Monday, January 29, 2007

Our Hero

Steve Harper likes to trash the Liberal environmental record (and let's face it, it sucked), but he doesn't like to be reminded of his own past. Here, for example is an article from November 2002 on the topic of Kyoto. Steve did not seem to be much of greeny in those days.
OTTAWA (CP) - It's time Paul Martin showed the fortitude expected of prime ministers and reject the Kyoto protocol on greenhouse gases, Canadian Alliance Leader Stephen Harper charged Wednesday night.

"Given the stakes here, the responsible thing to do is simply to come out and oppose it," Harper said, before a Canadian Alliance dinner in Ottawa which drew over 650 supporters who paid $350 apiece to dine with the Opposition leader.

"Mr. Martin himself has at least hinted that if he doesn't think it's bad he at least does understand that the way the prime minister is proceeding is improper and premature."

David Anderson, the environment minister and Herb Dhaliwal, the minister responsible for natural resources, were to launch the Climate Change Plan for Canada - a blueprint for Kyoto's implementation - Thursday in Ottawa.

Harper accused Martin, the leading candidate to replace Prime Minister Jean Chretien when he retires in early 2004, of sitting on the fence when it comes to stating his position on the protocol.

"Paul Martin has a responsibility to block ratification of Kyoto in the absence of an implementation plan with provincial and industry consensus," said Harper in the text of his speech.

Harper warned the deal, if fully implemented, would damage the economies of all provinces and territories and that consumers would end up footing most of the bill because they, not industry, are responsible for 80 per cent of carbon dioxide emissions.

The Kyoto agreement calls for Canada to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions by 30 per cent over projected levels by the end of its implementation process in 2012.

Prime Minister Jean Chretien has vowed to ratify the deal by the end of the year.

Harper also warned against the former finance minister using a "ratify and rescind" strategy to appease industry worried about the deal's effects.

"This strategy - to knowingly accept an investment chill and later renege on his own commitments - would be even more irresponsible behaviour than Jean Chretien's," he said.

The Alliance leader again blamed the prime minister for moving too swiftly on Kyoto, without enough input from Canadians.

"I think its clear that the majority of Canadians at least, thinks we should not proceed until there is a full plan and until all provinces and all governments are working together."

Harper said his party "would never ratify a deal with the effects of the magnitude of Kyoto without being able to explain how it will be implemented."

"I actually think (the Liberals) are running scared on Kyoto - and they should be because it's a major, major deal...and yet they are really in the dark about how they're going to move forward."
Mr. Green was Mr. Stall and Obstruct just a few years ago. I wonder what changed his mind?
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