Greenpeace Canada

Greenpeace Canada

January 21, 2007 11:51 ET

What About Kyoto?

Greenpeace confronts Natural Resources Minister...

Attention: Assignment Editor, Environment Editor, News Editor, Photo Editor, Government/Political Affairs Editor TORONTO/ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - Jan. 21, 2007) - Greenpeace activists today confronted Natural Resources Minister Gary Lunn with the fact that his government has still not committed to meeting Canada's legal obligation for greenhouse gas reductions under the Kyoto Protocol. To highlight this failure activists were joined by a polar bear carrying a placard asking "What About Kyoto?".

Minister Lunn was in Toronto to announce restoration of an earlier Liberal government conservation program. The new Tory program is a modified version of the EnerGuide for Houses Retrofit Incentive, cancelled by the Harper government in May 2005. That program provided funding for energy audits and retrofits of existing homes to conserve energy, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Last week, the government also announced a research program ($230 million over 4 years) and a renewable energy program ($300 million over 4 years).

"The only thing we have heard from Stephen Harper is that Kyoto is unachievable. It's time for the Prime Minister to come clean and state honestly whether his government is prepared to meet Canada's Kyoto commitment. We need action now to deal with the present climate crisis," said Dave Martin, Greenpeace Energy Coordinator. "Canada's national home retrofit program was forced to disband after it was cancelled by the Harper government in May 2006. It will take a long time to undo that damage and rebuild the program."

In December 2002 Canada ratified the Kyoto Protocol, binding itself to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 6 percent below 1990 levels by 2008-2012. Canada's greenhouse gas emission were 758 million tonnes in 2004, and under the terms of the Kyoto Protocol, this level must be reduced 563 million tonnes per year on average between 2008 and 2012.

"Why do we have to wait a year until Stephen Harper has his political back against the wall to get little more than copy-cat versions of the old Liberal programs?" added Martin. "What Canadians and the rest of the world really want to know about is, what about Kyoto?"

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For more information:

Dave Martin, Energy Coordinator, Greenpeace, cell: 416-627-5004
Jane Story, Greenpeace Communications, cell: 416-930-9055


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