By Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Wednesday November 6, 2007
Canada criticized at UN climate change summit
Canada continued to be on the receiving end of criticism Monday at the UN climate change summit in Bali, Indonesia, because of its position on the issue.
UN climate chief Yvo de Boer, who met with Environment Minister John Baird Monday, questioned Canada’s call for developing nations like China and India to accept binding emissions.
“I personally find it interesting to hear Canada just a little while ago indicating it would not meet its commitments under the Kyoto Protocol,” said de Boer.
Environment minister of Quebec’s Line Beauchamp and Ontario’s John Gerretsen made it clear that Ottawa does not speak for their provinces – which represent almost two-thirds of the Canadian population while speaking to the press from the Bali conference on climate change.
“Now (it’s) calling on developing countries to take binding reduction targets.”
The focus of the conference is to begin negotiations on an international agreement to fight climate change after 2012 — when the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol expires.
Canada wants the international community to reach a deal by 2009 so that it can be implemented by the time Kyoto expires.
However, Canada is refusing to apply its own binding targets until the big emitters such as the U.S., China, and India do so first.
“We think we need to get all the major emitters on board to ensure that we deliver the goods — that we get absolute reductions around the world on these harmful greenhouse gases,” Baird told CTV’s Canada AM on Monday.
So far, the U.S. and China have made it clear that they won’t accept binding emission targets.
Baird told The Canadian Press on Sunday that it didn’t make sense, for example, to close a coal plant in Ontario and then import more coal power from Michigan.
The end result would be a loss of Canadian jobs and no benefit to the atmosphere, he said. (Source: CTV News)