Canadian International Council

Canadian International Council

September 10, 2008 11:11 ET

Canada-China Energy Cooperation Must Be Fast-Tracked

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Sept. 10, 2008) - Canada is lagging behind in seeking increased cooperation in the energy field with China, and we forgo this at our own economic and environmental peril, says Christian Constantin in a paper released today by the Canadian International Council (CIC).

"The stakes are high as China will be shaping its future energy development and ensuing environmental impacts over the next decade," says Constantin, one of CIC's inaugural fellowship recipients. "Given how important China's energy development will be for the future of the world's energy sector and environment, and in view of the role Canada could play in helping the People's Republic of China face its energy challenges, effective bilateral energy cooperation will be crucial."

Despite official commitment to cooperation the results leave much to be desired. In light of China's priority to cleaner energy development, Canada could bank on China's needs - investments valued between US$1.9 and 2.3 trillion by 2030 - to foster the development of its own clean energy sector and, overall, achieve a better relationship in the energy sector.

The author argues that Canada should be seeking more cooperation with China over clean coal development and other efficient end uses. He notes that energy is a key global commodity and global management of supply, demand and environmental concerns resulting from energy consumption are at the top of the international agenda which will yield either increased cooperation or increased rivalry and recriminations. China is at the centre of all these concerns.

Constantin is a PhD candidate in the University of British Columbia's department of political science and one of eight fellows chosen earlier this year by the CIC to contribute new perspectives and discussion in vital areas of Canadian foreign policy. The program's initial areas of focus for 2008-09 include the following: China, Border Issues, Arctic Sovereignty and Security and Energy.

For more information on the CIC or the selected fellows please visit:

The Canadian International Council (CIC) is a non-partisan, nationwide council established to strengthen Canada's role in international affairs. With 13 branches nationwide, part of the CIIA national branch network, CIC seeks to advance research, discussion and debate on international issues by supporting a Canadian foreign policy network that crosses academic disciplines, policy areas, and economic sectors. The CIC will feature a privately funded fellowship program, supported by a network of issue-specific working groups. Carefully selected CIC fellows will focus on important foreign policy issues, working out of universities and research institutions across the country. The CIC was founded in 2007 by Jim Balsillie, co-CEO of RIM (Research In Motion).

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