I talked about a North American plan, nor a North American target, nor a North American trading system. That is not to say we should not have been working feverishly toward a tripartite approach on a continental basis.

However, to put in the window now and say that we have no plan at home, but there is dialogue with the United States should be explored.

In 2002 the former Liberal government announced a North American working group for energy dialogue. It was going strong, gangbusters, productive for Canada, making headway until 2006 when the Conservatives were elected. At the same moment they cut $5.6 billion in programming money for climate change, they also immediately cancelled a four-year-old successful North American energy working group and dialogue on energy. It evaporated.

Some two years later, when a democratic centrist administration was elected in Washington, the government, with nothing to announce on the environment, nothing to announce on the Great Lakes, nothing to announce on species at risk, nothing to announce on oceans, nothing to announce on anything, including climate change, resurrected the idea of a North American energy dialogue. It re-gifted it, tied it up with a nice, bright red bow and presented it to the people, saying that it now had a dialogue with the Obama administration. It is all smoke and mirrors all the time and it is really unfortunate because there is so much on the line.

Recently the United Nations issued a report, a very powerful one. It says that in the future countries that have more nature, more water, more species, more conservation will be the wealthiest. In other words, those countries that are best able to get more ecological integrity and better environmental protection will have a stronger, more competitive and more successful economy.

That is what eludes the Reform-Conservatives, and I do not understand why. Normally Conservative ideology and thinking would tend toward economic opportunities, enhancing those opportunities and creating the right conditions in government allowing our free market, entrepreneurs and capital to flourish. Not in this case.

Instead we have a regime that would rather play shell games and put things in the window one week after another instead coming up with a coherent national plan where everyone wins, where it can do good with respect to environmental improvement and it can do well financially. It is a race that the rest of the world is now participating in and Canada is not even at the starting line. We are not even close to being there. We are being outspent 13 times on a per capita, per person, basis by the United States on clean technology, research and development and other investments.

The Germans have already created 260,000 to 280,000 jobs today. This is not about tomorrow or 10 years from now. The future is now on this issue. The Germans have already created jobs in the clean technology sector. Why would they be doing that? What do they know that we do not know? Nothing. Why did the Chinese authorities just create a $250 billion environmental clean technologies investment fund? What do they know that we do not know? Nothing.

What we know is we are going into the powerful race of the future, where we become more efficient with the energy we use. We become cleaner with the energy that we produce. We reduce our waste. We use our resources more efficiently.

This is all good and all positive. It is a race in which humanity will compete. It is a race that Canada ought to be competing in and it is one that we can win. We have all the know-how in the world right here in our country.

Quebec has lots of experience with hydroelectricity, with dozens of engineering consulting firms that have dominated markets around the world.

Alberta has sequestration technologies and abilities to reduce our emissions, even in the exploitation of oil sands. In British Columbia, Vancouver is going to become the cleanest city in the world by 2020. Halifax is the most efficient waste management city in the country, reducing household wastes.

What does California know that we do not know? Nothing. Why else would California now define waste in all its laws? In all its laws, it does not talk about waste any more. It talks about unrecaptured profit. It sees waste as potential profit. In other words, if people generate waste, find ways not to generate it and they will make more money. They will create jobs today.

That is why Ontario's clean energy act is such a progressive step into the future. It is expected that the legislation, that initiative, will help to create over 60,000 jobs, not in a decade but today, because the future is now.

As we hurdle toward the Copenhagen meeting, it is important to remind the government that it has an obligation to Canadians, and the world, and it is failing. A whole litany of obstructionism has gone on now for four years. It barely is worth repeating, but it is important to have this debate today. It is important that the Bloc Québécois has brought the motion forward and that we debate it. It is about our future success. It is about whether we will win the race, which the Liberal Party believes we can win. It is about creating the right conditions inside Canada to participate fulsomely in the world and lead in the world.

For a change from the last four years, maybe we should start leading in the world. Canadians deserve no less.

Opposition Motion--Climate ChangeBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

12:35 p.m.

Bloc

Bernard Bigras Bloc Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie, QC

Madam Speaker, I listened with great interest to the remarks made by my colleague, the environment critic for the Liberal Party. He gave us some background on the Conservatives' position regarding the fight against climate change.

I must say I agree with the overall scenario he presented for us today. However, he must stop keeping us in the dark. Here today, he needs to clearly state his party's position regarding the three points included in the Bloc Québécois motion, namely, the 2oC limit, the 25% reduction compared to 1990, and support for developing countries to adapt to climate change.

So, to be clear, my question for my colleague is as follows: does his political party plan to firmly support and vote in favour of the Bloc Québécois motion next Tuesday?

Opposition Motion--Climate ChangeBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

12:40 p.m.

Liberal

David McGuinty Liberal Ottawa South, ON

Madam Speaker, I thank my colleague for his question.

We are continuing the debate. That is the purpose of this debate today on the motion. However, it gives me the opportunity to speak to the third part of the motion, which is very important. I learned yesterday that of all the G8 and G20 countries at present, we are the only one going to Copenhagen with an official delegation that will apparently be taking part in the negotiations, but we have no representation from CIDA or our department of international cooperation.

We know that supporting developing countries in their efforts to reduce greenhouse gases and adapt to climate change is critical for the future. It is critical not only during the negotiations, but for the decades and centuries to come. It is true that the motion contains some very positive elements. I agree that it is important to send a message, a signal, but at the same time, we must not forget that the Bloc Québécois motion, like the NDP's Bill C-311, is in no way a plan to combat climate change.