The Toronto Star suggests the Harperites are misleading the public on Canada’s Kyoto targets.
The Harper government fired the first salvos in this battle when Ambrose announced in the Commons April 7 that national emissions “are actually up by 30 per cent.” The Prime Minister then weighed into the fray April 25, saying Canada’s emissions had increased by 30 per cent above the Kyoto target.
Other Conservatives jumped on the bandwagon, claiming the failure of Liberal Kyoto policies was obvious because in 2003, emissions were up by only 24 per cent but then jumped all the way to 30 per cent in one year.
All those statements are factually wrong, according to the voluminous “National Inventory Report” prepared by Ambrose’s own department and filed last month with the UN’s Framework Convention for Climate Change, the agency that meets in Bonn.
Comparing emissions to 1990, the key base year in the Kyoto pact, the report concluded that:
- Canada’s 758 million tonnes of emissions in 2004 were 26.6 per cent higher than the 599 million tonnes in 1990 — not the claimed 30 per cent.
- After adjusting for better information, the correct figure for 2003 emissions was 25.9 per cent higher than in 1990 — not the quoted 24 per cent.
- The year-to-year emissions increase was four million tonnes — one of the smallest annual hikes recorded — because less coal was burned in electrical power plants as nuclear plants came back into service.
Fudging numbers to make Kyoto commitments seem impossible to reach is deplorable for a party that campaigned so righteously to Stand Up for Canada! To whose Canada were they referring?
Yes, Canada is off-target on Kyoto but surely that is no reason to stop striving for the goals to which we’ve committed!
Thanks to LE REVUE GAUCHE – Left Analysis And Comment for the lead.