Pembina’s federal election checklist: campaigning for the climate and clean energy

Blog - April 1, 2011 - By Ed Whittingham

It's early days yet, but this spring's federal election campaign has already made one thing abundantly clear: there are a lot of political junkies working at the Pembina Institute.

Despite some very serious distractions (like those irresistible new daily Nanos numbers) we managed to tear ourselves away from our Twitter feeds long enough to put together a checklist for the kind of party platforms we'd like to see in this campaign.

What we'll be looking for

Pembina works on four key policy areas, so our checklist covers all of them: climate change, oilsands, renewable energy and efficiency, and sustainable transportation. It offers a snapshot of most of the key federal policies we've been advocating for over the last few months — or sometimes, years.

Click to download the Pembina Institute's 2011 election checklist. We know platforms don't always provide all the details we'd like to see, but they often provide some surprises. Our policy team will be tracking parties' climate change and clean energy announcements throughout the campaign, and assessing how they stack up against our expectations. (Because we're a non-partisan organization, we won't be supporting or endorsing specific parties, but we can compare their ideas for clean energy progress to our own.)

The checklist we published today will guide our staff's analysis, but we hope it will also be useful for readers outside of Pembina too, by helping to shape your own evaluations of each party's environmental performance.

A critical moment

The winner of this election gets to set the direction of Canada's energy and climate policy at a crucial moment. While other countries are pouring resources and talent into the world's fast-growing clean energy markets, oilsands expansion is poised to continue at a pace and scale that Pembina thinks is not good for Canada's environment or our economy. And at a time when climate scientists tell us we need global emissions to peak and start declining within a handful of years, Canada isn't close to being on track to hit its current 2020 greenhouse gas target.

We'll be watching this campaign very attentively (for some of us, maybe even a bit too attentively). And we'll do our best to get useful, timely analysis out to all of you.

(On that note, keep an eye out for the Pembina Insider — a new project we're launching soon to help our subscribers stay up to date with the latest campaign developments around clean energy issues.)

We hope you enjoy the drama over the next five weeks as much as we undoubtedly will.


Ed Whittingham

Ed is the Executive Director of the Pembina Institute. He has served in an advisory capacity to companies, industry associations, government bodies and research networks on sustainable energy solutions.


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