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House of Commons Hansard #125 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was environment.

Topics

Opposition Motion--Budget LegislationBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

4:55 p.m.

Conservative

The Acting Speaker Conservative Bruce Stanton

Order. Members of course realize that when another member has been recognized to respond or provide comments, that member has the floor and members should keep other discussions on the low-down.

The hon. member for Etobicoke North.

Opposition Motion--Budget LegislationBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

4:55 p.m.

Liberal

Kirsty Duncan Liberal Etobicoke North, ON

Mr. Speaker, unfortunately the government has repealed the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act and we have great concerns about going forward. I think everyone in the House would agree there were aspects that needed to be changed, but what no one expected was for the act to be repealed.

Opposition Motion--Budget LegislationBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

4:55 p.m.

Independent

Bruce Hyer Independent Thunder Bay—Superior North, ON

Mr. Speaker, like the hon. member, I am concerned about Canadian sustainability. Like the hon. member, who has a wonderful track record on environmental issues, I am concerned that the Conservatives just do not seem to care about the environment. Like her, I am concerned that while the Conservatives inherited balanced budgets and significant surpluses, we now have the largest deficits in the history of Canada through mismanagement and tax rates for big banks and big oil that are less than one-half those of the United States.

Does the hon. member agree with me that there are three things under the government that are unsustainable: an unsustainable environment, an unsustainable resource management, and an unsustainable economy due to flawed ideologies and economic mismanagement?

Opposition Motion--Budget LegislationBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5 p.m.

Liberal

Kirsty Duncan Liberal Etobicoke North, ON

Mr. Speaker, there must always be a balance between the economy and the environment. While the government says the right things and claims to understand that one does not pit one against the other, unfortunately, the government's actions belie that. It is allowing the pendulum to swing too far in the direction of economic interests.

I will give an example of where the government really missed an opportunity. In the stimulus package, the government spent $3 billion on a green stimulus. Let me compare that with the United States, which spent $112 billion on a green stimulus, and China, which spent $221 billion on a green stimulus, and in the process created thousands of new jobs, jobs that Canada missed.

Opposition Motion--Budget LegislationBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5 p.m.

Conservative

Paul Calandra Conservative Oak Ridges—Markham, ON

Mr. Speaker, on a point of order, I just want to confirm that the member is talking about the United States, which has a $3 trillion debt and a $1 trillion deficit. Is that the plan she is asking that we follow? I did not hear her, so if she could just clarify if that is the plan she would ask us to follow.

Opposition Motion--Budget LegislationBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5 p.m.

Conservative

The Acting Speaker Conservative Bruce Stanton

That is really a matter of debate on the facts. It is not a point of order.

I think the hon. member for Etobicoke North finished answering the last question, so I will recognize the hon. member for Burnaby—Douglas on questions and comments.

Opposition Motion--Budget LegislationBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5 p.m.

NDP

Kennedy Stewart NDP Burnaby—Douglas, BC

Mr. Speaker, I am looking for a little clarification on my last question.

I did ask specifically what the Liberal position is on the Enbridge northern gateway pipeline. I did hear consultation, but I am wondering, since the environmental legislation has been gutted, if perhaps the Liberals have changed their view on this project. Of course, we in the NDP are opposed to this pipeline.

Opposition Motion--Budget LegislationBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5 p.m.

Liberal

Kirsty Duncan Liberal Etobicoke North, ON

Mr. Speaker, I was very clear. There are two points.

We are the party of evidence. We wait to hear the evidence. There is a process in place. We have to hear what will play through. Our concern is the backdating in the budget. By the time the budget passes, the pipeline could actually be approved. That is a concern.

We are the party that consults. We have two pieces: evidenced based and consultative. We listen to Canadians.

Opposition Motion--Budget LegislationBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5 p.m.

Liberal

Kevin Lamoureux Liberal Winnipeg North, MB

Mr. Speaker, could my colleague provide comment in regard to the government using the budget debate specific on this bill to affect the environment and the impact it will have on the environment?

Opposition Motion--Budget LegislationBusiness of SupplyGovernment Orders

5 p.m.

Liberal

Kirsty Duncan Liberal Etobicoke North, ON

Mr. Speaker, it is simply outrageous to use a budget bill to gut 50 years of environmental protections in order to fast track development.

History will show that when we do not pay attention to the environment, there are problems. A good example occurred in the 1950s. There was a terrible thick sulphurous fog that occurred in London. That fog killed 4,000 people. It was linked to very high coal burning.

Our legislation is in place. It is there to protect the health and safety of Canadians.

To include that in a budget bill, to not allow public scrutiny, or clause-by-clause study in the right committee, the environment committee which has the expertise to study this, is unconscionable.

[For continuation of proceedings see part B]