•   
  •   
  •   

Canada The Liberals' net-zero 'accountability' legislation is on thin ice

12:10  09 june  2021
12:10  09 june  2021 Source:   cbc.ca

The Liberals' net-zero 'accountability' legislation is on thin ice

  The Liberals' net-zero 'accountability' legislation is on thin ice Armie Hammer has reportedly checked into a rehab clinic in Florida to seek help for "drug, alcohol and sex issues".

a bird swimming in water: A polar bear walks along a melting ice floe in the Franklin Strait in the Northwest Passage on July 23, 2007. Legislation that would put Canada's greenhouse gas emissions targets into law is running out of time to pass both chambers of Parliament before an anticipated fall election. © Jonathan Hayward/The Canadian Press A polar bear walks along a melting ice floe in the Franklin Strait in the Northwest Passage on July 23, 2007. Legislation that would put Canada's greenhouse gas emissions targets into law is running out of time to pass both chambers of Parliament before an anticipated fall election.

Bill C-12, the Liberal government's net-zero emissions accountability act, could be a landmark law in the history of Canada's efforts to combat climate change.

But first it has to actually become a law — and it's suddenly not obvious that the bill will get through both the House of Commons and Senate before both chambers adjourn for the summer.

The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada for June 14, 2021

  The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada for June 14, 2021 The latest numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Canada as of 4:00 a.m. ET on Monday June 14, 2021. There are 1,402,126 confirmed cases in Canada. _ Canada: 1,402,126 confirmed cases (16,955 active, 1,359,240 resolved, 25,931 deaths).*The total case count includes 13 confirmed cases among repatriated travellers. There were 1,122 new cases Sunday. The rate of active cases is 44.61 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 9,216 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 1,317. There were 17 new reported deaths Sunday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 197 new reported deaths.

If the bill fails to pass before then, long-held hopes for climate accountability legislation in Canada could hang in the balance during a fall federal election.

"We are deeply concerned that Bill C-12 could again stall if the committee fails to complete clause-by-clause consideration this week," a coalition of green groups said in a letter sent to MPs on the environment committee on Monday.

Pointing to the dwindling number of days remaining before the House is set to rise, the groups asked members of the committee to complete their review of the bill this week.

The Liberals ask for help

That request was followed on Tuesday by a letter from Environment Minister Jonathan Wilkinson to NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh and Bloc Québécois Leader Yves-Francois Blanchet. In that letter, Wilkinson asked for their "support to use the parliamentary tools available to ensure this bill advances to the Senate of Canada for consideration as soon as possible."

The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada for Sunday, June 6, 2021

  The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada for Sunday, June 6, 2021 The latest numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Canada as of 8:30 p.m. ET on Sunday June 6, 2021. There are 1,392,563 confirmed cases in Canada. Canada: 1,392,563 confirmed cases (24,194 active, 1,342,645 resolved, 25,724 deaths).*The total case count includes 13 confirmed cases among repatriated travellers. There were 1,391 new cases Sunday. The rate of active cases is 63.66 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 13,099 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 1,871. There were 13 new reported deaths Sunday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 204 new reported deaths.

C-12 would put Canada's greenhouse gas emissions targets into law, require regular reporting on the country's progress toward those targets and establish an advisory panel to provide oversight and comment.

The environment committee is now considering amendments proposed by all four major parties, as well as Green MP Elizabeth May. That clause-by-clause review has so far taken up about 12 hours over four meetings and many amendments apparently still haven't been reviewed.

Liberals and New Democrats — who have agreed on a set of amendments to the bill — accuse the Conservatives of stalling. Wilkinson repeated that charge in his letter to Singh and Blanchet.

The Conservative members of the committee are not explicitly filibustering the bill, but they are doing most of the talking during the time allowed for debate and are asking many questions of the departmental officials on hand.

The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada for June 12, 2021

  The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada for June 12, 2021 The latest numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Canada as of 7:30 p.m. ET on Saturday June 12, 2021. There are 1,401,006 confirmed cases in Canada. _ Canada: 1,401,006 confirmed cases (17,599 active, 1,357,493 resolved, 25,914 deaths).*The total case count includes 13 confirmed cases among repatriated travellers. There were 1,289 new cases Saturday. The rate of active cases is 46.31 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 9,617 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 1,374. There were 28 new reported deaths Saturday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 194 new reported deaths.

"If asking questions is now filibustering, then what's the point of having clause-by-clause [review]?" Conservative environment critic Dan Albas asked in an interview this week.


Video: Alberta cabinet ministers slam Premier Kenney for flouting COVID rules (Global News)

C-12's slow march

Albas said that the committee's study of the legislation was rushed; the committee studied the bill and heard from witnesses over three meetings totalling about nine hours.

C-12 did not move quickly through the House. It was tabled last November but it wasn't until May 4 that Liberal, Bloc and NDP MPs voted to approve the bill at second reading — a vote that came after the Liberals, with the support of the NDP, voted to bring debate to an end.

Albas initially pledged support for the bill, but Conservatives subsequently objected to Wilkinson's decision to proceed with appointing a net-zero advisory panel.

Conservatives insisted that the panel should include a representative from the oil and gas industry and moved a "hoist amendment" — meant to defeat or at least delay the bill — that complained about the presence of "climate activists" on the panel.

The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada for Tuesday, June 15, 2021

  The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada for Tuesday, June 15, 2021 The latest numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Canada as of 7:30 p.m. ET on Tuesday, June 15, 2021. There are 1,404,093 confirmed cases in Canada. _ Canada: 1,404,093 confirmed cases (14,923 active, 1,363,198 resolved, 25,972 deaths).*The total case count includes 13 confirmed cases among repatriated travellers. There were 809 new cases Tuesday. The rate of active cases is 39.27 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 8,683 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 1,240. There were 30 new reported deaths Tuesday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 181 new reported deaths.

Better than nothing?

May criticizes how the government has managed the legislative process for C-12 and has said she believes the bill needs to be much stricter. But during Monday's meeting of the environment committee, she asked for unanimous consent to withdraw seven of her proposed amendments — an effort, she said, to speed up the process. Albas objected, denying May's request.

Though the Liberal bill is modelled on similar legislation in other countries — notably the United Kingdom — environmental groups said in their letter on Monday that the legislation falls short of the "gold standard." They also said they believe the amended version of C-12 "provides a foundation we can build on to ensure Canada develops the robust accountability framework we need."

a woman wearing sunglasses talking on a cell phone: Green Party MP Elizabeth May tried to withdraw several of her proposed amendments to C-12 to speed its passage. She was blocked by a Conservative MP's objection. © Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press Green Party MP Elizabeth May tried to withdraw several of her proposed amendments to C-12 to speed its passage. She was blocked by a Conservative MP's objection.

With another party's support, the Liberals could move to impose a limit on the committee's consideration of the legislation — as the government recently did with Bill C-10. Failing that, the bill's passage would depend on the committee's review of amendments ending reasonably soon.

The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada for Monday, June 7, 2021

  The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada for Monday, June 7, 2021 The latest numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Canada as of 9:30 p.m. ET on Monday June 7, 2021. There are 1,394,145 confirmed cases in Canada. Canada: 1,394,145 confirmed cases (22,861 active, 1,345,523 resolved, 25,761 deaths).*The total case count includes 13 confirmed cases among repatriated travellers. There were 1,235 new cases Monday. The rate of active cases is 60.15 per 100,000 people. Over the past seven days, there have been a total of 12,572 new cases. The seven-day rolling average of new cases is 1,796. There were 27 new reported deaths Monday. Over the past seven days there have been a total of 214 new reported deaths.

Though a Senate committee has started a "pre-study" of C-12 already, the upper chamber is due to adjourn for the summer on June 25.

Passing the bill before summer probably wouldn't matter so much were it not for two unknowns.

First, there's the timing of the next election; the recent speculation is that Trudeau will seek to have one called before Parliament reconvenes this fall. Second, there's the fact that the Conservatives haven't committed to implementing climate accountability legislation if they form the next government.

So proponents of a climate accountability law can't be sure of what they would get if C-12 doesn't receive royal assent this month.

If C-12 were to die on the order paper, it would add another chapter of woe to the ill-fated history of climate accountability legislation in Canada.

In 2007, Parliament passed a bill sponsored by Liberal MP Pablo Rodriguez — now the Government House leader — that was tied to the Kyoto Protocol. That bill was later repealed by Stephen Harper's Conservative government.

In 2010, a bill sponsored by former NDP leader Jack Layton was passed in the House, but then defeated by Conservatives in the Senate.

However blame is apportioned for the fact that C-12 is now in a race against time, it would be another unnecessary setback for climate policy in Canada if legislated accountability was left to wait until at least another election.

The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada for Wednesday, June 9, 2021 .
Nicholas Nelson and his sister were shot and killed two years ago. He would've graduated from Lawrence North H.S. this spring.

usr: 3
This is interesting!