Remember, back in the 1960s, Burt Bacarach, Hal David and Neil Simon wrote a hit Broadway musical called “Promises, Promises?” It was a lovely comedy about double dealing and broken promises and so on … and it reminds me, more that just a bit, of the Trudeau Liberals. They are, right now, trying to explain to their supporters in the environmental community why they approved the Pacific Northwest LNG project which “Stand.earth, an environmental organization that touts just how much oil it has helped keep in the ground, called Trudeau’s decision a “climate fail.” Dogwood, the BC organization, declared that “Trudeau’s climate legacy” was now “on life support.” The Pembina Institute said it was a “step backward for climate action in Canada” … [and] … Naomi Klein, the activist, author and co-promoter of the Leap Manifesto, was unimpressed. The Trudeau government, she said, had just broken the commitment it made in Paris last fall: that is, to do its part to limit future global warming to no more than 2 C.“
Environment Minister Catherine McKenna was at pains to explain that “the government’s assessment was “rigorous,” based on both the “best available science and on indigenous traditional knowledge.” Final approval depends on the meeting of more than 190 “legally binding” and “scientifically determined” conditions … [and] … Public input was quantified (more than 34,000 submissions) and assuredly considered. Indigenous communities, the minister explained, were “meaningfully consulted” and, where appropriate, accommodated … [and, even] … The salmon will be taken into account. The amount of greenhouse gas emissions allowed to be emitted by the facility will be capped. And the premier of British Columbia was ready and willing to raise the province’s carbon tax (just as soon as a federal-provincial plan on climate change is finalized).“
None of that will satisfy the “greenies,” they want all of Alberta’s oil locked in the ground and, one supposes, Canadians to return to a late 18th century sort of existence. But maybe the market will do what “green” propaganda could not. Another CBC News report says that “The project, backed by Malaysian-owned energy giant Petronas, would move natural gas from B.C.’s northeast via a TransCanada pipeline to a terminal on Lelu Island near Prince Rupert for export to Asia … [but] … The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (CEAA) released a draft report in February that said the project would result in roughly 6.5 to 8.7 megatonnes of GHG pollution each year, a marked increase in emissions both at the provincial (8.5 per cent) and national (0.75 per cent) level … [and] … The agency has said the project “would be one of the largest greenhouse gas emitters in Canada” … [however] … Since that draft report, the agency has revised its estimate down closer to the 5.0 megatonne level, or about the equivalent of one million new cars on Canadian roads each year … [but] … The decision comes as the global natural gas market continues to be weighed down by a glut from new projects in the U.S. and Australia, pushing prices to new lows … [and, while] … Petronas initially said it would proceed with the project if the federal government gave its approval, but now the company says it will conduct a “total review” of the project before making a final investment decision.” There is, also, according to the Globe and Mail, at least one First Nation, “the Gitga’at First Nation [which] remains upset at the B.C. government’s previous consultation process, which excluded the aboriginal group from being fully recognized in a provincial environmental assessment of Pacific NorthWest LNG.” That may, further, complicate Petronas’ deliberations.
Still, even with that much doubt, one cannot help but notice that BC Premier Christy Clark looks much, much happier than Minister McKenna …
… that’s probably because Premier Clark promised “jobs! Jobs!! JOBS!!!” while Ms McKenna promised to save the planet from the evils of an industrialized world … or some such nonsense. My suspicion is that Prime Minister Trudeau’s calculation is that she need Premier Clark more than he needs the First Nations and the “greenies.”
Team Trudeau over-promised in the 2015 campaign and now they must disappoint someone … athis times it’s the environmental movement, but it’s going to get worse on:
- Pipelines ~ at least one of which must be approved relatively speedily or this government will go down as an abysmal failure … but approval of any projects will make some enemies;
- The CF-18 replacement project and process ~ which is bound to disappoint some of the government’s friends;
- Free(er) trade with Europe, the UK, post Brexit, the TPP and China;
- Medicare funding, in which the Liberals have just, quietly, announced that Prime Minister Harper was right after all; and
- Greenhouse gas emission levels where Team Trudeau has also stayed with Team Harper’s plans.
Gee, Prime Minister, Brabie though math was hard; you could tell her that governing is harder, isn’t it? All those promises …