Culpeper and Tanner: Canada is losing the fight against climate calamity

By Roy Culpeper and Susan Tanner, Ottawa Citizen, October 15, 2018

Three things are conspicuously weak in Canada’s strategy to combat climate change: We have insufficient resolve to reduce the supply and consumption of fossil fuels; we need better incentives to promote the development of and shift to renewable energy; and national and provincial plans to prepare for catastrophic weather extremes are absent. The urgency to act cannot be exaggerated. According to the most recent report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, global average surface temperatures are “likely to reach” the critical 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels as early as 2030 at current rates of net emission.

In December 2015, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau joined leaders from around the world in Paris to set goals to reduce carbon pollution, in an effort to keep the global temperature at a level safe for human life. Scientists are now warning that those goals are inadequate. Yet after three years under the Trudeau government, Canada has no chance of meeting even the much less ambitious target for emission reduction established by prime minister Stephen Harper, under whose watch Canada was called a “climate laggard.”

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