Thursday, September 10, 2009

Ontario & Quebec to meet on climate change

Climate tops agenda for McGuinty, Charest

Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty and Quebec Premier Jean Charest meet today amid fears of a federal climate-change plan that would allow Alberta's oil sands to keep polluting while hindering industry in Central Canada.

McGuinty and Charest are meeting alone before tomorrow's joint Ontario-Quebec cabinet session to discuss Ottawa's controversial scheme to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Officials in Ontario say there is concern Prime Minister Stephen Harper will cap emissions from manufacturers here and allow energy firms to meet more flexible "intensity" targets that would allow output – and pollution – to grow...
"Intensity targets" are the linchpin in the Big Energy's plan to allow greenhouse gas production to rise. Ontario and Quebec are right in challenging them.
In the last joint Ontario-Quebec cabinet meeting, on June 2, 2008, McGuinty and Charest announced an interprovincial carbon-trading market. Under their system, companies that produce fewer emissions than their caps permit could sell their unused quota on an open market to big polluting firms that exceed their emissions cap.
This is the "trade" part of "cap and trade". The big question is "what's the cap"? How will this plan actually reduce greenhouse gas production to 20th century levels?

I will be following this story closely.

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