Thursday, September 20, 2007

Canada Faces Lawsuit Over Kyoto Failure

The Federal Government is facing a lawsuit for its failure to take action on global warming and address Canada's commitments under the Kyoto Protocol.

The lawsuit is a direct follow up to the Conservative government's failure to meet the demands of a private members bill passed by opposition parties this past February. That bill demanded that the minority Conservatives honour Canada's international climate change commitments and draft a plan outlining how they would do so.

But when the Conservatives unveiled their "Turning the Corner" plan for climate change, not only did they fail to meet the demands of that bill, they also demonstrated it in plain math - a move which may have swung the door wide open for this lawsuit to occur.

Conservatives, global warming deniers, and even some environmentally sympathetic Canadians, will be howling that there is no way we can meet those targets by 2012, the deadline of the Kyoto Protocol. They are probably even right. But getting Canada to meet Kyoto isn't necessarily the point of the lawsuit anymore than the point of the Conservatives' climate change plan was to actually address global warming.

The lawsuit is a pointed action directed at the federal government, regardless of what party comes into power next, to push them towards taking the most aggressive action possible against global warming. Kyoto may not be reachable, but this is no barrier to Canada developing a genuine plan to curb greenhouse gases. If the Conservatives present such a plan, you can be certain this lawsuit would disappear - even if that plan doesn't meet the strict Kyoto letter of the law.

The lawsuit was brought to Federal Court by Friends of the Earth Canada, Ecojustice Canada and private attorney Chris Paliare.


12 comments:

Matthew R Walker said...

This is somewhat encouraging news. Stephen Harper has to be held accountable for his lack of leadership, imagination and understanding of the climate change issue, or should I say his propensity to tip toe around the issue in order to hurt oil & gas profits from Alberta.

Realistically, this will get bogged down in the courts for years. On the plus side the bad press this will generate in combination with the public's desire to see leadership in this area might push the Tories further to actually develop a plan with substance, and solid emissions targets.

Odiyya said...

We can hope yes. While the cons are balancing on a minority the good news is that any big splash like this can develop into a political, rather than a legal issue. The prospect of falling in the polls while in a minority government would probably be the best motivation the cons could have for doing something.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

I am glad that someone, somewhere, is taking strong action.

TOM DISOUZA said...

I have a blog containing good information on global warming. Ozone has doubled since the mid-19th century due to chemical emissions from vehicles, industrial processes and the burning of forests, the British climate researchers wrote. Carbon dioxide has also risen over that period. History of global warming is very deep since 1850.

Lord Higham- Murray said...

Little hope - Harper is earmarked to do thngs for Them.

Matt Wardman said...

I have to say that, reading "Greenpeace" and "Ecojustice Canada", the words "publicity" and "stunt" come to mind.

lady macleod said...

hopeful action.

Ydb said...

Should be interesting to see what comes out of it. This type of action, if I am not mistaken, is waaayyyy easier said/done in the US than Canada... Rules of law would explain the difference. Maybe some changes are needed in our Northern country, so citizens (via groups) can push the governments to act when they fail to...

TheGnatStaff said...

Yes, Kyoto is an unworkable plan, always has been, always will be. Do you really believe Canada should spent billions sending it China and India because we didn't meet our targets? Where do you think this money is coming from, do you think the gov't has some slush fund (sorry that was the previous liberal gov't)? Please remember this money will be coming out of your pockets. Are you saying you wouldn't mind paying $3 a litre for gas? That would cost me over $250 to fill my tank. Not only that, but we have no say in how that money is spent by China and India. Pretty much guaranteed, it will not be used by either to reduce their emmissions. I think we should opt out of Kyoto and that money would be better served at home, helping our industries reduce their emmissions.
Sheila

TheGnatStaff said...

Does anyone remember the Energy Crisis in the 1970's?
Sheila

suresh sharma said...

More and more is required to done to save our mother from the demon of pollution. All efforts in this direction are welcomed with full support.
Please keep on publishing the ways and legal remedies to combat this problem.
Thanks and Regards,
Suresh Sharma

Anonymous said...

Possibly the most useless drivel I've ever seen...