Pembina reacts to the Green Party platform

April 7, 2011

OTTAWA, ON — The Pembina Institute's Clare Demerse made the following statement in response to today's launch of the Green Party's campaign platform:
 
"The Green Party puts tackling climate change at the heart of its platform. The result is a commitment to a suite of strong policies to cut greenhouse gas pollution, along with national emission reduction targets based on up-to-date climate science. More clearly than any of the other parties have to date, the Green Party's platform makes the case for urgent action to prevent dangerous global warming.

"Putting a price on greenhouse gas pollution is a litmus test of any serious climate policy for Canada. The Green Party proposes an immediate carbon tax of $50 a tonne, an initial level that our research shows is aligned with making significant cuts to Canada's emissions. The party also proposes a cap-and-trade system for industrial emissions and an end to fossil fuel subsidies — all of which would add up to give businesses and Canadians a real incentive to make greener choices.

"In addition to the platform's emphasis on sustainable transportation, especially regional and local rail, we're pleased to see a dedicated initiative for energy efficiency upgrades in low-income housing. This group of Canadians is hit the hardest by energy costs, and has the least means available to them to invest in energy efficiency upgrades.

"The Green Party also plans to increase ecoENERGY home retrofit grants by 50 per cent. This program has had success to date, but is in need of review to ensure it targets high-value investments. It is not clear that simply increasing the rebate will necessarily incent further investments on the part of homeowners or keep this program sustainable in the long term.

"The platform recognizes an important federal role in supporting the deployment of renewable energy in Canada, and commits to take steps to end the construction of new coal plants in Canada."

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Note: The Pembina Institute's comments on the Green Party's platform include its detailed 2010 policy document, entitled "Vision Green."

Contact:

Clare Demerse (English / français)
Acting Director, Climate Change, Pembina Institute
Cell: 613-762-7449
Phone: 613-216-1976 ext 24

Julia Kilpatrick (English / français)
Media Manager, Pembina Institute
Cell: 613-265-5579
Phone: 613-216-1976 ext 30

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