Madam Speaker, I am pleased to rise today to talk about the environment and the economy of the future as part of the debate on our motion today. I will be sharing my time with the excellent member for Cowichan—Malahat—Langford, who does a great job as the agriculture critic. He mentioned the potential risks and absurdity of the Liberal purchase of Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain pipeline at a cost of $4.3 billion of taxpayers' and Drummond residents' money.
For the past few days, the people of Drummond have been outraged that their money is being used to buy a private company for purposes that are not clear and to invest in the energy of the past rather than that of the future. In today's opposition motion, my colleague from Rosemont—La Petite-Patrie is proposing that we invest in the future. He believes that a global environmental leaders do not invest in a pipeline, they invest in renewable energy such as sun, wind, clean hydroelectricity or smaller projects.
Studies show that investing $1 million in renewable energy and energy efficiency will create 10 times more jobs than investing in fossil fuels. If we want to build a strong and competitive economy and a forward-looking society, we should not be investing $4.3 billion of taxpayer money in an outdated resource. We must invest in the future. The Liberal government failed miserably on this one. It is very serious.
Our motion states that we should transition towards energies and the economy of the future. Countries and societies around the world are investing more and more in renewable energy. In Canada, the Liberal government is unfortunately lagging behind on such investments. This motion calls on the government to urgently change course. When the NDP comes to power in 2019, that is what we will do. We will change course to ensure that the money this government misspent will be invested in the economy of the future.
I want to take this opportunity to talk about two young women I met on the weekend at one of my town hall meetings. Rébecca Joyal and Méganne Joyal are two sisters who are very involved in their school community. They started by getting involved in their school's UNESCO program, and then joined Amnesty International. They are working to get composting at their school. They are just 17 years old and they are already working to improve their environment.
Rébecca was recently elected environment minister in the Quebec youth parliament. As you can see, these young women truly want to get involved. They told me that we need to combat climate change and that this was the biggest challenge of the future, but it is also the biggest challenge of today.
Those who think that climate change is a myth are clearly forgetting all of the extreme and severe weather events the world has experienced in recent years.
Extreme weather events are not only on the rise, but they are also getting worse. In Drummondville, we used to see torrential rains maybe once every 100 years. Now, we get them every three or four years. That has serious implications for our infrastructure. Basements get flooded, for example.
Just a few years ago, I had to help out at a community centre when its basement was flooded because of torrential rain. I received all sorts of email. People came to tell me that their basement had been flooded and asked me to do something about it. Something must be done. The Liberal government is dragging its feet in the fight against climate change and is not investing all its time and money in the right places.
Just recently, in spring 2018, there were devastating floods in New Brunswick and British Columbia, not to mention forest fires in Manitoba. We know that climate change is affecting us and has serious consequences.
We have to turn things around, but we have to do so in an intelligent manner that supports our economy and our workers who work in outdated industries. We cannot leave them behind. We have to support them in this transition.
Canadian municipalities are very vulnerable to the risks associated with climate change, especially when it comes to extreme weather. Floods are the most costly natural disaster in terms of damage to property and urban infrastructure. Some might say this is a new phenomenon, but it is not. This has been going on for a long time and the government knows it.
In fact, there was once a national round table on the environment and the economy, which was tasked with linking the environment with the economy. Is that not odd? We often hear the Liberals or the Conservatives say that this hurts the economy and so on, but that is not true. The national round table on the environment and the economy explained that if we fail to invest in the fight against climate change, there will be serious consequences that will be far more costly in the future. We are talking cost increases in the billions of dollars.
Unfortunately, the government is currently handing out $1.3 billion a year in fossil fuel subsidies. The Liberal government said that it would do away with those subsidies, but it has not yet done so. However, we will eliminate them in 2019. The government is always behind on that. We would take the $4.3 billion that the Liberals invested in a pipeline and invest it in the economy of the future and energy efficiency.
I did not talk about energy efficiency, but there are a lot of businesses in Drummond that do excellent work in that area. Venmar, Annexair, and Aéronergie, just to name a few, are energy efficiency experts that create local jobs. They also drive the local economy and help people save money by lowering their home heating costs. These businesses also help fight climate change.
What plan do the Liberals' have for energy efficiency and helping Canadian families? They do not have one. That is why we need to adopt today's motion. The Liberals need to understand that. If not, that is fine. The NDP will take office in 2019 and we will do what needs to be done.