Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Harper's Head in the Smog

About a week ago I wrote a prep-post predicting that the Tory PR machine was about to go into full swing in and effort to make Canadians forget about Kyoto, global warming, and carbon dioxide, and reposition the environmental debate - and swing voters - around the issue of smog. Well, here we go....

In a sneak preview of their upcoming "Made in Calgary"....i mean "Canada" environmental plan, environmentalists were shown the first details. As predicted, they represent a concerted effort to draw the connection between health and smog while making zero mention of global warming or Kyoto. They did say that the focus of the plant will be on pollution from smokestacks and tailpipes, as well as stating that the Conservative' environmental concerns over the next year (god knows what happens afterwards) will be:

....air quality; greenhouse gases; toxics and hazardous materials; conservation; environmental assessment; water quality and quantity plus monitoring; compliance and enforcement.

Given their stated concerns, here is a different approach, early though it may be.
Create mandatory vehicle emission standards and tackle coal fired power generation, a move that would:
  • Drastically improve air quality (smog)
  • Sharply reduce greenhouse gases
  • Limit polluting compounds that originate in vehicle exhaust from entering the air
  • Stop mercury from coal burning power plants from entering our air, water and children, and
  • Reduce the need for expensive and bureaucratic enforcement, monitoring and compliance.
If you're going to state objective environmental concerns Steve, you should propose the best solutions to address them rather than burying your head in the tar sands....or the smog.


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