Delegates from around the world including Germany and the European Union reached a last-minute deal on climate change in South Africa, and agreed to extend the Kyoto accord by five years. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2011_United_Nations_Climate_Change_Conference
However, Canada’s environment minister Peter Kent has announced that his country will withdraw from the Kyoto protocol – and basically told the rest of the world that they, the Canadian Government know better and is not interested in dealing with other countries to try and address a potentially serious global crisis.
In an apparent fit of pique and self-righteous umbrage, Mr ‘Kent’ – who was later called another but like-sounding name by most Durban delegates – left the South African UN conference on climate change early.
At the conference he did not have the courage to state his position clearly and openly and be prepared to defend it. No, in a typical ‘Steve’ Harper type of way – namely spineless, underhanded and secretive – he slipped out of Durban and waited until he was back in Ottawa to make the announcement.
Why has this about face of the Canadian government taken place – Canada a country previously known for its outstanding and leading role in building international unity within UN bodies and especially on environmental issues?
The present right-wing ‘Steve’ Harper government can be seen as basically a front for the petroleum and energy lobby in Canada – they are in fact their paid agents.
Canada is a vast country and has in fact lots of oil – but it is not easy oil. It is in the form of tar and has to be extracted which is a very messy and very not environmentally correct.
Oil sands or tar sands are unconventional petroleum containing mixtures of sand, clay, water, and a dense and extremely viscous form of petroleum technically referred to as bitumen.This crude bitumen in Canadian Northern Alberta is a thick and sticky form of crude oil, so heavy and thick that it needs to be heated or diluted to be extracted.
Making liquid fuel from oil sands one needs energy for steam injection and refining – a process that generates almost four times the amount of greenhouse gases per barrel of final product as the “production” of conventional oil.
Oil extracted from these Alberta tar sands is being planned to travel south via a ‘Keystone pipeline’ to the US - economic and environmental idiocy.
See how wing-nut Republicans in the US are lining up behind this pipeline - http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/fact-checker/post/keystone-pipeline-jobs-claims-a-bipartisan-fumble/2011/12/13/gIQAwxFisO_blog.html
While Mr ‘Kent’ took the easy way out and blamed the previous Liberal government for having signed Kyoto in the first place - the German environment ministry has said that the Kyoto accord does not go far enough towards a global reduction of Green-house gases.
Eva Bulling-Schröter of Germany’s opposition left-wing ‘Die Linke’ party said rightfully that Canada’s withdrawal was cowardly – while she was able to say it openly as an opposition member these where in fact the very same thoughts and expressed the sentiment of most of the Bundestag or German parliament in Berlin.
Canada needs a government and PM who can exercise maturity, neutrality and judgment in environmental affairs and unfortunately this ‘Steve’ Harper bunch now in charge of the government of Canada, as paid agents of the energy producers are not capable to do this.
Much work and time – perhaps decades – will be required when they have been forced out of office to rescind and unwind the damage the Harperites are doing to Canada both domestically and internationally.
Read this compelling article in todays Guardian from a Canadian -Heather Mallick– living in the UK about how she feels on this issue called ‘Canada goes tabloid’ – http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/dec/13/canada-kyoto-protocol
And this from the independent Canadian news source Rabble.ca by Amy Goodman -http://rabble.ca/columnists/2011/12/outcome-durban-climate-talks-called-climate-apartheid
The opinions expressed are not necessarily those of OTA-Berlin but of the contributor – in this case Mr Emil Hoogensteyn.
This blog is brought to you by …..OTA-Berlin Constituency Blog’ is part of OTA-Berlin – ‘……the intelligent Apartment-Alternative to Hotels in Berlin’.
The Blog provides OTA-Berlin guests a quick overview of the cultural, sports, social and other related activities taking place in Berlin during their stay.
OTA-Berlin, the intelligent Apartment Alternative to Hotels in Berlin!
2011 United Nations Climate Change Conference – ‘Harper-Canada’ part of Global-warming problem – not the solution and becomes one of the environmental ‘bad guys’ – ‘No to Kyoto’ is easy and opportunistic – Germany and EU think Kyoto is not strong enough! -commentary by Mr Emil Hoogensteyn from OTA Berlin is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Germany License. If you use this article or parts of it, please refer to http://www.ota-berlin.de.
Tags: 'Harper-Canada', 2011 United Nations Climate Change Conference, Amy Goodman, Canada's withdrawal was cowardly, Canadian environmental idiocy, Canadian Government tells rest of world - we know better!, Canadian government tells rest of world to solve their own problems, die linke, Eva Bulling-Schröter, Germany and EU and Kyoto, Harper-Canada part of Global-warming problem, Heather Mallick, independent Canadian news source Rabble.ca, right-wing Harper a disaster for Canada