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House of Commons Hansard #112 of the 40th Parliament, 3rd Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was consultants.

Topics

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, Quebec announced that it had reduced greenhouse gas emissions to below 1990 levels, but the Canadian government is going in the opposite direction by speaking out against Kyoto renewal and doing whatever it can to interfere with international climate change initiatives.

Does the Prime Minister realize that, by refusing to recognize efforts made by Quebec and Quebec businesses, such as aluminum smelters, to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, Canada is penalizing Quebec and preventing it from moving forward?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:20 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, I know that the Bloc likes the Kyoto protocol, but the truth is that two-thirds of global emissions are not covered by the Kyoto protocol. That is why we negotiated the Copenhagen agreement as a step toward our goal of having a binding greenhouse gas regulation system for all of the world's major emitters.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Gilles Duceppe Bloc Laurier—Sainte-Marie, QC

Mr. Speaker, the C.D. Howe Institute reached the same conclusion in a report stating that the government's wait-and-see attitude toward climate change will put us so far behind technologically that it will cost us dearly in the long run.

Does the Prime Minister realize that his single-minded focus on the interests of oil companies is preventing him from recognizing Quebec's and Canada's interests with respect to climate change?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Calgary Southwest Alberta

Conservative

Stephen Harper ConservativePrime Minister

Mr. Speaker, on the contrary, Canada's energy sector capacity—including all sources of energy—is important to our country in terms of climate change. We believe this is a serious problem. That is why we are investing in technology. We are taking action with respect to technology and adaptation, and we are working with our international partners to reach an effective global agreement.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Paule Brunelle Bloc Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, the Minister of Natural Resources seems to be unaware that it is possible to strike a balance between environmental protection and economic development. By going to Chicago to lobby for dirty oil from the oil sands, he has clearly shown that he is on the oil companies' side.

In light of Canada's poor performance in the battle against climate change, should the Minister of Natural Resources not be concentrating his efforts on reducing greenhouse gas emissions rather than on increasing the production and export of oil from the oil sands?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis ConservativeMinister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, the member's allegations are completely false. We know that the oil sands are a strategic resource for our country. They are an economic engine. Approximately 120,000 jobs are associated with the development of this resource in our country.

There is one challenge in developing this resource: doing so responsibly by striking a balance between the environment and the economy. That is what we are doing with the different levels of government and the industry. Canadians can count on our government to protect our natural resources, our jobs and our regions.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Bloc

Paule Brunelle Bloc Trois-Rivières, QC

Mr. Speaker, does the Minister of Natural Resources, a member from Quebec, realize that he is going against Quebec's interests by acting as the lobbyist for the oil companies and sabotaging the efforts by Quebec industry to reduce greenhouse gas emissions?

Is he not ashamed to have been elected in Quebec and now to be defending the interests of Alberta oil companies at Quebec's expense? As we say back home, this minister is a turncoat.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Mégantic—L'Érable Québec

Conservative

Christian Paradis ConservativeMinister of Natural Resources

Mr. Speaker, that is completely irresponsible. The Bloc is using the energy file to pick a fight. We have listened to them ask questions about Old Harry. We have listened to them ask questions about the shale gas industry. They are either for or against everything when it suits them, just to stir up trouble in the federation. It is not true that our government will stomp on an industry, the fossil fuel industry, that can be operated cleanly and permit us to position ourselves as a world leader in energy security.

That is ridiculous.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair NDP Outremont, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday we learned that Canada is one of the worst countries in the world in terms of fighting climate change: 54th out of 57. For years, the academic/industrial consortium Ouranos has predicted that in eastern Canada, some of the worst effects of temperature change will be felt in the Gulf of St. Lawrence because of faster erosion due to new angles of the waves and their increased size. Over the past few days, Prince Edward Island and Sept-Îles have proven these predictions, which were based on scientific models.

What are they waiting for to act?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, we continue to act on both the GHG emissions and on pollution right across the country. Various programs wherever possible are being harmonized with the Obama administration in the United States in order to take effective continental measures.

We are dealing with the Copenhagen accord right now in Cancun to make sure that all major emitters sign on the dotted line. There is no use having an accord when the major emitters of the world are not signed on and doing their part. We want all world economies to be part of this program.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:25 p.m.

NDP

Thomas Mulcair NDP Outremont, QC

Mr. Speaker, it is time for the government to get serious about climate change and to respect our obligations to our children and grandchildren.

It turns out that contrary to the government's claims, we are not harmonizing our climate policy with the U.S. The United States is now regulating greenhouse gas emissions from big industrial emitters whereas Canada still has no federal regulations, not even draft ones.

The commissioner said today, “The government has not established clear priorities for addressing the need to adapt to a changing climate”.

Worse yet, the government has buried reports about the impact of climate change. It is not a theory. It is a reality.

When is the government going to stop denying the scientific truth?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, part and parcel of observing the scientific truth is to have a climate change adaptation framework. That is exactly what the environment minister is well on the way to producing. He should have that shortly for the House for examination.

We have already started with initiatives across the north, for example. As a result of a previous portfolio, I know something about the initiatives we have taken on adaptation. We not only have to have adaptation strategies and mitigation strategies, but we have to have worldwide strategies. All of the world's economies need to buy into the same program. We have to reduce those GHGs. It cannot be Canada's solution. It has to be a worldwide solution.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

NDP

Nathan Cullen NDP Skeena—Bulkley Valley, BC

Mr. Speaker, 20 years ago the federal government recognized the need for a national oil spill response strategy, but today the Commissioner of the Environment told us there is still no plan.

The Conservative motto must be “better lucky than good” when it comes to protecting our marine environment. There have been 4,200 spills in the last two years alone. The government does not know what equipment it has. It does not know if it even works. It has not even been trained to use it.

Tonight the Conservatives have a choice. Will they stand with New Democrats and the people of British Columbia, or will they once again side with their friends in the oil lobby?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Chilliwack—Fraser Canyon B.C.

Conservative

Chuck Strahl ConservativeMinister of Transport

Mr. Speaker, the motion tonight has to do with oil tanker traffic. It has nothing to do with anything the member raised.

With respect to oil tanker traffic, it is important to remember that there has been an exclusion zone off the west coast of British Columbia since 1988. That exclusion zone, which is closely monitored and strictly enforced, makes sure that no oil tanker traffic comes down the inside passage. What is more, oil tanker traffic cannot come within 25 to 80 miles off the west coast depending on where it is.

That exclusion zone is in place. It is going to stay in place. We are not going to change it.

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Marlene Jennings Liberal Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, yesterday we learned that the government ignored the calls from police associations, from victims and from women's groups to implement the firearms marking regulation. This regulation was passed by a Liberal government with the aim of truly supporting victims of crime.

When will this hypocritical Conservative government respect the democratic will of Parliament and Canadians and implement this regulation, which is necessary and important and will save lives?

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Provencher Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, our government is committed to making our communities safer. We continue to support gun control measures that assist law enforcement officers in protecting themselves and the safety and security of the public.

Since being elected, we have consistently introduced new measures that would prevent and solve crimes, including improved screening of new firearm applicants and mandatory prison time for those who commit gun crimes, unlike the Liberals who consistently oppose measures to protect people on the streets and in their homes.

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Marlene Jennings Liberal Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, QC

Mr. Speaker, even the Prime Minister's own Julian Fantino advocated in 2004 for the firearms tracing and enforcement program, saying that it was an invaluable aid in the investigation of certain gun crimes and must be sustained into the foreseeable future.

When will the government really stand up for victims and implement these important and life-saving regulations? After all, even Bush's Republicans implemented them in 2004.

Public SafetyOral Questions

2:30 p.m.

Provencher Manitoba

Conservative

Vic Toews ConservativeMinister of Public Safety

Mr. Speaker, since the member did mention the new member for Vaughan, Julian Fantino, we are so very pleased that we have another member from the law enforcement community joining us here in our caucus. It is police officers like Mr. Fantino and others who give us the perspective to ensure that we take all points of view into account, and our primary goal always is the protection of Canadian citizens in our streets and in their homes.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

December 7th, 2010 / 2:30 p.m.

Liberal

Anita Neville Liberal Winnipeg South Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, the government's failure to call a public inquiry into the missing and murdered aboriginal women is a national disgrace.

Over 600 first nations, Inuit and Métis women have gone missing or have been murdered. That is 600. These women were mothers, aunties, daughters and sisters.

Will the Prime Minister today on the 40th anniversary of the Royal Commission on the Status of Women right this wrong and call a public inquiry?

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Edmonton—Spruce Grove Alberta

Conservative

Rona Ambrose ConservativeMinister of Public Works and Government Services and Minister for Status of Women

Mr. Speaker, we have a responsibility to protect the most vulnerable women in our society and we are doing just that by implementing a new program to address the issue of missing and murdered aboriginal women.

We have created a new RCMP centre for missing persons. We have improved our law enforcement databases to deal with investigating missing and murdered women. We have also created a national website for public tips to help locate missing women.

In fact, the Native Women's Association has said that this is a significant investment. Sue O'Sullivan, the Federal Ombudsman for Victims of Crimes, says that what we need is more initiatives just like this.

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Liberal

Anita Neville Liberal Winnipeg South Centre, MB

Mr. Speaker, the facts are simple. This is a national crisis. There have been 600 missing and murdered aboriginal women and still no inquiry.

This is the real tough on crime issue. If the government wants to be tough on crime, then it should call an inquiry. If it wants to prevent violence against women, then it should call an inquiry.

How many more aboriginal women need to become victims before the Conservative government treats this issue like the crisis it is?

Aboriginal AffairsOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Edmonton—Spruce Grove Alberta

Conservative

Rona Ambrose ConservativeMinister of Public Works and Government Services and Minister for Status of Women

Mr. Speaker, we have taken very concrete action to support the issue of murdered and missing aboriginal women, but one of the things that is most important for all of us in this chamber and in the country to do is to support women's fundamental basic human rights.

Right now before the House we have the opportunity to support matrimonial property rights, which would historically change the inequality between aboriginal women and non-aboriginal women.

I ask the member why she does not support it.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Raynald Blais Bloc Gaspésie—Îles-de-la-Madeleine, QC

Mr. Speaker, global warming is increasing the intensity of certain known meteorological events. This fall, the high tides caused millions of dollars in damage in eastern Quebec. Part of Highway 132, houses, cottages and patches of land were swept away by the sea. Hundreds of residents were evacuated from their homes as a preventative measure.

Does the federal government plan to respond favourably to any requests from the Quebec government to compensate the victims?

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Langley B.C.

Conservative

Mark Warawa ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, the member well knows there has never been a government more committed to cleaning up the environment than this government.

The Liberals laugh but what a mess they created on the environment. That is why we are in Cancun working with our international partners to fight climate change.

The EnvironmentOral Questions

2:35 p.m.

Bloc

Raynald Blais Bloc Gaspésie—Îles-de-la-Madeleine, QC

Mr. Speaker, the environment commissioner has criticized the government for having no plan to address the effects of climate change. The Bloc Québécois is calling for the creation of a compensation fund that would, for instance, fund measures to slow shoreline erosion caused by the high tides.

Will the government come up with a plan to address climate change, as called for by the Bloc Québécois and the environment commissioner?