Editorial cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Wednesday June 10, 2015
Prime Minister Stephen Harper agrees to G7 ‘decarbonization’ by 2100
Prime Minister Stephen Harper has agreed to a G7 commitment to deep cuts in carbon emissions by 2050 — with an eventual stop in the use of fossil fuels by the end of the century.
The call for a low-carbon footprint will “require a transformation in our energy sectors,” Harper said Monday at a news conference in Germany, following the two-day G7 summit.
“Nobody’s going to start to shut down their industries or turn off the lights,” he said. “We’ve simply got to find a way to create lower-carbon emitting sources of energy — and that work is ongoing.”
Canada and Japan blocked attempts at a stronger statement on binding greenhouse gas reduction targets, according to The Canadian Press sources who saw a working draft of the G7 communiqué, which was released today as the summit wrapped up.
“We emphasize that deep cuts in global greenhouse gas emissions are required with a decarbonization of the global economy over the course of this century,” the G7 leaders said in their final communiqué.
“We commit to doing our part to achieve a low-carbon global economy in the long-term including developing and deploying innovative technologies striving for a transformation of the energy sectors by 2050 and invite all countries to join us in this endeavour.”
German Chancellor Angela Merkel had been pushing the G7 to endorse a pledge to reach zero carbon emissions.
“Canada and Japan are the most concerned about this one,” said one source who was privy to discussions but would only speak on the condition of anonymity. “The two of those countries have been the most difficult on every issue on climate.”
During question period on Monday, NDP Leader Tom Mulcair said the government’s role in “toning down” the communiqué leaves “Canada with an environmental black eye on the world stage.” (Source: CBC News)