Here we go people! We are getting ever closer to election day, which means things are getting heated up on the election trail, and I’m looking forward to no longer seeing random people’s names on front lawns everywhere! This week we are taking a look at the NDP’s environmental “platform”. Now, Brian, why did you put quotation marks around “platform”? Well my curious readers, let me explain. You see, for all of these articles I accomplish a certain level of research that I’m quite proud of, consisting mostly of me looking through a federal party’s website, as well as at credible news articles and interviews to uncover their environmental platform. Doing this for the NDP party, however, was like excavating the Grand Canyon in search of a missing cell phone! There were no documents on their website that outlined their platform in detail, nor were there any news articles available that gave more information other than a mumble jumble of buzz-words such as “sustainability” and “change”. Without coming across biased…here is a series of quotes and videos that we could find of Thomas Mulcair addressing Canada’s environment.
“Canadians can trust Tom Mulcair and an NDP government to protect the environment while growing Canada’s economy — by making polluters pay and investing in clean technology.”
“Liberals have a long history of being all-talk, no-action when it comes to protecting the environment…Despite all the hot air, the Trudeau Liberals still have not committed to any actual targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Canada.”
Says a man who’s talking a lot and yet has no committed targets or actions to reduce greenhouse gases anywhere on his federal party’s website! Ugh!
Canadians know we don’t have to choose between a strong economy and a clean environment — that’s a false choice.
“For ten years, Stephen Harper has gutted laws designed to protect the outdoors. And he’s hurt Canada’s reputation on the world stage by refusing to take serious action to tackle climate change.
Tom Mulcair has a concrete plan to protect the environment for future generations while growing the economy and creating good jobs.
As Prime Minister, Tom will work to kickstart renewable energy production and drive down climate-changing emissions. He’ll make big polluters pay to clean up their mess. And he’ll strengthen laws to protect Canada’s lakes and rivers.”
Red text = buzz words
The most information, however, comes from an article in the National Post, which lists the NDP’s environmental promises as:
- Continue opposing the Northern Gateway pipeline; it initially supported concept of west-east pipeline, but says Energy East can’t be approved without more stringent environmental review process; opposes Keystone XL pipeline.
- Create a cap-and-trade system with a market price on carbon emissions; revenue from cap-and-trade would be invested in a greener energy sector in regions where dollars are generated.
- Work with provinces to create a new fund to help Canadians retrofit their homes and offices to save energy and money.
- Redirect $1 billion a year from fossil fuel subsidies to investment in the clean energy sector.
- Invest in Sustainable Development Technology Canada – including wind, hydro, solar and geothermal technologies – to create thousands of new jobs for Canadians.
Oh, also, in this video, Mulcair talks about wanting to go to the Paris climate change meeting:
Here’s another video of Mulcair talking about pipelines:
Finally, here is a clip from the national debate where Tom Mulcair dodges a question about a cap-and-trade system:
Am I being too harsh on the NDPs for not providing adequate documents on their environmental platform? Possibly, but I could also just be getting hangry (all I’ve eaten today is a bagel with cream cheese). I know that politics are politics, and that everyone uses buzz words, but if I want to see change in Canada then that means I also want to see a change in the way we run campaigns, and that involves giving the public a real plan! My hope is that at some point before election night, Tom Mulcair and his party will give us a concrete plan, at which point I will be sure to update this article and let you all know when it happens!
Stay tuned next week when we look at the Green Party’s platform!
Update: On September 27, 2015 Tom Mulcair and the NDP party released their environmental plan.
“An NDP government is going to work with provinces and territories to develop a pan-Canadian cap-and-trade system that sets concrete emissions limits for Canada’s big polluters, which will have a significant positive impact on climate change.”
The NDP would also reinstate Jack Layton’s Climate Change Accountability Act in order to reduce Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions. Another aspect of the NDP’s plan is to reinvest the carbon-pricing revenue to the provinces and territories to fund further carbon-reducing initiatives.
Thank you Mulcair for giving us a bit more to work with!