Canada and global warming: a state of denial

266 posts / 0 new
Last post
jerrym

In December of last year scientists warned that California would fall dramatically making it more susceptible to drought and wildfires. 

California could be hit with significantly more dangerous and more frequent droughts in the near future as changes in weather patterns triggered by global warming block rainfall from reaching the state, according to new research led by scientists at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

Using complex new modeling, the scientists have found that rapidly melting Arctic sea ice now threatens to diminish precipitation over California by as much as 15% within 20 to 30 years. Such a change would have profound economic impacts in a state where the most recent drought drained several billion dollars out of the economy, severely stressed infrastructure and highlighted how even the state most proactively confronting global warming is not prepared for its fallout.

The latest study adds a worrying dimension to the challenge California is already facing in adapting to climate change, and shifts focus to melting polar ice that only recently has been discovered to have such a direct, potentially dramatic impact on the West Coast. While climate scientists generally agree that the increased temperatures already resulting from climate change have seriously exacerbated drought in California, there has been debate over whether global warming would affect the amount of precipitation that comes to California.

The study, published Tuesday in the journal Nature Communications, provides compelling evidence that it would. The model the scientists used homed in on the link between the disappearance of sea ice in the Arctic and the buildup of high ridges of atmospheric pressure over the Pacific Ocean. Those ridges push winter storms away from the state, causing drought. ...

Rainfall in California would drop, on average, 10% to 15% in the coming decades under Cvijanovic’s model, but the decline would present itself sporadically, exacerbating the potential for drought. Some years the decline in rainfall because of diminished Arctic ice would be much steeper than 15%. Other years would be wetter than they otherwise would be.

The study is yet another by federally funded researchers that finds the failure to more rapidly diminish greenhouse gas emissions could have a serious impact on California and other parts of the country. The findings contrast starkly with Trump administration policy on warming, which ignores the mainstream scientific consensus that human activity is driving it.

http://www.latimes.com/politics/la-na-pol-climate-california-20171205-ht...

 

 

JKR

I think everyone here is aware that the escalating climate change catastrophe is man made. I'm not sure how that knowledge translates into an effective political response. Maybe the NDP and Greens should merge?

jerrym

Canada is also facing droughts as a result of climate change. 

A study released in March 2018 looked at 29 different climate change models examining drought caused by global warming until 2100 would impact different regions of Canada in terms of precipitation both if greenhouse gas emissions grew unchecked and if they were significantly reduced. 

Prairie provinces

All three Prairie provinces, stretching from the Rocky Mountains to the shore of Hudson Bay, are vulnerable to drought, says David Price, a scientist for Natural Resources Canada who models climate change outlooks. ...

Southern parts of those provinces are vulnerable to drought, Barrie Bonsal, a research scientist with the Water Science and Technology Directorate of Environment Canada, agrees, and droughts could become more severe later in the century. Alberta will be particularly vulnerable as glaciers in the Rockies melt, ending a formerly reliable source of water.

South-central British Columbia

British Columbia's Okanagan Valley is one of the driest places in Canada, and agriculture puts pressure on water supplies. Climate change could mean even hotter summers in the region, making it more vulnerable to drought. "Most models show it getting drier toward the end of the century," said Barrie Bonsal, a research scientist with the Water Science and Technology Directorate of Environment Canada.

British Columbia has been dependent on snowpack to provide moisture through the spring and summer, but it may get more rain in winter, which would run off the land rather than melting slowly as snow does, Bonsal said. 

The Lower Mainland of B.C. is accustomed to seeing lots of rain, but with places like the lower Fraser region and Vancouver Island seeing less of it, they'll have to rely more and more on water reservoirs, according to John Pomeroy, professor of geography and director of the Centre for Hydrology at the University of Saskatchewan. However, since those regions don't usually have to rely on reservoirs, he says, the ones they have aren't adequate to offset the lack of rain. In fact, the shortage has prompted water restrictions in the province and instances of hydrological drought, which is when lakes, rivers and ground water supplies are depleted.

Yukon and Northwest Territories ...

"The impact of climate change is being felt rapidly in the far North," Price said. "We could see a dry winter followed by a hot summer that would make drought quite possible."

Ontario and Quebec

Southern parts of Canada's two most populous provinces are mainly protected from drought because of the Great Lakes, which create their own wet weather systems. Climate change models vary in their predictions of whether water levels in the Great Lakes will rise or fall as weather patterns change. But there still could be a need for water restrictions if demand exceeds supply, Bonsal said. ...

Northern parts of Ontario and Quebec are less influenced by the Great Lakes, and their forests could be threatened. "You only need a couple of years of very dry conditions to make those forests tinder-dry," Price said. That means elevated risk of forest fire.

Atlantic Canada

By contrast, Atlantic Canada and eastern Quebec are predicted to become wetter as the century progresses, under most climate change models. 

https://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/water-at-risk-canada-drought-1.4570333

    jerrym

    There are now 25 known dead and over 100 missing from the California fires in the last few days, with more than 250,000 under evacuation orders. The President of the California Professional Firefighters has ripped Trump for his comment on withholding federal funding to the states because of poor forest management. This is another attempt to deflect attention from how global warming is increasing levels of catastrophic damage when Trump denies global warming even exists. It also typical of his vindictive response to anyone who does not support him under any and all circumstances. 

    The death toll from wildfires raviging on both ends of California has risen to 25. The so-called Camp Fire leveled nearly the entire city of Paradise, scorching thousands of homes and leaving its business district in ruins. More than 100 people are still missing after the wildfire decimated the town of about 27,000.

    The Camp Fire, which began Thursday, destroyed more than 6,700 structures, almost all of them homes. It is considered the most destructive fire in state history. ...

    In Southern California, the Woolsey Fire tore through Malibu mansions and working-class suburban homes. Along with the Hill Fire, it prompted evacuation orders for more than 250,000 people. ...

    Brian K. Rice, the president of the California Professional Firefighters, criticized President Trump on Saturday after he threatened to withhold federal payments to the state, claiming its forest management is "so poor." The president made the comments as the state is battling multiple deadly wildfires.

    "The president's message attacking California and threatening to withhold aid to the victims of the cataclysmic fires is ill-informed, ill-timed and demeaning to those who are suffering as well as the men and women on the front lines," Brian K. Rice said in a statement.

    "Wildfires are sparked and spread not only in forested areas but in populated areas and open fields fueled by parched vegetation, high winds, low humidity and geography," Rice said.

    He added, "Moreover, nearly 60 percent of California forests are under federal management, and another two-thirds under private control. It is the federal government that has chosen to divert resources away from forest management, not California."

    https://www.cbsnews.com/live-news/california-fires-camp-malibu-woolsey-e...

     

    jerrym

    While Jerry Brown has received praise for his climate change measures for his climate change measures, he also has been strong criticized for being too friendly to oil, not unlike Trudeau and Notley. 

    Anti-oil protesters tried to shout down California Gov. Jerry Brown as he spoke at last November’s climate-change conference in Bonn, Germany, one of many interruptions in his appearances there. The occasionally feisty governor didn’t miss the opportunity to debate with the “Keep It In The Ground” campaign troops pushing for no new oil or gas drilling anywhere.

    “Keep it in the ground? Let’s put you in the ground,” Brown shot back, before veering into a well-worn admonition that the industrial world would suffer if fossil fuels suddenly stopped flowing. ...

    To some it’s jarring to attack the environmental bona fides of a public figure who has been talking about conservation since the 1970s and has arguably signed more environmental legislation than any American governor. As state attorney general and then governor, Brown has championed regulations supporting clean energy, energy efficiency and a broad suite of laws aimed at reducing greenhouse gases that warm the planet.

    But even as they acknowledge those gains, some fault Brown for a persistent and significant blind spot in his green worldview: oil. ...

    The governor declined to comment for this article. His spokesman, Evan Westrup, said the critics are myopic, ignoring the changes already occurring at Brown’s hand. ...

    But not to R.L. Miller, chairwoman of the state Democratic Party’s environmental caucus and president of the political action committee Climate Hawks Vote, which supports environmental issues and candidates. She said Brown used to be a committed environmentalist, and she gave him credit for promoting solar energy, for example. But oil exploration is another matter, she said. Like many critics, Miller noted Brown’s controversial dismissal of the state’s top two oil and gas regulators in 2011, two days after they warned the governor that oil activities were imperiling the state’s groundwater. Industry representatives, who had complained that the state’s enforcement noose was pulling too tightly, welcomed the move. Brown never publicly gave a reason for firing the officials, who serve at the pleasure of the governor.

    Two years later, to great fanfare, Brown signed legislation regulating fracking, calling it the toughest in the nation. But the law didn’t go as far as some environmentalists would have liked; they wanted a fracking ban. “His blind spot is bigger than just fracking; it’s really the entire oil industry,” Miller said. “He goes out of his way to be friendly to them.” She calls Brown “Chevron’s stenographer.”

    Critics howled again last year when oil interests were given key concessions so that Brown’s signature climate policy—the cap and trade system for reducing industrial pollution—could be extended. The governor himself lobbied legislators for passage. ...

    Brown has approved more than 20,000 new drilling permits since 2011. But his staff points out that fewer than 1,500 have been issued in the last two years, mirroring the decline in the price of oil and in statewide production. ...

    Oil interests, like many others, have donated to the governor’s campaigns and causes. Chevron and Occidental oil companies, for example, have contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars since 2010 to Brown’s gubernatorial runs and the two charter schools he founded in Oakland. Occidental gave $250,000 to a Brown-backed ballot-measure effort about two months after the 2011 oil-regulator firings.

    https://timesofsandiego.com/politics/2018/09/09/critics-accuse-environme...

     

     

    jerrym

    Drought and above normal temperatures brought on by climate change have contributed to the most disastrous wildfire season in California history with 44 dead and 230 missing. Unforunately, future wildfire seasons are expected to get worse both in California and in Canada, especially in its boreal forest, which stretches across much of the country. 

    The fires follow years of drought and increasingly deadly and destructive fire seasons. Fire officials and climate scientists have, in part, attributed those fires to climate change, saying the state’s fire season may now be year-round.

    California Gov. Jerry Brown stressed this during a news conference on Sunday night, calling this extended period of fire danger a "new abnormal."

    "This new abnormal will continue certainly into the next, 10 to 15 to 20 years," he said. "And unfortunately, the best science is telling us that dryness, warmth, drought — all those things are going to intensify."

    https://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/western-wildfires/firefighters-battle-...

     

    The death toll has reached 42 in the Northern California wildfire, making it the deadliest in state history.

    The dead were found in burned-out cars, in the smoldering ruins of their homes, or next to their vehicles, apparently overcome by smoke and flames before they could jump in behind the wheel and escape. In some cases, there were only charred fragments of bone, so small that coroner's investigators used a wire basket to sift and sort them.

    Statewide the number of dead stood at 44, including two victims in Southern California, from wildfires raging at both ends of the state, ABC News reported.

    The wildfire turned the Northern California town of Paradise and outlying areas into hell on earth, equaling the deadliest blaze in state history, and the search for bodies continued Monday.

    Nearly 230 people were unaccounted for by the sheriff's reckoning, four days after the fire swept over the town of 27,000 and practically wiped it off the map with flames so fierce that authorities brought in a mobile DNA lab and forensic anthropologists to help identify the dead.

    https://abc7chicago.com/29-dead-in-camp-fire-in-butte-county-228-remain-...

     

    Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

    Meanwhile in Canada: 

    Quote:

    'So many bears': Draft plan says Nunavut polar bear numbers unsafe

    Plan leans heavily on Inuit knowledge, contradicts western scientific thinking

     

    jerrym

    Here's a review of the International Panel on Climate Change 2018 report. It isn't pretty. 

    The Special Report tells us we’re screwed. Even to be a little less screwed, we’ll have to overturn everything in our society, politics, and economy — just to keep the global temperature from rising more than half a degree Celsius.

    That doesn’t sound like much, but an enormous amount of energy is involved in warming the planet by half a degree. Briefly, the IPCC argument runs like this: since the 19th century’s “pre-industrial” carbon dioxide levels began to rise, global temperature has risen about 1 degree Celsius. That one degree has brought us a shrinking Arctic ice pack, rapid melting of the Greenland ice sheet, dying reefs, rising sea levels, and some very extreme weather.

    The Paris Accord, which Canada signed, is intended to keep further temperature rise below 2 degrees by the end of the century, and to try to keep it as low as 1.5 degrees. This was on par with the “pledges” rich nations make to help poor nations recover from earthquakes and epidemics; somehow the money itself never arrives.

    In fact, studying the 1.5 degree goal was considered a sop to island nations that expect to drown if sea levels keep rising, and the Special Report was compiled to please them. The real trouble, scientists thought, would start with 2 degrees. ...

    But both the report and concurrent research show that a temperature increase of 1.5 degrees Celsius is going to hurt everyone, not just Polynesia. At present rates of emission, we’re going to hit a global average of 1.5 degrees not in some distant future, but in 2040. “Warming in many regions has already exceeded 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels,” the report says. “Over a fifth of the global population live in regions that have already experienced warming in at least one season that is greater than 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels.” ...

    To slow things down, the report says, “Global net human-caused emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) would need to fall by about 45 per cent from 2010 levels by 2030, reaching ‘net zero’ around 2050. This means that any remaining emissions would need to be balanced by removing CO2 from the air.”

    Of interest to Canadians, “Limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees rather than 2 degrees is projected to prevent the thawing over centuries of a permafrost area in the range of 1.5 to 2.5 million km2.”

    https://thetyee.ca/Opinion/2018/10/09/Choice-Now-Catastrophe-Mere-Disaster/

     

    jerrym

    A National Wildlife Federation (NWF) report looked at the impact of sea level rise caused by global warming on the Pacific Northwest, including British Columbia. Based on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report the NWF report concluded: 

    Using the IPCC’s projection of 0.69 meters (27.3 inches) of global sea level rise in this century, the NWF study predicts, by 2100:

    • 65% loss in estuarine beaches
    • 61% loss of tidal swamp
    • 52% of brackish marsh will convert to tidal flats, transitional marsh and saltmarsh
    • up to 44% loss of tidal flats
    • 25% loss of tidal fresh marsh
    • 13% loss of inland fresh marsh

    Coastal habitats such as beaches, marshes, tidal flats and estuaries are vital to wildlife.

    Millions of birds – from 29 countries and three continents – rely on the Fraser estuary and mudflats of Roberts Bank and Boundary Bay, to feed and rest as they migrate along the Pacific Flyway each year.

    For over 80% of BC’s wildlife – including wild salmon as well as birds – estuaries are essential during some part of the life cycle.

    Such coastal habitat loss could tip the balance for threatened and endangered species. It would mean, for example:

    • declines in forage fish, along with the salmon and other marine life that rely on them
    • reduced stopover and wintering habitat for migratory shorebirds and waterfowl
    • loss of essential salmonid habitat, especially for juvenile Chinook and chum salmon

    These changes would also have massive impacts on the economy of our region, hitting especially hard at BC’s tourism industry, shellfish aquaculture and fisheries.

    Many of our Strait of Georgia communities and sensitive estuaries face flooding by rising seawater. Salmon runs will perish as they encounter the warming waters of the Fraser River and countless other streams. The cumulative impacts across the many watersheds that drain into our inland sea will change the Strait in ways no one can foresee.

    Complicating the issue, many of our coastal areas have already been developed, polluted, dredged or otherwise damaged. Dikes, seawalls and other structures have reduced the possibility for critical habitats to simply move inland to adapt to sea level rise – so we cannot afford any further losses in terms of coastal habitat.

    https://georgiastrait.org/issues/climate-change/sea-level-rise/

     

    jerrym

    The damage already being done by global warming in the Georgia Strait region of BC is quite staggering and requires a major change in Canada's economy to avoid a catastrophe. 

    The Strait of Georgia, part of the Salish Sea, is a beautiful and productive place. Our coastal waters support a diversity of species, rhythms of life, economies and communities. However, we can already see that human-caused climate change is having negative impacts in the Strait of Georgia and its watershed.

    Reports by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) paint fairly bleak pictures for coastal communities. ... They outline several ways that coastal communities are experiencing the impact of climate change before communities that are farther inland.

    Our salmon are at risk In our region, salmon is one of the most important species. While in the Strait, salmon are the preferred prey of Southern Resident killer whales. When spawning in freshwater rivers, salmon feed bears and other species along the watersheds, contributing energy to the food chain and nutrition to the soil. Yet higher average air and water temperatures, including record high temperatures in the Fraser River, are already contributing to a significant decline in salmon spawning survival in our region.

    Our weather is changing Local economies and communities depend on regular precipitation patterns to be able to provide potable water and maintain winter wonderland conditions. However, changing patterns of precipitation, such as dry winters, lead to a decline in snowpack, while BC experienced its most extreme wildfire season the summer of 2017, with 1.2 million hectares burned by upwards of 1,300 fires.

    Sea-level rise and the coastline Perhaps the most visible impact of climate change is sea-level rise. As the atmosphere warms two things occur: the water in the ocean heats up and expands, and glaciers and icefields trapped on land melt. There will be less water held on land and more water in the oceanand this water will take up more space. King tides are already starting to illustrate for us the impending changes, what parks we will lose, which walls and foundations will need enforcing, and which aquifers may not be potable anymore due to saltwater intrusion. ...

    What can we do? We know that climate change is real, we know that we are causing it, and we know that we are running out of time to stop it. Canada has made many commitments to slow and stop our greenhouse gas emissions, but we have missed each and every one of these targets. The 2017 country review of Canada, issued by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), shows that the oil and gas sector is our largest culprit. It is not transportation, not the built environment or agriculture (although those sectors aren’t without impact) that is our biggest dragon to slay, but our mining and production of fossil fuels for export and domestic use.

    In the Salish Sea, we are uniquely placed in Canada. As coastal communities, we have a direct relationship to the direct impacts of climate change. We are also located in a corridor which the oil and gas sector wants to use to transport its product to tidewater. It is time to create a green barricade of resistance to any further impacts from new fossil fuel projects along our coast.

    And we are beginning to do that! Our next step is to say a definitive and legal “NO” to new fossil fuel infrastructure in the Salish Sea. We are working hard for a Moratorium on fossil fuels projects in the Salish Sea and doing our part to help Canada meet its international commitments and to slow global climate change.

    https://georgiastrait.org/issues/climate-change/impacts-on-our-region/

     

    jerrym

    The 2016 Ontario Greenhouse Gas Progress Report describes some of the problems the province is already facing as a result of global warming. 

    In Ontario, climate change is already contributing to many impacts. Coldwater fish are losing habitat. Heat is stressing moose populations, which are already in decline. Invasive species are flourishing. Wildfire risk is increasing. Disease-carrying pests are spreading. Northern communities’ ice roads are becoming less reliable. The season for ice fishing and snow sports is shrinking. Heat waves are posing health risks for vulnerable populations. Cities like Toronto, Burlington, Windsor, Thunder Bay and Sault Ste. Marie have suffered extreme storms and devastating floods. Severe heat and drought have crimped water supplies and damaged crops.  ...

    What used to be “normal” weather is gone.

    As a result, 2016 has continued to break all temperature records. January to August had the highest land and ocean temperatures ever recorded.  ...

    While not all impacts are harmful, on balance, climate change will bring more extreme weather, ecological damage, financial loss and human misery.  ...

    Warmer and wilder weather is already affecting the province, and much more lies ahead. Ontario is warming faster than the world average, especially in the north. It is too late to avoid some disruptive and expensive changes to our environment and economy. But we still can influence how destructive those changes will be. By working together, we can still protect much of what we love, by reducing the GHGs that we emit, and by preparing for the changes ahead.  ...

    Ontario still depends on fossil fuels for 80% of its energy. Transportation is our biggest challenge: Ontario’s largest and fastest growing share of GHG emissions. Industry, homes and commercial buildings are other major emitters. 

    Ontarians have high emissions per person, compared to most people around the world, even those in other rich northern countries. Ontario’s per capita GHG emission footprint (12.6 tonnes) compared to Sweden (5.8 tonnes), the UK (9.1 tonnes), Norway (10.6) and worldwide (4.9 tonnes). 

    And these emission numbers underestimate our true carbon footprint, because they leave out:

    •the full impact of some emissions, such as methane and black carbon (soot);

    • the emissions we cause by consuming things grown or made outside the province; and

    •the emissions we cause through international aviation and shipping.

    If these additional emissions were reflected in Ontario’s annual GHG totals, our reported emissions would be much higher. We have lots of room to improve, and many opportunities to do so. 

    http://docs.assets.eco.on.ca/reports/climate-change/2016/2016-Annual-GHG...

     

    epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

    U.S. fishermen file climate lawsuit, name Canada's Encana

    A major Calgary-based energy company is facing its fourth lawsuit in U.S. courts over climate change.

    The Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations — the largest commercial fishermen’s group on the West Coast — has included Encana in a lawsuit attempting to link greenhouse gas emissions from 30 energy companies to damage in the crab fishery.

    “The world’s oceans are changing and commercial fishermen and -women, their businesses, their communities and their families are paying the price,” says the lawsuit, filed in a San Francisco court on Wednesday.

    Encana is named because it once operated a large natural gas storage facility in the state. That facility was sold in 2006.

    An Encana spokesman declined to comment on the lawsuit....

    jerrym

    Yesterday in post 262 I summarized the 2016 report of the Ontario Environmental Commissioner, Dianne Saxe, where she described the climate change problems that were already impacting Ontario two years ago. This September she criticized the Ford Progressive Conservative's government termination of the cap and trade system without putting an effective climate change program in its place. (https://toronto.ctvnews.ca/environmental-watchdog-criticizes-pcs-move-to...)

    The good news is that Ford, from his viewpoint, has quickly solved Ontario's environmental problems. The bad news is he did it by shutting down the Environmental Commissioner office, which was established by the Ontario NDP government in 1994.

    After almost a quarter century, the office of Ontario's environmental commissioner is no more. ...

    The move was announced in the Progressive Conservatives' Fall Economic Statement, released Thursday at Queen's Park. ...

     The commissioner's office has existed for 24 years. It's tasked with reporting on the province's progress on energy efficiency and emissions reductions.

    https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2018/11/15/ontario-pcs-do-away-with-enviro...

     

    jerrym

    The right-wing Ford government has shut down a green energy wind farm in Ontario while the right-wing Legault Quebec  is looking at doing the same thing in Quebec. 

    The White Pines project in Prince Edward county Ontario, which was close to completion after ten years of development and $100,000,000 included nine wind turbines meant to produce enough electricity to power just over 3,000 homes annually as Ontario shifted to renewable energy. Shutting it down was part of Ford's plan of closing 758 renewable energy projects. 

    Ontario’s move to cancel the contract of a German-owned wind energy project represents a black mark for the province in the eyes of foreign investors, Berlin’s ambassador to Canada, Sabine Sparwasser, warned Monday.

    The German government and multinational companies have taken note of Premier Doug Ford’s decision to pull the plug on wpd AG’s White Pines wind project in Prince Edward County, as well as the bill now before the legislature that will allow the province to set limits on what compensation is provided, Ms. Sparwasser said in a telephone interview. “Obviously, every incoming government has the right to change policy direction,” she said. “But to have a unilateral cancellation pushed through by law that way is unsettling for the company, but is also something that will unsettle other potential investors." ...

    The Progressive Conservative government announced the cancellation of the 18.5-megawatt White Pines project two weeks ago and introduced legislation last week to allow the termination and to limit the compensation the province would face. Wpd Canada Corp. had been developing the project over the past 10 years, and received final approval for construction from the province’s Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) in May, just after the election campaign began. That cancellation was separate from the government’s decision to terminate 758 renewable energy projects which had IESO contracts that had not been finalized.

    https://www.theglobeandmail.com/business/article-cancellation-of-german-...

     

    In Quebec, the Legault government is seriously considering down the $600 million Apuiat wind farm project that was intended to produce 200 megawatts from 50 wind turbines. The mayor of Port-Cartier, Alain Thibault, says that if this project is terminated by the government it will be hard to get further investments in the region.

    Hydro-Quebec would buy power from the wind farm under a provisional agreement made with the Innu Nation, a group that represents all nine Innu communities in Quebec, and Boralex in late August. It had been agreed to wait until after the Oct. 1 election to finalize the deal. The farm would cost $600 million to build and would create 400 jobs during the construction phase.

    First proposed in 2015, the wind farm became a political hot-potato during the Quebec election campaign. Philippe Couillard’s Liberals said the project was crucial to obtaining Innu support for future energy development on Innu traditional territory, while Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) leader Legault agreed with Martel, deeming the project uneconomical, given Quebec's surplus of hydroelectric power.

    https://www.nationalobserver.com/2018/11/08/news/francois-legaults-gover...

    jerrym

    On Saturday November 10th, 50,000 Quebecois joined in a march called La planète s’invite au Parlement (The Planet Goes to Parliament) in order to demand that the Quebec government establish a concrete plan to deal with climate change. This demonstration was one of a series of marches called La planète s’invite dans la campagne aimed at insisting that all political parties develop a plan that prioritizes the "transition to green jobs, divest from fossil fuels, respect Indigenous sovereignty and protect their land and biodiversity."

    The Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) government of François Legault hasn’t discussed clearly what their plan is to start transitioning to a green economy for future generations. Previously in the campaign’s early stage, Legault had no problem with the fracking industry and fossil fuel projects. But after the tornado that destroyed houses and communities in Gatineau and surrounding areas, the CAQ changed their message a little. However, they still didn’t offer concrete measures. On the party’s official page, general topics such as Green Economy, National Architecture and Planning Policy, Greenhouse Gas and Energy Efficiency are listed without any references nor real proposals.

    On the other hand, Quebec Solidaire had a breakthrough in this year’s election, winning 10 seats as they ran a campaign supporting an energy transition program divesting from oil companies, providing better conditions for workers, public dental insurance, free education, and increasing the minimum wage. These are important measures and to fight climate change we also need decent wages and working conditions for people, instead of targeting individuals and how much time they spend in the shower. As per an article from The Guardian, in July 2017 by Tess Riley, it shows that 100 companies are responsible for 71% of global emissions.

    The latest mobilization brought once again the following list of demands, which is also based on the Transition Pact (Le Pacte de transition), a document signed by 400 prominent figures in Quebec stating their commitment to put the fight against climate change as a priority and what needs to be done in the short term (2 years) to make progress on this matter.

    1- Recognize that the climate emergency and the protection of biodiversity are the greatest challenges of our time, and raise public awareness about them.

    2- Develop a climate plan that meets the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) targets of reducing GHG emissions by 45% by 2030 (compared to 2010 levels) and eliminating them completely by 2050. Provide a detailed annual report to the public on the progress towards achieving these targets.

    3- Ban any new oil and gas exploration or development projects, and end all direct and indirect fossil fuel subsidies.

    The Pact also demands that the government commit to "Adopting a strategy to ensure that the energy transition brings social justice for workers and their communities that will face economic impacts."

    Indigenous peoples, political figures from Quebec Solidaire, workers from the CSN, the FTQ, environmental groups like Greenpeace and more political organizations were part of this event which shows a great level of solidarity and understanding about the importance of a mass movement that will keep us on a path to environmental justice.

    More marches are already scheduled to happen through November and December to keep the pressure on. Groups will be marching in Quebec City by the end of the month and on December 8th, another event will take place in Montreal.

    http://www.socialist.ca/node/3718

     

    Pages