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House of Commons Hansard #150 of the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was c-37.

Topics

Science and TechnologyOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Conservative

Garry Breitkreuz Conservative Yorkton—Melville, SK

Mr. Speaker, our government's historic investments in science and technology have created jobs, improved Canadians' quality of life and strengthened our economy for future generations. Canada leads the G7 for supporting basic discovery-oriented research. We invest heavily to development, attract and train the world's top researchers in Canada.

Could the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry please update the House on our continued support for basic research in Canada?

Science and TechnologyOral Questions

11:40 a.m.

Edmonton—Mill Woods—Beaumont Alberta

Conservative

Mike Lake ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Industry

Mr. Speaker, today the Minister of State for Science and Technology is in Waterloo, celebrating the grand opening of the Mike & Ophelia Lazaridis Quantum-Nano Centre. This investment in state-of-the-art science infrastructure will attract some of the world's top researchers to study in Canada and strengthen Canada's research capacity.

Our government will continue to support science and technology because it enhances productivity, grows the economy and produces lasting benefits for all Canadians.

Economic DevelopmentOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

NDP

Dennis Bevington NDP Western Arctic, NT

Mr. Speaker, the Conservatives sold off 9,000 square kilometres of the Beaufort Sea for pennies to a shell company and yesterday the government could not even begin to say why they did it. The CEO of the company says that either the Russians or the Koreans might be interested in this lease. The minister had the power under the law to reject the deal, but he did not.

Why did the Conservatives sell off Canadian resources like this?

Economic DevelopmentOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Kenora Ontario

Conservative

Greg Rickford ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development

Mr. Speaker, it is just that there is so much to say about the member for Western Arctic.

Unlike the anti-development NDP, our Conservative government is committed to unlocking the north's potential. In this case, the exploration rights were awarded to the highest bidder. If the company fails to live up to its commitments, this bid will be revoked and no licence issued.

Economic DevelopmentOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

NDP

Dennis Bevington NDP Western Arctic, NT

Mr. Speaker, remember that we are talking about a company with $220 in the bank and a corporate value of minus $32,000 at its last filing. That is the guy who got the lease, someone who wants to get the backing of the Koreans or Russians to get rich. Industry observer Paul Ziff rightly points out this would never happen in the North Sea. At least the U.K. has some concern about who takes its resources.

Why did the Conservatives sell off this lease to a fly-by-night company in one of the most environmentally-sensitive areas of the country, one of the places where drilling and exploration is most controversial right now?

Economic DevelopmentOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Kenora Ontario

Conservative

Greg Rickford ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development

Mr. Speaker, if the member is talking about Arctic drilling in the U.K. report, what it really says is that our government is showing leadership through our northern strategy and it calls upon its own government to develop a similar strategy.

Our National Energy Board has just completed a comprehensive review of Canada's Arctic offshore drilling and it concludes that Canada's regulatory regime has the tools we need to strike that important balance: protecting the safety of northern workers, residents and the Arctic environment, while creating jobs for northern Canadians.

Search and RescueOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

NDP

Élaine Michaud NDP Portneuf—Jacques-Cartier, QC

Mr. Speaker, when the Conservatives unfairly decided to close the maritime search and rescue centre in Quebec City, the NDP raised concerns about the disappearance of services in French.

We had reason to be concerned. The Conservatives recently gave us a glimpse of what is coming. Fisheries and Oceans Canada sent a manual of standard operating procedures to the Quebec City centre for comments. The problem is that they sent the manual in English only.

Is this how the Conservatives intend to prepare people for the disappearance of services in French?

Search and RescueOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Pitt Meadows—Maple Ridge—Mission B.C.

Conservative

Randy Kamp ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans and for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

Mr. Speaker, we certainly agree with her that the provision of bilingual services is essential and the Coast Guard will continue to enhance services as part of this consolidation. In fact, that is why we have taken a little longer to make that change to ensure we had the necessary bilingual services in place before we made that transition.

Search and RescueOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

NDP

Élaine Michaud NDP Portneuf—Jacques-Cartier, QC

Mr. Speaker, first, services in Newfoundland and Labrador were outsourced to Italy, and now the people at the maritime search and rescue centre in Quebec City are supposed to communicate in English.

It should not be hard to understand that when people are in danger and request assistance, they will want to get that help in their mother tongue and they will want to speak to someone who knows the region and the navigable waters.

Will the Conservatives finally recognize that they made a mistake? Do they understand the importance of providing marine rescue services in French?

Search and RescueOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Pitt Meadows—Maple Ridge—Mission B.C.

Conservative

Randy Kamp ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans and for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

Mr. Speaker, as we have stated before, the changes that we have made will not affect the availability of search and rescue resources. We are committed to providing those services in the language of the person who is distress. We are moving toward that in an effective way and we are working with the Commissioner of Official Languages on this issue as well.

EmploymentOral Questions

11:45 a.m.

Liberal

Mark Eyking Liberal Sydney—Victoria, NS

Mr. Speaker, when are the Conservatives going to stop stealing jobs out of Cape Breton?

In the last 16 months we have lost over 190 federal positions and the services they provide. Two weeks ago, northern Cape Breton fell to the Conservative axe again with 20 more pink slips being handed out to Parks Canada employees. The Conservatives struck again last week with 10 more layoffs at a mail sorting station in North Sydney.

These decisions are not only cruel, but they are bad choices for the Canadian taxpayer. When will the Prime Minister stop this madness?

EmploymentOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Madawaska—Restigouche New Brunswick

Conservative

Bernard Valcourt ConservativeAssociate Minister of National Defence and Minister of State (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency) (La Francophonie)

Mr. Speaker, first, I do not think the hon. member renders service to Cape Breton when he tries to label these decisions as a means of taking something away.

At the Atlantic Canada Opportunity Agency level, we are investing serious sums of money in the Cape Breton area to create jobs and opportunities. Moreover, just like every other area of Atlantic Canada, Cape Bretoners will be able to take advantage of the national shipbuilding procurement strategy, creating jobs—

EmploymentOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Conservative

The Speaker Conservative Andrew Scheer

The hon. member for Lac-Saint-Louis.

Canada Post CorporationOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Liberal

Francis Scarpaleggia Liberal Lac-Saint-Louis, QC

Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities, the operative word being “communities”.

Canada Post is closing the historic post office in Pointe Claire Village after conducting a full public consultation. In fact, close to 300 municipalities across Canada have expressed disappointment with the crown corporation's consultation process.

Pointe Claire Village has been served by Canada Post for 150 years. Why so little regard for the history of Montreal's Lakeshore community and for seniors who need easy access to postal services?

Canada Post CorporationOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Charleswood—St. James—Assiniboia Manitoba

Conservative

Steven Fletcher ConservativeMinister of State (Transport)

Mr. Speaker, our government is committed to high-quality mail service for all Canadians and businesses. We continue to expect that Canada Post maintain local service and fulfill its universal service mandate without becoming a burden on taxpayers.

In the specific case the member mentioned, I note that there are seven post offices within a five kilometre radius of the Pointe Claire post office, most of which offer extended hours to serve the community even better.

Climate ChangeOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

NDP

Anne Minh-Thu Quach NDP Beauharnois—Salaberry, QC

Mr. Speaker, this week, scientists have sounded the alarm: the Arctic ice cap is melting at an unprecedented rate.

This finding shows that climate change is an alarming problem. We must act now because this is happening right now.

Yet the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development pointed out two years ago that this government has no comprehensive strategy for climate change and no plan for concrete action.

Why are the Conservatives dragging their feet instead of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to help the north deal with this crisis?

Climate ChangeOral Questions

September 21st, 2012 / 11:50 a.m.

Calgary Centre-North Alberta

Conservative

Michelle Rempel ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

On the contrary, Mr. Speaker. Our most recent greenhouse gas emissions inventory in our country shows for the first time a stabilization of greenhouse gas emission growth while the economy grew. We are seeing that the economy can grow and that jobs can be protected while reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Also, our country was one of the first to sign on to the Climate and Clean Air Coalition to reduce short-lived climate pollutants, which have a major impact on northern climate change.

We are getting things right, as opposed to the NDP that would put a price on carbon, see gas prices increase, and winter is coming.

Climate ChangeOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

NDP

Anne Minh-Thu Quach NDP Beauharnois—Salaberry, QC

Mr. Speaker, that is not what the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development says. That is just more hot air. And it is not a concrete plan.

The minister seems to think that Canadians are going to swallow those empty words, but he is mistaken. We must take action now to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions. Otherwise, we might end up with an ice-free Arctic by the summer of 2015. That would not only be bad for us, but also for the traditional lifestyle of northern peoples.

Are we going to wait for the Arctic to become a new Club Med? When are the Conservatives going to take real action to address climate change?

Climate ChangeOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Calgary Centre-North Alberta

Conservative

Michelle Rempel ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment

Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague opposite for the opportunity to point out that Canada is the first country internationally to have regulations on coal-fired power plants.

Our sector-by-sector regulatory approach is seeing real, tangible reductions to greenhouse gas emissions, as opposed to the Liberal Party, which saw a 30% increase in greenhouse gas emissions under its tenure, and the NDP voted against our measures to support climate change adaptation in the north.

Our government is getting it done.

International TradeOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Conservative

Randy Hoback Conservative Prince Albert, SK

Mr. Speaker, this past week the NDP leader has been making outrageous and incorrect claims about Canada's trade record. It is laughable that he does not grasp the irony that if an NDP's reckless and irresponsible anti-trade agenda were imposed on Canada, there would be zero trade.

Could the Minister of International Trade update the House on the government's plans to increase trade, help grow the economy and create jobs?

International TradeOral Questions

11:50 a.m.

Abbotsford B.C.

Conservative

Ed Fast ConservativeMinister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

Mr. Speaker, the NDP's anti-trade record is very clear. It has consistently opposed our government's efforts to open up new markets for Canadian exporters.

Ever since the North American Free Trade Agreement, the NDP members have regularly called for Canada to erect new trade barriers. These policies, along with the NDP's $20 billion carbon tax, would kill Canadian jobs and stall our economy.

On this side of the House, our government is focused on pursuing new agreements that reduce barriers to trade and promote Canadian exports.

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Liberal

Mauril Bélanger Liberal Ottawa—Vanier, ON

Mr. Speaker, tomorrow, Mali will celebrate the 52nd anniversary of its independence. Unfortunately, this past year has not been an easy one for the people of Mali.

On Wednesday, when he was making a speech at the Canadian Club of Ottawa, I informed the Minister of Foreign Affairs of a letter that was sent to him in August by the African diaspora in Canada, inviting Canada to support Mali's transitional institutions.

Can the minister tell us what his government plans on doing to maintain Mali's territorial integrity and peace in western Africa?

Foreign AffairsOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

Ottawa West—Nepean Ontario

Conservative

John Baird ConservativeMinister of Foreign Affairs

Mr. Speaker, I appreciate this good question from the member for Ottawa—Vanier.

I got this question on Wednesday, and I saw the letter that a large group of people wrote to me. Yesterday, I responded that Canada was proud to continue supporting peace and security in Mali and that I was happy to work with my colleague on this good policy.

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

NDP

Sadia Groguhé NDP Saint-Lambert, QC

Mr. Speaker, because of the Conservatives' ridiculous changes to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, an Iranian woman whose asylum claim was rejected could be sent back to Iran even though there is evidence that she could be accused of adultery, which is punishable by death.

Because of the Conservatives' irresponsible changes to the refugee process, the Canada Border Services Agency does not even have the right to look at new evidence that her life will be in danger if she returns to Iran.

What will the minister do to solve this serious problem?

Citizenship and ImmigrationOral Questions

11:55 a.m.

St. Catharines Ontario

Conservative

Rick Dykstra ConservativeParliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration

Mr. Speaker, the hon. member knows I cannot speak to the specifics of an individual case, but the policy she speaks to in terms of how the Immigration and Refugee Board treats issues in this regard was passed under the previous Parliament under Bill C-11. Every member of Parliament and every party supported that legislation in terms of starting the process of reforming our refugee legislation.