Friday, March 16, 2007

Dion Strikes Back!

Too many people have been telling The Libs to bail on the environment as an issue: the Tories have "neutralized" it, and so forth. So I am glad to see that Stephane Dion has chosen to ignore this advice, and has chosen today to release a portion of his environmental strategy. I am also glad to see that he is going the Tories one step further and demanding hard emissions caps from Canada's top 700 polluters:

If the Liberals were in power, they would introduce absolute caps on emissions, not intensity-based targets as the Conservatives propose, Dion said.

“An absolute emissions cap or ‘carbon budget’ of our 1990 emissions level minus six per cent -- our Kyoto target -- will come into effect on January 1, 2008 for the three largest industrial emitting sectors --electricity generation, upstream oil and gas and energy intensive industries,” the policy paper reads.

The sector-based caps will be used to allocate an annual carbon budget to each big industrial emitter in those three sectors and they will have to live within that budget. If they don’t, they will have to pay to pollute, says the Liberal plan.

The companies that exceed their carbon budget would be forced to pay $20 (increasing to $30 by 2011) for every extra tonne of carbon dioxide they emit. The money would go into a fund called a Green Investment Account that will be created for each company and the cash would be held in trust.

You don't "lay claim" to an issue by abandoning it the first time someone raises their voice against you, TDH, and it isn't how you shake the label of "flip-flopper" either, if that's the label they're trying to stick on you. Rather, you do what Mr. Dion has been doing the last several weeks, which is to lay out his priorities in other areas to show that he is not the "one trick pony" that some have claimed, and then WHAMMO! return to the issue he has made central to his leadership. To employ a boxing metaphor, you use your jab to set up your knock-out punch.

What I think people like TDH haven't figured out yet is that this issue will not go away. He seems to feel, like blogging Tory Stephen Taylor (in a post I am unable to locate), that pretty soon we will get back to the "normal" plate of political issues that the major parties have been humping to death for so many years. But that ain't gonna happen. There's a new player at the table. The environment as a global issue has only increased in prominence over the past couple of months, and with bold and (relatively) concrete actions happening on both the provincial and international stage, this is a perfect time to take a stand that will reveal Harper's mealy mouthed proposals in the Clean Air Act to be the sham that they are.


Anonymous said...

"electricity generation, upstream oil and gas and energy intensive industries,”"

And what about a carbon tax on Toronto's gas guzzling, carbon spewing, SUV loving drivers? I forgot, that's where the votes are.

Anonymous said...

and if these companies have increased costs of doing business due to increased government regulations, they will not pass these costs along to consumers ??

Ya right.

Or maybe they'll just pack up, fire all the workers and move their business off shore to China or India, where there is no regulation of coal powered electricity generation.

The hundreds of thousands of Canadians who will lose their jobs with this idiotic approach will be very happy Dion has drunk the Kyoto Kool-Aid, bought into Al Bore's new religion and prostrates himself at the altar of Dr. Fruit Fly's diesel powered bandwagon.

Anonymous said...


The smartest money in global warming stocks may be scurrying to the exit just when the enthusiasm for alternative-energy companies is at an all-time high.

While SunPower Corp. and Theolia SA are among more than 180 companies whose shares have surged as much as 240 percent this year -- buoyed by efforts to curtail the observed increase in the average temperature of the Earth's atmosphere and oceans --the market's nimblest investors already are hedging their bets.

D.E. Shaw & Co., Tudor Investment Corp., Citadel Investment Group LLC, Caxton Associates LLC, SAC Capital Advisors LLC and Pequot Capital Management Inc. reduced their stakes in solar- power and ethanol producers in the fourth quarter, according to filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The hedge funds manage about $86 billion.

“As an investment play,” global warming is “a bubble” and “social short-term craze,” said Ken Fisher, who oversees $35 billion as chairman of Fisher Investments Inc. in Woodside, California.

Anyone looking for corroboration of that assessment may find it in the so-called short selling of U.S. alternative-energy stocks last month, which climbed 45 times faster than the average for Standard & Poor’s 500 Index members.

By itself, I don't know that global warming is a viable investment theme,'' said Malcolm Polley, who oversees $1 billion at Stewart Capital Advisors LLC in Indiana, Pennsylvania. ``It's largely Wall Street's answer of trying to create something where there really isn't anything that exists.

Lord Kitchener's Own said...


As opposed to Calgary's gas-guzzling, carbon-spewing, SUV-loving drivers? Or Winnipeg's? Or Vancouver's? Or Montreal's.

Gas-guzling, carbon-spewing, and SUV-loving are not descriptions of Torontonians, they're descriptions of Canadians from coast to coast.

And don't be worried that Ontario doesn't get hit here. "Electricity generation" affects Ontario as much as (if not more than) any other province. I'm pretty sure those coal fired gernerators that haven't been shut down yet will need to now. I'm also not certain what counts as an "energy intensive industry", but I'm not willing to just assume that Ontario's large manufacturing industry is going to be immune here.

Anonymous said...

dion wants to charge $10/tonne for domestic credits

Makes ya wonder if the tall foreheads in the Liberal policy back room know the current price for C02 credits hovers at about one Euro

Anonymous said...

lord kitchener,

The gutless Liberals wont put a Kyoto tax on gasoline because they know that would cost them the election. Canadians are great Kyoto supporters so long as they can be gulled into believing someone else, the evil big corporations for instance, will foot the bill. When jobs are lost to the US and China, or the cost of electricity skyrockets citoyen Dion will give the Gallic shrug and blame it all on the 'greedy corporations'.

Anonymous said...

Dion won't add taxes, he just wants to add "fees"

He knows we are too fucking stupid to tell the difference

Vive le parti Liberal du Canada, vive Emperor Dion

Anonymous said...

Dud said "Or maybe they'll just pack up, fire all the workers and move their business off shore to China or India, where there is no regulation of coal powered electricity generation."

So, they'll pack up the oil sands and move it to India? or provide Ontario with electricity from china?

give your head a smack!! Also, this actually guarentees that these big oil companies can't just take their money back to Texas or Saudi Arabia and actually invest it from where they earned it - i.e. Alberta.

Anonymous said...

Why do I feel that Dion is going to make a big announcement on April 1st?

Anonymous said...

Hey, Canadians don't 'do' sacrifice anymore. That's for suckers. And "patriots" (aka idiots in Liberal-speak).

It doesn't matter where the oil comes from; what is of concern is where it is USED. Fossil fuels used in Canada come from almost every province in some form or another. You've got to work on the END USER of the energy, any first year economics student will understand that. I guess that's why this sociology professor has such a tough time crunching numbers; he wants to "feel" his way through.

This Dion is the worst opposition leader ever, he is such an ideologue that he's completely poisoned Parliament and all of Canada. His narrow left-wing extremism isn't what Canadians want and his own party is sharpening up their knives. His policies blow with the wind when they don't suck. He'd tax the food out of the mouths of the rich, after changing the definition of 'rich' to include everyone. And then that money would end up in his and his cronies pockets. He's been in the Librano$ gang far too long to not be tainted. His not-so-hidden socialist agenda would yoke us all to labour for government and we'd be forced to look to the gov't teat for our only support. This guy scares the hell out of Canadians.

I'm glad you guys voted him in!!!

Anonymous said...


The Tories wish, at least, when they aren't thanking hom for saving the friggin country from the seperatists in the mid to late 90's. And what was Stevie doing at that time - oh, he was talking about setting up a perimeter around Alberta. Yep, that's what i want in a PM.

Dion is no perfect being but he has fought for his ideals against threats to his family and himself and never silenced himself. This is called courage and its a damn site better than what we are being offered by Stevie and his pack of pricks.

Anonymous said...

"Dion is no perfect being but he has fought for his ideals against threats to his family and himself and never silenced himself."

like that other Liberal, Trudeau ?? the moral coward who failed to answer the call to the greatest moral challenge of his generation ? who mocked the Canadian Army fighting German Fascism and Japanese Militarism ??

Liberals know shit about fighting for ideals. Maybe they'll fight over the size of a brown envelope full of stolen taxpayers money, but ideals and morality are not part of Liberalism.

Anonymous said...

Actually BCL, on this one I think you're wrong. People are beginning to realize that the Kyoto hysteria is just that...hysteria. My's going to be less of an issue when the "common folk" begin to realize that adhering to the Kyoto limitations will result in a virtual shut down of our economy.

I mean, I've done my bit...over the last 5 years I have spent about $40K in retro-fitting my 30 year old house by installing a 96% efficient gas furnace, installing all new "argon" windows, more insulation etcetc. But I have to confess that I did so more in self interest than my desire to save the planet...but reducing our carbon footprint by what I'm told is about 8 tons a year is a good thing...

I just think, as people begin to realize that a lot of the Kyoto bunk is just that, it's going to be less and less of an election issue...

Ti-Guy said...

I mean, I've done my bit...over the last 5 years I have spent about $40K in retro-fitting my 30 year old house by installing a 96% efficient gas furnace, installing all new "argon" windows, more insulation etcetc...

You're the PI Bruce, aren't you?

You're an inveterate liar.

rockfish said...

Ah, the CONs talking points at their best...
Nope, its better to continue the resource giveaway and creating toxic soup cans over our cities (check the recent studies of cancer and airborne related diseases in northern Alberta, up 500% over the past decade)... If you're gonna lie and say 'It's the end of jobs as we know it!' then I expect you to at least pay respect to the federal government that made both the investment and development of those oilsands possible. Yep, put the blindfold on tell us how the great economist Harpor, who has mastered the lie of yelling loud, has the plan... So far every plan he's had has been just a resurrection of a liberal plan.