Saturday, July 31, 2010


Here's an upcoming public forum to be held here in Winnipeg on August 4. I have to say that this sort of thing makes me somewhat "itchy" and not just because its sponsors such as the 'Council of Canadians' are in most other circumstances advocates of centralization in the Canadian federation. It's also because their presumed "strategy" of reducing carbon emissions via delegation of responsibility to the provinces would only get 'self-interested support' in an unequivocal manner in two Canadian provinces - Qu├ębec and Manitoba. Their invocation of Ontario is, in my mind doubtful even with Ontario's commitment to nuclear power thrown in for good measure, and as for the other provinces..forget it. I could go on and on about the "political illusion" here, but I'll leave that to the readers' imagination. I also think that arguments about provincial/federal responsibilities in terms of power generation are very much beside the point as the real argument is local/municipal versus all other levels of government. The old anarchist argument about localism versus statism. All that aside here's the promo for the meeting.
Public forum on Trade threats to provincial leadership on climate change


Location Buchwald room, Millenium Library .
251 Donald St.
Winnipeg, MB

Wednesday, August 4

7:00 – 9:00 pm

Buchwald Room, Millennium Library ( 251 Donald Street )

Faced with federal impotence on the climate file, Canada 's provinces are taking independent steps to reduce their carbon consumption. At the same time, new international trade agreements, such as the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), that the provinces are actively negotiating alongside the Harper government threaten to undermine these new provincial efforts to mitigate climate change.

The Ontario Green Energy Act, which prioritizes locally produced renewable energy, is one example of the kind of forward-looking policy the provinces should be adopting. But European trade negotiators are putting enormous pressure on federal and provincial governments to get rid of local content or sustainable sourcing requirements that are necessary to help Canadian communities and companies transition away from dirty energy, and create good, green jobs. Efforts to phase-out tar sands production are also compromised by these trade agreements.

On the eve of the 2010 meeting of the Council of the Federation in Winnipeg, come learn more about this provincial contradiction -- between a need to move further and faster than the Harper government on climate change and a willingness to compromise environmental policy in trade deals -- and why the provincial governments need to reject any trade deals with Europe or other countries that threaten their shift toward sustainability.

Steve Guilbeault, Co - Founder and Deputy Director, Equiterre
Brendan Reimer, Prairies & Northern Territories Coordinator, CCEDNet
Stuart Trew, National Trade Campaigner, Council of Canadians

Presented by the Council of Candians Winnipeg Chapter and Climate Action Network Canada - Reseau action climat Canada

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