Skip to main content

House Publications

The Debates are the report—transcribed, edited, and corrected—of what is said in the House. The Journals are the official record of the decisions and other transactions of the House. The Order Paper and Notice Paper contains the listing of all items that may be brought forward on a particular sitting day, and notices for upcoming items.

For an advanced search, use Publication Search tool.

PDF

37th PARLIAMENT, 2nd SESSION

EDITED HANSARD • NUMBER 014

CONTENTS

Thursday, October 24, 2002




1000
V         The Speaker
V     Privilege
V         Comments Made in Chamber
V         Mr. Stephen Harper (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)

1005
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of State and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)
V         Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP)
V         Hon. Art Eggleton (York Centre, Lib.)
V     Points of Order
V         First Report of Procedure and House Affairs Committee--Speaker's Ruling
V         The Speaker

1010

1015
V Routine Proceedings
V     The Environment
V         Mrs. Karen Redman (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, Lib.)

1020
V     Government Response to Petitions
V         Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)
V         Mr. John Williams
V         Mr. Geoff Regan
V         The Deputy Speaker
V     Competition Act
V         Mr. Dan McTeague (Pickering—Ajax—Uxbridge, Lib.)
V         (Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         (Bill read the second time and referred to a committee)
V     Criminal Code
V         Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP)
V         (Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         (Bill read the second time and referred to a committee)

1025
V     Patent Act
V         Mr. Dan McTeague (Pickering—Ajax—Uxbridge, Lib.)
V         (Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)
V     Income Tax Act
V         Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP)
V         (Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of State and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)
V         Mr. Pat Martin
V         The Deputy Speaker
V     Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act
V         Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP)
V         (Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

1030
V     Canada Business Corporations Act
V         Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP)
V         (Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)
V     Committees of the House
V         Procedure and House Affairs
V         Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.)
V         (Motion agreed to)
V     Foreign Affairs
V         Mr. Scott Reid (Lanark—Carleton, Canadian Alliance)

1035
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         (Motion agreed to)
V     Petitions
V         Child Pornography
V         Mr. Jay Hill (Prince George—Peace River, Canadian Alliance)
V         Stem Cell Research
V         Mr. Sarkis Assadourian (Brampton Centre, Lib.)
V         Child Pornography
V         Mr. Sarkis Assadourian (Brampton Centre, Lib.)
V         Foreign Affairs
V         Mr. Sarkis Assadourian (Brampton Centre, Lib.)
V         Child Pornography
V         Mr. Chuck Strahl (Fraser Valley, Canadian Alliance)
V         Government Contracts
V         Mr. Michel Guimond (Beauport—Montmorency—Côte-de-Beaupré—Île-d'Orléans, BQ)
V         Horses
V         Ms. Sarmite Bulte (Parkdale—High Park, Lib.)
V         Child Pornography
V         Mr. Dale Johnston (Wetaskiwin, Canadian Alliance)

1040
V         Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance)
V         Criminal Code
V         Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance)
V         Child Pornography
V         Ms. Anita Neville (Winnipeg South Centre, Lib.)
V         Stem Cell Research
V         Ms. Anita Neville (Winnipeg South Centre, Lib.)
V         Child Pornography
V         Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance)
V         Electoral Boundaries
V         Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.)
V         Child Pornography
V         Mr. Jim Gouk (Kootenay—Boundary—Okanagan, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Garry Breitkreuz (Yorkton—Melville, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Reed Elley (Nanaimo—Cowichan, Canadian Alliance)

1045
V         Stem Cell Research
V         Mr. Stephen Harper (Calgary Southwest, Canadian Alliance)
V         Child Pornography
V         Mr. Peter Goldring (Edmonton Centre-East, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mrs. Carol Skelton (Saskatoon—Rosetown—Biggar, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance)
V         Stem Cell Research
V         Mrs. Lynne Yelich (Blackstrap, Canadian Alliance)
V         Child Pornography
V         Mrs. Diane Ablonczy (Calgary—Nose Hill, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Howard Hilstrom (Selkirk—Interlake, Canadian Alliance)
V     Questions on the Order Paper
V         Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V Government Orders
V     Supply
V         Allotted Day—Kyoto Protocol
V         Mr. Stephen Harper (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)

1050

1055

1100

1105

1110
V         Hon. Charles Caccia (Davenport, Lib.)
V         Mr. Stephen Harper
V         Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis (Winnipeg North Centre, NDP)
V         Mr. Stephen Harper

1115
V         Mr. Jim Abbott (Kootenay—Columbia, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Stephen Harper
V         Mr. Alex Shepherd (Parliamentary Secretary to the President of the Treasury Board, Lib.)

1120
V         Mr. Stephen Harper
V         Hon. Maria Minna (Beaches—East York, Lib.)

1125

1130
V         Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Maria Minna
V         Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont—Petite-Patrie, BQ)
V         Hon. Maria Minna

1135
V         Ms. Sarmite Bulte (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage, Lib.)

1140

1145
V         Mr. John Herron (Fundy—Royal, PC)
V         Ms. Sarmite Bulte
V         Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance)
V         Ms. Sarmite Bulte
V         Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance)
V         Ms. Sarmite Bulte
V         Mr. Joe Comartin (Windsor—St. Clair, NDP)

1150
V         Ms. Sarmite Bulte
V         Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont—Petite-Patrie, BQ)

1155

1200

1205

1210
V         Mr. Joe Comartin (Windsor—St. Clair, NDP)
V         Mr. Bernard Bigras
V         Ms. Monique Guay (Laurentides, BQ)
V         Mr. Bernard Bigras

1215
V         Mrs. Karen Redman (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Mr. Bernard Bigras

1220
V         Mr. Joe Comartin (Windsor—St. Clair, NDP)

1225

1230
V         Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis (Winnipeg North Centre, NDP)
V         Mr. Joe Comartin

1235
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP)

1240

1245
V         Mrs. Karen Redman (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Mr. Pat Martin
V         Mr. Jim Gouk (Kootenay—Boundary—Okanagan, Canadian Alliance)

1250
V         Mr. Pat Martin
V         Mr. John Herron (Fundy—Royal, PC)

1255

1300

1305

1310
V         Mrs. Karen Redman (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         (Motion agreed to)
V         Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. John Herron

1315
V         Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance)

1320
V         Hon. Charles Caccia
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Bob Mills

1325
V         Mr. Julian Reed (Halton, Lib.)
V         Mr. Bob Mills

1330
V         Mr. Dale Johnston (Wetaskiwin, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Bob Mills
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance)

1335

1340
V         Mr. Werner Schmidt (Kelowna, Canadian Alliance)

1345
V         Mr. David Chatters
V         Hon. Ethel Blondin-Andrew (Secretary of State (Children and Youth), Lib.)

1350

1355
V STATEMENTS BY MEMBERS
V     Healthy Workplace Week
V         Mr. Gurbax Malhi (Bramalea—Gore—Malton—Springdale, Lib.)
V     Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Medal
V         Mr. Peter Goldring (Edmonton Centre-East, Canadian Alliance)

1400
V     The Environment
V         Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.)
V     Governor General's Award
V         Mr. Jerry Pickard (Chatham—Kent Essex, Lib.)
V     Literacy Action Day
V         Mr. Irwin Cotler (Mount Royal, Lib.)
V     Agriculture
V         Mr. Howard Hilstrom (Selkirk—Interlake, Canadian Alliance)
V     International Literacy Day
V         Mr. Mac Harb (Ottawa Centre, Lib.)

1405
V     Civets de la nature
V         Mr. Jean-Yves Roy (Matapédia—Matane, BQ)
V     International Literacy Day
V         Mr. Mauril Bélanger (Ottawa—Vanier, Lib.)
V         The Speaker
V     Liberal Leadership Campaign
V         Mr. Chuck Strahl (Fraser Valley, Canadian Alliance)
V     United Nations Day
V         Mr. Bernard Patry (Pierrefonds—Dollard, Lib.)

1410
V     Literacy Action Day
V         Ms. Wendy Lill (Dartmouth, NDP)
V     The Environment
V         Mr. Serge Cardin (Sherbrooke, BQ)
V     Louis-Marie Gagné
V         Mr. Gérard Binet (Frontenac—Mégantic, Lib.)
V     Literacy Action Day
V         Mr. Inky Mark (Dauphin—Swan River, PC)
V     Louis Riel
V         Mr. Jim Pankiw (Saskatoon—Humboldt, Ind.)

1415
V     Canadian Institutes of Health Research
V         Hon. Hedy Fry (Vancouver Centre, Lib.)
V     Child Pornography
V         Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance)
V ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
V     Kyoto Protocol
V         Mr. Stephen Harper (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Mr. Stephen Harper (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Mr. Stephen Harper (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)

1420
V         Mr. James Rajotte (Edmonton Southwest, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Mr. James Rajotte (Edmonton Southwest, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)

1425
V         Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont—Petite-Patrie, BQ)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont—Petite-Patrie, BQ)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP)
V         Ms. Alexa McDonough
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Mr. Joe Comartin (Windsor—St. Clair, NDP)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)

1430
V         Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC)
V         The Speaker
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of State and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)
V         Mr. John Herron (Fundy—Royal, PC)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Herb Dhaliwal (Minister of Natural Resources, Lib.)
V         Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Mr. Serge Cardin (Sherbrooke, BQ)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)

1435
V         Mr. Serge Cardin (Sherbrooke, BQ)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V     Ethics
V         Mr. Ken Epp (Elk Island, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. John Manley (Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Lib.)
V         Mr. Ken Epp (Elk Island, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. John Manley (Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Lib.)
V         The Speaker
V         Mr. Pierre Brien (Témiscamingue, BQ)
V         Hon. John Manley (Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Lib.)
V         Mr. Pierre Brien (Témiscamingue, BQ)
V         Hon. John Manley (Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Lib.)

1440
V     National Defence
V         Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. John McCallum (Minister of National Defence, Lib.)
V         Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. John McCallum (Minister of National Defence, Lib.)
V     Energy Conservation
V         Mr. Julian Reed (Halton, Lib.)
V         Hon. Herb Dhaliwal (Minister of Natural Resources, Lib.)
V     Taxation
V         Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP)
V         Hon. John Manley (Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Lib.)
V     Health
V         Mr. Yvon Godin (Acadie—Bathurst, NDP)

1445
V         Mr. Jeannot Castonguay (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health, Lib.)
V         The Speaker
V     Persons with Disabilities
V         Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland—Colchester, PC)
V         Ms. Sophia Leung (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue, Lib.)
V         Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland—Colchester, PC)
V         Ms. Sophia Leung (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue, Lib.)
V     Child Pornography
V         Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Paul Harold Macklin (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Lib.)
V         Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance)

1450
V         Mr. Paul Harold Macklin (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Lib.)
V     École de médecine vétérinaire de Saint-Hyacinthe
V         Mr. Yvan Loubier (Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, BQ)
V         Hon. Lyle Vanclief (Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Lib.)
V         Mr. Yvan Loubier (Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, BQ)
V         Hon. Lyle Vanclief (Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Lib.)
V     Canadian Wheat Board
V         Mr. David Anderson (Cypress Hills—Grasslands, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Paul Szabo (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         Mr. David Anderson (Cypress Hills—Grasslands, Canadian Alliance)

1455
V         Mr. Paul Szabo (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V     Agriculture
V         Mr. Murray Calder (Dufferin—Peel—Wellington—Grey, Lib.)
V         Hon. Lyle Vanclief (Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Lib.)
V     Grain Transportation
V         Mr. Jim Gouk (Kootenay—Boundary—Okanagan, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Claudette Bradshaw (Minister of Labour, Lib.)
V         Mr. Jim Gouk (Kootenay—Boundary—Okanagan, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Claudette Bradshaw (Minister of Labour, Lib.)
V     Correctional Service Canada
V         Ms. Diane Bourgeois (Terrebonne—Blainville, BQ)

1500
V         Hon. Wayne Easter (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.)
V     International Aid
V         Mr. Jerry Pickard (Chatham—Kent Essex, Lib.)
V         Hon. Susan Whelan (Minister for International Cooperation, Lib.)
V     Health
V         Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP)
V         Mr. Jeannot Castonguay (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health, Lib.)
V         The Speaker
V     Kyoto Protocol
V         Mr. André Bachand (Richmond—Arthabaska, PC)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V     Presence in Gallery
V         The Speaker

1505
V     Business of the House
V         Mr. John Reynolds (West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of State and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)
V Government Orders
V     Supply
V         Allotted Day--Kyoto Protocol
V         The Speaker
V         Mr. Jim Gouk (Kootenay—Boundary—Okanagan, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Ethel Blondin-Andrew

1510
V         Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Ethel Blondin-Andrew
V         Hon. Charles Caccia (Davenport, Lib.)

1515

1520

1525
V         Mr. Keith Martin (Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Charles Caccia
V         Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Charles Caccia
V         Mrs. Diane Ablonczy (Calgary—Nose Hill, Canadian Alliance)
V         

1530

1535

1540
V         Hon. Charles Caccia (Davenport, Lib.)
V         Mrs. Diane Ablonczy
V         Mr. John Godfrey (Don Valley West, Lib.)
V         Mrs. Diane Ablonczy

1545
V         Mr. David Anderson (Cypress Hills—Grasslands, Canadian Alliance)

1550

1555
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)

1600

1605

1610

1615
V         Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. David Anderson
V         Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont—Petite-Patrie, BQ)
V         Hon. David Anderson

1620
V         Mr. Reed Elley (Nanaimo—Cowichan, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. David Anderson
V         Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis (Winnipeg North Centre, NDP)

1625
V         Hon. David Anderson
V         Mr. John Reynolds (West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast, Canadian Alliance)

1630
V         Mr. John Godfrey (Don Valley West, Lib.)

1635
V         Mr. John Reynolds
V         The Deputy Speaker

1640
V         Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance)

1645
V         Mr. Larry Bagnell (Yukon, Lib.)

1650
V         Mr. Vic Toews
V         Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP)
V         Mr. Vic Toews

1655
V         Mr. John Godfrey (Don Valley West, Lib.)

1700
V         Mr. Stockwell Day (Okanagan—Coquihalla, Canadian Alliance)

1705
V         Mr. John Godfrey
V         Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP)
V         Mr. John Godfrey
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)

1710
V         Mr. Clifford Lincoln (Lac-Saint-Louis, Lib.)

1715

1720
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)
V         Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Clifford Lincoln
V         Mr. Jim Gouk (Kootenay—Boundary—Okanagan, Canadian Alliance)

1725
V         Mr. Clifford Lincoln
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)
V     Points of Order
V         Bill C-252--Speaker's Ruling
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)
V         (Order discharged and Bill C-252 withdrawn)
V     Supply
V         Allotted Day--Kyoto Protocol
V         Mr. Scott Reid (Lanark—Carleton, Canadian Alliance)

1730

1735
V         Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Scott Reid

1740
V         Mr. André Harvey (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport, Lib.)
V         Mr. Scott Reid

1745
V         Mr. James Rajotte (Edmonton Southwest, Canadian Alliance)

1750

1755
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)
V         Mr. Larry Bagnell (Yukon, Lib.)
V         Mr. James Rajotte
V         Mr. Clifford Lincoln (Lac-Saint-Louis, Lib.)

1800
V         Mr. James Rajotte
V         Hon. Hedy Fry (Vancouver Centre, Lib.)

1805

1810

1815
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)
V Adjournment Proceedings
V         Kyoto Protocol
V         Mr. David Anderson (Cypress Hills—Grasslands, Canadian Alliance)

1820
V         Ms. Sophia Leung (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue, Lib.)
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)
V         Mr. David Anderson

1825
V         Ms. Sophia Leung
V         The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos)






CANADA

House of Commons Debates


VOLUME 138 
NUMBER 014 
2nd SESSION 
37th PARLIAMENT 

OFFICIAL REPORT (HANSARD)

Thursday, October 24, 2002

Speaker: The Honourable Peter Milliken

    The House met at 10 a.m.


Prayers


[Privilege]

*   *   *

  +(1000)  

[English]

+

    The Speaker: The Chair has received notice of a question of privilege from the Minister of State and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons.

    The Leader of the Opposition is rising on a question of privilege.

*   *   *

+Privilege

+Comments Made in Chamber

[Privilege]
+-

    Mr. Stephen Harper (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, allow me to rise on a related matter, on a couple of things.

    First, yesterday during debate the Chair will recall that the member for Burnaby--Douglas rose on a point of order and I replied to him on his point of order. He made it clear that he took my response to him as a personal insult and, in particular, as a comment about his sexual orientation. I just want to say that I intended no such insult and intended no such interpretation. I will also add that when the hon. member for Calgary Centre rose shortly after to ask me to clarify my remarks, at that point, quite frankly, that particular interpretation had not occurred to me.

    I have talked to the hon. member and indicated to him that I am sorry that he took that meaning. I did not intend it, but I am sorry he took it that way. I would just say to the hon. member that I have known him for a long time and we have a lot to disagree on; I do not know if there are any two members in the House who probably disagree on more items. It is very possible for he and I to have a debate on issues of substance. There would be absolutely no need on my part to engage in the type of personal insult that he has alleged, nor if I were to do that would there be any justification in doing so. That said, I intended no insult and am very happy to withdraw my remark that he took that way.

    I also am aware that one minister of the crown and some former ministers of the crown took exception to comments I made. I think I made it clear yesterday that I was not making an allegation that any member of the House of Commons was a criminal. I was simply making reference to the fact that a number of members have been forced to resign under a cloud. These situations vary from fairly clear breaches of ethics to much more serious instances where there are in fact investigations by authorities, and in some cases they involve, indirectly, investigations by the RCMP.

    But as I say, I just want to make it clear that no member should take the implication that I was making a specific allegation of criminal wrongdoing. If that is the implication any individual member took, I withdraw that.

  +-(1005)  

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of State and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am prepared of course to accept the apology of the hon. Leader of the Opposition at least with regard to myself, having reviewed what the criteria would have been in order to have someone's name posted in a police station and recognizing that we are talking about suspected mass murderers, convicted child molesters and terrorists.

    I cannot say, though, after having reviewed Hansard this morning, that the other three members of Parliament, namely the member for Fredericton, the member for Cardigan and of course the member for York Centre, are prepared to accept that. That would be for them to say.

    I am prepared to withdraw the question of privilege that I raised this morning, on the strength of the apology of the hon. Leader of the Opposition.

+-

    Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I had given notice yesterday of a point of order with respect to the comments made by the hon. leader of the official opposition. I believe I heard an apology this morning from him, and on the basis of that apology I will not be pursuing my point of order.

+-

    Hon. Art Eggleton (York Centre, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I too accept the apology given by the Leader of the Opposition, and I hope we can get on with the business at hand.

    Mr. Speaker: I thank all hon. members for their assistance.

*   *   *

+-Points of Order

+-First Report of Procedure and House Affairs Committee--Speaker's Ruling

[Speaker's Ruling]
+-

    The Speaker: I would now like to deal with the point of order raised on October 22, 2002, by the hon. member for West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast relating to the use of the provisions of Standing Order 56.1. The hon. member argued that an abuse of process had occurred when, earlier that day, the government used Standing Order 56.1 to move a motion to which unanimous consent had been previously denied. The motion in question concerned the report of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs establishing the committee membership lists for this session.

    I would like to thank the hon. member for West Vancouver--Sunshine Coast for raising this question and of course the hon. Leader of the Government in the House of Commons for his contribution on the matter.

    The hon. member for West Vancouver--Sunshine Coast raised three objections in this case: namely, first, that the motion pursuant to Standing Order 56.1 was moved under the rubric “Tabling of Documents” of the daily routine of business and not under the category of “Motions”; second, that the government moved this motion on a day different from the day on which unanimous consent had been denied; and finally, third, that the motion to concur in the striking committee report was substantive, not routine, and therefore ought not to be subject to the provisions of Standing Order 56.1.

  +-(1010)  

[Translation]

    House of Commons Procedure and Practice, at page 571, describes Standing Order 56. 1 as follows:

    If, at any time during a sitting of the House, unanimous consent is denied for the presentation of a “routine motion”, a Minister may request during Routine Proceedings that the Speaker put the motion. For that purpose, a “routine motion” refers to motions which may be required for the observance of the proprieties of the House, the maintenance of its authority, the management of its business, the arrangement of its proceedings, the establishment of the powers of its committees, the correctness of its records or the fixing of its sitting days or the times of its meeting or adjournment. The motion, which is neither debatable nor amendable, is immediately put to the House by the Speaker. If 25 Members or more oppose the motion, it is deemed withdrawn; otherwise, it is adopted.

[English]

    The points raised by the hon. member for West Vancouver--Sunshine Coast are germane to any understanding of Standing Order 56.1, whose invocation has sometimes raised concerns.

    Proceedings in this House are governed by written rules, chiefly the Standing Orders, and also by the unwritten practices which hon. members have seen fit to follow over the years. It is clear that, in setting down an explicit rule, the House may adopt new procedures. However, where the House has not made such a deliberate choice, our usual practice is to continue using the way of proceeding that has so far met the needs of the House. When our practice offers no guidance in a particular case, members may raise points of order to seek guidance from the Chair. It then falls to the Speaker to arbitrate between honest differences of interpretation that arise from time to time. I believe that such is the case before us today. Let us therefore consider in turn each of the elements of the objection raised.

    The hon. member for West Vancouver--Sunshine Coast contended that the proper place to move a motion during routine proceedings is under the rubric “Motions”. It is true, as the government House leader pointed out, that the text of Standing Order 56.1 requires only that the motion be proposed during routine proceedings. However, our practice has always been that during routine proceedings motions, or “routine motions” to cite the actual text of the standing order, be moved under the heading reserved for them. An examination of previous uses of Standing Order 56.1 does not reveal any case where we proceeded differently.

    The day before yesterday, the House, and I dare say the Chair, may have been taken somewhat by surprise when such a motion was moved at the beginning of routine proceedings under the heading “Tabling of Documents”. Since the motion was ultimately deemed withdrawn, I believe that this occurrence might be seen as an exception that will not recur. Our practice is clear. Motions pursuant to Standing Order 56.1 should be moved under the rubric “Motions”, unless there is unanimous consent to do otherwise.

[Translation]

    The second point raised by the hon. member for West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast concerned the appropriateness of using Standing Order 56.1 on a day different from the day on which unanimous consent had been requested and refused.

    An examination of the records of the House will show that this is an acceptable way of proceeding.

[English]

    A number of examples may be cited. Unanimous consent was sought on September 28, 1994 and again on October 6, 1994 for permission for a subcommittee to travel. Consent being denied, a motion pursuant to Standing Order 56.1 was moved on October 8, 1994, two days after the request for unanimous consent.

    I refer the hon. member to the Debates of September 28, 1994, at page 6263 or October 6, at page 6642, and the Journals of October 7, at page 270. A similar travel permission motion was denied unanimous consent on June 7, 1995 and Standing Order 56.1 was used the following day. I refer the hon. member to the Debates for June 7, 1995, at page 13375, and the Journals for June 8, at page 1594. In a third example on April 21, 1997 unanimous consent was refused to a motion arranging the sitting time of the House with respect to a royal assent ceremony. That motion was proposed under Standing Order 56.1 on April 24. See the Debates for April 21, 1997, at page 10012-13, and the Journals for April 24, at page 1524.

    It is clear from these cases that Standing Order 56.1 requires only that the motion in question has been previously refused unanimous consent whether that day or on some previous day.

    The last point raised by the hon. member for West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast concerns whether the use of Standing Order 56.1 to propose adoption of a report of the striking committee is procedurally acceptable.

    On this last point he maintained that to allow speedy adoption of this report would interfere with consideration of certain proposals now before the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs. The Chair is not persuaded by this view. The Speaker and the House must of course be guided by any changes that may be brought from time to time in our Standing Orders. However, it would be imprudent if not irresponsible for the Chair to impede the House in its normal transaction of business simply because changes are under consideration by a committee.

    The crux of this point of order is, in my view, whether or not a motion for concurrence in a report establishing committee membership at the beginning of a session can be reasonably characterized as “routine” and therefore subject to the terms of Standing Order 56.1.

  +-(1015)  

[Translation]

    As I stated on September 18, 2001, in my previous ruling on this standing order, Debates, September 18, 2001, p. 5258:

    The standing order [56.1] has never been used as a substitute for decisions which the House ought itself to make on substantive matters.

    Responding to concerns raised at the time of the introduction in 1991 of the then new provisions of Standing Order 56.1, Mr. Speaker Fraser said:

—this “over-ride” provision can operate, as the Chair understands it, only with respect to a certain very limited range of motions offered at a specific time in our daily agenda by a minister of the Crown—

[English]

    Mr. Speaker Fraser then went on to speak of what he called, “the very limited application of the new proposal”. I have found his cautionary words very helpful in reaching this decision.

    All members will agree that the House does very often see fit to approve the membership of committees, or changes to that membership, by unanimous consent. Indeed, the Chair must acknowledge that a review of our modern practice reveals no instance where motions for concurrence in the report of the striking committee have been debated or amended. However, as I pointed out in an earlier ruling, again at page 5258 of the Debates, that:

--if the House from time to time should agree on a way of proceeding by unanimous consent...one cannot assume that such agreements would automatically fall into the category of routine matters as defined in Standing Order 56.1.

    Our research tells us that motions to concur in the reports of striking committees have not in modern practice been the subject of debate or amendment. To extrapolate from that, that these motions are therefore routine, not substantive, is in the view of the Chair to go too far. Accordingly, I have concluded that Standing Order 56.1 cannot be used as a recourse in the event that unanimous consent to concur in the report striking the committees of the House is sought and denied.

[Translation]

    I can appreciate the viewpoint of the Government House Leader who has indicated that the establishing of committee memberships is of some urgency but I must remind him that S.O. 56.1 was not meant as an alternative mechanism for limiting debate.

    If the situation requires it, I know that the Government House Leader will find that he has other procedural means at his disposal to expedite matters.

[English]

    Once again, I would like the thank the hon. member for West Vancouver--Sunshine Coast for raising the matter and for the views put forward by the hon. government House leader.

    I trust this decision clarifies the issues with regard to Standing Order 56.1 and that it will prove helpful to the House in the future.


+Routine Proceedings

[Routine Proceedings]

*   *   *

[English]

+-The Environment

+-

    Mrs. Karen Redman (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 32(2) I have the honour to table, in both official languages, a report of the Government of Canada entitled “Achieving Our Commitments Together: Climate Change Draft Plan Overview”.

*   *   *

  +-(1020)  

+-Government Response to Petitions

+-

    Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36(8) I have the honour to table, in both official languages, the government's response to four petitions.

+-

    Mr. John Williams: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. We have now passed tabling of documents and we do not have anything from the President of the Treasury Board. She has given notice that the Public Accounts of Canada will be available after 3 o'clock this afternoon after question period, where we are going to find out how the $175 billion of taxpayers money has been spent, wisely or otherwise.

    Marleau and Montpetit on page 763, note 403, clearly indicates that the Public Accounts of Canada have in the past been tabled by the minister directly in the House. That is in Journals of October 31, 1978, at page 94 and Journals of December 11, 1979, at page 336.

    I think it is rather unfortunate that the Government of Canada would slide the information out under the table rather than placing it on the table at routine proceedings.

+-

    Mr. Geoff Regan: Mr. Speaker, I am looking at the reference which the hon. member has raised and I note that it states as follows:

    The Public Accounts of Canada are usually deposited with the Clerk of the House and the tabling is recorded in the Journals.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Respectfully to members on either side of the House, that is not a point of order, it is a matter of debate, and there may be another time and another place for members to have that debate.

*   *   *

+-Competition Act

+-

    Mr. Dan McTeague (Pickering—Ajax—Uxbridge, Lib.) moved for leave to introduce Bill C-249, an act to amend the Competition Act.

    He said: Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to reinstate this private member's bill from the last session of parliament. The bill seeks to amend the Competition Act to clarify the competition tribunal's powers to make or not to make an order in the case of a merger when gains in efficiency are expected or when the merger would create or strengthen a dominant market position.

    (Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

[Translation]

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: The Chair is satisfied that this bill is in the same form as Bill C-248 at the time of prorogation of the first session of the 37th Parliament. Accordingly, pursuant to Standing Order 86.1, the bill is deemed to have been read the second time and referred to the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology.

    (Bill read the second time and referred to a committee)

*   *   *

[English]

+-Criminal Code

+-

    Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP) moved for leave to introduce Bill C-250, an act to amend the Criminal Code (hate propaganda).

    He said: Mr. Speaker, I am pleased this morning to reintroduce my bill pursuant to Standing Order 86.1 and to point out to the House that the bill is identical to the one that I had introduced during the first session of the 37th Parliament. I ask that it be reinstated at the same point it had reached at prorogation, which was that it had been passed by the House at second reading and referred to the justice committee.

    The Criminal Code of Canada currently protects Canadians from those who advocate genocide or spread hatred of others based on their colour, race, religion or ethnic origin. My bill seeks only to extend that same level of protection to those who are targeted on the basis of their sexual orientation.

    It is important to note that this bill in no way limits or threatens the freedom of religious expression or religious texts.

    (Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: The Chair is satisfied that this bill is in the same form as Bill C-415 was at the time of prorogation of the first session of the 37th Parliament. Accordingly, pursuant to Standing Order 86.1, the bill is deemed read a second time and referred to the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights.

    (Bill read the second time and referred to a committee)

*   *   *

  +-(1025)  

+-Patent Act

+-

    Mr. Dan McTeague (Pickering—Ajax—Uxbridge, Lib.) moved for leave to introduce Bill C-251, an act to amend the Patent Act (patented medicines)

    He said: Mr. Speaker, the bill concerns patented medicines and seeks to amend the Patent Act by repealing the power of the governor in council to make regulations preventing the infringement of the patent by any person who makes, uses, constructs or sells the patent invention solely for uses reasonably related to the development of a submission.

    For the information of members, the bill addresses, for example, the inequality of regulations currently attached to the Patent Act. This concerns the rather odious practice of permitting automatic injunctions to some brand name pharmaceutical companies that are claiming patent infringement when in reality they are merely seeking a delay of entry on the market of cheaper generic drugs once an existing patent has expired.

    (Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

*   *   *

+-Income Tax Act

+-

    Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP) moved for leave to introduce Bill C-252, an act to amend the Income Tax Act.

    He said: Mr. Speaker, I am happy to move this bill which calls for an amendment to the Income Tax Act to change the it in a very minor and subtle way so that a business cannot deduct fines from its income tax. The act is currently silent on this issue, and the Supreme Court has ruled that fines, penalties and levies that are levied against a company for breaking the law can be deducted as a legitimate tax deduction. We think this is fundamentally wrong and we call for broad support for this simple amendment to the Income Tax Act.

    (Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of State and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I am extremely concerned with this bill being introduced. In fact, whether one likes or dislikes the merits is a matter to be dealt with by the committee and I want to do that. The point however that I want to make to the Chair is that this bill has as an objective to increase the level of taxation on someone.

    I submit to the Chair that it be examined to see whether it offends the principle of having preceded a motion of ways and means, because it is in fact increasing a taxation measure. No matter how meritorious someone might think it is or is not, I still do not believe that it should be constitutionally acceptable to introduce a bill which does that in the manner in which it has been introduced.

+-

    Mr. Pat Martin: Mr. Speaker, I think the hon. House leader for the government is right. This is not the place to debate the merits of the bill. However I could make the simple point that nothing in this bill would have anyone pay more taxes. It simply would eliminate one tax deduction, which most Canadians believe is simply bad public policy. The Supreme Court said it is a matter for Parliament to decide.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: The Chair thanks the House leader for the government in the House of Commons and the hon. member for Winnipeg Centre for their interventions. I will take the matter under advisement and get back to the House if necessary and as soon as possible.

*   *   *

+-Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act

+-

    Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP) moved for leave to introduce Bill C-253, an act to amend the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act (unpaid wages to rank first in priority in distribution)

    He said: Mr. Speaker, hopefully this bill will be a little less controversial.

    The bill seeks to amend the bankruptcy act so that unpaid wages owing to an employee at the time of a bankruptcy will rank first in priority in terms of distribution of the assets of the company. The purpose is to give unpaid wages and other compensation due for benefits in a bankruptcy first priority, the logic being that other secured creditors know full well the risk of a possible bankruptcy of the company in which they are investing and compensate for that by charging interest and making profit on the loan.

    In the case of an employer and employee relationship, all that exists is the trust relationship that the employee will be compensated fairly for hours worked. Therefore, it is up to Parliament to add the protection for the worker in this case, and I seek broad support from the House on that matter.

    (Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

*   *   *

  +-(1030)  

+-Canada Business Corporations Act

+-

    Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP) moved for leave to introduce Bill C-254, an act to amend the Canada Business Corporations Act

    He said: Mr. Speaker, the bill seeks to amend in a minor way the Canada Business Corporations Act. It would require auditors in their annual financial statements to a company to divulge if they are selling any other non-audit services to the same company. It would add a requirement to the auditing firm to divulge to shareholders if they are also selling other financial services and therefore possibly be in a conflict of interest.

    It is a consumer issue, and that shareholders have a right to know if this practice is in fact taking place in the companies where they invest.

    (Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)

*   *   *

+-Committees of the House

+-Procedure and House Affairs

+-

    Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I move that the 1st Report of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs, presented on Monday, October 21, 2002, be concurred in.

    (Motion agreed to)

*   *   *

+-Foreign Affairs

+-

    Mr. Scott Reid (Lanark—Carleton, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, there has been consultation among parties and I believe you would find unanimous consent to adopt the following motion without debate. I move:

    That, in the opinion of this House, the Prime Minister should take advantage of his upcoming meeting with President Jiang Zemin of China at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation [APEC] conference to privately raise the issue of the continued imprisonment in China of thirteen [13] Falun Gong practitioners who have close family ties to Canada and to emphasize that Canadians would be more willing to strengthen existing ties between Canada and China if these individuals, namely: Lizhi He, Xiuzhen Lu, Tianxiong Peng, Zhanzhong Wu, Xiuchao Huang, Bo Qiu, Yueli Yang, Yangtao Jin, Jiangang Huang, Guangshou Huang, Mingli Lin, Zhou Zheng, and Changzheng Sun, were reunited with their families in Canada.

  +-(1035)  

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: The House has heard the terms of the motion. Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    (Motion agreed to)

*   *   *

+-Petitions

+-Child Pornography

+-

    Mr. Jay Hill (Prince George—Peace River, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36 I would like to table four additional petitions with a total of 650 signatures from my constituents of Prince George--Peace River.

    The petitioners call upon Parliament to take all necessary steps to eradicate all forms of child pornography in Canada. My constituents are demanding clear legislation that will curb child exploitation by severely punishing those who promote or glorify this material as well as outlawing all materials containing child pornography in Canada.

*   *   *

+-Stem Cell Research

+-

    Mr. Sarkis Assadourian (Brampton Centre, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I have three petitions. The first one is from Brampton Centre which calls upon the government to focus its legislation to support adult stem cell research to find a cure for and therapies necessary for illnesses and diseases of suffering Canadians such as, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, diabetes, cancer, muscular dystrophy and spinal cord injuries.

*   *   *

+-Child Pornography

+-

    Mr. Sarkis Assadourian (Brampton Centre, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the second petition is from residents of Peel region, including Brampton. They ask the House to protect children by taking all necessary steps to ensure that all materials which promote and glorify pedophilia be banned in our country and be outlawed on the Internet.

*   *   *

+-Foreign Affairs

+-

    Mr. Sarkis Assadourian (Brampton Centre, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the third petition is Canadians from across the country who call upon the government to open an embassy in Yerevan, the capital of Armenia. They mention the fact that Canada is the only G-7 nation that does not have an embassy in Yerevan and that Armenia has an embassy in Ottawa. They ask the government to consider opening up an embassy in Yerevan.

*   *   *

+-Child Pornography

+-

    Mr. Chuck Strahl (Fraser Valley, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I would like to present a petition today from constituents, primarily from my riding of Fraser Valley, concerned about the way that the courts have applied the existing child pornography laws. They call upon Parliament to protect our children by taking all steps necessary to ensure that materials which promote or glorify pedophilia or sado-masochistic activities involving children are outlawed. There are 1,100 signatures on this petition and more are coming.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Government Contracts

+-

    Mr. Michel Guimond (Beauport—Montmorency—Côte-de-Beaupré—Île-d'Orléans, BQ): Mr. Speaker, on behalf of the people of Beauport—Montmorency—Côte-de-Beaupré—Île-d'Orléans and the greater Quebec City area, I am pleased to present a petition asking the government to enact a public inquiry, which, according to these petitioners, is the only way to get to the bottom of the close ties that exist between the Liberal Party, its ministers and certain advertising agencies that have received millions of dollars in government contracts in recent years, and the entire tendering system for federal government contracts.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Horses

+-

    Ms. Sarmite Bulte (Parkdale—High Park, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I have a petition, perhaps the largest petition I have ever received. It contains over 2,000 signatures from my constituents, and across Canada, who are concerned about the slaughter of horses. Horses slaughtered in Canada are being exported as food for human consumption.

    The petitioners call upon Parliament to enact legislation against the slaughter of horses and also the sale of horsemeat for human consumption especially since the horse plays an important role in the history of Canada and the RCMP. Members will know that recently the Canadian horse was deemed to be the national horse of Canada.

*   *   *

+-Child Pornography

+-

    Mr. Dale Johnston (Wetaskiwin, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I too have a petition to present today. The petitioners are concerned that the current child pornography laws are not applied in a way that makes it clear that such exploitation of children shall always be met with swift punishment. They call upon Parliament to protect our children by taking all necessary steps to ensure that all material which promotes or glorify pedophilia or sado-masochistic activities involving children is outlawed. There are some 1,381 names on this petition.

  +-(1040)  

+-

    Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, it gives me a great deal of pleasure to rise today on behalf of constituents from Wild Rose who have submitted an additional petition to the ones I have already tabled in regard to taking action which is long overdue to stamp out child pornography in this country. There are 3,117 signatures on this petition to add to the many that we have already had. We encourage the government to get to work as this is an issue that is long overdue and should be addressed.

*   *   *

+-Criminal Code

+-

    Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the second petition calls upon the government assembled in Parliament to immediately raise the age of sexual consent from 14 to 16 years of age.

*   *   *

+-Child Pornography

+-

    Ms. Anita Neville (Winnipeg South Centre, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I have three petitions signed by several hundred residents of Winnipeg South Centre concerning child pornography. They urge tougher laws against matters that glorify pedophilia and sado-masochistic activities involving young children.

*   *   *

+-Stem Cell Research

+-

    Ms. Anita Neville (Winnipeg South Centre, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I also have two additional petitions that call upon the government to focus its legislation on non-embryonic stem cells or adult stem cells for research which would find cures and therapies necessary to treat the illnesses and diseases of suffering Canadians.

*   *   *

+-Child Pornography

+-

    Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I have five more petitions to present on the same topic of child pornography. My constituents in Athabasca condemn the activity of child pornography as the most vile form of perversion and would like the government to move immediately to outlaw all forms of child pornography.

*   *   *

+-Electoral Boundaries

+-

    Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I have a petition from the citizens of Peterborough county, particularly from townships which are being impacted by the proposed changes of the electoral boundaries commission and also from citizens who have been affected by changes brought about by previous boundaries commissions.

    The petitioners point out that the proposal of the Federal Electoral Boundaries Commission of Ontario would remove the township of Havelock, Belmont, Methuen from its historic, social and economic roots in Peterborough county; that in effect the realignment will make it more difficult for citizens of that township to participate fully in the electoral process due to distance and the unpredictability of the new riding of Northumberland--Quinte which has as yet no viable centre.

    The petitioners call upon Parliament to support a new boundary alignment for the township of Havelock, Belmont, Methuen in the riding of Peterborough.

*   *   *

+-Child Pornography

+-

    Mr. Jim Gouk (Kootenay—Boundary—Okanagan, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I have four petitions from my constituents who join the many thousands of others who have called upon Parliament, pointing out that the use of child pornography is condemned by a clear majority of Canadians and that the courts have not applied the current child pornography law in a way that makes it clear that such exploitation of children will always be met with swift punishment.

    The petitioners call upon Parliament to protect our children by taking all necessary steps to ensure that all pornographic materials of any kind directed toward children are swiftly outlawed.

+-

    Mr. Garry Breitkreuz (Yorkton—Melville, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, it is a privilege for me to submit a petition concerning child pornography. There are over 600 signatures on it indicating that this is a great concern to many people. Their concern is that the creation and use of child pornography is condemned by the clear majority of Canadians and that the courts have not applied the child pornography law in such a way to make it clear that such exploitation of children will be met with swift punishment.

    The petitioners are calling upon Parliament to protect our children by taking all necessary steps to ensure that all materials which promote or glorify pedophilia or sado-masochistic activities involving children are outlawed. These petitioners come from my riding, from Saskatchewan, from Manitoba, and also include first nations people.

+-

    Mr. Reed Elley (Nanaimo—Cowichan, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I would like to present a petition to add to the thousands of names that are being presented here today from about 300 members of my own constituency who call upon the House of Commons to stiffen up the current child pornography laws. These laws are not keeping our children safe. They call upon Parliament to protect our children by taking all the necessary steps to ensure that all materials which promote or glorify any of these activities involving children are absolutely outlawed.

*   *   *

  +-(1045)  

+-Stem Cell Research

+-

    Mr. Stephen Harper (Calgary Southwest, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36 it is my pleasure to rise today to present a petition signed by 28 electors in my constituency of Calgary Southwest.

    The petitioners call upon Parliament to focus its legislative support on adult stem cell research to find cures and therapies necessary to treat the illnesses and diseases of suffering Canadians.

*   *   *

+-Child Pornography

+-

    Mr. Peter Goldring (Edmonton Centre-East, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise to present a petition put forth by many concerned Canadians. These petitioners are demanding that the Prime Minister and the Minister of Justice stop the exploitation of our children in child pornography. The petitioners call upon Parliament to take all necessary steps to ensure that all materials that promote or glorify pedophilia, other deviate concerns, or sado-masochistic activities with children be outlawed.

+-

    Mrs. Carol Skelton (Saskatoon—Rosetown—Biggar, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I rise today with great pleasure to present a petition on behalf of my constituents in Saskatoon, Outlook, Rosetown, Dinsmore, Sovereign, Milden, Conquest and all other rural areas in the riding stating that the creation and the use of child pornography is condemned by a clear majority of Canadians. They call on the Government of Canada to act immediately to put forward swift punishment for the use of child pornography. I ask that Parliament act immediately.

+-

    Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I have five more petitions against child pornography. The petitioners are concerned that the current laws on child pornography are not being upheld. They call upon Parliament to put in place clear laws that will outlaw sado-masochistic activities and pedophilia. It is surprising that it would be necessary for Canadians to petition against child pornography but unfortunately it is.

*   *   *

+-Stem Cell Research

+-

    Mrs. Lynne Yelich (Blackstrap, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I rise today with a petition that calls upon Parliament to focus its legislative support on adult stem cell research to find the cures and therapies necessary to treat the illnesses and diseases of suffering Canadians.

*   *   *

+-Child Pornography

+-

    Mrs. Diane Ablonczy (Calgary—Nose Hill, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I rise today on behalf of constituents in my riding of Calgary--Nose Hill who are petitioning Parliament about their concerns regarding child pornography. They are asking Parliament to protect the children of Canada by taking all necessary steps to ensure that child pornography is outlawed.

+-

    Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36, I have the privilege to present to the House of Commons 14 petitions signed by approximately 1,300 constituents in my riding of Crowfoot. The areas in Crowfoot that are represented in this petition are Veteran, Drumheller, Stettler, Three Hills, Trochu, Camrose, Hanna, Castor, Oyen and Acadia Valley, Flagstaff and Bashaw.

    All these petitions call upon Parliament to protect children by taking all necessary steps to ensure that all materials which promote or glorify pedophilia or sado-masochistic activities involving children are outlawed.

    These petitions reflect the opinion of a majority of Canadians in condemning the creation and use of child pornography. It is my pleasure to present them to the House.

+-

    Mr. Howard Hilstrom (Selkirk—Interlake, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I have a petition in regard to child pornography. It in fact asks Parliament to take action in an immediate manner to stop the use of materials that promote or glorify pedophilia or sado-masochistic activities involving children. I think Parliament should do that.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Questions on the Order Paper

+-

    Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I ask that all questions be allowed to stand.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Is it agreed?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.


+-Government Orders

[Supply]

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Supply

+-Allotted Day—Kyoto Protocol

+-

    Mr. Stephen Harper (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance) moved:

    That, before the Kyoto Protocol is ratified by the House, there should be an implementation plan that Canadians understand, that sets out the benefits, how the targets are to be reached and its costs.

    He said: Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure for me to speak today to our supply day motion.

  +-(1050)  

[English]

    The purpose of the motion is to give instruction to the government in how to proceed with the ultimate passage that it plans of the Kyoto protocol.

    The motion we are tabling today reflects the concerns of a large number of members of Parliament, not just in our party, which has taken a strong position in opposition to the Kyoto protocol, but other parties that have expressed reservations as well. I think the motion also reflects the reservations of many in Quebec who may support the protocol but who have grave reservations about the lack of an implementation plan.

    Finally, I think the motion also reflects the views of a significant number of Liberal members of Parliament who have spoke out about some of the deficiencies in the way the government has been proceeding. I will just speak to that for a minute.

    We have had a very strange evolution to this debate. We had documents signed 10 years ago that led 5 years ago to the development of the Kyoto protocol on which there seemed to be very little, if any, action whatsoever in Canada until a sudden declaration by the Prime Minister after his pre-emptive notice of resignation this summer. Since that time, we have been subjected to a bewildering array of briefings, trial balloons, statistics, plans and, frankly, if I can be blunt, enough hot air to go along with it to warm up the planet all on its own.

    We had another briefing this morning. After giving notice of this motion last night, suddenly the government comes up this morning with a document which it tabled in the House only minutes ago. That particular document obviously has not been subjected to a debate or a thorough review in the Chamber but what is interesting is that apparently in the minds of some Liberal members that document would satisfy the criteria of this motion.

    Let me be absolutely clear, as I go through the motion, that is not the case. We certainly will welcome the government agreeing to proceed in the manner we lay out in our motion, but the document tabled today, which is apparently called “Climate Change Draft Plan Overview”, is woefully incomplete, uncosted almost entirely and subject to considerable more work, negotiations and agreement with other parties, governments and non-governmental organizations.

    The motion speaks about the necessity of an implementation plan before ratification of Kyoto and it speaks about four elements that are necessary for an implementation plan: a true understanding of the plan among Canadians at large; targets that are achievable; costs that are laid out in detail; and finally, benefits that are clear and understood.

    I will quickly go through each of these elements to underscore what we are looking for and to underscore how inadequate what we have today is in terms of what we are seeking.

    My first comments will be on the understanding. We are looking for a true implementation plan. As I said, that is not what we have today. An implementation plan is not the latest version of a bunch of drafts and technical briefings that are just thrown on the table prior to a debate; although I am happy to see we at least have the government moving. A genuine implementation plan is one that is not only complete but around which considerable consensus has been built, consensus not only in the Chamber but among provinces, other levels of government and industries that will be expected to implement it, and ultimately the consumers who also will be affected. We do not have anything like that.

    I should also say that an implementation plan is not simply a poll number indicating there is some sudden support for this vague concept. It is a genuine, widespread consensus. We have already seen in the province of Alberta the danger of the government suggesting that a consensus is achieved by a poll. We have seen support for the Kyoto protocol drop 45 points in the space of the last six weeks, so there is certainly no consensus in this country.

  +-(1055)  

    Members of the government have been complaining that all they are asking is for us to make a leap of faith similar to what was talked about in the pivotal historic debate on free trade in 1988. Nothing could be further from the truth. There is an enormous difference. In 1988 we can all concede that we did not know the full effects of the free trade agreement. However there was an absolute detailed implementation plan and document ready, in fact the document that the Mulroney government had attempted to pass through this Parliament.

    We did know the implementation plan. We knew it involved withdrawals of tariffs. We knew that those and other measures caused significant cost to the government which had been documented. We knew about the establishment of panels to administer the agreement and we knew about some of the transition mechanisms that were involved in putting that agreement in place. We must say that what the government is suggesting today is nowhere near the free trade example.

    All we have heard the government say is that it has some kind of plan to achieve some targets, and I will get into that later, with some kind of a checklist of up to 40 items, chief among them taxes, fines, trading credits and other paperwork, but it has not said what if any of these it will choose to implement. It has been involved, if I can be blunt, in a whole bunch of communication exercises that are a little more than smoke and mirrors. It claims one day that it will pass Kyoto with great fanfare and claim to be pro-environment. Then it turns around and has nudge-nudge, wink-wink discussions with industry, assuring it that nothing will change.

    On one day particularly in my home province we have Alberta positioned and categorized as some kind of offender and villain in this entire debate. Then we read in the Globe and Mail there are secret discussions initiated by the federal government to get Alberta to be one of the first to sign on.

    Everyone in the Chamber may not agree with the position of the Canadian Alliance but at least people know what we mean when we state our position. The Liberals are saying different things. They say one thing to environmental groups in order to look like environmental angels and other things to industry in order to attract and hold corporate donations. They tell Europeans that we will meet target reductions negotiated in Kyoto and then they turn around and tell Canadians that they will have ways to get around the targets that they negotiate.

    Until they make real choices there is no way to assess the potential cost of implementing Kyoto upon Canadian jobs, incomes or families. I know that document will go to the provinces on Monday. There is no way the provinces at this point will be able to decide whether this is a good or bad thing for them based on it. If I can paraphrase that famous commentator, Rex Murphy, of CBC, who the other night said that the provinces could not get onboard if they wanted to. They cannot find the ship, for God's sake. I think that describes the situation.

    Let me talk specifically about the issue of targets. Today the government is doing what it has done from time to time, which is to assume what we have assumed in our critique in Kyoto that the government will somehow meet the full target. The full target is, according to Kyoto, a 6% reduction in CO2 emissions below 1990 levels, which works out to a projected reduction of 240 megatonnes of emissions of CO2. The government has hedged back and forth on that target and has sent mixed signals.

    I will point out that today that although the document released continues to mention 240 megatonnes, 60 megatonnes are unaccounted for. The government simply has not decided in any way, shape or form how that particular group of emissions targets will be met.

    We know that for months the government was claiming that it would get a credit of 70 megatonnes of carbon dioxide emission because of Canada's clean energy natural gas exports to the United States. We now know that is not correct. It is very unlikely that will happen. The government is scrambling now to fill the difference.

    However it is more than just hedging on the targets themselves. It is important that Canadians understand the difference between targets that we talk about and what we are concerned about on this side, which is actual reductions. We have a bit of bureaucratic bafflegab here. They are not the same things.

  +-(1100)  

    Targets can be met, not by reducing CO2 emissions but by engaging in emissions trading credits that ultimately will be paid for internationally. The deal today talks about two sets of emissions trading credits but I will not get into that yet. The government has said it will make all of the reductions in Canada, but today's plan talks not about making reductions but about engaging in international trading.

    Obviously when we do not really know the targets the government plans to make in terms of its actual reductions, it is impossible for us to suggest what the costs will be and how we will meet them. That is the third item the motion talks about.

    The biggest deficiency in the document is so glaring it is embarrassing. There is simply no costing whatsoever in the document, virtually none. In particular, there is no costing of government expenditures themselves. Given all of the deficiencies I have laid out so far, obviously the exercise of costing at this stage would be so highly speculative that the wider impacts could not be predicted and nothing could be met.

    If we proceed with this and pass this motion and the government acts this way, it will have to have a fully costed plan. We make no bones about it. It is our conviction on this side of the House that we cannot in a cost effective way, in an economically sustainable way, make the entire reductions that Canada is allotted in the Kyoto accord.

    Canada is looking at a projected 30% reduction in carbon dioxide emissions. No other country in the world that is participating in this agreement has agreed to anything like that. Countries that have agreed to significantly less are having difficulty meeting their targets. We do not believe the cost will be met in any plan and that is why we will continue to push until we get a costed plan.

    Let me talk a bit about how costs are impacted by the plan. One would assume that the lower the targets are, the lower the costs are. That in itself is not quite true. I will summarize the costs, and these figures are very conservative by any standards out there. Industry and the business community in this country are predicting much higher costs, but the government has estimated that between 60,000 and 250,000 jobs will be lost and expenditures and impacts on the economy will be between $5 billion and $25 billion.

    If we chose to ignore the targets and simply said they could not be met because we did not get the credits we thought we were going to get and we did not get the energy exports from other countries, if Canada could simply decide not to implement those portions of the agreement contrary to the government's commitment, there is no doubt that the costs would fall. However it is very different if we are replacing the reductions with simply buying emissions trading credits from other countries.

    If we replace actual reductions with purchasing emissions trading credits, the cost of this deal to Canada could rise substantially and enormously. We have no idea at all what these international trading credits would cost. We do not even know at the moment if a market for them would exist, and frankly we do not know how such a market would function.

    All of this comes down to the bottom line. Forget about global costs. We still do not know even based on today's document, who exactly will pay. We do not know which provinces will pay. Will it be Alberta? There are fears it will be Alberta. Now there are fears it will be Quebec.

    The government should be clear on this. It wants to point at certain big energy industries in provinces like Alberta and Quebec and say they are going to pay, but we should be under no illusions. At least 75% of carbon dioxide emissions come from the consumption of energy, not from its production. These reductions are bound to hit hardest on Canadians of poorest and most modest means.

    Now I will speak about the benefits. The government speaks as it always has in very general terms about the benefits. I will go through this very quickly because I think the benefits are going to be the most controversial aspect of this deal

  +-(1105)  

    It is important to have some kind of basic grasp of the science. Canadians have to understand that the Kyoto accord simply deals with levels of carbon dioxide. It is not smog. It is not the smog problem in Toronto. It is not acid rain. It is a natural occurring gas we all breathe. Carbon dioxide occurs naturally in the atmosphere. In fact, 95% of all carbon dioxide on the planet occurs naturally. Only 5% is man made.

    The Kyoto accord calls for reductions of around 6% over 1990 levels. For all intents and purposes, this amounts at the end of the Kyoto process to a worldwide reduction, if achieved, of less than 1% decrease in man-made carbon dioxide and one-tenth of 1% of naturally occurring carbon dioxide.

    The relationship of carbon dioxide to global warming also involves complicated and complex science that is far from settled. It is a matter of significant debate. If I can cite Dr. Lindzen, a professor of meteorology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who said:

But--and I cannot stress this enough--we are not in a position to confidently attribute past climate change to carbon dioxide or to forecast what the climate will be in the future.

    We cannot predict the weather tomorrow with absolute accuracy. We certainly cannot predict the climate 100 years from now.

    Models have been constructed that suggest there could well be a base line increase of about 2.5°C over 100 years. There is no particular knowledge at the moment whether that relationship has to do with natural or man-made carbon dioxide. Frankly, over the last few years we have failed to see the full rise in global temperatures that the models predict.

    When the Prime Minister stands in the House and suggests that somehow Canadians will start dying from extreme heat in 30 years if this agreement is not passed, it is fearmongering. It is not a position that any credible scientist would endorse.

    Let me go on with this aspect of the benefits. This is the most serious concern we should have. If we do not achieve even the reductions laid out and instead we go to trading schemes and in particular the international trading scheme, we are not achieving reductions. We are simply transferring wealth to other countries. In most countries this will be a wealth transfer to countries with far worse emissions records and far worse emissions goals than ours.

    Sixty-five per cent of emissions in the world are occurring in countries that will not ratify Kyoto or are exempted from any kind of meaningful targets. It is very predictable that all this international trading scheme the government suggests it will cooperate in will do will be to shift jobs and activity and frankly, the production of CO2 emissions outside Canada. It is predictable, if not certain, that global emissions will in fact end up rising because of the structure of the Kyoto accord.

    I will summarize very quickly that as we said about the Charlottetown accord that was voted on about 10 years ago, it is important that Canadians know a lot more. Ten years ago we were told there was a consensus on the Charlottetown accord. We had dire warnings of what would happen if it was not passed. The consensus collapsed within a month. The deal was not passed. Of course ultimately, life has gone on and I think much better than if it had passed.

    Ratification without implementation is a dangerous strategy. As long as this continues to be the government position, we are going to ensure that ratification is read by industry as assuming the worst, making assumptions the targets will be as high as they could possibly be, the costs as high as they could possibly be and the unknowns as high as they could possibly be. We will not move forward in the country on any kind of environmental package. We will simply see investment in key sectors such as the tar sands and related sectors dry up. We are already seeing that now.

    The government must present us with a full implementation plan. It cannot continue to play communications and legacy games with both the environment and the economic future of Canadians.

  +-(1110)  

+-

    Hon. Charles Caccia (Davenport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I listened carefully to the hon. Leader of the Opposition and in particular to the point he made in the course of his speech about his assumption that 65% of greenhouse gas emissions are from non-signatory countries. I would like to ask him whether he has been briefed on the reasons major countries are not coming into the Kyoto agreement, namely China, India, the Philippines and Brazil? They are countries that over the years have indicated repeatedly that they consider the first step is a responsibility for the industrialized nations to show their determination to deal with the problem mainly created by industrialized nations until very recently and that in a second phase the non-signatory countries of course would join Kyoto and do their share of work.

+-

    Mr. Stephen Harper: Mr. Speaker, first, I would dispute the assertion in the hon. member's question that industrialized countries are responsible for the current problem that has been created. We do not know that there is a current problem. Quite frankly, the purpose of the Kyoto agreement as we all understand it is to deal with a problem that may occur in the future.

    In that regard, we look at the developing countries that are exempt from the provisions, countries like Brazil, China and India and we see that they are already major producers. China is already the second largest emitter of carbon dioxide in the world. It is already there. It is going to be more so in the future and it is completely exempt from the provisions.

    I should also point out something which should be a concern to the hon. member and to others who have a different philosophy than I do. We believe that the really critical problem is not carbon dioxide, or certainly not the primary problem, but it is pollution and the creation of smog in the Asian cloud. I would suggest that is the problem we should be dealing with first. That calls even more strongly for the inclusion of those countries in an international protocol than does this situation.

+-

    Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis (Winnipeg North Centre, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I too listened carefully to the comments of the Leader of the Opposition. I was somewhat struck by his disregard for the science pertaining to carbon dioxide. I would certainly suggest to him that this is not a philosophical difference. This is a difference based on concern about the future of the planet and about the health and well-being of our citizens.

    The Leader of the Opposition seems to have conveniently ignored the impact that inaction and not proceeding with the Kyoto accord will have on the health and well-being of Canadians. I refer him in particular to the statements and cries from the Canadian Medical Association. It has clearly indicated its support for the ratification of Kyoto because of the importance it will have to the health and well-being of Canadians. The Canadian Medical Association stated that sulfur reduction in fuels could provide significant health benefits, not only in terms of the adverse health effects that could be avoided but also the economic costs of illnesses due to these health effects.

    I ask the Leader of the Opposition and the Alliance Party, why have they chosen to disregard Canadians' health and well-being?

+-

    Mr. Stephen Harper: Mr. Speaker, it always amazes me that a number of Canadians on that side of the spectrum, particularly in the NDP, seem to think they are the only people who have any concerns about living in the environment. I do not know where they think the rest of us live.

    We all have fairly serious concerns about the environment and about our health. In my personal case, we are talking about the contents of the atmosphere and I have been a lifelong sufferer from asthma. I am very concerned about my respiration and how this agreement will affect my respiration.

    The hon. member suggested it is very important that we reduce sulfur and sulfur based gases in the atmosphere. That is an interesting argument but it has nothing whatsoever to do with the Kyoto protocol.

    As I have said before, if we are to look at what we think should be done in terms of dealing with environmental problems and atmospheric change, we would put a higher priority, quite frankly internationally and domestically, on dealing with emissions of that type.

  +-(1115)  

+-

    Mr. Jim Abbott (Kootenay—Columbia, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, after listening to my leader I am interested in knowing if he is also aware of the speculation on what will happen when we have population growth. In other words, we are talking about capping at a level under 1990's well into the future.

    I wonder if he would have any comment about the fact that obviously as we have a population increase in Canada, which we all hope for so that we end up with more economic activity, we will have more industrial and manufacturing activity. Therefore, I wonder if he would agree with the speculation that this would mean that as we add more people or as we try to add more to the economic value we are generating in Canada, we would have to do it at this capped level well into the future or at least until the Kyoto accord gets revised.

+-

    Mr. Stephen Harper: Mr. Speaker, I appreciate that question. It speaks to the concern that most opponents of Kyoto have: that rather than targeting caps what we should be targeting is ultimately the intensity of emissions. There has been great technological progress made on that over the years and it will continue.

    Let me speak specifically to the issue he raised, the issue of population growth, because there are a number of ways in which Canada is particularly negatively impacted by the provisions of the Kyoto accord. One of them is the fact that unlike most developed industrialized countries that have committed to targets, Canada does have significant population growth. This is not true in the western European countries that by and large have ratified the accord, so in that context looking at a cap is a much less onerous and a much less long term serious issue than it is in regard to trying to implement a cap in this country.

    I should point out that this accord and the government, when it negotiated this accord internationally, disregarded other major factors that should have been taken into account in looking at Canada's reasonable share. It did not look at the size of this country and, quite frankly, the transportation needs that this imposes on all Canadian economic activities. That growth of transportation, the use of energy by transportation, is another reason why we face such serious implementation problems. I also have to admit that, notwithstanding global warming, just the general coldness of the Canadian climate should have at least been considered by the government before it adopted our international targets.

+-

    Mr. Alex Shepherd (Parliamentary Secretary to the President of the Treasury Board, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I was just wondering while listening to the Leader of the Opposition's speech about the connection between carbon dioxide emissions and climate change. I know that his party likes to be a sort of spokesperson for the business interests in the country and I have noticed that the insurance industry has been very clear in saying that it no longer wants to cover for the issue of climate change. For some of those businesses, indeed even the oil and gas sector, when they are reviewing their insurance policies, these insurance companies are now saying they will not insure for the downside of climate change. How does the member reconcile that with his stand on not proceeding with the accord?

  +-(1120)  

+-

    Mr. Stephen Harper: Mr. Speaker, I am not sure that I have to reconcile that. I think it is the hon. member who is going to have to reconcile a few things here. Just about every major business group in this country is opposed to this accord. I certainly hope he is not suggesting that all of these industries and businesses simply do not understand their own business.

    Let me go a little further in pointing out that this member represents an area of Ontario that is highly tied to the automobile industry, that is highly tied to the expense of energy and the use of energy through that industry. If he is going to suggest we proceed with this accord, and not just proceed but proceed blindly as the government proposes, I hope he is prepared to go not to just the big fat cat oil executives who are donating to the Liberal leadership candidates but to the workers on the shop floors and explain to them the implications of this accord and these targets on their jobs and on their livelihoods.

+-

    Hon. Maria Minna (Beaches—East York, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with the member for Parkdale--High Park.

    I am quite pleased to see that the Alliance is supporting the Kyoto accord. That is what the motion says and I must admit my surprise at seeing the motion, which supports exactly what the government is talking about doing, that is, ratifying Kyoto after we set out an implementation plan. I look forward to joining my colleagues in the Alliance Party in December when they vote in favour of the Kyoto accord and ratification.

    Some hon. members: Oh, oh.

    Hon. Maria Minna: Their motion today says they support it.

    In recent months there has been a wide range of estimates on the economic impacts of Canadian implementation of the Kyoto protocol. Even in the House we have heard repeated some of the large scale claims from different interest groups on the impact of taking action on climate change. I want to comment on the economics of action and of inaction. I also want to take a step back and comment on all these estimates that are being tossed around.

    Probably the single most important point to make is that this work of preparing estimates has been a cooperative effort between the federal government and the provinces for years now. The federal government has worked closely with the provinces on this because the goal is an approach that enables all of Canada to be part of meeting our Kyoto target.

    To achieve this goal, a working group of economics and modelling experts from both the federal government and the provinces have worked with specialized economic models operated by the private sector to undertake a comprehensive forecast for Canada. All of this work has been and is being done outside of government by two organizations in the private sector, Informetrica and the Canadian Energy Research Institute. But did they work on their own to do all of this? No, they also worked with experts in those industries that are most concerned about the potential impacts of climate change, such as the oil industry, the chemical producers, manufacturers and so on, to fine tune the model. Every time the policy options have become clearer, the modelling has been updated to reflect the most likely situation.

    This is important because all too often some people have been willing to use old information to create scare stories about the potential impacts of Kyoto on Canadian jobs and Canada's economy. For example, the ability that Canada negotiated in 2001 to get credit for the impact of our well managed forests and farmlands on greenhouse gas emissions has an important impact on the modelling results. Old estimates that do not take that into account simply are not as accurate as the new estimates based upon the real world of Kyoto.

    Where does all this economic modelling stand right now? What does it tell us? The modelling looks at the impacts on Canada, on individual provinces and territories and on sectors of our economy. In doing all of this, it uses the most current thinking on possible policies that governments could put in place, so it takes into account different ways of addressing greenhouse gas emissions.

    The modellers were clear, as economists always have been, that this modelling has its limits. It normally can offer only partial assessments of costs and benefits. It cannot hope to capture the full range of choices and decisions in a complex economy such as Canada's, but here is what they found in general. They compared the general economic impact of Kyoto to what would happen if there were no Kyoto protocol. They estimated that our total gross domestic product by 2010 would be a small amount less than it would have been otherwise, somewhere between four-tenths of 1% less to 1.6% less, depending upon what assumptions we use. This is a modest impact relative to the strong economic growth of 18% that economists expect over this eight year period.

    Which is the more likely scenario? There is a pretty strong consensus that the impact probably will be to the low end of the range because the international price of carbon is expected to be around $10 per tonne. The impact on growth will be fairly minimal. We will have a lot of growth, just a modest amount less than we might have had otherwise.

    What about jobs? The analysis shows that instead of the roughly 1.32 million new jobs that Canada would gain over the next eight years, we would gain between 1.08 million in a worst case scenario and 1.26 million in the more likely scenario. We must remember that this is not about actually losing jobs. It is about creating slightly fewer than we might have otherwise. This has to be put into perspective. For one thing, the economists only make a small allowance for new job creation in response to Kyoto-generated opportunities and innovation.

  +-(1125)  

    More than that, we have to remember how well the Canadian economy has been creating jobs. The Canadian economy generated 427,000 new jobs in the past nine months, so if the economists tell us we might not create 60,000 jobs over eight years, it pales in comparison to what we are creating just because of our economic strength.

    We cannot stop with that kind of analysis of the costs. After all, actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions also typically reduce other atmospheric emissions. The federal-provincial working group of economists estimated the health benefits of clear air due to Kyoto actions at between $150 million and $250 million per year. These come from more smog-free days, fewer cases of respiratory diseases and asthma, and fewer hospital admissions and avoidable deaths. Those are the straight economic impacts. They say nothing about the value of improving the health of our communities, our kids, our seniors and everyone else. Even with that, the models did not try to estimate the impacts of related reductions across all pollutants. The models did not include non-environment related benefits, such as economic and safety benefits from reduced traffic congestion if we can make public transit more attractive.

    All of these are the costs and benefits of action, but let us also be clear that inaction has very real costs too. Climate change is expected to lead to more droughts and severe weather events such as floods and intense storms. The scientists who study these issues say that we could see more episodes like the ones we have seen in recent years.

    We may remember that droughts in 2001 cost the Canadian economy more than $5 billion. The 1998 ice storm cost Ontario, Quebec and New Brunswick more than $6 billion. The floods in Manitoba and the Saguenay region of Quebec a few years back are other costly examples that we want to avoid through strong action on climate change. These floods will happen more often. For example, between 1900 and 1950 there were two peak flows of the Red River that surpassed the 2,000 cubic metre per second mark. In the next 50 years there were eleven, with the last flood exceeding all of them by a big margin.

    Inaction would make it a lot less likely that we could spur innovation in Canada. Many firms in Canada and internationally are already making more efficient use of energy and resources and introducing new processes to cut their GHG emissions. With a national commitment to reach our Kyoto target, we could realistically expect to see more innovation and the creation of more export opportunities for these new technologies and processes. We have already seen this in the past because the history of environmental action shows an enormous capacity for innovation. Costs are typically lower than expected and results come sooner. We saw this on acid raid and on protecting our ozone layer, for example.

    The best evidence tells us that while there will likely be some costs of action on Kyoto, they will probably be modest and almost certainly much more so than the claims that some interest groups suggest. Those costs will actually be more in terms of forgone activity, not losses compared to today. But there will be benefits: the benefits of better health, the benefits of innovation and economic benefits as well. All of this pales beside the benefits of taking action to address a challenge that future generations will be glad we did.

  +-(1130)  

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, let us first remember that asthma is caused by smog, not by a greenhouse gas, and that health concerns are about smog and this is about climate change and greenhouse gases.

    Second, let us say that there are a lot of innovative companies in Canada. They have received no encouragement over the years from the Canadian government. It is sort of being a boy scout to say now there will be all these jobs out there when Denmark, Germany, the United States and Japan are leaders in alternate energy research. It certainly is not Canada, because nothing has been done to help that.

    If we talk to the chief climatologist at Environment Canada, he will tell us that we cannot do a model that will accurately predict the next 30 days of weather. It is rather interesting that the government can get a model that will project for the next hundred years. With El Nino and all the factors that come into weather change, how can the member justify that she or the government can accurately predict what the weather will be for the next hundred years?

+-

    Hon. Maria Minna: Mr. Speaker, with respect, the hon. member should know that a thousand scientists across the world have signed on to the science behind climate change. The Government of Canada has invested in innovation and technology. Technology Partnerships Canada is one example of that.

    Quite frankly, I think the hon. member likes to talk about gloom and doom rather than deal with some of the facts that are all around us. For instance, 50% of emissions come from large industrial emitters. I know that the oil industry in Alberta will be opening up some new energy plants using coal. Why can we not use, for instance, electricity that is in surplus in Manitoba and across the country? Instead of silos, why can we not use all our best resources?

    With regard to ethanol, the United States has bought into ethanol and its farms will be producing a heck of a lot more corn than we will. That will reduce the emissions. I can use example after example. Our caucus and our government have been dealing with the issue of ethanol for some time. We have taken some initiatives on that and I think we should be much more aggressive with that as well.

    We should be looking at solutions that will make our environment much more healthy for our future generations who will inherit the earth rather than talking about gloom and doom. We should do what we can instead of sticking our head in the sand and saying that it cannot be done. With respect, it can be done.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont—Petite-Patrie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, allow me to take advantage of this question and comment period to put a question to the government side. I find it rather ironic that, concerning a Canadian Alliance motion on Kyoto, the answer is coming today not from the minister himself, or even his parliamentary secretary, but from a member across the way.

    It is rather ironic to see how unwilling this government is to engage in real debates in this place and to provide real answers to the opposition's questions.

    There is another aspect. In his statement, the government member opposite never dared say how he intended to vote on this motion.

    Does he intend to vote for or against it? Does he not find it ironic that the Canadian Alliance motion does not specify that a vote ought to take place by the end of the year, despite the commitment made by the Prime Minister when he was abroad?

    Is the government not telling us that it will be voting for a motion at odds with what the Prime Minister stated abroad?

[English]

+-

    Hon. Maria Minna: Mr. Speaker, the minister has spoken on this issue many times. We have been consulting with Canadians for five years. With respect, this is a democracy.

    Some hon. members: Oh, oh.

    Hon. Maria Minna: Wait a minute. The Alliance is complaining now. The reality is that I am a member of Parliament so why can I not respond and discuss this issue? This is a democracy. We have a lot of MPs in the House who have a right to speak on the issue. It does not have to be just the minister who does it every day in question period and at other times in the House and elsewhere across the country. This is a debate that was put forward, and appropriately so, today. It is one that I support. I want to see Kyoto ratified. I think it is the right thing to do. I am quite happy to see that the Alliance is supporting it and that the member from the Bloc is also supportive of the ratification of Kyoto, if I am not mistaken.

  +-(1135)  

+-

    Ms. Sarmite Bulte (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am delighted to rise today to speak to the opposition motion. During my time I will talk about the consultations I have had with my constituents in the riding of Parkdale--High Park on this issue. The motion reads:

That, before the Kyoto Protocol is ratified by the House, there should be an implementation plan that Canadians understand, that sets out the benefits, how the targets are to be reached and its costs.

    The motion almost assumes that Canadians do not understand and for some reason do not know the benefits. I can assure the House that in my riding of Parkdale--High Park, this is a very important issue.

    The official opposition seems to imply that we as the government have done nothing. That is not true at all. A lot of work has been done. I would like to praise the work of the economic development committee which examined this issue and helped the members prepare a questionnaire on Canada and the Kyoto protocol.

    I would like to share some of those questions that the committee put together. First: Should Canada work with other nations to fight climate change or should it act alone and, by acting alone, will we indeed be significantly able to cut greenhouse gas emissions?

    We looked at the examples of some of the states in the United States. I believe 42 states have actually embarked on reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Should Canada consider similar laws to tackle climate change?

    We looked at what we as a government could do to minimize costs. How do we minimize the cost of climate change and will we suffer economically if we do not take similar types of investments? It was this survey and the basis of the survey that I used to go out to my constituents. It was posted on the website. There were direct mailings. I held round tables throughout the riding in the spring and I asked my constituents to come together and help us solve this problem.

    I should also add that the same caucus committee, which was headed by the member of Parliament for Stoney Creek I believe, also came up with four options. They met with industry and environmental groups. They looked at whether we should act alone or together. From their report and the four options they came up with, it also then went forward to the sustainable development group.

    We as a caucus have been working very hard on this issue with the minister, with the parliamentary secretary and with the committee. We on the government side are all very concerned about this issue.

    I would like to review some of the comments made by my constituents but in doing so we must also look at the background.

    Under the United Nations framework convention on climate change, the more economically developed countries agreed in 1997 to collectively reduce their emissions of six greenhouse gases by at least 5% relative to their 1990 levels. Exact levels varied from country to country and in Canada's case the reduction level was 6%. The target period for achieving these reductions is 2008-2012. There was no one specified means for achieving the reductions and the protocol actually allows for measures such as emissions trading and the financing of emissions reduction projects in developing countries.

    In addition, in 2001 Canada and 178 countries agreed to a political framework to indeed implement that protocol. Even before then we should look at the action that the government has taken. Let us look at what happened in October 2000. The Government of Canada at that time announced a $500 million action plan 2000 on climate change to reduce Canada's greenhouse gas emissions by 65 megatonnes per year by the period 2008-2012, taking us one-third of the way to our Kyoto target.

    Action plan 2000 took action on many fronts. It is expanding the use of low or non-emitting energy sources by four times current levels; increasing the use of ethanol in gasoline, as the member for Beaches--East York stated; investing in the refueling infrastructure for fuel cell vehicles; enhancing opportunities to store carbon in agricultural soils and forests; investigating the potential of geological storage of carbon dioxide; assessing impacts; identifying adaptation needs; and analyzing policy options such as emissions trading.

  +-(1140)  

    In the Speech from the Throne the government committed to introducing legislation on the ratification of the Kyoto protocol, which I must admit again was truly applauded by the constituents in my riding.

    There are challenges but let us look at the challenges. If there are challenges and there are problems let us find the solutions to those problems.

    Reducing emissions to Kyoto levels will not be easy and it would be trite to say that this is not a complex issue. They have already increased by approximately 13% since 1990 and a number of Canadians, elected officials, such as the official opposition, and industry voices are unconvinced of various aspects of the Kyoto protocol. For example, some question whether the climate is significantly changing over the longer term or if it is indeed changing whether that change can be materially attributed to greenhouse gases.

    Others question whether a changing climate would have very harmful effects overall, or they believe that the economic costs involved in meeting the Kyoto targets would vastly outweigh the benefits gained. Some have argued that Canada would suffer disproportionate economic losses for little improvement in the environment should we implement the measures to achieve Kyoto targets while the United States does not.

    What were the comments from my constituents? Virtually without exception, the constituents who contacted me on this issue were strongly in favour of ratifying the Kyoto protocol and introducing implementation measures to achieve the greenhouse gas reductions as soon as possible. They tended to believe there was sufficient scientific consensus that climate change was indeed occurring, that rising levels of greenhouse gases contributed to this change, that there were considerable economic and health costs to such change, that climate change would not reverse itself or settle in at some new equilibrium on its own, and that therefore people all over the world were well advised to take steps to reduce these gases.

    Most of my constituents were unconvinced that the economic costs of implementation would be so severe as is sometimes claimed. It was argued that there are already many overlooked costs to business as usual approach of non-implementation. Specific examples included the costs of more severe weather swings as evidenced by floods, droughts and storms. Health care costs, such as lung disease and skin cancers, were also cited.

    On the more positive side, some pointed out that early investment in non-polluting technologies could lead to export sales as anti-pollution measures were bound to be a growth industry for many years to come. Examples cited included wind and solar technologies and greater investments in all forms of rail transport.

    I would also submit that the Kyoto protocol also provides Canadian industries access to international opportunities, such as making investments in other countries to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and potentially buying greenhouse gas emission credits from other countries to help reduce the costs of implementation.

    Aside from a purely economic cost benefit view, some constituents felt that there was a straightforward moral imperative not to despoil our environment, even if this required some reduction in our own material well-being. Others believed that there was a spurious overemphasis on economic analysis as the costs of phenomena such as melting icecaps and rising sea levels were almost impossible to accurately quantify.

    Still others contended that whatever the costs were now, they would be considerably greater if we waited another generation or two before attempting to meaningfully reduce emissions.

    Prior to the Speech from the Throne, I, along with many of my colleagues in caucus, signed a letter to the Prime Minister asking that the protocol be ratified expeditiously.

    Without doubt, how we proceed with its implementation will be a major issue for years, but the minister has already said that there will be a review process in place. We will continue to monitor the situation. Therefore I would ask all Canadians and urge my constituents to continue to address this issue and their concerns so that we can deal with these concerns and make sure the benefits are there for future generations to come.

  +-(1145)  

+-

    Mr. John Herron (Fundy—Royal, PC): Mr. Speaker, I know that the hon. member who spoke is familiar with the wording of the amendment today but I would like to read it back to her. It says:

That, before the Kyoto Protocol is ratified by the House, there should be an implementation plan that Canadians understand, that sets out the benefits, how the targets are to be reached and its costs.

    Those are the words of the now former finance minister, the member for LaSalle—Émard.

    Does the member know whether the former minister of finance supports the rapid ratification of the Kyoto protocol, yes or no?

+-

    Ms. Sarmite Bulte: Mr. Speaker, we definitely do have a plan. The plan has been talked about here. We have heard members of caucus speak. We have heard the minister speak. We have heard the parliamentary secretary speak. We do have a plan. We are proceeding but we are not proceeding unilaterally. That is key here because in fact the joint ministerial meeting will be held next Monday when we hope to put the plan together. It is not a federally made plan; it is a Canadian made plan.

+-

    Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I want to raise a question in terms of competency. I understand that countries, such as France, are already below the 1990 level because they utilize atomic power. I was absolutely amazed, better put shocked, that the government did not get any credits whatsoever for the Canadian uranium industry that supplies that atomic energy to Europe. To me this speaks of incompetence. We did not get credits on natural gas exports. We did not get credits on the export of uranium to countries that are using that to get under those levels.

    Would the member comment on why we are not getting any credits for the export of uranium to European countries?

+-

    Ms. Sarmite Bulte: Mr. Speaker, it is wrong to say the government has done nothing. We worked very hard and insisted on carbon sinks and agricultural practices. That is what is important to members on this side. That is what is important for agricultural communities.

    I am surprised the member does not realize this because it will have a huge impact on his riding.

+-

    Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is correct. Kyoto will have a tremendous impact on farmers in our part of the country and across the country, an extremely negative impact as input costs will rise dramatically due to increases in fuel, fertilizer costs and other inputs. It will devastate the agriculture industry, yet nothing has been done by the government to even give some numbers on just how bad the impact could be.

    Could the member tell us why the government is willing to implement an agreement without having any information whatsoever on how devastating this could be to the agriculture industry in the country?

+-

    Ms. Sarmite Bulte: Mr. Speaker, what are the costs? Right now we are in a plan which everyone has had an opportunity to look at today. We talk about the carbon costs being $10, when right now they are $5.50.

    Again, with respect to the agricultural industry and the farmers, on this side of the House the member for Haldimand—Norfolk—Brant chaired the Prime Minister's task force on agriculture and farming policies. Today when we were at the briefing with the minister, one of the important things that was raised by the chair of the task force was the important opportunity for our farmers for the use of ethanol which is produced from corn. That was also raised by the member from Toronto Beaches.

    Let us not say there are no opportunities for our farmers because there are. Look at the drought experienced by the farmers out west this year. That has had devastating effects on those farmers and we owe it to them to ensure that we do something so those kinds of droughts do not happen.

+-

    Mr. Joe Comartin (Windsor—St. Clair, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I could not help but note in the motion that there is reference to cost but no reference to the cost of not proceeding with Kyoto. Could the member comment on that?

  +-(1150)  

+-

    Ms. Sarmite Bulte: Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the member for his question because it is very key. We do not know what those costs are. The Prime Minister has said this is for his children, his grandchildren and his great grandchildren.

    We have to preserve our planet for the future and this is the leadership we need to give now to ensure that we save our planet for future generations to come.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont—Petite-Patrie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to address the Canadian Alliance motion on the important and fundamental issue of climate change and on the ratification and implementation of the Kyoto protocol.

    When we first read the motion, we were inclined to support it, because it appeared full of good intentions and properly drafted. However, after taking an in depth look at its substance, we soon realized that it was far from reflecting the views that the Bloc Quebecois has always defended in this House, as it did with stakeholders last March regarding the ratification of the Kyoto protocol.

    There are three fundamental reasons why we will vote against this motion from the Canadian Alliance this evening. First, let us look at the wording of the motion, which reads:

That, before the Kyoto Protocol is ratified by the House, there should be an implementation plan that Canadians understand, that sets out the benefits, how the targets are to be reached and its costs.

    Here, in the House, we have always argued that the Kyoto protocol should be ratified at the earliest opportunity and that no conditions should be attached to this ratification, because this issue is too important for the protection of natural heritage and public health. We must proceed quickly.

    Accordingly, on March 7, we set up a coalition in Quebec that included over one hundred groups from civil society, from the academic and environmental sector, and also some members of Parliament representing various political parties in this House. These groups had one thing to say and that was “That Canada should take the necessary measures to ratify the Kyoto protocol before the month of June”. This was our hope at the time.

    Today, I am rather surprised by the arguments used by the government regarding this motion. When the delegation that he was heading and that I was part of was in Johannesburg, the Prime Minister of Canada stated that the government and the House would make a decision before the end of the year. The Prime Minister said in Johannesburg that the House would vote on the ratification of the Kyoto protocol before the end of this year. The motion before us today provides that the ratification of the Kyoto protocol by the House would be conditional on an implementation plan that Canadians understand.

    It is clear today in the House that there is no difference between the Canadian Alliance and the member for LaSalle—Émard. The clear statement made by the member for LaSalle—Émard indicated that he wanted an implementation plan in place before proceeding with ratification. This is what the Canadian Alliance motion before us today would propose.

    If the government party—and incidentally, we have not heard one word today about their intentions with respect to the motion—votes in favour of this motion this evening, this would clearly mean that the Johannesburg commitment, made some weeks ago by the Prime Minister, will have been broken. We would be back to square one.

    This is not the position of the Bloc Quebecois. The position of the Bloc Quebecois calls for a quick ratification of Kyoto. The government and the Prime Minister made a commitment to have the House ratify it before the year is out and I think they must vote against this motion.

  +-(1155)  

    There is a second aspect. It appears that when it comes to implementation, this motion implies that the Canadian Alliance is proposing a Canadian solution to climate change, similar to what the U.S. and George W. Bush are proposing today.

    We in the Bloc Quebecois believe that what is needed is an international solution to deal with climate change. This international solution depends on the speedy ratification of the Kyoto protocol, because we believe there are internal mechanisms that have allowed the Government of Canada to obtain significant concessions from the international community.

    As part of its implementation of the protocol, the Government of Canada will be able to incorporate 52 megatonnes for carbon sinks into the 6% reduction objective. Emissions credits, which can be traded on the market, have been established. Green development methods have been integrated into the Kyoto protocol. There are joint mechanisms.

    We believe that Canada has already managed to obtain significant concessions from the international community. The way to fight climate change now is by respecting the fundamentals of the Kyoto protocol, in other words, by respecting the mechanisms contained in the protocol.

    I will, if I may, express my disappointment with respect to the plan, or the overview of an action plan, unveiled this morning by the minister. A three-step action plan is proposed.

    The first consists in reducing emissions by 80 megatonnes based on the 2000-01 budget. Naturally, the investments would be incorporated into renewable energies. Even if we had always wanted more of previous budgets to be earmarked for green energy—and still do—we can be happy with this.

    The problem lies in steps two and three of the minister's action plan. He proposes a 100 megatonne reduction in Canadian emissions based on a sectorial distribution that is unfair to Quebec, one that will give heavy greenhouse gas emitters, the western oil industry in particular, an opportunity to increase emissions by close to 14%, while a heavier burden will be imposed on the Quebec manufacturing sector, which has already succeeded in reducing its emissions. A heavier burden as well will be placed on the Canadian forestry industry, which has reduced its greenhouse gas emissions by 19% since 1990.

    These industries, which have made efforts, would be penalized by a federal implementation plan. This we cannot accept, nor can we accept that a heavier emissions burden be imposed on Quebec when Alberta and the west are the ones that have not done their bit.

    It is worth keeping in mind that, in Canada, two provinces have drafted and implemented action plans for climate change: Quebec and Manitoba. When one has a precise action plan with clear objectives, those objectives can be attained. The proof: between 1990 and 2000, Quebec reduced its greenhouse gas emissions by 1%, while the west allowed its to increase.

    Quebec is responsible for 12.5% of the greenhouse gas emissions in Canada, while it contains 24% of the population.

    How can we accept that, based on a distribution we would like to think was equitable, the polluter pay principle would not be applied?

  +-(1200)  

    Moreover, today, in the third phase of its implementation plan, the Canadian government announced that it hopes to get 60 megatonnes through clean energy export credits. This is strictly a virtual concept, a concept that is being developed by senior federal officials. This is a concept that is not approved by the international community and that is not recognized in the Kyoto protocol. Today, Canada is hoping to apply a Canadian solution by incorporating a concept of clean energy exports that is not recognized by the international community.

    We believe that the implementation plan is unfair and unworkable because it is based on premises that are not recognized in the Kyoto protocol. There is a risk that, in the end, the international community will not recognize the clean energy export credits for the reductions and the objective of 200 megatonnes that Canada pledged to achieve.

    With the plan that was just presented, Canada would, in the end, fall far short of the objectives set for it by the international community. Therefore, we believe that we must use all the means provided in the Kyoto protocol, from carbon sinks to the development of clean modes of energy, not to mention the exchange of credits and a true reduction of emissions at source. This is how a true reduction in greenhouse gases will be achieved in Canada.

    Today however, the government presents us with a sectoral plan that will penalize Quebec. Yet studies are available, which show that a territorial application of the Kyoto protocol in Canada is possible. This is a model that was developed in Europe, and agreed on by 15 sovereign nations of the European Union one year after the protocol was signed. This model could be applied in Quebec. Internal studies at the Department of the Environment show that, applied to Quebec, this three-pronged territorial model would be fair to those provinces that have done outstanding work in this regard.

    How is it that 15 sovereign nations of the European Union can, within a year, come to an agreement on an approach to sharing the responsibilities arising from the Kyoto objective, and we cannot? This goes to show the extent to which this federation is not working. If Quebec was a sovereign nation, Kyoto would probably have been ratified. I repeat, Kyoto would have been ratified.

    What does this mean? Countries like Quebec would have been able to avail themselves of the mechanisms contained in the protocol. Quebec could have taken advantage of the carbon sinks and emission trading credits. It could have used the clean development route or the joint approach.

    Today instead we find ourselves paralyzed by a federal government that makes decisions based on a single region of Canada, and a single industry, and in the process penalizes Quebec, which has been making efforts since 1990. Let the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs rise in this House today and tell me, if he dares, that this approach to sharing Kyoto within the federation is fair and equitable.

    We will demonstrate that implementing Kyoto will cost the aluminum industry in Quebec $4.73, while it will cost the Canadian oil industry only 3 cents. Is that a fair and equitable sharing of the Kyoto objective? Is that in keeping with the polluter pays principle endorsed by the Canadian government in Rio in 1992?

  +-(1205)  

    International conventions cannot be signed, and then the opposite action taken. People demand a certain consistency in policy. Today we have proof that the Canadian federation is not working. We will say that as often as necessary for as long as possible. We will ask the European Union if it believes that this is a fair distribution. We will ask all those countries that have decided to implement it whether they find the Canadian method fair and equitable.

    We will, nevertheless, continue to support ratification of the Kyoto protocol. We continue to do so, because Quebec is acting as a responsible state, and has passed a motion in the National Assembly, with the unanimous support of all parties. All of us, whether Liberal, ADQ or PQ, want to see Canada assume its responsibilities.

    We believe that the Kyoto protocol ought to be ratified. The effect of the motion before us today is to create a major loophole for the government, by not having it seek a vote on ratification of the protocol here in this House.

    For example, the hon. member spoke of the throne speech and its reference to the government's commitment to introduce a motion on ratification of the Kyoto protocol before the end of the year. A few weeks prior to that, the Prime Minister announced before the international community that the House will be voting on the Kyoto protocol before the end of the year.

    What we want to see, what we would have liked to have seen in this motion, is a clarification of this deadline. What we would have liked even more is a clarification of the fundamental difference between Kyoto ratification and Kyoto implementation.

    More than 85% of Quebeckers, more than 90% even, are in favour of ratifying the Kyoto protocol. Even in some of the western provinces, there is a majority—a slim one, of course, someone might point out—but nevertheless a small majority of the public is in favour of ratification of the Kyoto protocol. Even in Ontario, where the current government is caught between a population that wants ratification and the problem of implementation by the federal government, there is a strong desire to get on with ratification.

    I have barely two minutes left to say that there are basically three reasons why we will not support this motion. First, we think that it does not reflect the commitment made by the Prime Minister in Johannesburg, to the effect that the House would ratify the Kyoto protocol by the end of this year.

    Second, we would have liked to see an important distinction made between implementation and ratification, primarily because this House decided to use an approach that is consistent with that of Quebec, where the coalition expressed its support for speedy ratification of the Kyoto protocol.

    We were in favour of speedy ratification of the Kyoto protocol a year ago, we are today and we will continue to be tomorrow.

  +-(1210)  

+-

    Mr. Joe Comartin (Windsor—St. Clair, NDP): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Bloc Quebecois member. The Canadian Alliance tells us that Kyoto has nothing to do with the health of Canadians. I would like to know whether the hon. member shares this view, or if he has a different opinion on this issue.

    If we ratify the Kyoto protocol, will this make a difference for the health of Canadians?

+-

    Mr. Bernard Bigras: Mr. Speaker, the question my colleague raises is an important one. The Alliance and opponents of Kyoto often fail to include costs that are not purely economic. Sure, there are economic advantages to ignoring Kyoto, but there are also social costs involved. There are health costs.

    I would like to cite a Canadian study that indicates that the social benefits in improved public health would be in the order of $500 million per year. There are definite advantages for our health care system if we ratify the Kyoto protocol. We need to think of more than just the short term results. We need to consider the future of climate change with a long-term vision, not only with a short-term vision. Though there may be job loss, there will also be job creation.

    We have an obligation to think of the results that will be dealt with by future generations, in other words protecting our natural heritage. We know that the ice storm in Quebec cost insurance companies $3 billion. The Saguenay floods also entailed significant costs. I think it is our responsiblitiy to include not only all of the costs, but also the benefits for industry and all sectors of the economy in Canada and Quebec. We must not base our assessment of the impact of the Kyoto protocol on one single industry, Alberta's oil industry.

+-

    Ms. Monique Guay (Laurentides, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I want to congratulate my hon. colleague on his remarks; he is doing an outstanding job on environmental issues. I also congratulate him on his participation in our youth forum, where he explained the whole Kyoto issue to the young people.

    This is a very important agreement, and the lack of government involvement is deplorable. I find it sad because such involvement is essential. Commitment should have been made long ago. In Quebec, we take our job seriously.

    I would like the hon. member to touch on this briefly. He knows full well that research on electric vehicles is underway and that we do things differently back home. Perhaps he could expand on that.

+-

    Mr. Bernard Bigras: Mr. Speaker, I think that a broad debate is in order on the issue of climate change. Ratification of the Kyoto protocol must also be seen as a golden opportunity to develop areas of economic activity in Quebec and Canada that we would never have dared develop without such a protocol. Kyoto is but a step toward developing areas that can be used to promote sustainable development.

    I will remind hon. members that we have a great wind energy potential in Canada, and that 60% of this potential is in Quebec, most of which is on the North Shore, and in the Gaspé and Lower St. Lawrence regions. Here is a golden opportunity to develop our resource regions, to ensure that our energy resources—wind energy in this instance—can be developed. These are developing areas that are creating jobs, but more importantly, we must develop these industries of the future for Quebec.

    We must ensure that the expertise we develop in Quebec can be exported worldwide, not only to reduce emission rates in Quebec but also to possibly take advantage of the joint mechanisms contained in the Kyoto protocol. We are being given a golden opportunity to be winners. This is what ratifying Kyoto would do for us.

  +-(1215)  

[English]

+-

    Mrs. Karen Redman (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I wish thank my hon. friend for his intervention. I am a little puzzled by a message that seems to be subliminally put into a lot of the questions that he and his colleagues have been posing this morning. They feel that the government is not participating fully enough in today's debate.

    I have represented the government at some of the negotiations of the Kyoto protocol. Our Minister of the Environment was there, holding a significant lead role. The provincial ministers of the environment from Quebec, Alberta and Ontario were actually at the one last summer in Bonn.

    Surely, the member opposite recognizes the value of participation of all members of the House. I have heard many excellent interventions, from different perspectives, by my colleagues right across Canada.

    As enthusiastic as he is about ratification of the Kyoto protocol, I am somewhat puzzled by the provincial environment minister's desire to go on a different path. Surely, the kind of things he is talking about call for a pan-Canadian plan, which is exactly what the government has been consulting on with Canadians from coast to coast to coast for the last five years.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Bernard Bigras: Mr. Speaker, in Quebec, we have always advocated a territorially based approach on the issue of greenhouse gas emissions. It is ironic to see that the federal government, which, for years, has urged the provinces to develop an action plan on climate change and set objectives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, is now telling them that what it asked them to do a few years ago, namely to adopt a provincial action plan, would not be taken into consideration in the implementation of the Kyoto protocol.

    Again, and the parliamentary secretary is well aware of that, in July 2001, a 160-page document that is available on the Internet talked about implementing in Canada the European model on greenhouse gas emissions. This model, which is implemented in Europe, could very well be used in Quebec. The 15 member countries of the European Union agreed on this model within one year.

    How can we expect to arrive at an approach that is equitable? Can we agree that Quebec's economic structure is not the same as Alberta's economic structure? Can we agree that energy efficiency in Quebec is not the same as in Alberta? Can we agree that the Canadian climate is not the same all across the land? Can we put in place equitable parameters that would take into account Quebec's past efforts?

    There are manufacturing industries and businesses, particularly aluminum smelters, that have reduced their greenhouse gas emissions in recent years and are now asked to make additional efforts, with the result that total cost amounts to $4.73 and that a 3 cent fee or levy is imposed on the oil industry. This goes against the polluter pay principle agreed to in 1992, in Rio, by Canada.

    This is what we are asking. We are asking that the government apply this principle in the pursuit of our objective under Kyoto.

  +-(1220)  

[English]

+-

    Mr. Joe Comartin (Windsor—St. Clair, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I wish to indicate that I will be splitting my time with the member for Winnipeg Centre.

    When we look at the motion that is before the House today we must appreciate that behind it are a number of different agendas. What those agendas reflect from the various parts of the House and the various political parties are strategies that have been deployed by all of the parties for some period of time.

    I want to go through those strategies from the perspective of the various political parties as I see them. We have the strategy of the mover of the motion and his party which is one of delay, a delay that will allow that party, the Ralph Kleins of the world, following the lead of the Americans, President Bush and his cadre, the fossil fuel industry and frankly a whole bunch of other fearmongerers who are spreading and attempting to expand on the spread of fear across the country of what Kyoto might mean in its implementation. That clearly is their strategy.

    Then we have the strategy of the government which, to be fair to it and to be accurate, is a non-strategy. It has been since 1996 when we committed as a country, the first country in the world, that in principle we would adopt and implement Kyoto.

    Here we are six years later almost to the day and we still do not have the vote before the House to ratify Kyoto. This is a classic case of bungling on the part of the government that has given the official opposition and its allies all sorts of targets to shoot at.

    Then we have a third strategy which is that of the federal New Democrats, a number of the environmental groups, the Bloc Quebecois and a number of members of the business community, which have said that we must ratify Kyoto, we must do it as quickly as possible and we must move on with implementation.

    That strategy was being deployed in the early part of this year with a number of coalitions that came together at that time to pressure the government to stop bungling, delaying, and ignoring its responsibilities, and to get on with ratifying Kyoto and get on with the implementation.

    It finally culminated in Johannesburg. I was in Johannesburg with a number of other members and listened to the Prime Minister tell the international community clearly and unequivocally that by the end of the year Kyoto would be before the House for ratification. He made the very clear statement as well, although implied but very clear, that the government would be supporting the ratification of Kyoto.

    We still have not seen that resolution. We are still expecting the Prime Minister to comply with the statements he made to the international community in Johannesburg and put that resolution before the House before the end of the year and get it passed.

    It is obvious from my comments that we will be voting against the opposition motion because it is only for the purpose of delay. We have heard from the Leader of the Opposition that this is not about waiting and seeing what the plan is going to be like. The motion is about delay because the members of the official opposition are absolutely opposed to Kyoto. That has to be clear. They do not want it and they will never change their position. Again, this motion is all about delay.

  +-(1225)  

    It does not matter what is in the plan or how extensive, detailed or favourable the implementation plan is to that political party. It will still vote against Kyoto. There can be no doubt about that.

    It is rather interesting to listen to some of the commentaries and questions we have had from the Alliance Party, which are clearly questions and commentaries that indicate its opposition to Kyoto. At the same time we have members of that party in British Columbia who are actively involved in opposing what is an integral part of the American energy policy, which is to build over the next decade some 2,000 fossil fuel fired plants in the United States. A number of those will have their air pollution, toxins and smog dumped into Canada because of prevailing winds. British Columbia is one of the areas and my home riding of Windsor, Ontario is the greatest beneficiary of that policy.

    Members of the Alliance are out on the streets demonstrating. We do not see that too often with that party. They are organizing their communities against that, yet they are here in the House opposing Kyoto. Let me say to them that if they were serious about concerns for their communities, they should be supporting Kyoto.

    The other point I want to make about the delay that is incumbent in this motion is that we have had way too much of that. As a result we have had some serious negative consequences to the economy of the country. As we try to deal with developing some alternative energy sources we buy technology from elsewhere in the world because we have been so slow and laggard in developing our own.

    I was in Calgary this summer. The city of Calgary has, for its public mass transit system, done an excellent job of creating a scenario that has all of the energy for that public transit system coming from wind power, with no assistance by the provincial government. This was all done at the municipal level. I was speaking to the representative from the company that supplies the power out of Pincher Creek. He told me that this was costing between 5% and 10% more because we had to buy the windmills and the generators offshore from Denmark and Germany.

    It is the same story with regard to solar power. Japan has leapfrogged us and is now the leading country in the world in that technology. In another five years we will have to buy the technology from Japan rather than having developed it here and be able to export that technology to other parts of the world. We are losing our priority with regard to developing a hydrogen economy. We are losing that to the U.S. and other parts of the world, again Japan and Germany.

    In terms of ratifying Kyoto, we have a responsibility at the international level in two respects. First, we have made a commitment. The international community is expecting us to do this because we have committed. We have lost a lot of credibility in the international community around environmental matters. We do not need to perpetuate that type of conduct. Second, we owe every other resident of this planet a moral duty to ratify Kyoto and to begin to implement it as rapidly as possible.

  +-(1230)  

    We do not live in isolation, not like the Americans who think they can stay away from Kyoto and somehow the rest of the world will not be affected. That is not the case and it will not be the case if we do that. We have a moral responsibility to them. We have promised it to them and we have to go ahead with it with no further delays.

    As I said earlier, we definitely will vote against this motion today. We will continue to press the government to get a resolution before the House that will ratify Kyoto.

+-

    Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis (Winnipeg North Centre, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the work done by my colleague, the member for Windsor--St. Clair. I want to pursue with him the issue of the impact of greenhouse emissions on human health.

    This morning we heard the Alliance Party and the member for Red Deer suggest that there is no link between greenhouse gas emissions and ill health. That was an unbelievable statement in the face of evidence that has been documented repeatedly and has evoked strong statements from the Canadian Medical Association.

    I would like the member for Windsor--St. Clair to clarify the science on this very important issue. I want him to comment on the fact that although the federal government appears to be committed to moving toward signing Kyoto, it has been negligent in terms of outlining the impact on human health. The Minister of Health seems to be more concerned about the impact on oil and gas companies and has very little to say about the impact on health and well-being.

+-

    Mr. Joe Comartin: Mr. Speaker, there are two aspects to the science which the opponents to Kyoto want to ignore.

    The reality is that carbon dioxide is part of smog. We know that because we see how dramatically the smog levels climb in the summer when it is particularly hot. That is because carbon dioxide stays in the atmosphere for longer periods of time when the temperature is hot.

    While it is there, it also holds other toxins in the atmosphere. It absorbs them. If I can say it this way, it is like a sponge or a magnet. It brings toxins in and keeps them in the air that we breathe for a longer period of time as a result.

    Obviously, that air we breathe and those toxins along with the carbon dioxide get into our lungs. That is why there are so many severe problems with asthma. My area of the world is the asthma capital of Canada because my area has so much air pollution, including carbon dioxide that comes across from the American side of the border.

    The other part that is ignored by those people who oppose Kyoto and say it has nothing to do with health is that as we do the cleanup, as we eliminate carbon dioxide, we will be eliminating other toxins. For instance, as we stop burning coal, we will be reducing the amount of mercury that gets into the atmosphere because coal gives off mercury as well as some other toxins when it is burned. When we stop burning that coal, those toxins will be out of the atmosphere as well. Those are two points that they miss.

    With regard to the other part of the question about the Minister of Health who has been very silent, I remember asking her a question in the House earlier this year and getting a blank stare from her. The question was about the costs of not implementing Kyoto, the $500 million that it is costing us right now annually in extra health care costs. Are we taking that into account? I do not think she knew that was the cost of health care because we have not cleaned up our atmosphere.

    The Canadian Medical Association and the Ontario Medical Association are saying that if we fully implement Kyoto, not only will there be dollar savings but of course much more important, there will be savings in ill health and the loss of life. In my home province alone, 1,900 lives a year end prematurely because of the pollution in the atmosphere, a good deal of which is related to the burning of fossil fuel.

  +-(1235)  

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: There is only 30 seconds left. I do not think in fairness to the debate that I can ask for a question and an answer, so I will resume debate and extend that period slightly longer.

+-

    Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to join this important debate on Kyoto. I thank the official opposition for choosing this as the subject matter today. It gives many of us the opportunity to voice our concerns with Kyoto and to voice our concerns with its position on Kyoto. That is what it boils down to.

    I also thank the hon. member for Windsor--St. Clair for sharing his time with me and for using the first 10 minutes of our 20-minute spot to dispel some of the myths that seem to be clouding the debate around Kyoto.

    I have said in previous speeches that I think the hon. member for Red Deer must have the toughest job in Canada right now because he is the guy who is trying to explain to Canadians what the Canadian Alliance position is on Kyoto. A couple of years ago the Alliance started out in complete denial. It was the flat earth society saying there was no global warming. It moved on from that position to agree that perhaps there was some global warming but the science surrounding the conclusions was flawed so it still could not accept it. Frankly it has been a moving target ever since. It is difficult for some of us who are interested in the issue to follow where the Alliance is on a day to day basis but I do admire the dance that the member does.

    I am here to bring another perspective to the debate. One of the most prevalent myths about Kyoto is that it is going to kill Canadian jobs. Ironically, the third largest private sector union in the country, which is in fact the union dealing with energy workers, the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union, at its convention recently very publicly passed a resolution calling upon the federal government to ratify Kyoto. It called for a just transition in case there are jobs affected.

    The union itself, as the union representing the very workers who could stand to be affected, is not afraid of Kyoto. In fact it is looking at opportunities stemming from ratifying Kyoto and meeting our commitments under Kyoto. Perhaps that is one more sacred cow to the flat earth people's argument gourd, to mix metaphors.

    The just transition movement is gaining momentum. I myself in a previous incarnation as a union leader did some research regarding the members whom I represented in the carpenters union. At one time it was heresy to speak against building more generating stations or more power plants because we wanted those jobs. We were compelled to do some research to separate the myth from the reality.

    We found that if we commit ourselves to demand side management instead of supply side management of our energy resources, there is three to seven times the number of person years of employment, in other words, if we could embrace the idea that a unit of energy harvested from the existing system is exactly the same as a unit of energy generated at a generating plant except for a number of important things. For one thing, it creates three to seven times the number of jobs to generate. Also it is available and online immediately instead of borrowing billions of dollars on the open market to build a new nuclear power plant and then waiting seven years for the plant to be built before we get our first unit of energy. The very minute I undertake a conservation measure, that unit of energy is online and available on sale to someone else. Plus, and this is a big plus, if we consider demand side management, we actually reduce the operating costs for the user by 30% to 50%.

    Government is a prime consumer of energy. If we embrace energy efficiency, we can reduce our operating costs by 40% thus further mitigating any financial impact we may have appreciated by this change in lifestyle. That is what we are selling here, a change in lifestyle.

    The last and most important thing, if we embrace demand side management and energy efficiency, it reduces hundreds of thousands of tonnes, megatonnes of harmful greenhouse gas emissions.

    That is the difference between harvesting a unit of energy from the existing system through demand side management measures and generating a new unit of energy, whether it be in the tar sands, the coal mines, the oil wells or even a hydroelectric unit of energy which is cleaner but still has an environmental impact.

  +-(1240)  

    We have to get our minds around those things as we move from the most consumptive energy users in the world to efficiency. Canada uses more energy per capita than any other country in the world. I think Kyoto is doing us a favour because it is driving us toward efficiency.

    How many people in the House of Commons have an energy efficient shower head in their bathroom? For $12 we can buy an energy efficient shower head and it will save $190 a year. That is the figure the hon. member for Windsor West cited; I have heard $75 a year in energy costs for a $12 purchase. We all know that if we put $12 down, we save $75 a year. Not every Canadian has one of those shower units in their washrooms yet. They should have. Maybe by our debating this in the House of Commons today, more will.

    Something as simple as a computerized thermostat on the wall of our home will automatically turn down the temperature at night to a comfortable 18 or 19 degrees. In case we forget to turn down the thermostat at night when we go to bed, it does it automatically. It can save $300 a year and it costs $30 to install.

    We can extrapolate that logic in the whole public works and government services regime in view of the fact that we own 68,000 buildings in this country. I hope this debate today and our ratifying Kyoto will finally motivate the government to seriously undertake an energy retrofit of all the federally owned buildings as a pilot project. It could be a demonstration project to show the private sector what can be done and to dispel even further the fearmongering that exists around Kyoto.

    We should embrace Kyoto. We are being pushed in a direction we should be going in voluntarily. We have waited a little too long and now we have to do it. For a while it was a good idea. Now it is an essential idea.

    We have already heard in today's speeches and we will probably hear again later today about the thousands of jobs lost, et cetera. The very workers who stand to be affected are members of the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union. I was at the convention in Toronto when it passed a resolution. I can even read the resolution if time permits. It calls on government to ratify Kyoto and calls upon government to meet the Kyoto targets. Those workers are not afraid of this, so why should we be afraid?

    I represented the carpenters union. Those workers are no longer afraid of the idea of greening. They recognize there is more job creation potential in green technology than there is in the old smokestack industries of building more and more generating stations. That is not even taking into consideration the valid point made by the member for Windsor--St. Clair.

    There is also the idea that we could be developing the technology here and marketing it around the world. We could be a centre of excellence for energy efficiency. What more appropriate country in the world to become a centre of excellence for energy efficiency than the most energy consumptive country in the world in a cold northern climate?

    We can meet our Kyoto targets without freezing in the dark. We can meet our Kyoto targets without costing thousands of jobs. We believe that if we do embrace Kyoto, we are opening a new door to a whole new era for Canadian workers, because we are only just beginning to explore the wonderful energy efficient ideas that are out there.

    Already Canada produces the best windows in the world. We export triple pane windows with argon gas sealed units that are state of the art, the best in the world. We have only scratched the surface of those industries. We also have some of the best thermostat control units in the world. We export them around the world. Those are just the very beginning. I repeat that there is as many as seven times the person years of employment in demand side management and energy efficiency as there is in supply side management or the generating of units of energy through generating stations.

  +-(1245)  

    The workers involved and their unions and representatives are not afraid of Kyoto. Why are we hearing from the Canadian Alliance and some of the opponents to Kyoto that they are afraid we will lose thousands of jobs. If we were progressive and looking forward, we would embrace this opportunity to move into a whole new era of energy efficiency in the country.

+-

    Mrs. Karen Redman (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am very heartened to hear my colleagues across the way embrace Kyoto the way they are. My hon. colleague covered the fact that basically that Canadians are in tune with the government and the government has listened to Canadians. They know what Kyoto is about, that it is good for us today and that it will be good for generations to come.

    He made a very good point when he talked about workers in factories recognizing there would be a technology change of which they could be a part. Truly Kyoto could be a lost opportunity if Canada does not get in line and decide that we will be at the cutting edge of this.

    Could my hon. colleague comment on some of the changes that have happened? Indeed, in the resource sector we have BP, Shell and many Canadian companies that recognize this is the way of the future. We also have Technology Partnership Canada and the Canada Foundation for Innovation and through those the government is helping facilitate the very kinds of technological advances that will lead to new jobs being kept in Canada. Could my colleague comment on that?

+-

    Mr. Pat Martin: Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the hon. member raising those important issues. I believe the first point she made was that she was heartened to hear people on this side of the House interested in and understanding Kyoto. She went on to say that most Canadians in fact do understand the principles of Kyoto and why it is so important.

    What she failed to say and what I will add, it seems that the only people who do not understand or embrace Kyoto are those people sitting on the benches on my side of the House, the members of the Canadian Alliance. When we survey Canadians, they understand. When we survey the other opposition parties, they understand. Therefore there is one very small segment of society, the members of the Canadian Alliance and perhaps the few people they represent who do not.

    In the second point the member made, even the oil industry, the industries that will be affected, have recognized that change is necessary and they are willing to embrace change and make the necessary changes without the accompanying fearmongering et cetera. This is not something that people are concerned about to the point that we would believe if we listened to members of the Canadian Alliance.

    The point is well taken that Canadians are ready, they embrace change, they understand Kyoto, and the Canadian industry is willing to be innovative and to respond and meet that challenge.

    We see Kyoto as an opportunity, not a problem.

+-

    Mr. Jim Gouk (Kootenay—Boundary—Okanagan, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member from the NDP said that we do not understand Kyoto. I will ask him if he understands some of the basic concepts of Kyoto because I believe that Kyoto is one of the greatest attempts by the government to hoodwink the Canadian people.

    How does the hon. member think Kyoto will deal with the polluting of our streams, the poisoning of our soil, acid rain and pollutants in the air, given that the target of Kyoto is strictly or primarily CO2, a naturally occurring element, not a pollutant and that man-made CO2 is less than half of one per cent of the total amount of CO2 generated by this planet? What difference does he think it will make by reducing a certain percentage of that? If we were to totally eliminate man-made CO2, we are talking about less than half of one per cent. That is from the leading Ph.D. climatologist in the country. Further, 97% of the greenhouse effect on our atmosphere is water vapour.

    What exactly is the Kyoto accord supposed to do and how will it deal with pollution because that is the buzzword that everybody keeps throwing out to try to scare or shame Canadians into signing onto something that will do absolutely nothing in terms of pollution in the country?

  +-(1250)  

+-

    Mr. Pat Martin: Mr. Speaker, in 1993 I was part of the global climate change task force that toured five different cities across the country. We were dealing with Rio at that time. Those very questions were asked because that was how primitive the debate was at that time. We were at the infancy of the debate and starting to draw attention to climate change. I think the global climate change task force came away satisfied that the issues of climate change and global warming had a secondary impact and that was the air pollution side. There were two parallel tracks.

    One of the recommended methodologies by which Canada will meet its Kyoto targets will be to look at the urban transit strategy. The emissions that will be avoided by a rapid transit urban strategy will include, not only CO2, but also other poisonous hydrocarbons such as mercury. A number of pollutants will be eliminated as we seek to reduce other greenhouse gas emissions. Poisons will be reduced in concert with the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.

    I hope that answers some of the hon. member's questions.

+-

    Mr. John Herron (Fundy—Royal, PC): Thank you, Mr. Speaker, for the opportunity to join my colleagues in the House in debating the motion before us today. I would like to use the motion itself as a framework for the remarks I will be making. It states:

That, before the Kyoto Protocol is ratified by the House, there should be an implementation plan that Canadians understand...

    I would have said with which they are fully engaged. It goes on:

--that sets out the benefits, how the targets are to be reached and its costs.

    It seems to be a very measured motion. That is a minimum that we owe Canadians. The Progressive Conservative Party of Canada has full intention of supporting this motion. It is incredibly measured, but the words of this motion are the words of the member of Parliament for LaSalle—Émard. It will be very curious how members of Parliament on the other side of this chamber proceed on this and whether they will support what I consider to be a very reasonable approach.

    It also reflects the Progressive Conservative position on climate change, and that is we categorically do not support the blind ratification of a legally binding accord. The minimum we owe Canadians is a comprehensive plan that has a sector by sector analysis, broken down province by province, that ultimately evolves with the provincial consensus in the agreement and that Canadians really understand what behavioural expectations their national government has for them. That is a reasonable approach. This is a legally binding accord.

    Reference was made a little earlier to Rex Murphy, a political commentator. He wondered why the provinces were not on board?” The analogy was that the provinces could not find the ship. The Liberal government has been bungling this file more than half a decade.

    Illustration of that very issue is that our Kyoto target of minus 6% below 1990 level between 2008-2012 is a reduction of 240 megatonnes. We also know that the Minister of the Environment on the front end of September stated that the target was to make it 170 megatonnes, then try to renegotiate it at the eleventh hour. That type of Anderson accounting is the type of initiative that means we plan to ratify an accord as a nation, then not keep our word. Blind ratification is irresponsible. It sullies our reputation as a nation if we go forward with what I would deem to be disingenuous ratification in that regard.

    I want to highlight a couple of illustrations about how ad hoc the government's approach has been in this calendar year on developing the implementation plan with respect the Kyoto accord itself. We all know less than a month ago cabinet was supposed to meet to see this so-called peekaboo plan so it could endorse it. Then there was no plan. In fact the Prime Minister, when he spoke to an audience in Calgary the week before, said that we would have a plan. Then he said that we would have a plan sometime between now and 2008-12.

    We also know that even last evening after many of our hard-working staff had finally gone home, in this instance my staff had gone home, a notice of a briefing was sent out at 7:35 p.m. The government had finally developed some form of a plan, put the work together in a PowerPoint presentation and members of Parliament were informed that there would be a briefing this morning at 9:30. Anybody can understand that kind of last minute planning really does not show a lot of good faith.

  +-(1255)  

    This is not just recent history. The Government of Canada went to Kyoto without a plan, without a target or a timeline to speak of. It was one of the most ill-prepared governments at the summit. I had the privilege of attending that summit, however I was very saddened by how ill-prepared our government was as compared to the rest of the industrialized nations which are members of this particular accord itself.

    We all understand where things started to unravel. On November 12, 1997, the provinces finally met and handed the government a consensus. They agreed to stabilization levels of greenhouse gases to 1990 levels by a certain target; it was heading toward 2010. The very next morning the then minister of natural resources said that might or might not be our target.

    It really broke faith with the provinces from that point on, so much so that the provinces and parliamentarians began to assault the then minister of environment, the hon. Christine Stewart, on the fact that her government had not provided her with a comprehensive approach in terms of what it was doing. I do not blame her individually in that regard. The government said that Minister Stewart would be empowered to negotiate the international aspects of climate change in the Kyoto protocol and the Minister of Natural Resources would be responsible for domestic implementation.

    That so-called strategy has gone by the wayside because we have not even heard from the Minister of Natural Resources on this file and it has been usurped by the Minister of the Environment who has been Canada's lone spokesperson, although he does have a multiple level of positions in terms of what our target is, whether it is 240 megatonnes or 170. This depends on who one is speaking to on any particular day.

    I would like to make one clear comment though. A progressive country like Canada must have a progressive climate change strategy. Canadians produce the highest amount of greenhouse gases, on a per capita basis, of all industrialized nations. We contribute 2% of the problem in this world of in excess of 6 billion persons. With 30 million persons, we contribute 2% of the world's greenhouse gases.

  +-(1300)  

[Translation]

    The objective of reducing greenhouse gases is not being challenged. Canada must ensure that it does its share to achieve net and constant reductions, because it produces more greenhouse gases per capita than any other OECD country, 2% of world's greenhouse gas emissions.

[English]

    As an illustration of how other countries were more prepared than Canada was in that regard, the Swedes, for instance, went to the European Union and said that it was a cold climate country with an export driven, energy intensive economy and a large land mass relative to a small population. It added that with an export driven, energy intensive economy, it was tougher for it to make the target.

    Sweden only has a 20% reduction of what the rest of the EU is doing. It had done its homework. It was a tougher role for the Swedes to fulfil than the rest of the European nations. Sweden's circumstances were taken into account. Canada, in contrast, had no plan, no modelling to that effect, the same way the Swedes and the Aussies had done in that regard.

    The science is clear. Climate change is happening. The world community must put its shoulder to the wheel to ensure that it reverses this particular trend. We must also ensure that we have a plan we can live up to and that we honour our word. If we merely ratify an accord that we do not implement, we dishonour our nation, and it becomes a disingenuous ratification in that regard.

    We get nowhere challenging the science. An argument can be made, and I have made it in the past, that one of the reasons the Government of Canada is ill-prepared is that it has taken a similar position as that of the leader of the opposition in 1997, Mr. Manning, when he took the approach of fighting the science of climate change. This has been, in more recent days, replicated by some members of the Canadian Alliance but not all. If we go down that track it irradicates our capacity to ask those heartfelt questions to keep the government accountable, and to assist with a plan if we do not believe that there is even a problem.

    On the science issue I would like to add this aspect. Carbon dioxide itself may not be a pollutant that can cause an effect on human health on its own. However every activity of an industrial nature that produces CO2 also produces other gases which are greenhouse gases and, in particular, contribute to smog and pollution, such as nitrogen oxide. Therefore, investing in public transportation does prevent pollution, such as nitrogen oxide, and also reduces carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas.

    This reflects the essence of what the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada has advocated all along. Our members have advocated what we term as a no regret strategy of initiatives we should be doing anyway: massive tax incentives for the research and development of renewable sources of energy; tax incentives and R and D on energy efficiency initiatives; and similar incentives of that nature with respect to the utilization of renewable sources of energy and energy efficiency itself.

    We advocated in our platform of 2000, and it was highlighted by the member from Winnipeg Centre as well, that the Government of Canada implement a program to retrofit federal government buildings within its own capital budget. Not only would that have an immense payback to the taxpayer, it would also show that the federal government is willing to lead by example.

    We have also called for the Government of Canada to adopt a higher emphasis on blended fuels.

    These are elements that the Government of Canada is now talking about. However, every one of these initiatives could have been put in place in January of 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 or 2002. The Government of Canada has been asleep at the switch. None of these initiatives were put in place. Most of these are financial instruments, tax incentives. It would not cost the Government of Canada anything to speak of, given that there is so little industry in those sectors right now and we are not foregoing any revenues that the treasury is now taking in. Almost every one of these initiatives was in the purview of the then Minister of Finance, the member of Parliament for LaSalle—Émard.

  +-(1305)  

    If the Government of Canada was asleep at the switch on climate change and not adopting a no regret strategy it was because of the lack of leadership that we had, not only from the Prime Minister, but more in particular from the then finance minister. More and more Canadians are now recognizing that particular deficiency.

    Where do we go? We know we do not have a comprehensive plan that has a sector by sector analysis where the provinces have a consensus and an agreement. If the accord is ratified without the active participation of the provinces the accord cannot be implemented.

    What the PC Party is advocating is clearly what provincial governments are advocating and members of Parliament in the Chamber are as well. We are advocating to have not only a made in Canada plan, but we are also advocating to have a North American made regime. I call it a Kyoto annex, but a non-binding accord.

    If we had the capacity to rope in the Americans who are the number one emitters of carbon dioxide we would bring in our largest trading partner, a country where we export one-third of our gross domestic product. That made in Canada plan would become a made in North America initiative and would replicate something we have done in the past.

    This is exactly the same framework when we proposed the acid rain treaty in 1987 and had a comprehensive North American strategy on sulphur dioxide power generating plants that built upon an arrangement that we had made with the Europeans, known as the 35% club, where we had pledged to reduce SO2 emissions by 35%.

    The Americans initially fought us on the science, but because it made sense to their state governments such as, New Hampshire, New York and Vermont we were able to develop a North American regime.

    Where is the indication that the Americans are interested in participating in a project of that sort? We do know that business hates uncertainty. Business likes to have established rules. We should engage the Americans and develop a North American plan to prevent the United States from having at its worst case 50 climate change regimes. Some 10 or 12 state governments are already going in that direction. If we were able to harness the interests of state governments and work with their national government toward a national strategy where the Americans and Mexicans would team up with us for a North American regime it would replicate something that we have had success with before. It does more for the climate, given that Canada has used its special relationship that was once stronger. We should use that special relationship to bring the Americans in who are the number one emitters of greenhouse gases as well.

    I wish to emphasize what the motion actually says. I compliment the environment critic of the Canadian Alliance who I have worked with, although we have different objectives from time to time, for the wording of the motion itself. This is the minimum we owe Canadians, to provide a plan that is done sector by sector, province by province and that Canadians are fully engaged with and has a provincial consensus.

    The minimum we owe this Chamber is that whatever plan has been tabled to the provinces come back to Parliament. We should strike a joint Senate and House committee, or perhaps just a House committee if some people have some objections with that, but I would rather have both Chambers involved which would express the special nature of the committee itself. That committee should have the right to tour the country and engage Canadians, health care professionals, environmentalists, the provinces, and hear from industry so that we have a comprehensive debate.

    The Liberal government has been having this peekaboo plan, drawn up on the back of a napkin, that has no costing whatsoever, that falls 70 megatonnes short, and is so disingenuous.

  +-(1310)  

    We are advocating that all parliamentarians embrace our idea, which I know is supported by provincial governments in Alberta and New Brunswick and is resonating in the Province of Quebec as well. We would tour the country and see whether whatever plan we have is actually doable and manageable and that we know the costs, the impacts and the opportunities that are there. Why would we deprive ourselves of the opportunity to do that?

    There is another thing I would like to add. The member of Parliament for LaSalle--Émard made a very aggressive speech the other day, which members may have heard, about the democratic deficit in Parliament. This is the largest public policy issue before the House at the moment. At the very minimum, he owes it to Parliament and this chamber to be in the House and vote on his own words, on whether he supports what he said earlier this week. I challenge the former minister of finance from LaSalle--Émard to be in the chamber when we vote on this on Tuesday.

+-

    Mrs. Karen Redman (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I believe you would find consent for the following order:

    That at the conclusion of the present debate on the opposition motion, all questions necessary to dispose of this motion be deemed put, a recorded division deemed requested and deferred until Tuesday, October 29, 2002, at 3 p.m.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Does the hon. parliamentary secretary have the consent of the House to propose the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    The Deputy Speaker: The House has heard the terms of the motion. Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    (Motion agreed to)

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the position of the previous speaker which he stated very clearly. We should also just put on the record the exact wording of the member for LaSalle--Émard, if I may quote:

    What I really believe in terms of Kyoto is that before there is a vote we have to have a plan. And it has to be a plan that Canadians understand. One that sets out the benefits, one that sets out exactly how we're going to hit the targets and one that sets out the costs.

    I think that is very important. The member has referred to this and now we have the exact words on the record, but I wonder if he does not find it disrespectful, if he could elaborate on, for instance, the technical briefing on Kyoto, which occurred Friday at 1 p.m. before a long weekend. There was no prior announcement. Today we found out, as he mentioned, that there was a briefing this morning. The Liberal caucus had theirs at 8:30 a.m. with two ministers. Ours began at 9:45 a.m., just prior to the opening of the debate. Obviously we would not be able to attend and ask our questions.

    I wonder if does not find that disrespectful to Parliament. Or what is the government really trying to hide?

+-

    Mr. John Herron: Mr. Speaker, I share the sentiment of the Canadian Alliance critic for the environment on the aspect of the words of the member for LaSalle--Émard and whether he has the political courage to be in the chamber for Tuesday's vote. We should see what kind of respect he actually has for Parliament, which breeds the very next point as well. That is, there is indeed a disrespect for Parliament which has been exhibited time and time again by the Liberal Party of Canada and which has wreaked havoc with respect to parliamentary traditions, beyond any other particular government.

    The fact that the e-mail went out last night, barely giving opposition members and maybe even government members the opportunity to have access to the plan, to have any kind of scrutiny before this debate, is shallow. It is disrespectful to Parliament. It really is an embarrassment to the institution that we should hold so dear, the Parliament of Canada, our principal institution.

    I know why we were not given too much of a heads-up about the document before this debate. The reason is that there is very little detail in the document itself. There is no costing. The plan itself falls 70 megatonnes short. There is no reference as to whether the provinces even think that any of these initiatives are doable, meaning that they are amenable to implementing them, because a number of these initiatives are regulatory aspects that are in provincial jurisdiction. I think that the photocopiers here in Ottawa were running rapidly last night, with the government trying to at least show that it had the remnants of a framework of a plan.

  +-(1315)  

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I will be sharing my time with the member for Athabasca.

    It is certainly my pleasure to be able to stand in the House and speak further about Kyoto and what it means. My first comment is that I get tired of listening to members across the way and the Prime Minister saying that we in our party do not care about future generations, that we do not care about our grandchildren and our children. Of course that is totally not true. We care every bit as much about our children and our grandchildren as anybody across the way. I know I cannot use a prop, but I have a picture of my granddaughters here if anybody wants to look at it. I certainly care about them every bit as much as members on that side care about theirs.

    On the street, what are people saying about Kyoto? They are asking four questions. Their first question is, what is Kyoto? The Ontario minister of environment says that a lot of people are telling him that it is a car. The level of understanding about Kyoto is very, very light. There are some who understand it totally, but the main question out there is, what is Kyoto? People want to know that. The government has not done its job of telling them.

    The next question is, how does it affect me? What will be the economic cost? What will happen to my gas bills, to my job, to my kids? What is going to happen because of this? The government should be providing answers. What is it going to cost? And that is in full costing, as others have talked about.

    The third question is, how will it help the environment? People really care about the environment. Certainly everyone in my constituency does. Right across Canada in all the town hall meetings I have attended, people care about the environment.

    Finally, the fourth question is this: Is there a better way than Kyoto?

    I want to talk about the last two questions. Other members of our caucus will talk about the first two. I want to emphasize what this will do for the environment. I am the environment critic and I believe that is what I should be focusing on. Also, is there a better way?

    First, let us go back and examine the government's environmental record. It is rather fitting, I think, that the environment commissioner gave her report a couple of days ago. She commented on the government's record in her document, talking about Rio in 1992 and beyond and the 27 guiding principles that the Canadian government agreed to. The commissioner has done a report card on how well the government has done.

    Of course the government also signed the UN framework convention on climate change to reduce CO2 levels by the year 2000. It has signed some 200 other international agreements since then. The results given by the commissioner of the environment are based on 60 audits. She states:

    The federal government is not investing enough–enough of its human and financial resources; its legislative, regulatory, and economic powers; or its political leadership–to fulfill its sustainable development commitments.

    The result is a growing environmental, health and financial burden that our children will have to bear, the same children, I assume, that the Prime Minister and the party across the way think so much of. She went on to describe the government's huge environmental “deficit”.

    The government has other deficits--

  +-(1320)  

+-

    Hon. Charles Caccia: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I apologize to the hon. member for interrupting but it seems to me that he is addressing the report by the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development, which really has no relevance to the motion before us today unless the hon. member has an oblique way of again finding his way on the motion before us.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: With the greatest of respect to a long-serving member, I find great difficulty in finding a point of order in his intervention, but on the matter of relevancy, in fact that is the substance of the issue. I think that all members are cognizant of it. I am sure that the member's intervention will be very relevant to the topic before us.

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills: Mr. Speaker, we are about to sign the most important international document that we have ever signed in the history of the country. Let us look at our record on the other ones to see how well we have done. The commissioner says we have done a lousy job. We have failed the course. We have not delivered on our environmental commitment. That is why it is relevant.

    In fact, in signing Kyoto in 1997 we agreed to 6% below 1990 levels. In 1999 we were 15% above 1990 levels. By the year 2000 we were 20% above those levels. By the year 2010 we are going to be 30% above those levels. With Kyoto, by 2005 we are supposed to show substantial improvement in our record. How are we going to do that when we keep increasing? Signing an international agreement that is just talk and that we are not going to deliver on is extremely relevant to what we are talking about today.

    I am going to go even further and say that it is rather deceptive to tell Canadians that we are going to hit these targets, but then we have news conferences where we say we will not hit the Kyoto targets, that gap of 240 megatonnes. We are only going to hit 170. That is fine, but we are signing an international agreement and talking about ratifying it and we are not even going to hit that level.

    As well, of course, we constantly hear in the House about the mixing of Kyoto, greenhouse gases and climate change with pollution. If we really want to deal with pollution there are ways to do it that are much cheaper than signing an international accord to deal with it. I will not go through the science of what makes up smog and what makes up greenhouse gases. I think most members know that there is a major difference between those two.

    Kyoto will not help pollution. Once Canadians find that out they will understand the deception. Should we deal with pollution? Yes, we should. Do Canadians want us to? Yes, they do. But it is not through Kyoto that we will do it.

    So when we hear that we do not care about the environment, let me say that we are getting sick and tired of that kind of comment.

    Let us go on and look at the better way, the second of the questions Canadians are asking. Yes, there is a better way. There is a much better way. Had the government shown leadership much earlier, we could have been a long way down the track in finding this better way. Countries like Denmark, Germany and even the U.S. are a lot further down the track of finding alternatives to our carbon based industries than we are.

    What can we do? I think there are three obvious areas that we need to explore. The first one is the area of conservation. Few of us would disagree that there are a lot of things we could do to improve the use of energy, from retrofitting houses to encouraging people to use triple-pane glass. Those are all things that we should be emphasizing, but they come at a cost. We have to be sure that people understand who is going to bear that cost. It is going to be the consumer. It is not going to be some mythical government that is going to give a $1,000 grant. That will not cover this retrofitting.

    With regard to energy efficiency, just changing light bulbs will make a lot of difference. Some people over there want to heckle, but that is because they do not like the green message. They just talk about it. They never deliver it. It is fine for them to throw in their little comments, but there is a lot we can do. We can target the uses. We can use oil and gas more efficiently.

    Companies like BP, Shell and Suncor want to be part of this. They are investing in it. They see a good future in being part of this. It is not that industry wants to pollute everything or does not care. Industries do care and want to be part of the solution and the conservation, but they cannot do it on artificial targets, on a non-plan that the government has, with the uncertainty, the investment freeze that this will cause and all of that which other members are going to talk about.

  +-(1325)  

    All kinds of transitional fuels are now being developed. It is great to see in the manual that we are going to use 25% ethanol but where is the feed stock? Where are the plants? How long will it take? There are many unanswered questions.

    We have a geothermal plant in my riding that heats a recreation unit and a swimming pool at Sylvan Lake, Alberta. They do not need gas or electricity because they use geothermal. That is the future, that is the way we are going and that is what the government does not have a vision for.

    The other side of the issue is alternate energies such as wind power, solar power, biomass and hydrogen fuel cells. It is exciting what is happening in that area. The cost of alternate energies is being reduced by 50% every 10 years. They will become competitive around 2040 or 2050. With a government commitment, not just this government but the international community as a whole, they could happen much sooner.

    Kyoto is a bad deal. It is a bureaucracy. It is inefficient and it is filled with mediocrity. It will be an economical and environmental disaster. We should focus on conservation, alternate energy, research and development, substantial climate change science, and cooperation with industry and the provinces. Ratification should be put off until we have a well conceived plan and we know the costs. We should stop being environmental boy scouts and stop signing things symbolically. This is probably the most important issue facing Canadians in this century.

+-

    Mr. Julian Reed (Halton, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the Kyoto debate is refreshing. I commend the hon. member for Red Deer for talking about alternate energy, renewable energy and energy development but I do not think those words would have issued forth from the Alliance Party if we had not brought Kyoto to the front of the stage.

    An hon. member: Where are the ethanol plants?

    Mr. Julian Reed: My hon. friend asked me where the ethanol plants were to put 10% ethanol into 25% of gasoline over 10 years. Three are now planned for Saskatchewan, as my hon. friend might know, and a major one is planned for southwestern Ontario. Those two together will provide enough feed stock to provide that very modest target.

    I was interested in hearing my hon. friend talk about greenhouse gases and CO2 as if he were looking at it as a noxious gas. In a previous debate I remember that he supported CO2 by saying that it was a great thing because it made things grow. At that time I challenged him to sit in a room filled with CO2 for an afternoon and that if he could walk out I would give him a month's salary. I repeat that challenge.

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills: Mr. Speaker, it is hard to know what to say to that. I appreciate that the member has done a lot of work on alternate energy, but as far as CO2 is concerned maybe we should just leave that to the plants. They use it in photosynthesis and that is probably not the main issue.

    As far as his interest in biology is concerned, I could walk him through the seventies and share some of my involvement as a biologist in many environmental issues and my real concern for our environment.

    As far as ethanol plants are concerned, I have one in my riding which probably will be forced to close down later this year because the feed stock wheat has become so expensive that it is not in the market for it. The market is primarily in the U.S. which is where it is being shipped because it is not selling in Canada. We should be selling it but to get to 25% is a huge leap from the under 5% that we are at now. When that kind of number is being thrown out we had better be able to substantiate it with how to get there. Obviously this very weak plan does not do that.

  +-(1330)  

+-

    Mr. Dale Johnston (Wetaskiwin, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I listened to my colleague from Red Deer speak about how important the protocol is for Canadians, and I agree with him. I have also read that Canadians are extremely interested in this issue. They are interested in how it will impact on their environment as well as how it will impact on their standard of living. Will it affect their jobs? How will it affect their energy prices? Will it cost them more to heat or to cool their homes? Depending on what part of Canada we live, we either have to heat our homes for part of the year or cool them for another part of the year, which is the case in Ottawa where it gets hot in the summertime.

    If this is so important to Canadians do they not deserve to have the government put forth a plan telling them how this will affect them? Has my colleague heard how the government plans to do that?

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills: Mr. Speaker, the only thing I know is that the government said that it would not need more than four days in the House to inform all of the people across Canada and answer all those questions. People really do want to know. It will take a real mind shift.

    According to the document we received this morning, we will have to agree under the protocol to one tonne less emissions. The average person in Canada is responsible for about five tonnes of emissions a year. We are asking them to reduce that by one tonne for us to hit our targets. That is a pretty major decision that Canadians will have to make. How are we going to inform Canadians and make them understand that, and get them on side when we refuse to talk to them about it and the government will not even talk about it in the House.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: I overheard some members being concerned about the old Dodge truck. I inquired and apparently it is getting closer and closer to retirement.

    Resuming debate, the hon. member for Athabasca.

+-

    Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I am certainly glad to hear that because I am sure, by the sound of it, it is a very polluting vehicle.

    I am pleased to join in the debate today on the motion. I am particularly pleased because it is our motion, and yet it literally mirrors the words of the former finance minister who made a speech just the other night on the subject. It also very closely resembles the demands made by the health minister not very long ago in the province of Alberta. I am looking forward to the vote on the issue and seeing how that all shakes out.

    I would like to go back a bit on this issue because it amazes me how the rhetoric has grown around the issue. I remember attending a federal-provincial ministers' conference in Regina just prior to Kyoto where the provinces and the federal government came to an agreement on Canada's position going into Kyoto.

    From the Kyoto meeting onward, there has simply been one betrayal after another of the provinces by the federal government, yet the plan that was released this morning, which we have had just a little time to look at, quite clearly states in a number of places that this plan cannot work without the cooperation of the provinces and Canadians.

    I, for the life of me, cannot understand why the government would expect cooperation from the provinces. Certainly that cooperation is not being demonstrated today. The vast majority of the provinces are against ratification. How do we go from there?

    It is really something to hear how the arguments on both sides have evolved. I know that our side certainly will never convince the true believers, although I know there are a number of people who believe in it for political reasons, but there are true believers out there who believe that if we do not do something about Kyoto that it will be too dry where it is supposed to be wet and too wet where it is supposed to be dry, or we will have harsher winters or milder winters, or whatever, but we do not expect it would be caused by Kyoto. I am really surprised at that because I have not seen one shred of evidence, quite frankly, that would indicate that Kyoto, or climate change for that matter, has anything to do with more severe weather.

    I have limited knowledge of meteorology but the experts I have spoken to have suggested that extreme weather is caused by warm weather in the tropics moving into more temperate areas further away from the tropics and the mixing of that air causes severe weather. In fact if it is warming more in the northern latitudes and southern latitudes than anywhere else, then that temperature should become equalized and there should be less severe weather, but who knows the rationale for that.

    I know we do not want to get into a debate on the science of the whole thing but perhaps it would be a wise idea to go back and have another look at the science. However it is not science to say that at one time this planet was much warmer than it is today. In fact, the polar regions were tropical.

    I spent a good part of my life drilling for oil and gas in Arctic regions and core samples consistently showed tropical plant and animal matter in those bit cuttings. That is not science, that is archeological fact. When we went to school I am sure all of us learned about a number of ice ages where glaciers moved across North America and across a good part of Canada and then retreated again when the weather and the climate warmed. So clearly there is a cycle that repeats itself.

  +-(1335)  

    Certainly that cycle has included some catastrophic weather changes that wiped out the dinosaurs. I will not go where Ralph Klein went with the dinosaurs, but before we suggest that it is being caused by man, someone out there should explain what caused that cycle in eons past. It certainly was not man who drove any of that.

    Just for a moment I would like to look at the industry perspective on this issue. Industry has shown real responsibility on the Kyoto issue. It has been for some time since before Kyoto that many companies, municipalities and communities in Canada have been enrolled in the voluntary challenge program. They have done some wonderful things. I have attended a couple of awards nights where those achievements were recognized.

    Certainly, in my own riding, Syncrude, one of the major producers of heavy oil and one of the bogeymen in the whole issue of carbon dioxide emissions, has won numerous awards. In fact a number of producers of heavy oil from the tar sands have done amazing things in the direction of reducing the intensity of their emissions, in other words, moving the emissions per barrel down well below the Kyoto target. However because the Prime Minister is in Washington promising George W. Bush that we are his answer to energy security and that we are developing the tar sands to be that secure energy source for the United States, the production of barrels is rising dramatically and the emissions are going up and up.

    We cannot have it both ways. We either have economic development, growth, jobs and wealth creation, or if we go the Kyoto way, we will have stagnant economic growth, loss of jobs and loss of wealth creation. We simply cannot have it both ways.

    Another thing has really bothered me, and I have been approached by a number of companies in the industrial sector on it. It is the issue that the government, early on and partly with the announcement of the voluntary challenge program, through repeated promises by the Prime Minister, the environment minister and the former natural resources minister spoke of credit for early action on emissions reductions.

    A fair number of companies invested heavily in those early actions. Some others invested less heavily, but nevertheless did things. Suncor, for example, invested in wind power and invested with Niagara Mohawk in nuclear power with the understanding and belief that the government would live up to its promise to give credit for that action.

    It seems that the government is reneging on that promise. In the plan released today there is no mention of credit for early action by those companies. If we treat people like that, how do we expect to get their cooperation? It just does not work.

    I am running short of time. I have some ideas that perhaps we should look at. One would be to stop this process because there is not a catastrophic climate change event about to hit us in the face like the one that destroyed the dinosaurs. We have time. Let us step back. Let us go back and perhaps do what the U.S. did before it made its decision.

    We should set up a joint parliamentary committee to look at the whole issue, the science and the economics. We should bring in the experts. Let us listen to them on both sides and then let us have the vote in the House that we are proposing to have so that we have a better basis than the rhetoric I have heard on which to make a decision. That would be wise to do. Certainly a number of experts across the country have suggested that it would be the right thing to do.

  +-(1340)  

    If we were to step back and take a deep breath, maybe we could put aside some of the extreme rhetoric, like the Prime Minister saying yesterday in the House that in 30 years people are going to be dying. In the booklet released this morning there is a reference to 600 people dying. I do not know where in the world the evidence came from for those remarks.

    In response to my question the other day in the House, the environment minister denied that the government was looking at international emissions credit trading. Yet in a number of places in the plan that was released this morning, it was proposed not only for the government but for the private sector to engage in international emissions trading.

    We need to step back from some of this extreme rhetoric, get real and take a good look at the issue. Maybe we could come to a consensus in the House and deal with it more sensibly.

+-

    Mr. Werner Schmidt (Kelowna, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, it is always useful when we get into a debate like this to listen to someone who has actually been in the field, who actually did look into some of the geology that exists in the northern part of the hemisphere as well as other parts of the world and to recognize that all is not as it appears sometimes. I thank my colleague for doing that.

    The purpose of my question is to go to another spot and that is with regard to the plan released this morning. There are three points on which I would ask the member to comment.

    Is the plan one that he thinks is implementable, the way it was presented? Could the plan actually be implemented?

    Did the plan give confidence in the sense that there is sufficient credibility so we can actually believe that some of things that are in it could be achieved?

    Was there any indication in the plan released this morning as to what it would cost to implement it, in terms of the actual finances that would be required and also the resources, personnel and expertise that would be necessary to meet the provisions of the Kyoto protocol?

  +-(1345)  

+-

    Mr. David Chatters: Mr. Speaker, those are good questions and I certainly meant to get to that in my presentation but there is so much to talk about it is hard to cover it all.

    The plan is no more credible than anything we have seen to date. There is absolutely no costing in the plan whatsoever. With regard to the figures the government is using, I will pick one with which I am familiar because I know the business. That is the suggestion that implementing the Kyoto plan would add 3¢ a barrel to conventional oil and I believe the figures were 11¢ to 13¢ to heavy oil. Those numbers are not credible. People in the industry immediately discounted it.

    Once totally unbelievable figures like that are presented, it throws a lack of credibility onto everything said about it. The industry itself suggested the figures were not credible and that the actual cost would be somewhere between 50¢ and $7 a barrel depending on what kind of targets the industry was given. It just does not work.

    When we look at the expectation, it is broken down in the plan by the number of tonnes we will save, that each individual Canadian should reduce emissions by one tonne. They should do things like fill their dryer full when they are drying clothes and they should turn the thermostat down. If that is part of the plan, and we need the .4 or .5 tonnes to meet our plan, who is going to be out there checking to see if we are filling our dryers full when we are drying our clothes in order to meet the commitment and to claim that amount of reduction? It is ridiculous. It makes no sense at all.

    We have to go back and bring in a real plan that people understand and that has costs applied, just like the health minister and the former finance minister suggested.

+-

    Hon. Ethel Blondin-Andrew (Secretary of State (Children and Youth), Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I come from a riding in an area of Canada that depends on cold weather. We are very challenged in terms of infrastructure, unlike my colleague from the Yukon whose communities, all except for one, are accessible by road. We do not have that kind of infrastructure. Most of our communities are isolated and we depend on a winter road structure.

    With the melting of the permafrost, our winter road season is becoming shorter. It is a very difficult problem for the north. The north is probably most graphic in its illustration of how we are the repository of all things bad in terms of the environment, not because we do not have a beautiful environment, but because we are an area that is very vulnerable. We receive the persistent organic pollutants from around the world. The heavy metals from around the world wherever those industrialized countries are collect in the colder climate areas, that being northern Canada.

    We could be compared to the canary in the mine when it comes to the environment. We are the warning sound. We are the warning bell, and very graphically so, for other parts of the world if things go wrong.

    People can question how is it that Inuit mothers have pesticides or chemicals in their breast milk that they pass on to their children. How is it that many of our animals will be affected? For instance, if we have warmer climates, or if we have hot and cold climates that run up against one another, our animals will not be able to feed properly. The caribou depend on lichen. They can only get to lichen when there is light snow. If there is a melting of the snow and a freezing of the snow, they cannot get to their food. It affects the every essence of how people live traditionally in the north.

    Having said that, many members will know that I am a huge fan and a proponent of oil and gas development in the north. I consider myself a friend of the industry but I am also a friend of the environment. I want to see a northern gas pipeline develop. I believe it is not a carbon intensive activity in the sense that oil would be. I believe it is less polluting than other sources and it is possible. I also think in my position as a northern representative that we can have both.

    If we think we can have a clean environment without having a strategy and without setting a target like we have in Kyoto, it is impossible. There is a price to pay. We will not regain the cleanliness and the pureness of our environment no matter where we live in the world without a price. It is ridiculous to think that we will. It will cost money.

    My colleague across the way talked about consumer behaviour. He belittled such aspects as making sure the clothes dryer is full. As in health care, the only way to really affect the health care of people is to change the behaviour of people. Consumer behaviour is a big part of what we do in terms of the environment as it would be with our health.

    We have to change the way human beings behave. In some countries around the world recycling is a way of life. It is a consumer behaviour that has been endorsed and people do it. It was never thought of before. In some places we still struggle with it but if we have that kind of attitude, things will never change. It will cost money. It will take a bit of effort. It will take compromise but we need to care. What could be more important than the environment that our children and our grandchildren are going to live in? In my area it is absolutely important.

    People generally accept what the intergovernmental panel on climate change and its more than 3,000 scientists from around the world have to say. People accept it when that panel says that most of the warming observed over the past 50 years is attributable to human activities; that human induced climate change will accelerate in the years ahead; and that extreme weather events will be more frequent and more severe due to climate change. They should accept it.

  +-(1350)  

    There are 17 national academies of science from around the world that have independently reviewed this work and endorsed its conclusions. I am sorry if some people do not like good science. Certainly I, and everyone in the House who has spoken, accept that there is an issue that merits action and of course the Government of Canada accepts it and has done so for many years.

    Our elders in the Northwest Territories have been talking about climate change for years. It is not a new thing. It is not as abrupt and as comic as some people would refer to it as. This is a very serious issue and we all have a stake in it, including the members opposite.

    It has been just over a decade that the rest of us have clued in basically. In the Northwest Territories we are feeling the effects of climate change on a daily basis with our warmer and somewhat shorter winters and our wetter and hotter summers. This does not sound like a bad thing but the north is built on the premise that it is cold. Special construction techniques have been used on all our infrastructure to accommodate the permafrost below the surface ensuring that it remains frozen.

    I am sharing my time, Mr. Speaker, with the hon. member for Davenport and I am honoured to do so.

    I am very enthusiastic on this issue and I am very resolved to supporting the Kyoto protocol, as are my premier and the people in the Northwest Territories. They too want a pipeline but we understand that we have to care about the environment as well.

    Special construction techniques, as I have indicated, have been used on our infrastructure to accommodate the permafrost. Most people who have spoken do not know what frost heave is and how expensive it is. Most people do not understand, except for my colleague from Nunavut who lives with permafrost and has to deal with that sort of condition. The warmer temperatures are now beginning to slowly melt that permafrost. The repercussions of this phenomenon are obvious and expensive.

    Because of the long commitment to action, when Canada ratifies the Kyoto protocol, we will not be starting from square one. Over the past few years the Government of Canada has built a record of consistent action on climate change. I want to take a few minutes to point out some of these actions now.

    One of the most fundamental points that I have to make about these actions is that they usually are built around partnerships. They are not just Ottawa doing something all by itself. These are actions that are encouraging collaborative approaches to an issue that affects us all. These are actions that are bringing together partners in government, business, communities and more. Indeed a lot of the initial work involved collaboration to examine the issues and identify options for action even before Kyoto. There were many discussions where there was consensus and agreement. Some people have conveniently forgotten that.

    For example, much of this work has taken place under the direction of ministers of energy and the environment from the Government of Canada and all the provinces and territories since 1993, including my territorial counterparts in the government of the Northwest Territories who have been actively participating at the table on this issue. These ministers generally have met annually and often more than that. Many of the provincial and territorial ministers have been included in Canada's delegations to international climate change meetings and conferences, including Kyoto in 1997. In fact, there has indeed been a great deal of time and money spent on climate change consultation since 1992. Ten years and $22.3 million has been spent on consultations with provinces alone.

    That collaboration set the stage for broader partnerships such as the work of the national climate change task group. This group brought together the Government of Canada, the governments of the provinces and territories, industry and environmental groups. They have looked at climate change and related issues affecting specific sectors and affecting Canada in general. That task group consulted with stakeholders and developed the general report with recommendations.

    In 1994-95 it took the report out for public consultation across Canada that led to a summary report. All this work, plus input from ongoing federal-provincial meetings, fed into Canada's action plan on climate change released in 1995. I say this because there are people sitting here now who are not aware of the history of this evolving process. It also helped to identify priorities for other efforts and investments.

  +-(1355)  

    There is so much more I could speak to. I have so many other notes, including the announced Government of Canada action plan, a $500 million five year initiative plan, a planned 2,000 targets and key sectors, including initiatives in transportation.

    Let me finish by saying I unequivocally support the ratification of the Kyoto protocol with my northern counterparts and with all the people of the north. We know we will feel the effects of it, but we do not walk away from our intent to be progressive and to work on resource development.


+-STATEMENTS BY MEMBERS

[S. O. 31]

*   *   *

[English]

+-Healthy Workplace Week

+-

    Mr. Gurbax Malhi (Bramalea—Gore—Malton—Springdale, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, this is Healthy Workplace Week. Launched by Health Canada two years ago, this week is dedicated to increasing awareness of how important healthy workplaces are to the success of organizations.

    This year's theme is healthy leadership, and the labour program of HRDC, along with other government and private organizations are the sponsors. The government is committed to building healthy workplaces and has many programs and services to support its employees.

    We can all be leaders when it comes to promoting a healthy workplace. I encourage all members to get involved in Healthy Workplace Week, both here and in their constituencies.

*   *   *

+-Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Medal

+-

    Mr. Peter Goldring (Edmonton Centre-East, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, tomorrow evening on Friday, October 25, a prodigious event will take place at Queen Elizabeth Composite High School in Edmonton, the Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee medal award ceremony.

    Created to commemorate Her Majesty's 50 year reign, these distinctive medals will be presented in a celebration hosted by Principal Tony Rankel, along with the staff and students of the Queen Elizabeth Composite High School.

    The Honourable Lieutenant Governor Lois E. Hole will attend this event to present medals to 40 extraordinary Canadians who, in their own way, have made a valuable and outstanding contribution to both community and country.

    A special expression of gratitude is extended to Principal Rankel, the staff and the student body of the Queen Elizabeth Composite High School. Please join them in extending congratulations to these 40 remarkable Canadians.

*   *   *

  +-(1400)  

+-The Environment

+-

    Mr. Peter Adams (Peterborough, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the Kyoto accord is more than a rigid formula for the reduction of greenhouse emissions. It is a frame of reference for each of us in our daily lives. Humans in their billions are the cause of the changes in the atmosphere which are causing global warming. We humans, by small changes in our daily lives, can reduce those emissions dramatically.

    It is my hope that the Kyoto process will encourage us all to think differently about how we live. This is not a matter of a reduced standard of living. It is about a change in the way we live. One aspect of this is increased use of public transportation. Many of our communities already have good but underused transit systems. Let us begin by using existing facilities to full capacity. Then let us increase that capacity so that Canadians can travel cheaply and conveniently by public transportation.

    In southern Ontario, where highway gridlock and air pollution are features of everyday life, this means improved rail transit in and around the major cities, including VIA service to places like Peterborough.

*   *   *

+-Governor General's Award

+-

    Mr. Jerry Pickard (Chatham—Kent Essex, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it is with great pleasure that I rise to congratulate a constituent of mine, Megan Reid, of Leamington, who won the Governor General's Award in Commemoration of the Persons Case, an award saluting the accomplishments of contemporary women in advancement of women's equality.

    Megan received the award for promoting positive body images for women and for her volunteer work organizing events and raising money for breast cancer research.

    Ms. Reid is a remarkable volunteer in her community. Her work in her local student government and other school activities is a tribute to her desire to make a contribution to society and be a positive influence. She has a passion for justice and equality of the sexes that makes her a wonderful role model for her peers.

    This award was instituted by the Governor General of Canada in 1979 to honour the 50th anniversary of the Persons Case and five Alberta women whose determination led to a landmark victory in the struggle of Canadian women for equality.

    I congratulate Megan on an honour well deserved.

*   *   *

+-Literacy Action Day

+-

    Mr. Irwin Cotler (Mount Royal, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as we welcome representative organizations to Parliament Hill for the annual Literacy Action Day, we are reminded of the theme that inspires this gathering, that literacy is for life.

    Indeed, literacy engages and impacts upon every aspect of our individual lives. It is at the core of our early childhood learning, our personal development, our economic opportunity and our capacity to participate fully in all aspects of life and society, from individual and family literacy to workplace and political literacy. It is no less vital to us as a people, for in a knowledge based economy literacy has a crucial role to play in ensuring that Canada continues to be a productive, competitive and economically secure environment.

    Regrettably, the final report of the International Adult Literacy Survey revealed that some 40% of Canadians between the ages of 16 and 65 have very low or limited levels of literacy, while 8 million Canadians, or 2 in 5 working age Canadians, do not even have the skills to contribute as full participants in our society and economy.

    Accordingly, I am encouraged that the government's skills and learning agenda and the Speech from the Throne reaffirmed the government's commitment to knowledge as the engine of the new economy with the imperatives of literacy at its core.

*   *   *

+-Agriculture

+-

    Mr. Howard Hilstrom (Selkirk—Interlake, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, thousands of western Canadian farmers do not have the basic human right to sell their own grain. They are forced to sell it to the Liberal imposed Canadian Wheat Board monopoly against their will. Quebec and Ontario farmers can sell their grain to whomever they want.

    The Canadian Wheat Board minister has criminally convicted the following prairie farmers for selling their own wheat, some of whom are here in Ottawa today: Gary Brandt, Ron Duffy, Marcel Desrocher, Jim Chatenay, Rod Hanger, Martin Hall, Noel Hyslip, Ike Lanier, Mark Peterson, Jim Ness, Bill Moore, Rick Strankman, John Turcato and Darren Winczura.

    Having already criminally prosecuted these prairie farmers, the Canadian Wheat Board minister is now going to physically throw them in an Alberta jail on October 31.

    Why does he deny western Canadian prairie farmers the same opportunity given to farmers in the rest of the country?

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-International Literacy Day

+-

    Mr. Mac Harb (Ottawa Centre, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to announce to the House that today is International Literacy Day.

    Today, some 22% of Canadians face barriers because of problems with reading and writing, and 26% do not have the skills required to work in today's economy, the knowledge economy.

    There is a direct correlation between literacy and health, economic growth, crime prevention and social cohesion.

    Therefore, I invite all of my colleagues to join me in highlighting the importance of literacy and its contribution to Canada's development.

*   *   *

  +-(1405)  

+-Civets de la nature

+-

    Mr. Jean-Yves Roy (Matapédia—Matane, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I rise to pay tribute to a business in my riding that employs 12 persons and that has only been in existence for one year.

    The Civets de la nature de Carleton, on Chaleur Bay, was recently been awarded two gold medals and two silver medals at the Masters européen de dégustation, an international culinary competition for fine preserves, held in Brussels.

    The company, led by Michel Massouty, prepared a very creative menu quite typical of the region. This was not the first time that chef Christian Menant has won the award. He won honours at the Masters in 1999, when he lived in France.

    It is worth noting that the award-winning food products almost never reached Brussels, because of long negotiations with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, which refused to issue an export permit.

*   *   *

+-International Literacy Day

+-

    Mr. Mauril Bélanger (Ottawa—Vanier, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I too would like to highlight International Literacy Day.

[English]

    Once again this year nearly 100 adult learners, teachers and volunteers from literacy groups are on Parliament Hill to make us aware of the needs of people to combat illiteracy in this country. According to Statistics Canada, 22% of Canadians have difficulty reading simple text. It is simply unacceptable.

[Translation]

    We must all work together to ensure that Canadians have the tools they need to be full participants in the social, economic and cultural life of our country, as well as in the age of information.

    Canada is blessed with many extraordinarily talented writers, including Yann Martel, who won the Booker Prize this week for his book, Life of Pi. It is unfortunate that some Canadians do not read, it is tragic that some cannot read.

[English]

    Let us all contribute to--

+-

    The Speaker: The hon. member for Fraser Valley.

*   *   *

+-Liberal Leadership Campaign

+-

    Mr. Chuck Strahl (Fraser Valley, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, on Wednesday the Prime Minister set loose the dogs of war. He has taken the leash off the cabinet ministers seeking to replace him and is allowing them to campaign for his job.

    Being a cabinet minister is a fulltime position and a very heavy responsibility, but it is not, as the Prime Minister suggests, whether or not ministers can walk and chew gum at the same time. It is the fact that ministers angling for the leader's job are simply in a conflict of interest.

    A few months ago the Prime Minister said that if ministers wanted to campaign, all they had to do was resign. He even fired his former finance minister when he refused to stop campaigning but apparently now those rules no longer apply. Why the double standard?

    In the recent Canadian Alliance leadership race, our party led by example when the member for Okanagan--Coquihalla, the member for Macleod and the member for Calgary--Nose Hill all resigned their critic portfolios and other responsibilities so they could campaign fulltime for the leader's role.

    It is clear that the right and honourable thing to do would be for those ministers to step down from their posts and campaign to their heart's content. To try to do two fulltime jobs at once does a disservice to their roles as ministers and an even greater disservice to the Canadian public.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-United Nations Day

+-

    Mr. Bernard Patry (Pierrefonds—Dollard, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, today is United Nations Day. I am pleased to acknowledge the importance of this organization to Canada.

    A founding member of the United Nations Organization, Canada has always been a strong champion of the system based on rules established when the UN Charter came into effect, on October 24, 1945.

    We believed at the time, and still do, that multilateral cooperation is the safest way to ensure the safety and security of the world community in the long term.

    Today, we look back on recent achievements—the summit on sustainable development in Johannesburg, the special session on children and the consensus achieved in Monterrey, Mexico—that have strengthened the partnership between developing countries and donor countries.

    The potential for improvement has increased considerably under the leadership of Secretary-General Kofi Annan, whose ideas for a reform of the organization have earned him the Nobel Peace Prize.

    The UN must be and will be at the heart of the international community's response to the challenges it faces today. Canada will continue to provide it with its steadfast support in this regard.

*   *   *

  +-(1410)  

[English]

+-Literacy Action Day

+-

    Ms. Wendy Lill (Dartmouth, NDP): Mr. Speaker, today is Literacy Action Day and I would like to welcome all of the literacy delegates who are here today to give us an important message.

    We all know in the House as parliamentarians the importance of solid reading, writing and comprehension skills in the full process of democratic debate and in the knowledge based economy that we are all working in now.

    Canada has one of the highest literacy rates in the world and yet, ironically, in a country that has produced award winning writers, such as Yann Martel, close to half of our citizenry may not be able to even read his novel.

    The development of a larger, more skilled workforce is crucial to Canada's future economic success, as well as creating a culture that values lifelong learning.

    Today I join with the literacy delegates and call on the government to ensure that making advancements on literacy is a policy and a budget priority.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-The Environment

+-

    Mr. Serge Cardin (Sherbrooke, BQ): Mr. Speaker, the Environmental Excellence Awards ceremony was held on October 22. These awards are presented jointly by the Fondation estrienne en environnement and the Conseil régional de l'environnement de l'Estrie. It is my great pleasure to name the recipients:

    UPA Estrie and Rivers and Lakes Foundation of Canada, agriculture or forestry sector category; the municipality of Saint-Herménégilde, municipality, city or town category; Envirotel 3000 of Sherbrooke, small business category; Kruger of Bromptonville, large or medium size business category; Action Saint-François of Sherbrooke, environmental group, NGO or institution category; and Daniel Bergeron of Orford, personal contribution category.

    Finally, the Centre universitaire de formation en environnement at University of Sherbrooke received the special recognition award.

    All the residents of the region can enjoy a quality environment, thanks to the actions and dedication of all these people.

    Our congratulations and thanks to all the men and women involved in conserving and improving the environment. Keep up the good work.

*   *   *

+-Louis-Marie Gagné

+-

    Mr. Gérard Binet (Frontenac—Mégantic, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, this week being Small Business Week, I wish to draw attention to the professionalism of Louis-Marie Gagné, founder of Groupe Évimbec group, the largest property assessment company in Quebec.

    Mr. Gagné, a native of Thetford Mines, is now the owner of 15 offices throughout Quebec. The Thetford Mines office has already been in existence for 50 years. The company is also in proud partnership with the Roche Group, which is also very active in Canada and abroad.

    For more than 50 years now, Évimbec has distinguished itself by its broad range of services and expertise. Dynamism and creativity are the keys to its vitality and success. It has set an example for others.

    Small business is an essential element of our economy and we must continue to encourage its development.

    Congratulations to Louis-Marie Gagné.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Literacy Action Day

+-

    Mr. Inky Mark (Dauphin—Swan River, PC): Mr. Speaker, learners, teachers and administrators have come to Ottawa today to urge parliamentarians to make advances on our literacy policy.

    Almost half of the Canadian population does not have the literacy skills they need to succeed in today's society. Literacy affects child poverty, unemployment, immigration settlement programs and advances for aboriginal people.

    I call on the Government of Canada to: one, ensure literacy is key to the federal innovative agenda; two, create a Canadian literacy and essential skills strategy; and three, expand the role and resources of the National Literacy Secretariat.

    With critical labour shortages threatening we cannot allow low literacy levels to force any of our citizens to the economic sidelines. We need to act now to advance literacy.

*   *   *

+-Louis Riel

+-

    Mr. Jim Pankiw (Saskatoon—Humboldt, Ind.): Mr. Speaker, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation subjected Canadians to an unprecedented effort in rewriting the history of a murderous traitor, Louis Riel.

    In one of the most rabid examples of political correctness, the CBC has attacked and blackened the eye of Canadian history, particularly the memory of those who were murdered in cold blood by Riel and his fanatics during the 1885 Northwest Rebellion.

    The fact that Riel was justly convicted and executed for hatching his terrorist rebellion is shamefully ignored by historical revisionists at the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

    This is nothing new for the CBC which delights in drive-by smearings; witness the McKenna brothers' defamation and insult to the memory of Canada's World War II veterans.

    Since the Liberals shovel almost a billion dollars a year into their propaganda machine, is it too much to ask that they leave our nation's history intact?

    It is highly offensive and purely outrageous that hard-earned money from Canadian taxpayers is routinely wasted on historical revisionism.

*   *   *

  +-(1415)  

+-Canadian Institutes of Health Research

+-

    Hon. Hedy Fry (Vancouver Centre, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, when this government set up the Canadian Institutes of Health Research it was the first of its kind in the world. Made up of 13 virtual institutes, it provides a collaborative network for researchers across the country, linking basic academic in vitro scientists with applied in vivo researchers.

    The CIHR spans a broad spectrum of issues from the economics of health care to genomics. Its virtual nature allows for easy access and collaboration with low infrastructure costs. The CIHR is uniquely and innovatively Canadian.

    This week researchers from across the country are visiting Parliament to applaud this Liberal government's initiative and to explain how the CIHR has not only reversed the Canadian brain drain, but also attracted non-Canadian researchers from around the world.

    Canada is now seen as a worldclass centre for research. However the CIHR's worth is only as good as the support we give it.

    I urge our government to continue to maintain, sustain and expand the CIHR so that it can continue to place Canada on the front lines of innovation.

*   *   *

+-Child Pornography

+-

    Mr. Myron Thompson (Wild Rose, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, in response to the Speech from the Throne, the justice minister announced that he would be introducing a children's legislative package that may take aim at child pornography on the Internet.

    There is an epidemic of child pornography in this country. In the Toronto area alone 500 residents have been identified as being in possession of child porn. Due to the strict rules of evidence disclosure, investigators are required to view and catalogue every piece of pornography they seize. The investigations are so time consuming that only 20 Toronto area men have been charged this year. Yet in those 20 cases the numbers are staggering. Police have identified tens of thousands of victims in the more than 1.7 million photos and movies they have seized.

    The very first thing the minister can do is provide our police with some relief by allowing them to treat child pornography the same as they do for drug crimes. In other words, a sample is considered to be representative of the whole. Give our police the means to do their job properly in their fight against child exploitation.

    I want to thank Focus on the Family for its efforts.


+-ORAL QUESTION PERIOD

[Oral Questions]

*   *   *

[English]

+-Kyoto Protocol

+-

    Mr. Stephen Harper (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, provincial support for the Kyoto accord continues to collapse.

    Yesterday the Ontario legislature voted against endorsing ratification of Kyoto. Today, after the government tabled its latest Kyoto document, there was an all-province telephone conference. Afterward, the Alberta environment minister said that Ottawa is just trying to shove this down the provinces' throats.

    Will the government ratify Kyoto without the consent of the provinces?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, until very recently we were asked for more and more detail by the provinces. We have deliberately waited until we meet with them on Monday so that we could have the benefit of their information and suggestions to make sure this is a truly made in Canada plan representing every part of the country.

    So we obviously do not have the final word. We are obviously awaiting for the participation of our partners. We expect to get it on Monday.

+-

    Mr. Stephen Harper (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, it will be interesting to see whether he requires it, though.

    On Tuesday the environment minister twice denied in question period that the government would engage in international emissions trading under the Kyoto accord. Yet today's latest document contains international emissions tradings.

    Why did the government's position on this change in the last 48 hours?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it has not changed. There are potentially 10 of the 240 megatonnes that would be from international trading, but it will not be as described by the opposition: simply buying credits which have no real reduction behind them in terms of reducing emissions overseas. We intend to make sure every credit purchased internationally results in a full reduction, tonne per tonne, overseas as in Canada.

+-

    Mr. Stephen Harper (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, if the minister wants to do that he is going to have to have the accord renegotiated because that is not how it works now.

    Today the government did table its latest incomplete Kyoto document and I want to know why, after five years, this document still contains no meaningful, detailed cost estimates.

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the document that we have is to be presented to the provinces and territories on Monday. There are pages and pages of it, of very detailed information. Obviously we expect them to have suggestions which we hope we will be able to incorporate into our future document. That is why at this point we cannot come up with any final figure.

  +-(1420)  

+-

    Mr. James Rajotte (Edmonton Southwest, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the provincial coalition against ratification of Kyoto is growing each day.

    Newfoundland and Labrador's premier said that his province will pay a high price in terms of jobs lost and lost economic opportunities if Kyoto is ratified. B.C.'s premier also has grave concerns about the fact that his province seems to be taking a greater hit in terms of job loss and GDP.

    Clearly, is it the intention of the government to ratify Kyoto and to impose Kyoto on the provinces without their consent?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, in the lengthy period of discussions on Kyoto with the territories and provinces, which has gone on for some five years at the request of all 14 first ministers, we have had very important discussions on various issues.

    Now we are coming closer to finalization of this issue. Naturally I expect every province to say that the burden should be more on the other nine than on them. Naturally I expect the territories to take the same approach.

    If we look at the history of federal-provincial conferences, even though they may agree with the objectives they always want to make sure that any burden on them is minimized and any benefits maximized.

    That is when it is the turn of the federal government to speak up for Canada.

+-

    Mr. James Rajotte (Edmonton Southwest, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, that did not address my question at all. There are more concerns from more provinces. Nova Scotia's Premier John Hamm has said that implementation could threaten his province's oil and gas industry. Yesterday Ontario's Premier Ernie Eves rejected Kyoto, saying that his province would develop its own emissions reduction strategy.

    True to form, this morning's cut-and-paste mystery meat scheme has satisfied no one, no provincial premier. I ask again, clearly, is it the intention of the government to impose Kyoto on the provinces without their agreement?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the material that was introduced and given to the opposition today clearly outlines some of the expectations with respect to costs of the modelling.

    When I look at it and I read that the conventional oil cost per barrel is three cents, I say to myself that if that is how marginal the industry is in some part of the country, we should re-examine that particular industry because three cents on a barrel which has 200 litres does not work out to a major increase per litre.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, both in this House and at the summit in Johannesburg, the Prime Minister made a solemn commitment to ensure that Canada would ratify the Kyoto protocol by the end of 2002.

    Today, I would like the Minister of the Environment to tell us—I do not want to hear about hopes and objectives, I want a firm commitment—if, following a vote in this House, Canada will ratify Kyoto.

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, to be precise, that is what the Prime Minister said in Johannesburg, that we would bring forward here in this House a resolution on the issue of ratifying the Kyoto protocol and have a debate. That is what he said.

    I can assure the hon. member that, following a good debate in this House and a vote, which might be 80% in favour of ratification, we will have, I think, the protocol ratified by the end of the year.

+-

    Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier—Sainte-Marie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, there is lot of double talk in the minister's answer.

    A commitment was made to ratify Kyoto in 2002, and there is another commitment to have a vote in this House. I would simply ask him this. Will a vote be held by the end of 2002, followed by the ratification of the Kyoto protocol also by the end of 2002? Will Kyoto be ratified this year, in 2002, following a vote, yes or no?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is putting me in a pretty difficult position. I am a member of the House of Commons, and there are 300 other members.

    The Prime Minister said he welcomed the input of everyone in this House. It is not my place to say that he will ignore this input and the decision of the House. As far as I am concerned, if it were up to me, the hon. member knows full well what that decision would be.

  +-(1425)  

+-

    Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont—Petite-Patrie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, Quebec produces 12.5% of greenhouse gas emissions in Canada, and has 24% of the total population of Canada. In other words, its present performance is far better, given past efforts in this connection.

    Will the Minister of the Environment admit that the sectoral approach for which he has opted, rather than a territorial one, penalizes Quebec, does not take past efforts into consideration and will put a far greater burden proportionally on Quebec businesses to reach the objective Canada must meet?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is forgetting that a litre of gas used in a vehicle in the province of Quebec has exactly the same effect on the atmosphere as a litre of gas used in a vehicle in the province of Alberta. The impact on the atmosphere is the same. It is not a matter of just taking the figures, reducing them and saying there is equality.

    No, the circumstances of each industry must be taken into consideration, whether in the province of Quebec, the province of Alberta, or any other province.

+-

    Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont—Petite-Patrie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, if Quebec were a sovereign country, its emission reduction objective would not be disproportionate and the objective for the rest of Canada would in turn be far higher. That is the reality.

    Will the minister admit that his sectoral approach clearly places Quebec—which has already made its own efforts and done its own homework—at a disadvantage, and gives an advantage to the Canadian provinces that have not in the past made the same efforts as Quebec?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the advantages for the province of Quebec of membership in a confederation with the other provinces are clear.

    What we are going to do in the debates with all the provinces, Quebec included, is to try to create a plan that does not give any one region an unfair advantage over the others. This is very clear.

    This is what we are going to do, and since the province of Quebec is, fortunately, among the provinces of Canada, it will enjoy that protection.

[English]

+-

    Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I would like sincerely to congratulate the government on finally tabling its climate change draft plan.

    An hon. member: But?

+-

    Ms. Alexa McDonough: Mr. Speaker, no buts: We can get to the details of the plan but for now the next step, the principal step, is to get on with ratifying Kyoto.

    Will the government commit to bring in a motion on Kyoto next week following the environment ministers meeting so that the House can vote on ratification?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the prospect of imminent retirement from the leadership of the New Democratic Party is certainly focusing the hon. member's mind in a way which I find very attractive.

    I would agree with her that after an appropriate discussion with the provinces and territories, which will take place on October 28, and after we have had an opportunity of working with them over the next three weeks, and after we have had the second JMM, on November 21, I believe, we will then be in a position to have an excellent debate in the House.

+-

    Mr. Joe Comartin (Windsor—St. Clair, NDP): Mr. Speaker, Canadians know that we have been waiting for five years for the government to finally put Kyoto before the House. The time is over. It has the plan. It is having the meeting next week. Will it commit next week to bring that resolution before the House so that we can vote on it and get on with implementation?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I have stressed in the House, and will stress again, the importance of having this as a made in Canada plan, where all provinces and territories take part in creating it.

    The New Democratic Party governing the province of Saskatchewan has reservations and concerns. I want to make sure we discuss with it what I believe are its ill-founded concerns and that we manage to create something that will give it a level of comfort, so that not only the federal NDP but also the provincial party governing Saskatchewan will be in favour of what we ultimately arrive at.

  +-(1430)  

+-

    Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC): Mr. Speaker, the Kyoto document is silent on the impact on each province, it is silent on sectors and it is silent on costs. Canadians know nothing more about Kyoto today than we did before this vague plan was published.

    My question is for the acting Prime Minister. Why not empower Parliament to find the facts that the government will not present?

    Motion No. 82 is on the order paper. It would set up a special joint committee to determine the impacts of Kyoto and to look at alternatives. Will the government accept that motion and refer this plan immediately to the special joint committee so Canadians can have the facts before we are called upon--

+-

    The Speaker: The hon. government House leader and Minister of State.

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of State and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I find it unusual that the leader of that party would see it appropriate to discuss private members' business while asking the government, when most people in this House, particularly the people on this side of the House, consider private members' business to be free votes.

+-

    Mr. John Herron (Fundy—Royal, PC): Mr. Speaker, the government's draft document to implement the Kyoto protocol falls far short of even reasonable expectations. This pathetic, paltry excuse for a plan is absent of any costs and falls 60 megatonnes short of our commitment under Kyoto.

    If the provinces reject the plan when they meet next week, is it the federal government's intention to go ahead without them, without their support and without their consent?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, there are various rules against hypothetical questions in the House.

    All I can say to the hon. member is that if, if, if the situation arises, if, if, if, as he suggests, then we are going to have a debate in this House and he will be quite at liberty to give his views at that time as to whether we should or should not.

+-

    Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, since the Kyoto process first began in Japan, the government, the Prime Minister and at least two cabinet ministers have promised credit for early action for voluntary emission reductions.

    Could the Minister of Natural Resources confirm that these companies that accepted the government's promise will receive credit under this latest plan?

+-

    Hon. Herb Dhaliwal (Minister of Natural Resources, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we have been consulting with industry. We know that it has some legitimate concerns. We want to make sure that we deal with those concerns in the final plan in terms of dealing with that uncertainty, in dealing with making sure that we deal with the early action that some companies have taken so that they are not disadvantaged in any way.

    That consultation is continuing because they have some real, legitimate concerns we need to deal with, and because we want to make sure that investment stays in Canada and that we continue to be competitive with our partners.

+-

    Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, that truly was a hypothetical answer.

    I know for a fact that promises mean little to the government. Many corporations and municipalities have spent hundreds of millions of dollars on early action because they believed that the government would keep its promise.

    Why is there no reference to credit for early volunteer actions in this latest fantasy plan?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member has raised an important issue which we think should be discussed fully.

    The fact is many companies have taken early action and made more money as a result. Should we be giving them taxpayers' money that could go to other uses when in fact the companies have become more profitable because of the measures they have taken?

    This is the type of dilemma that the hon. member should put his mind to and discuss more fully during the debate that we are having this afternoon. It is not that easy to work this out on a general rule.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Serge Cardin (Sherbrooke, BQ): Mr. Speaker, in the plan proposed this morning to meet the Kyoto objectives, one quarter of the effort could depend on credits for exporting green energy sources.

    How can the government think it realistic to base 25% of Canada's efforts on a measure that has was not accepted during the Kyoto negotiations?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the plan contains a variety of means to reach the final 60 megatonnes. Exporting clean energy is one of them.

    I agree with the hon. member. We do have problems in this respect internationally, but it is very important to point out that by exporting clean energy, we will be reducing greenhouse gases that are emitted into the atmosphere. Even if this happens in the United States or in another country, it is very important to do so. In fact, this is the very goal of the Kyoto protocol and the Rio convention.

  +-(1435)  

+-

    Mr. Serge Cardin (Sherbrooke, BQ): Mr. Speaker, logically speaking, how can the Government of Canada claim that it should benefit from credits for its efforts to reduce pollution by exporting clean energy, but at the same time, that it should not suffer penalties for exporting energy that pollutes?

    Is the government not being terribly naive?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is a sensible man. He has made an important point. Yes, if there is an increase in polluting energy, it should be taken into account, not only for Canada, but for all countries around the world.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Ethics

+-

    Mr. Ken Epp (Elk Island, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Deputy Prime Minister stated that there would be an independent ethics commissioner, yet he was ambiguous on the method of the commissioner's appointment. The proposed legislation does not provide for any direct involvement by the House in selecting the appointee.

    Will the Deputy Prime Minister admit that the proposed legislation precludes the direct election of the ethics commissioner by members of Parliament?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I refer the hon. member to Standing Order 111 which provides for the election by the House of Commons of officers of Parliament of which the ethics commissioner is one.

+-

    Mr. Ken Epp (Elk Island, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the proposed legislation says that the commissioner will be appointed by order in council. That is the Prime Minister. Any votes in committees are non-binding, and the votes there as in the House are controlled by the Liberal majority. All members of Parliament should have a real say in the selection of the commissioner.

    Will the government commit to an all party selection of the ethics commissioner?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I suggest that the hon. member review the bill again. It does not say by order in council. In fact, the language is precisely the same as that which is in the Auditor General Act which provides for a similar process for the selection.

    I would not recommend that the appointment be capable of being held up by opposition parties. However, I do take very seriously the importance of having credibility in the name of the person to be selected. We heard, for example, suggestions yesterday from the leader of the Progressive Conservative Party that are very useful as to the manner of selection. We--

+-

    The Speaker: The hon. member for Témiscamingue.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Pierre Brien (Témiscamingue, BQ): Mr. Speaker, in introducing its draft bill on government ethics, the government has neglected to include any provisions on Parliament's involvement in hiring the ethics counsellor.

    Can the Deputy Prime Minister make a firm and precise commitment today to include in the law a mechanism for consultation whereby the members of the House will have a say on this?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as I have just said in English, there is provision for consultation as part of the selection process. This is exactly the same as for other officers of Parliament, such as the Auditor General of Canada and the Privacy Commissioner.

    What has been presented is certainly a draft version and, if there are other suggestions, we are prepared to entertain them.

+-

    Mr. Pierre Brien (Témiscamingue, BQ): Mr. Speaker, if that is what the government wants, it simply needs to state it clearly in the law.

    In its draft bill, the government indicates its intention to make public the opinions of the ethics commissioner on any minister of the government.

    Would the minister prove how serious he is about this and how much he really believes in the benefits of this provision by applying it immediately to the case of the former Solicitor General and making public the ethics counsellor's report, currently in the hands of the Prime Minister?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I believe there is sufficient information available in the press or in the Debates. I believe we have presented a draft bill and a draft code of ethics.

    There will be plenty of opportunity for all members to express their views and make recommendations, and we are prepared to listen to them.

*   *   *

  +-(1440)  

[English]

+-National Defence

+-

    Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, yesterday it was revealed that the Minister of National Defence has known since May that the Canadian Forces have less than half the money they need to maintain the bases and equipment for next year. In fact I have received complaints from military technicians that some bases do not even have enough money to fire up their heating systems during this cold weather.

    Our nation is now engaged in a global war against terrorism and faces the prospect of war in Iraq. How can the government expect our troops to fight overseas when they cannot even heat their workshops here at home?

+-

    Hon. John McCallum (Minister of National Defence, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it is typical of the hon. member to use misguided, apocalyptic language to describe various stresses and strains that we have acknowledged to exist within the Canadian Forces. It is also true that they have never failed to deliver when called upon by our country. It is also true that we are addressing the issues of funding as we speak.

+-

    Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, our troops have delivered in spite of what the government has done, not because of it.

    Yesterday it was revealed that the minister is planning large scale cuts to the Canadian Forces. The report suggests a yard sale of Canada's destroyers, tanks and supply ships. This is a foolish plan which would deal a fatal blow to Canada's naval task force and army brigade capabilities.

    Why is the Minister of National Defence engaging in the secretive plan to break the backs of the Canadian armed forces?

+-

    Hon. John McCallum (Minister of National Defence, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as one of my hon. colleagues just mentioned and with all due respect, the gentleman across the way is speaking absolute nonsense. The idea that I have in mind to sell our submarines, our tanks, et cetera is crazy.

    Indeed yesterday I was in one of our submarines and I can say it is a magnificent, strategic new addition to the navy which will produce massive dividends in this post-September 11 world. It is a machine with which our allies are clamouring to do joint operations.

*   *   *

+-Energy Conservation

+-

    Mr. Julian Reed (Halton, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Natural Resources.

    According to a recent poll, most Canadians do not know the source of their electricity but they do know how much they must pay for it. Could the Minister of Natural Resources tell the House what his department is doing to promote energy efficiency in Canadian households?

+-

    Hon. Herb Dhaliwal (Minister of Natural Resources, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the Government of Canada, through Natural Resources Canada, is helping Canadians make smart decisions about home energy use. For example, through EnerGuide for Houses we help subsidize professional home energy evaluations that show homeowners how they can seriously save money on home heating and cooling.

    We support the R-2000 standard for construction of highly energy efficient homes which would save 30%. We are promoting the internationally recognized Energy Star which helps save energy for appliances. In partnership with industry we are also helping Canadians do a better job in energy efficiency and reduce their costs.

*   *   *

+-Taxation

+-

    Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP): Mr. Speaker, most Canadians agree that allowing businesses to deduct fines from their income taxes is simply bad public policy. Breaking the law should not be tax deductible and this could be achieved with a simple one line amendment to the Income Tax Act.

    Does the Minister of Finance agree that fines and penalties should not be considered business expenses for the purposes of income tax, and will he amend section 18 of the Income Tax Act accordingly?

+-

    Hon. John Manley (Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the member raises an important question. He will know that the Income Tax Act itself does not specifically permit this deduction, but it has been determined by the courts that in certain circumstances fines and penalties that have been incurred are expenses of doing business.

    I am prepared to review this as well as any other provision of the act. We would want to consult thoroughly before making a change that may create unforeseen consequences.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Health

+-

    Mr. Yvon Godin (Acadie—Bathurst, NDP): Mr. Speaker, it was reported on the news, on Radio-Canada, that some private medical clinics in Quebec are renting out operating rooms to health professionals to perform surgeries. A total of 11,000 surgeries have been performed in violation of the Canada Health Act. The Quebec health minister says “If there are no complaints, I am not taking action”. They do not care about the act.

    My question is for the Deputy Prime Minister. Will he immediately look into the matter?

  +-(1445)  

+-

    Mr. Jeannot Castonguay (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, at present, all the provinces are required to comply with the Canada Health Act. It is very clear that all the services that are medically necessary must be paid for by the provinces, with the money transferred to them by the federal government to provide these services.

    Some hon. members: Oh, oh.

    Mr. Jeannot Castonguay: If members opposite would listen, they might learn something. Of course, sometimes there are people who would rather not listen. It is very hard for me to speak any louder than I am right now. If things were a little quieter, I could share—

+-

    The Speaker: The hon. member for Cumberland—Colchester.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Persons with Disabilities

+-

    Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland—Colchester, PC): Mr. Speaker, John Mawdsley received a disability tax credit for 15 years because he was totally disabled. Mr. Mawdsley suffers from a degenerative disease that has no cure and only gets worse.

    Under the new review strategy, Revenue Canada recently demanded he get another opinion that confirmed the disability. Then the department overruled that opinion with no meeting, no examination, and no personal contact whatsoever with Mr. Mawdsley. Revenue Canada required the doctor's report. Now it has overruled the doctor's report.

    Was it a doctor at Revenue Canada who made that decision?

+-

    Ms. Sophia Leung (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as a rule we cannot comment on individual cases. However, I would like to inform the hon. member that the government has a lot of compassion and empathy for disabled people. Since 1996 we have paid 70% more for the disabled tax claim. I want the member to know that we have not overlooked anyone who is qualified for the disability benefit.

+-

    Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland—Colchester, PC): Mr. Speaker, we often hear Liberals say that this is the Liberal way. If this is the Liberal way, it is a sad, sad way.

    We have brought up issues of people who have been run over by trains, who have cancer or who have multiple sclerosis with no cure, in order to have them qualify for the disability tax credit. Yet the government decides with no examination that they are disqualified for the disability tax credit.

    The government demands that disabled people in Canada get a doctor's report. Is it a doctor who overrules that report when it overrules it?

+-

    Ms. Sophia Leung (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as I said earlier, we welcome any cases. If they have been declined they can be appealed. We have never closed the door for any interested party. I want to correct the hon. member. We have never refused any appeals. We welcome appeals.

*   *   *

+-Child Pornography

+-

    Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, first the government ignored the disabled and now it ignores children again.

    Recently the Manitoba Court of Appeal overturned the jail sentence of Leonard Elder, a child pornographer. In imposing home arrest, the court again ignored the dangerous role of child pornography in the abuse of Canadian children.

    Why has the minister not closed this legal loophole in our Criminal Code by eliminating this get out of jail free card?

+-

    Mr. Paul Harold Macklin (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, children are a priority with the government. They continue to be a priority with the government. We brought forward Bill C-15A which was passed in July of this year. It deals with much of the Internet, pornography and the way in which we proceed to catch those who perpetrate this crime.

    A recent case has been brought before the courts and we are very happy to see that action is being taken with the tools we have given them to work on this problem.

+-

    Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, if children are a priority, why has this Liberal government consistently tolerated sexual brutality against children on the basis of artistic merit? Despite repeated promises to impose a national sex offender registry, it has done nothing of the sort. It has broken every promise in that respect.

    Why does the government continue to place the interests of child predators ahead of the rights of children?

  +-(1450)  

+-

    Mr. Paul Harold Macklin (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I do not know where this member has been. He has to pay attention to what is going on in the House. We have been taking continuous steps in the House to eliminate child pornography. We are very concerned about it.

    As far as the Sharpe case is concerned, to which he refers, there is no question that the minister has clearly stated in the House that we will be bringing forward legislative suggestions this fall.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-École de médecine vétérinaire de Saint-Hyacinthe

+-

    Mr. Yvan Loubier (Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, BQ): Mr. Speaker, in December, that is in a few weeks, the American Veterinary Medical Association will decide whether or not to maintain the accreditation of the École de médecine vétérinaire de Saint-Hyacinthe, the only such French language school in North America.

    How can the Minister of Agriculture justify the fact that, after giving me assurances regarding the financial involvement of the federal government to maintain the standards required, four months later and barely a few weeks before the evaluation, the federal government still has not done anything, thus jeopardizing the very existence of the school?

[English]

+-

    Hon. Lyle Vanclief (Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as I said before in the House, the government recognizes the role of veterinary colleges in the country, not only for the health and safety of animals, but also the vital role they play for the health and safety of humans and the work and research in the laboratories that they provide.

    I can assure members that we are seeking ways to work with the provinces to assist the continued certification and to ensure the certification of those colleges in Canada.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Yvan Loubier (Saint-Hyacinthe—Bagot, BQ): Mr. Speaker, the minister's replies are always the same. As regards the educational role of the veterinary school, the Quebec government has already done its part in March, with an amount of $41 million.

    We are talking about the mission to protect animal and human health. We are talking about food safety, about food inspections, matters that come under federal jurisdiction.

    Will the federal government do its part before it is too late and before the only French language veterinary school in North America shuts down?

[English]

+-

    Hon. Lyle Vanclief (Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am pleased that the hon. member repeated all the reasons that I said of the importance of veterinary colleges in the country. I repeat my answer. We recognize that. We as a government are seeking resources, and hopefully we can come forward with resources because we know the importance of the veterinary colleges.

*   *   *

+-Canadian Wheat Board

+-

    Mr. David Anderson (Cypress Hills—Grasslands, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I know farmers who have shown the courage of their convictions. I know farmers who will sacrifice their freedom for the principle of fairness. I know farmers and their families who are paying an incredible price for defending their principles. One week from today the government will be jailing these same people. They too get no compassion from this government. They are here, in Ottawa, today.

    I ask this for them and their families. Why are they being locked up for doing what is perfectly legal in the rest of Canada; selling their own wheat?

+-

    Mr. Paul Szabo (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the minister is well aware of legal difficulties that the member describes and we regret that legal circumstances affect producers who oppose marketing laws and regulations.

    Let me assure the House, we understand that court proceedings are not very pleasant, but the Minister of Public Works and Government Services has not and will not interfere in court proceedings.

+-

    Mr. David Anderson (Cypress Hills—Grasslands, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the Canadian Wheat Board minister keeps dodging his responsibilities. He is the one who charged farmers under the Canadian Wheat Board Act. He is the one who lost the first court case. He is the one who changed the customs regulations to make these men criminals. He is the one who ignored the Alberta plebiscite.

    He is personally responsible for the situation in which these farmers find themselves. When will he and the government quit persecuting prairie farmers and give them the same rights as producers in the rest of Canada?

  +-(1455)  

+-

    Mr. Paul Szabo (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the member will well know that two-thirds of the board of directors of the Canadian Wheat Board are elected by western farmers and they are responsible for the policy and strategic direction of the Canadian Wheat Board.

    In this regard though, it is totally inappropriate for the minister to interfere in any due process of law.

*   *   *

+-Agriculture

+-

    Mr. Murray Calder (Dufferin—Peel—Wellington—Grey, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food. Earlier this month the minister announced $600 million of the transition money will be moving into the farmers' NISA accounts.

    What I would like to know is how is that proceeding and how can the farmers get that money as soon as possible.

+-

    Hon. Lyle Vanclief (Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I said earlier this month that the money was starting to flow into the farmers' NISA accounts. To date, already $495 million has been placed into farmers' NISA accounts. We estimate that over 70% of this will be immediately available to farmers based on their 2001 business year. The other farmers have had the opportunity since April and will now have the opportunity of continuing to apply for interim payments based on their 2002 estimated income.

    This money will be well used by farmers in the transition to new and improved risk management programs for farmers that are being negotiated and discussed with the provinces and the industry.

*   *   *

+-Grain Transportation

+-

    Mr. Jim Gouk (Kootenay—Boundary—Okanagan, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, last Tuesday in question period the Minister of Labour proved that she does not understand the elements of collective bargaining. She should know that strikes and lockouts are not part of the collective bargaining system but the result of the failure of it.

    Knowing this, why would she not immediately impose final offer selection arbitration to end the lockout at Vancouver port?

+-

    Hon. Claudette Bradshaw (Minister of Labour, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, when the employee and the employer are in a conflict and they are negotiating, they have three options. We always give them a mediator and a conciliator, but they have three options. One is arbitration. Two is binding arbitration. Three is final selection.

    They have that option and that option belongs to them, not to me as Minister of Labour.

+-

    Mr. Jim Gouk (Kootenay—Boundary—Okanagan, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the federal government has a responsibility to prevent a strike or a lockout by a relatively small number of people when it adversely affects an entire industry. Imposing final offer arbitration in place of a strike or lockout does not interfere with collective bargaining or stop negotiations; it simply provides a dispute settlement mechanism that does not disrupt work.

    How long will the minister allow farmers, shippers, dock workers and the reputation of the Vancouver port to sink before she imposes a non-disruptive dispute settlement mechanism?

+-

    Hon. Claudette Bradshaw (Minister of Labour, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as I have just said, collective agreements are between the employee and the employer. Our mediators and our conciliators are in place any time they want to return to the table, and I encourage them to return to the table. They also have the option of an arbitrator, binding arbitration or final offer selection. It is their choice. It is their collective agreement, not mine.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Correctional Service Canada

+-

    Ms. Diane Bourgeois (Terrebonne—Blainville, BQ): Mr. Speaker, for several months, the climate in federal correctional institutions has been unpleasant. An in-house survey commissioned by the President of the Treasury Board revealed that 20% of employees, regardless of gender, experienced some kind of harassment without anything being done to remedy the situation.

    Will the new Solicitor General of Canada show the leadership necessary to put an end to this and ensure a harassment-free work environment?

  +-(1500)  

[English]

+-

    Hon. Wayne Easter (Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I, like the previous solicitor general, certainly intend to provide a role of leadership. Harassment in any workplace is certainly unacceptable. Correctional Service Canada does not condone harassment. We will be doing everything to ensure that harassment does not take place in correctional services.

*   *   *

+-International Aid

+-

    Mr. Jerry Pickard (Chatham—Kent Essex, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the media reported last Monday that four Leamington Mennonite churches have raised $8,000 for the Canadian Food Grains Bank, also known as CFGB, for the purchase of grains for third world country relief. This is just one example of how Canadians are involved in helping the developing world.

    Would the Minister for International Cooperation please inform the House of how the government encourages organizations, such as the Canadian Food Grains Bank, to raise funds for such important causes?

+-

    Hon. Susan Whelan (Minister for International Cooperation, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the members of the Sun Parlour Food Grains Bank, the Leamington Mennonite churches and the local farmers all deserve our thanks for helping to provide food aid for those less fortunate in the developing world. I would also like to thank the Essex Food Grains growing project for their harvest last week of 811 bushels of soy beans.

    The Canada Food Grains Bank and their community partners all across Canada accomplish important work. For every dollar that they raise, the Canadian government and CIDA matches $4.

    I congratulate the member for Chatham--Kent Essex for making the chamber aware of this very important contribution of our community partners.

*   *   *

+-Health

+-

    Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby—Douglas, NDP): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Deputy Prime Minister. Recently studies for the Romanow Commission have noted that trade deals like NAFTA and the GATS may block the expansion of medicare to include a national plan for home care, pharmacare and dental care.

    Will the government take immediate steps to prevent any further privatization in the health care field to prevent private health care companies from claiming massive compensation under NAFTA and GATS? Will it stand up for public health care in Canada?

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Jeannot Castonguay (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, clearly, under the existing legislation, all Canadians are assured to be provided with all medically necessary health care services.

    Also, it is clear that this government is very aware of the importance of restructuring our health care system for the future. That is why we are enthusiastically awaiting the release of the Romanow report and the Kirby report, which will help us determine the way ahead.

    I can assure all Canadians—as the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs indicated—that our health system will be protected in spite of all—

+-

    The Speaker: The hon. member for Richmond—Arthabaska.

*   *   *

+-Kyoto Protocol

+-

    Mr. André Bachand (Richmond—Arthabaska, PC): Mr. Speaker, the government of Quebec has voiced objections on the federal plan for ratification of Kyoto. This plan does not acknowledge the efforts of the provinces, Quebec included, which have already begun to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. There is no provision whatsoever in the plan for reduction objectives by province.

    Instead of a sectoral objective, why not, if as the minister claims, the provinces are necessary and mandatory for implementation of the protocol, use them as the unit of measurement for achievement of the objectives of the Kyoto protocol?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the measures taken so far by the province of Quebec and other provinces to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, have been quite considerable. I commend the provinces and industries that have taken steps.

    At the same time, what we need is a system that applies the same rules across the country. We do not, for instance, want different rules from province to province for the lumber industry, since it operates in all ten provinces.

    That is the reason we feel it is better to go by industrial sector rather than province. We are prepared to discuss this, prepared to speak about it with—

    The Speaker: I am sorry to have to interrupt the hon. minister, but that is all the time we have for oral question period.

*   *   *

+-Presence in Gallery

+-

    The Speaker: Order, please. I would like to inform hon. members of the presence in the gallery of His Excellency, Henri Plagnol, Secretary of State for Government Reform to the Minister responsible for the Public Service of France.

    Some hon. members: Hear, hear.

*   *   *

  +-(1505)  

[English]

+-Business of the House

[Business of the House]
+-

    Mr. John Reynolds (West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I would like to ask the government House leader if he could tell us what the business is for today, tomorrow and next week.

    I also ask him if the government has any plans for legislation with changes to the Canadian Wheat Board that would allow western Canadian farmers to do the same thing as central Canadian farmers without having to go to jail.

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of State and Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will take the last issue as representation by the hon. member for legislation. Meanwhile though, I will announce to him and to all colleagues the business of the House.

    This afternoon we will obviously continue with the debate on the allotted day motion by the official opposition on this excellent initiative of the government to ratify the Kyoto protocol.

    Tomorrow we will consider a motion for referral to committee before second reading of Bill C-15, the amendments to the Lobbyists Registration Act proposed by the hon. Minister of Industry.

    I wish to announce that on Monday we will begin a take note debate during the day on the national discussion on the future of the Canadian health care system. There were questions even today, several of them actually on this issue. The government feels it is an important topic.

    Tuesday and Thursday of next week shall be allotted days.


+-Government Orders

[Supply]

*   *   *

[English]

+-Supply

+-Allotted Day--Kyoto Protocol

    The House resumed consideration of the motion.

+-

    The Speaker: When the debate ended for question period, the hon. member for Western Arctic had the floor for questions and comments, which we will resume at this very moment.

+-

    Mr. Jim Gouk (Kootenay—Boundary—Okanagan, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I listened with interest to the presentation by the hon. member across the way.

    She mentioned that there are scientists who back the concept of global warming. I acknowledge that there are many eminent scientists who do, but there are an equal number of eminent scientists who challenge those very same statements.

    Her speech focused primarily on global warming. Does she feel it is industry that is largely causing a lot of this now and it is man-made problems in the generation of greenhouse gases? How does she explain the fact that a little over 20,000 years ago when this planet was covered in ice, there was no industrialization, there was no movement by man that caused the ice to melt yet the planet warmed up and the ice melted?

    In 950 A.D. the planet entered into another global warming period which lasted approximately 400 years until 1350 A.D., at which time the planet, without shutting down non-existent industry, cooled down and went through a cool period from 1350 A.D. until about the mid-1800s. How does she explain these cycles in the environment on our planet when there was no industrialization to blame it on? Why does she blame it on the industries now?

+-

    Hon. Ethel Blondin-Andrew: Mr. Speaker, rather than blaming or picking sides, I believe there is a great deal to be had by collaboration. I will not go through the history of world evolution and how we went through various stages and ages. I would like to deal with the issue that we have right now.

    There has been irreversible damage done to our environment in various parts of the world. There is the whole issue of climate change to deal with. We as Canadian citizens, and especially as representatives of all Canadians, are very challenged to find ways to work together to come to some resolve on reversing those effects.

    What we need to do is not look at the people who are vitriolically opposed to each other and who are so divergent in their views that they cannot come together. I believe there are more who would like to come together to collaborate, to mull over those partnerships that will allow the stakeholders to take ownership and responsibility for what has happened and help carve out an implementation plan that is workable for everyone. There is a possibility of doing that.

    If we think that by offering explanations we can avoid our responsibility, we are sadly mistaken. We have to work together and collaborate. There is room for that. I think industry wants to play that role. There are many in industry who are responsible.

    For example, BP Amoco has undertaken numerous steps to deal with the reduction of emissions. It plants trees. It has a huge project on that. There are many environmentally friendly industry stakeholders that want to be part of the process.

    I do not think that being divergent in views and putting our best arguments forward is what it is all about. It is about putting our ideas forward that will work for the environment.

  +-(1510)  

+-

    Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I have visions of Kyoto meaning bigger government. We are getting into something called emissions trading. It seems that every single entity in the economy will have to be audited by somebody and there will have to be monitoring and tracking of this procedure. This would mean more government, more regulation and more government civil servants in Ottawa just to administer and deal with the matter.

    Does the hon. member have any idea of how many new jobs in the public sector Kyoto will mean?

+-

    Hon. Ethel Blondin-Andrew: Mr. Speaker, it is noted around the world that new environmental technologies create not only jobs but create opportunities for business and many people in the private sector. It is an opportunity to be looked at.

    If we want to be on the cutting edge in the new economy, if we want to work with the knowledge economy and get at the environmental issues in some of those innovative ways, we have to go there. We are not talking about a proliferation of government. We are talking about bringing the partnerships together that will allow industry to have ownership, to have participation, to have active engagement on these issues that it can do best.

    We are not talking about government going in as storm troopers and doing for industry what industry can do for itself or for other stakeholders. It is a collaborative approach, a partnership we are looking for that will be efficient and effective.

+-

    Hon. Charles Caccia (Davenport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, today the Calgary Herald reports that a host of Alberta's top scientists have written an open letter to Premier Klein urging him to embrace the Kyoto protocol. The letter is signed by 27 Alberta university experts in the fields of hydrology, ecology and atmospheric science. The letter also accuses Premier Klein of ignoring or downplaying the potential dangers of climate change in favour of business and economic interests in the province. The letter states:

    We must take the effects of climate warming seriously....The Kyoto protocol does not specify courses of action, only targets and timelines....We are optimistic that Alberta and Canada have the technical expertise to meet the Kyoto targets, if efforts are made to mobilize it.

    In their letter the scientists predict global warming will result in increased droughts and water shortages, an increase in the number of forest fires and wildfires, and the drying up of key wetlands areas.

    The letter also refutes those who say the scientific jury is still out on climate change. The scientists say there is virtually universal agreement that climate change is real and that human-caused greenhouse gas emissions are speeding up the process.

    They also say that predictions of economic losses under Kyoto are worst case scenarios and do not take into account the cost of not signing the accord. This worries the scientists who write:

    It is...unacceptable to postpone action to reduce climate warming. To minimize the effect, we must reduce greenhouse gas emissions as rapidly as possible.

    The scientists write that the Kyoto accord, rather than being a detriment to Alberta, is a deal that presents enormous opportunities for technical innovation and it makes sense in the long term to encourage these. What a refreshing message from Alberta. One wonders whether the Alliance Party will have to be reluctantly dragged into the 21st century or whether it will take leadership and even urge the government to accelerate the pace of ratification and implementation. The 27 scientists are certainly giving an important message to the people of Alberta.

    I will give a quick background on the Kyoto ratification. The agreement comes into effect when a developed country whose combined emissions equal 55% of the total emissions ratifies it. The countries of the European Union have already ratified it, as has Japan. Canada's signature could be enough to put Kyoto into effect. Therefore we have a particularly strategic and significant role to play.

    Waiting for developing countries to join is unrealistic. It is unfortunate that the Leader of the Opposition made that point this morning, probably without being fully briefed about the position taken by the developing countries repeatedly on this matter.

    The developing countries have made it clear that they have no intention of acting now. Instead, creating opportunities for improved energy efficiency, energy innovation and economic incentives in developing countries is the better approach for us. By ratifying the Kyoto protocol, Canada would give badly needed leadership in North America and assume its share of responsibility for its own security and the security of the global community.

    Much has been said about the cost of action and not much about the cost of inaction. Ratifying the Kyoto protocol will evidently result in energy efficiency and it will generate energy innovation. It will put the focus on energy conservation. It will give us great economic advantages in doing so.

  +-(1515)  

    Therefore, rather than talking about the cost of ratifying Kyoto, if we want to engage in that debate we should at the same time talk about the cost of inaction. The cost of inaction is increasing. There are persistent temperature levels several degrees above normal which are causing economic damage to the shipping, the insurance and even the tourism industry.

    In addition, farmers and ranchers face severe droughts and damage. Droughts also lead to more frequent forest fires. Our people in the Arctic are already seeing the negative impact of climate change on permafrost. The cost of inaction is rapidly overtaking the cost of ratifying Kyoto.

    The Department of Industry, in a study done a few months ago, reported that more than $7 billion in economic activities can be generated by the ratification of Kyoto. In contrast, the claims made by the petroleum association, Esso, Exxon, the BCNI and the chambers of commerce are misleading. Instead we should act before the cost of inaction becomes too great and unbearable.

    There are also benefits. Contrary to what opponents of the Kyoto accord are saying, its ratification offers Canadians several advantages and opportunities: One, to become more energy efficient and less energy wasteful; two, it would make Canada more competitive; three, it would make non-renewable fuel reserves last longer; four, it would develop renewable sources of energy at a faster pace; five, it would remove unwarranted tax subsidies to the oil sands and the nuclear industry; six, it would improve air quality; seven, it would protect the polar ice caps and the permafrost; eight, it would reduce the rise in sea levels; nine, it would moderate weather extremes, frequent droughts and forest fires; and finally on the international scene, ten, it would make Canada a good team player on the global scene in terms of international security.

    For those reasons it is no wonder that the vast majority of Canadians support the ratification of the Kyoto agreement.

    The ratification of Kyoto has somehow multiplied false claims, including the loss of 200,000 jobs, accompanied possibly by huge investment losses. The threat of investment loss has been used in the past with other issues.

    Mr. Speaker, you will recall the debate we had in the House on the acid rain program in the 1980s, the debate on the removal of lead from gasoline and the debate on the regulations that were introduced at that time to improve the performance of paper mills and the regulation of their effluents.

    However, as in the past, investments will continue to take place but in an innovative way, with less damaging energy forms, like natural gas, wind, solar, ethanol and other renewables.

    As for jobs, Kyoto opponents forget that jobs will be created because of new opportunities in all these emerging energy sectors.

    Opponents also fail to take into account job losses from not acting on climate change, such as the high cost to agriculture because of more frequent droughts; the cost to shipping because of lower water levels; insurance rates because of extreme weather. This is not the time for fearmongering and false claims. In order to protect the public good, I hope Parliament will ratify and move Canada toward a new energy future.

    Then we come to the not yet initiated debate of levelling the playing field. There is much talk these days about oil sands companies, for instance, such as Suncor, EnCana and Syncrude. This oil sector alone generates 22% of the greenhouse gas emissions by the fossil fuel industries. In addition, the extraction of petroleum from tar sands depends on the use of billions of litres of precious water every year.

  +-(1520)  

    Furthermore, the oil sands industry enjoys generous tax concessions amounting to hundreds of millions of dollars. In other words, our tax system presently favours the production of greenhouse gas emissions and the depletion of water which is becoming a precious natural resource. In a free enterprise economy, handouts of this magnitude impact on Canada's efforts to comply with the Kyoto goals. This practice should be phased out.

    We come now to the question of plans. Critics have said that we lack the plans to meet the Kyoto target. There is an initial action plan 2000 on climate change which was implemented two years ago. That plan helps Canada to meet one-third of the Kyoto target. After several consultations with the provinces and territories over many years, the government released a document earlier this year proposing options and measures to reduce emissions for the remaining two-thirds of Canada's Kyoto target.

    Today the government released an implementation plan for everybody to see before the vote on ratification takes place. To sum it up, we have a plan already at work to take us one-third of the way and, as of today, the climate change draft plan, developed after widespread consultations.

  +-(1525)  

+-

    Mr. Keith Martin (Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I know my hon. friend is one of the most committed environmentalists in the House but we have significant concerns over Kyoto and particularly the emissions trading scheme embedded in it. What the public should know is that the emissions trading scheme gives allows us to buy the ability to produce more greenhouse gas emissions by giving money to countries like Russia.

    Does my colleague believe that a better way to deal with the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions would be to utilize existing technologies that focus on conservation and more efficient use of energy? If we look back historically we will find that conservation and the use of technology to conserve and burn energy more efficiently and the use of alternative sources is by far a more efficient and more effective way of not only meeting our Kyoto agreement greenhouse gas emissions but going beyond that. Kyoto will not allow Canada to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions.

+-

    Hon. Charles Caccia: Mr. Speaker, I am not as knowledgeable on this matter as the hon. member. I can only indicate to him that as far as I know the emission trading scheme does not contemplate purchasing tonnage from Russia. It may apply perhaps to trading schemes with developing countries that might welcome that kind of trade.

    I agree with the hon. member that the best application of our efforts should be in real reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by way of the initiatives that he mentioned, namely innovation, conservation and renewable resources. The emission trading scheme has been quite controversial over time and it has been accepted internationally. I think it is part of the Kyoto accord. However it has to be applied with a grain of salt.

+-

    Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I want to deal with the premise behind the hon. member's speech. The premise is that climate scientists are unified in saying that there is a greenhouse crisis on this planet. Some of those leaders back in the seventies and eighties were predicting an ice age, not global warming. Of the 1,800 alleged climate scientists in the U.S. who supported Kyoto, analyses show that only 250 were legitimate climate scientists. There are thousands of climate scientists who take serious disagreement with Kyoto.

    Does the member not accept the fact that climate scientists are very much divided on this question?

+-

    Hon. Charles Caccia: Mr. Speaker, 700 years ago some scientists were claiming that the earth was flat. Does the member recognize that there are examples throughout history of conflicting views?

    The fact is that today, as we speak in this Chamber, unlike 10 years ago, the vast majority of the scientific community is of the opinion that we are undergoing a climate change. Those who do not are, by and large, subsidized and paid by the fossil fuel industry.

+-

    Mrs. Diane Ablonczy (Calgary—Nose Hill, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the motion members of Parliament are debating today is the following:

    That, before the Kyoto Protocol is ratified by the House, there should be an implementation plan that Canadians understand, that sets out the benefits, how the targets are to be reached and the costs.

+-

     This motion is a Canadian Alliance motion but the origin of the words in the motion come from the mouth of the former Liberal finance minister, whom the majority of Liberal caucus members support to be the next prime minister of Canada. We agree with the former finance minister. We have taken his statement on Kyoto and used it as our motion being debated today.

    The former finance minister said that before Kyoto is ratified Canadians are owed some things. He said Canadians are owed a plan and that there must be enough discussion with Canadians about the plan so that they can understand it. He said Canadians must be told what benefits the plan will deliver and how Kyoto targets will be reached. Finally, he said that Canadians must be given the costs they will have to pay.

    This is all very reasonable and we agree with the former finance minister. That is why our motion uses his words. We hope other members of the House will agree as well and that they will vote for our motion.

    Canadians care passionately about our wonderful land and the beauty of our environment from coast to coast. We value clean skies, unspoiled lands and fresh pure water. The Canadian Alliance, as a political party, is specifically committed to protecting and preserving Canada's natural environment.

    It is my privilege to represent the people of Calgary—Nose Hill. Our city is close to the Rocky Mountains and the many parks, rivers, streams and natural acres in and around that area. It is a delight to enjoy our own home area, to have people from around the world visit and find pleasure there.

    Unfortunately the purpose of Kyoto is not to protect or clean up our environment. The purpose of Kyoto is to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide in the air. Carbon dioxide is produced when we travel in vehicles, heat our homes and as industry operates to make our goods and products.

    Carbon dioxide is not carbon monoxide. Carbon monoxide is a component of smog. Carbon dioxide is not. Carbon dioxide is not the soot that forms smog. All it may do, and there is a lot of divided opinion on this, is make the earth marginally warmer over several decades. Surely we have more pressing environmental matters in which to put our scarce resources.

    Only 20% of carbon dioxide is produced by industry. The other 80% is produced by ordinary people who travel, heat their homes and use their appliances. Therefore Kyoto means much more costly vehicles and driving less. Kyoto means higher home construction costs and keeping the thermostat not as warm as we would like. Kyoto means more expensive appliances. It means higher costs to those who make our goods and products.

    Those higher costs will be considered by anybody who might invest in industry or develop new industries in Canada. Higher costs mean less profit. Some potential investors will inevitably decide not to go ahead. This is especially true when those same business people can locate in the U.S. or Mexico, and not be subject to the extra Kyoto costs.

    The U.S. president says Kyoto would cost his economy $400 billion U.S. The U.S. is dealing vigorously with environmental protection but will not sign Kyoto. The Australian Prime Minister said:

...for us to ratify the protocol would cost us jobs and damage our industry.That is why the Australian government will continue to oppose ratification.

    Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time.

    The Liberals' own estimates, which they are trying to hide from cabinet, says 200,000 jobs will be lost and Kyoto will cost Canadians a whopping $16.5 billion.

  +-(1530)  

    This is an outfit with a sorry track record of lowballing program costs in order to sell them. Let us look at the firearms registry which it said would cost $85 million and will end up close to an unbelievable $1 billion with objectives not even achieved.

    Other Kyoto cost estimates are much higher. The Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters say job losses will be at 450,000 in their sector alone. Business organizations say the cost to Canada will be an extra $33 billion for Kyoto. Who are Canadians to believe? It is hard to believe the federal government not only because of its track record but because there are no final cost figures in its material so far. When the real estimates were leaked a few weeks ago, the 200,000 jobs and the $16.5 billion a year, there was so much shock that Liberals have been scrambling ever since to keep them under wraps.

    The government is much less than trustworthy on such matters but even if its secret figures are correct, Kyoto will cost each person in Canada over $500 a year. That is over $2,000 for a family of four. Some of those Canadians will not be working because of the Kyoto fallout. If business estimates are more realistic, the cost will be over $1,000 per Canadian, over $4,000 for a family of four.

    What will this mean for people in the Atlantic provinces for example? Here are figures from the work of Dr. Mark Jaccard who is responsible for the Canadian Industrial Energy End-use Data and Analysis Centre, funded by the Canadian government and other agencies. He also chaired the intergovernmental panel on climate change. Based on Dr. Jaccard's work, the cost in Atlantic Canada for heating oil will rise from the current Statistics Canada average of $1,150 a year to $1,800 a year. Electricity costs will go up for the average Atlantic Canadian from $1,200 a year to $2,000 a year. Gasoline costs will take a jump from an average of $2,100 per year per Atlantic Canadian to $3,200 per year. Right now, gas costs 78.9¢ a litre in Halifax. Look for that to go up a lot more under Kyoto.

    Kyoto will hit struggling Atlantic Canadians, those from our poorest have not provinces, and hit them hard, right in the pocketbook. It will hit our seniors and those on fixed incomes hardest of all. How are they supposed to pay these increased costs for heating oil, electricity and gasoline on fixed incomes?

    Offshore gas and oil development in Atlantic Canada is forecast to generate $36 billion in revenue for Nova Scotia alone but without question, Kyoto will negatively impact that potential development. Already some investors are pulling out of the sector. Kyoto has the potential to pull the rug right out from under that bright economic development future forecast for the Atlantic provinces.

    All of this is money that will not be able to be used to fund health care, to educate our children, to help out with the cost of drugs, and the rising cost of home care as our population ages. The job losses and lost investment will shrink the tax base needed to support our most important social programs just when the need for them is becoming more critical. Even if we gave up those jobs, even if we gave up those billions, and put those billions into reducing carbon dioxide emissions, let us be clear about what might be gained.

    Canada produces only 2% of the world's man-made greenhouse gases. We know that. It is not in dispute. If we were to keep our Kyoto commitments to the letter, and by the way the Liberal government has made it clear it wants to weasel out of the full quota, but even if we did not, Canada's efforts would slow, not reduce, the rate of global greenhouse gas production by less than one-quarter of a percent.

    All of this is masterminded by a government whose track record on the environment is so bad that just this week the Environment Commissioner lashed it for the hundreds of toxic sites left to fester. In a country like ours, scores of communities lack clean water to drink without boiling.

  +-(1535)  

    That is under this government. However it would take billions from the pockets of Canadians to fund the Prime Minister's Kyoto legacy, to slow the production of carbon dioxide in the air by less than one-quarter of a per cent, while our social programs and our health care go begging. That is the priority of the government.

    We believe this must not go ahead without some clear answers from the government. As our environment critic has said, we believe the path to real environment protection does not lie with Kyoto at all. We urge the House to support today's motion.

  +-(1540)  

+-

    Hon. Charles Caccia (Davenport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I would like to ask the hon. member for Calgary--Nose Hill, who seems to enjoy wallowing in fearmongering, whether she would like to comment on the letter that appeared in today's Calgary Herald, signed by 27 eminent Alberta scientists, urging the provincial government to support the ratification of the Kyoto protocol?

+-

    Mrs. Diane Ablonczy: Mr. Speaker, I believe it was this member's leader, the Prime Minister, who yesterday said if we do not sign Kyoto Canadians will die in 30 years. That is fearmongering. We do not need to give the Liberals any lessons, they are very good at it themselves.

    With respect to the letter that appeared in the Calgary Herald today, I would say the following: government and government spending is about priorities. It is about where we can do the most for our citizens with the resources available to us. It is very clear, although there are some nice-to-haves that there are some need-to-haves like health care, home care, helping with drug costs, educating our kids, cleaning up toxic waste sites and clean water for our citizens.

    The resources for all of those things are going to be sucked out by the billions. Kyoto is not a small project. Billions will be sucked out from the pockets of Canadians by this move to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by one-quarter of a per cent in the world.

    Scientists in the ivory tower may say that is nice to have, but as Canadians examine what their priorities are and what their resources are and what their ability to pay is that they would much rather put that money into health care, jobs, education, care for our seniors, and the things that we need to maintain the kind of standard of living in the country that we are working so hard for.

+-

    Mr. John Godfrey (Don Valley West, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I listened with great interest to the justification for the wording of the motion from the hon. member. I would be curious to get her reaction in terms of the criteria which she establishes for an acceptable plan, which is an implementation plan that Canadians understand that sets out the benefits, how the targets can be reached and its costs. Does she think the plan put out by the government of Alberta last week would meet the test? Would that be the definition of a plan?

    If she would concede to that point, and I am anxious to have her reaction as to whether the Alberta plan does meet the test, would she not agree that this most obliging of governments, having heard the concerns about an implementation plan that meets all these tests, obligingly puts out a plan which answers the criteria and in far greater detail than the Alberta plan? If that is a plan, this is a plan.

+-

    Mrs. Diane Ablonczy: Mr. Speaker, the criteria in our motion today is the criteria set out by the former finance minister who most members opposite support to be the next Prime Minister. This is the criteria that comes right out of the mouth of the former finance minister.

    With respect to the opposition to signing Kyoto, it does not come from just the province where I live. It comes from B.C and Ontario. It increasingly comes from the Atlantic provinces that see their only hope to get out of the have-not trap that they have been in for so many years, largely due to Liberal mismanagement, now being attacked by the Kyoto scheme.

    With respect to plans, there is not one bit of cost in the Liberal plan. Not one. No one in their right mind signs a contract or any kind of a deal or buys something when they do not know what it will cost, yet the member somehow suggests that this is a worthy document to base a decision on. I beg to differ and so would Canadians.

  +-(1545)  

+-

    Mr. David Anderson (Cypress Hills—Grasslands, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, we are here today to debate the Kyoto protocol. All of us want a clean environment. That is clear and it is one thing on which all of us in the House can agree.

    I am fortunate enough to come from an area where we do have a clean environment. We have clean air. We have clean water. We have clean land. I can walk out to the end of my driveway, stand and listen and a lot of times hear nothing, which is a nice change from being here. We want that for all Canadians. We want them to have an opportunity to live in a good environment and to be in a situation where they can be healthy. The question is how to achieve that.

    We have several different options. Kyoto is one of those options. The Kyoto option has floated around here for several years. I think we need to talk about what kinds of things will work in order to improve our environment and protect it from pollution.

    We are told that this is a treaty that will reduce greenhouse gases. There are two ways to reduce greenhouse gases. One is to actually reduce emissions. We can set up a program that affects the environment, reduces emissions, and gets rid of some of the pollution we are faced with. The other option, of course, is that we do not really reduce emissions much at all, but we set up a bureaucracy so that we can trade credits back and forth. We can talk about emissions, we can give them a value and swap them back and forth. We can set up a bureaucracy that can interfere with the functioning of our economy. We can set up a bureaucracy that can regulate, and poorly, as they virtually always do, the environment through government intervention.

    I happen to be from Saskatchewan and am obviously not at all a supporter of our NDP government. Even it has concerns about this protocol for our part of the world. As everyone knows, Saskatchewan is agriculture based. We depend on energy in many different ways. One thing that is clear about Kyoto is that it will raise the cost of producing energy. We need to ask what the impact will be of those increasing costs of energy.

    Our office was concerned about Kyoto and how it would impact agriculture, so we decided we would try to do some research to see what the government actually has done to see what effect Kyoto would have on agriculture in Canada. We looked quite extensively and in fact we could find nothing. We found that the Canadian government basically has done absolutely nothing on the impact of Kyoto on agriculture. It has done research on other things such as carbon sequestration and methane gas and that kind of thing, but nothing directly on Kyoto and agriculture. We went to the agriculture department and again we could find nothing to indicate what impact Kyoto would have on agriculture.

    Interestingly enough, we were able to find a 1998 U.S. study. The U.S. had taken the time to do some studies through the American Farm Bureau and a couple of other organizations. They reached a conclusion that is frightening for Canadian producers. They said that compliance with the Kyoto protocol could increase U.S. farm production expenses by $10 billion to $20 billion annually and depress annual farm income by 24% to 48%. That is almost 50%. Higher costs of fuel oil, motor oil and fertilizer and other higher farm operating costs would also mean higher consumer food prices, greater demand for public assistance with higher costs, a decline in agricultural exports, and a wave of farm consolidations. In short, they concluded that the Kyoto protocol represents the single biggest public policy threat to the agricultural community today.

    When we saw that we began to get very concerned about what impact Kyoto would have on our farmers. Surveys indicate that farmers feel that rising input costs are the number one concern in their operations. They are under a big squeeze at this time for a number of reasons across the country, but rising input costs are their number one concern.

    It is imperative that the federal government provide farmers and farm families with a thorough examination of Kyoto's impact on Canadian agriculture. We need answers to some questions. The first question we need answered is this: What would be the impact of higher energy prices? Clearly if Kyoto is implemented we will see higher energy prices. That will directly affect things like fuel. Diesel fuel will be hit directly. Fertilizer costs will be hit directly. We have talked to the Canadian Fertilizer Institute, which says it will face some substantial increases. Chemical companies will face substantial increases in the costs of their products if Kyoto is implemented.

    So first of all we need to know what the impact of higher energy costs will be. From that, there are a few other questions that need to be answered. We hope to bring these up again and again over the next few months so that we can get answers to them.

  +-(1550)  

    How much will input costs rise? The Americans are suggesting that they could rise by as much as 32%. I do not know any farmers who can survive an increase of 32% on their input costs. It would not be possible for them to continue to make a living.

    We need to know what effect Kyoto would have on net farm profits. We hear that net farm income is dropping again this year, particularly on the Prairies. It basically will be a disaster in terms of net farm income there. It is dropping again. Each year it seems to be coming down. What effect would Kyoto have on net farm incomes in Saskatchewan and also in the rest of Canada?

    We need to ask what the overall impact would be on annual farm income. What would be the larger effect of the resultant economic downturn in the agricultural sector? I come from a small town. It is a really vibrant community where people are trying to get ahead, working together and putting their money together to form new projects. We need to know overall what Kyoto would do to the ability to start new ventures, to work together and to create prosperity in our towns. It is bad enough that we have drought; we do not need the further effect of this. Of course the agricultural industries would be affected as well.

    On the other end of the spectrum, we need to know if Kyoto would result in higher consumer food prices. If Kyoto is implemented and there are more costs on the farm, when people go to the grocery store they likely will have to pay more for their food. If they do not have to pay more for it, that means that I as a producer would get less for what I produce.

    There is a second question that really does need to be answered as well, that is, what would be the impact on the non-implementing countries? How much of an advantage would our non-Kyoto competitors gain from not ratifying this protocol? Canadian farmers are already struggling. They struggle against European subsidization and they struggle against the U.S. treasury. The government does very little to help them out and if it is bringing in a protocol that could have an impact of up to 30% on net farm incomes, what will that do in terms of our farmers' competitiveness? What will be the extent of the impact on our international competitiveness? How much of a decline will there be in Canadian agricultural exports, which this entire country depends on, if we implement this protocol?

    I think these are reasonable questions that we could ask of the government in order to see what in fact it would do with Kyoto in terms of agriculture.

    There are other questions that need to be raised as well, and we will talk more about them later, but the issue of carbon sequestration, carbon sinks and how the protocol mechanisms are to be implemented is something that we need to address. I understand that at the technical briefings given a couple of weeks ago the federal government basically said that it would be claiming those carbon sinks for itself. To me it seems that they are a natural resource, one that is probably in the purview of the provinces. We need to take a look at who actually should be dealing with those carbon sinks. Probably it should come right back to the farmers. They are the ones who are farming the land and growing the crops. They are the ones who should be able to access this. There is no indication that the government is going to give the farmers access.

    We have three main concerns right now. The first is that this would raise the input costs for farmers. The second is that it would make us uncompetitive; an Australian study just put out states that Canada will fall further behind if we implement this in terms of competition with both Australia and the United States in agriculture. One of the concerns I have is that Russia is another one of our competitors and we are talking about using this to ship money to Russia to buy environmental credits. We would be propping up its economy at the same time that we would be destroying our own agricultural industry, which has to compete with Russia's.

    In conclusion, we really do have a choice here. We can continue with Kyoto and end up seeing higher costs, with little or no emissions improvements and with money transferred out of Canada. Or we can come up with a different plan, one that will be far more successful, one that we design.

    First we should sit down and domestically set the standards that we think are important and that we need to apply in this country, not just in the rural areas. like where I live, which would be affected by Kyoto, but in our cities as well. Let us set those standards. Let us set realistic goals for Canada. Let us take our own Canadian money and let us begin to use it to improve our own environment. It is crazy to talk about sending money across the world to other countries to pay for environmental credits when we can use it to improve our own environment.

  +-(1555)  

    Last, I would like to say that we should give our children a future. It is important. Because it is important, let us do it right.

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to rise today to speak to the motion. The hon. member for Calgary—Nose Hill who spoke some 20 minutes ago pointed out that it is a motion taken directly from the words of the hon. member for LaSalle—Émard, the former minister of finance.

    I would like to encourage the opposition to continue to use members on this side to draft the motions it puts forward, because when we saw it we were surprised at how good it was. I am quite willing to accept the motion. I intend to vote for it. It is an excellent motion. The member for LaSalle—Émard should be congratulated and the opposition should be congratulated for realizing that it does not have the ability to do the things that the hon. member for LaSalle—Émard does so well.

    I welcome this debate. I welcome the opportunity to speak today. In fact, what the opposition is asking the government to do in the resolution of the hon. member for LaSalle—Émard is exactly what we did today, namely, put forward a plan before the House and the people of Canada.

    I do not want to suggest that it is the final plan of all time. No. As the Prime Minister made clear, it is going to be changed and modified as time goes on. As we know, we will be discussing that with the provinces and territories next Monday, again on November 21, and perhaps after that, who knows.

    What we have put forward is an approach built on the best ideas to come out of the five years of constructive consultations with the provinces and territories, with private industry, with environmental groups and with the Canadian public. In fact it goes back 10 years, since we first agreed to the United Nations framework convention on climate change back in 1992, previous to this government.

    We released an overview of our draft plan today so that we can engage in substantive discussions with the provinces and territories when we meet on Monday and so in fact we could have a substantive discussion this afternoon.

    The elements of this document have been the basis of recent discussions with industry and stakeholders. The draft plan is about innovation and technology, energy conservation and energy efficiency. It is about all Canadians everywhere in our country. It is about all governments and industry sharing the responsibility for combating climate change. And it is about a cleaner environment and a better quality of life for Canadians and for, in particular, future generations of Canadians.

[Translation]

    Starting in the 2003 budget and in subsequent budgets, the Government of Canada will announce investments in partnership and cooperation with the provinces, territories, municipalities, communities, aboriginals, the private sector, non-government organizations and, of course, individuals.

    We have prepared a draft plan under which no one region of the country will assume an unreasonable share of the burden. This plan is in response to the unique challenges facing Canada to reduce its emissions. This plan will also promote an economy that is strong, competitive and growing.

    Fighting climate change provides Canada with two opportunities to explore. State of the art technologies can help us reduce our emissions and the latest processing technology can help put us on track to reduce emissions in the long term.

    Canada's investment into new technologies is starting to pay off in terms of productivity.

    Thanks to our policies, we have created economic and financial stability, and we have increased funding of research and development in the country. In this context, Canadian businesses will be able to improve their productivity even more in the future.

  +-(1600)  

[English]

    Our approach recognizes that reducing emissions will require cost sharing among the private sector and governments. For our part, we will increase investments in innovation and technology and reallocate funds in some existing programs to climate change objectives. We will also explore promising new areas, such as renewable energy, bioproducts, bioenergy and biofuels, fuel cells and the hydrogen economy, clean coal technology and CO2 capture and storage, distributed power systems and eco-efficient industrial processes.

    We have heard a lot over the last few weeks and months from the opposition about businesses, business organizations and their lobbyists and their claim that somehow jobs will be lost. I would remind those business lobbyists that the true objective of business is of course shareholder value or what some people call profit. However, the true objective of labour unions, of the association of workers, is the number of jobs for their members, the safety of employees in the workplace and of course their pay. These are among the issues that concern unions.

    I would like to salute the Canadian labour movement, in particular the Canadian Labour Congress and Ken Georgetti, its president, for the resolution it has passed and for the determination it has shown in the ratification of Kyoto. The Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada and its president, Brian Payne, understand despite the fact it represents many workers up in the tar sands, in the oil patch, that the environment and job creation can go hand in hand.

    I look forward to working with labour and labour representatives, particularly the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union in a partnership to anticipate changes that may occur because of Kyoto measures, to identify how we can smoothly have a transition, and of course to identify appropriate methods of training for people who may be displaced, if that is the case, or who may be moving into new technologies. It is an opportunity for the Government of Canada to work together with the labour movement, who are the people who should be and in fact are the most concerned about the jobs issue. There has been a little too much in the way of crocodile tears from lobbyists from big business on this issue.

    A draft plan is aimed at ensuring that the overall economic impact of the Kyoto measures is modest and that those impacts are balanced across provinces and sectors. Decisions in our approach are based on the results of our latest modelling and the representative reference case.

    The results reflect that deliberate policy choices can lead to zero and less than a cent increases in gasoline prices and only minimal cost increases for natural gas and minor decreases in the price of electricity. The modelling case leads us to see 1.26 million new jobs created by 2010 compared to 1.32 million new jobs in the business as usual scenario. That is a difference of 60,000 jobs over an eight year period, but that is without the full count of the jobs that will be created by adopting the new technologies that will be required for the climate change constrained world. To put things in perspective, I would like to suggest the number of 427,000.

    An hon. member: Jobs lost.

    Hon. David Anderson: It shows how wrong the opposition is when it talks about jobs lost. That is the jobs gained in the Canadian economy in the last nine months of this year for which we have figures, in other words, from January through to September.

    Members should compare those two figures. Just from the normal action of a robust economy that we have thanks to good management on this side of the House, compared to the 60,000 that I mentioned as a potential job loss before we have the increases that come, that is seven times more jobs created in the last nine months. These are real jobs. It is done in less than one-tenth of the time. If we think about it, the number of potential job losses over a decade is in fact the same as the job increases since the Speech from the Throne five weeks ago.

    Impacts are modest if we choose the right tools. That is our approach and it is important to strike that balance.

  +-(1605)  

    The approach is based on fairness, burden sharing, and it recognizes that all segments of Canadian society must do their part. It covers all sectors: the federal government, transportation, the building sector, large industrial emitters, small business, agriculture, forestry, municipalities and consumers.

    The draft plan reduces uncertainty for business while maintaining flexibility for future actions. We want to engage in intense discussions with large industrial emitters on the design of a comprehensive approach for reducing their emissions. We also want to maximize trade opportunities for Canadian goods and services, to maximize the opportunity for Canadian companies to make a business out of generating offsets and to help build an effective functioning market to allow Canadian firms to purchase permits at a reasonable price.

[Translation]

    Targets for emissions trading, that we are currently discussing with large industrial emitters, is in the order of 55 additional megatonnes. This represents a significant contribution to reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

    In order to meet this objective, we have been open to ideas on changing concepts as fundamental as the allocation of credits. Every approach has advantages, but the most important criteria will be to maintain the competitiveness of Canadian industry, to ensure that certain sectors and companies are not disadvantaged, and to allow the private sector to plan ahead.

    We hope to meet these objectives through consultations and we will continue to host intense and productive exchanges until we have managed to strike the necessary balance.

    Together with stakeholders, we are in the process of developing an approach that recognizes the importance of early measures and offers real incentives to reduce emissions.

    The most economical approach is emission permit trading, since it uses market forces to reduce emissions cheaply and efficiently. In addition, it provides the advantage of improving productivity, which makes our economy more competitive.

[English]

    Whatever method is chosen for emissions trading established in Canada, we recognize that our efforts will go much further if we coordinate our efforts with our neighbour and closest trading partner, the United States. Its decision not to ratify puts Canada in a unique situation and complex competitiveness considerations arise. The economic analysis however shows that the implications for Canadian industry are relatively modest. Canada can achieve its target at an acceptable cost and we can move ahead without the United States as we have done in the past on so many important issues.

    It is true that the Bush administration has rejected the Kyoto protocol. Nevertheless, it has taken many measures to encourage its business to become more energy efficient and environmentally friendly. The United States is tightening energy efficiency standards and investing heavily in science and technology to meet the challenge of the European and Asian competition in world markets. Many state and local governments are taking even tougher environmental measures. In fact, the number of such states taking such measures has now reached 42.

    Just as we did with our government in the 1990s to deal with the deficit, here we are taking a step by step approach to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Our goal is 240 megatonnes, or 240 million tonnes.

    Our first step, the action plan 2000 of two years ago, takes us one-third of the way. I should say that it started two years ago and that one-third is comfortably on target. The second step announced today will take us to another 100 megatonnes, totalling 75% of our target. We have quite a number of options, which are listed in the paper that was released today, to choose from to achieve the remaining 60 megatonne gap from our target, the third step of our climate action plan. The decision on that will be driven by shared experiences, by collaboration and by capitalizing on new technologies.

    Our draft plan uses conservative numbers to calculate the megatonnes for each step in our approach. The draft plan does not include the actions, for example, that the provinces and territories are expected to take on their own, though they will of course be part of the national total. We believe they will be taking action and we believe it will be substantial.

    It does not take into account the benefits of the 10-year infrastructure plan that was announced in the Speech from the Throne, nor does it include current and future research and development planned over the next 10 years by the government. We believe that these will also make an important contribution to the next phase.

    We recognize that industry, its products and processes are the result of a stable and substantial public need and support. We believe that consumers will choose a more energy efficient future and we will help both the producers and the consumers in this regard. We believe that communities and municipalities will choose a more energy efficient future and we will help them too. Of course we will continue our international negotiations for cleaner energy exports. We believe that they are important in attacking the overall problem, the global problem of climate change.

    Our approach recognizes there are uncertainties in the future, including changes in the emissions profile, in technology and in the international environment.

  +-(1610)  

[Translation]

    Before year end, the Parliament of Canada has to vote on ratification of the Kyoto protocol. Both the House of Commons and the Senate will have a say.

    The draft plan we have presented today will help inform parliamentarians on this most important debate.

    We have listened to the concerns of the provinces and industries since publication of our discussion paper last May and have readjusted our proposals to minimize the economic impact on the regions and on specific sectors of our economy.

[English]

    We want to know if we have struck the right balance on burden sharing, costs and responsibilities. We want to know if the plan adequately engages Canadians. We want to know if the mix of measures and instruments proposes is right. We want to know that we have a plan that adequately captures the many opportunities in the new lower carbon global economy that is so important to Canada.

    This is yet another opportunity for the many voices in the climate change debate to be heard. We must all work to meet our Kyoto commitments.

    I point out that this issue is not entirely economic, although I have stressed economic matters in my speech so far. It is an issue of tremendous importance to the future of the country and to our children, their children and children well beyond them. It is an issue where many of the measures that we intend to put in place over the next 10 years to the end of the first Kyoto period will not in fact benefit many of us in this chamber in a direct sense, but it will be something that will improve the future of our children and their children. That is why Canadians from coast to coast to coast realize the importance of this issue.

    Canadians know and understand, as science has told them, that the impact of climate change measures is likely to be severe in many parts of the world, more severe than here and indeed in some parts of the world the expected crop losses may well be 40%; some parts of southern Africa and southern Asia.

    Canadians know they also have a responsibility not just to their own children but to future generations of the world. They know it is important for us to take measures, measures which are well within our ability, measures which will not affect our standard of living, which will not affect our competitiveness but which will in turn have an important impact on future generations here and elsewhere in the world.

    It is for that reason that Canadians from coast to coast to coast are asking us to assume our responsibilities, do the right thing and ratify the convention of Kyoto.

  +-(1615)  

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I have three questions.

    First, some of the provinces are reporting that the minister will not be attending the meeting on Monday.

    Second, 75% of CO2 emissions are through consumption, not through production. Does that mean that the costs will be borne in about that ratio by consumers? When will the minister tell us what those costs will be?

    Third, Canadians are being asked to reduce their emissions by one tonne of the five tonnes that they produce in a year. That is a 20% reduction. When will Canadians understand what exactly that means?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson: Mr. Speaker, first, I can assure him I will be there at the Halifax meeting of the JMM.

    Second, with respect to the burdens, we are attempting not to get the lowest cost plan for achieving our Kyoto goal. To do that would create imbalances and uneven burdens across the country. We have therefore decided to make a more important criteria, a plan which does not disadvantage any region of the country. Therefore, the lowest cost option is not there, although of course we are trying within the constraints of having a fair plan for every region of the country. Within that constraint we are trying to have the lowest cost we can.

    Third, with reference to each Canadian currently being responsible for five tonnes of carbon each, think of that. An average car weighs a tonne and each of us is responsible for five of them every year. That is what is going into the atmosphere and causing our problem. If we visualize it that way we can see that there is a major impact from a developed country such as Canada.

    We have in the plan. If the hon. member will look at it, although I do not have the page reference here, he will see there an opportunity for what individual Canadians can do: having a car which gets better mileage; driving less so that they indeed improve their health by walking more. Average North Americans only walk 400 metres a day. That is very bad for their health. They should walk more. Hon. members should too, but not the one with the leg in plaster.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont—Petite-Patrie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, the references to fairness and equity do not ring true coming from the minister.

    Is the minister aware that there are provinces that have put action plans on climate change into place, and have made considerable efforts?

    Is the minister aware that there are industries, the Quebec aluminum industry for example, which have made considerable efforts? I am thinking of such companies as Alma, in the county of Jonquière.

    Is he aware that the forest industry, for example, has cut its greenhouse gas emissions by 19% since 1990? Basically, is he prepared to reward past efforts, to take them into consideration?

    How can he explain to us that the intensity factor used in the calculations and the division of efforts is not 1990 but 2012?

    How can he explain that, if past efforts are being rewarded, the intensity factor used in the calculations for the decision is not 1990 but 2012?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson: Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his very good question. First, it is true that there are many plans in place already. Many measures have already been implemented and I salute the provinces and industries that have done this work.

    However, let us not forget. He asked me if I was going to reward efforts. Perhaps he is forgetting that most of the efforts made to reduce greenhouse gas emissions also maximized revenues for these companies. They are better companies today, worth more, because of what they spent to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

    The energy efficiency of these companies has also made them more efficient from a financial perspective as well. That is one thing. We cannot ask Canadian taxpayers, we cannot use tax dollars, to pay all the people who have already clearly benefited. They cannot collect twice.

    In the case of an industry that has paid and received nothing in return, we are prepared to talk with the hon. minister from Quebec, André Boisclair, or with others, or directly with industries in order to come up with something that is fair.

    Of course, I would like to pay tribute to the efforts of Quebec's aluminum industry, particularly Alcan. Quebec has not been alone; my birth province, British Columbia, has also made extraordinary efforts. I salute them.

  +-(1620)  

[English]

+-

    Mr. Reed Elley (Nanaimo—Cowichan, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the Minister of the Environment has made a great deal about having consulted widely with industry over the past five years. If this is true, then I wonder what kind of consultation has been going on because there are still so many questions being asked by industry about the Kyoto protocol. For instance, NorskeCanada president, Russ Horner, said at the Vancouver Board of Trade yesterday that:

    British Columbia's pulp and paper industry could be wiped out by American producers if Canada signs the Kyoto Accord and the U.S. doesn't...

    But if other nations don't sign and Canadian industry is required to pay a carbon tax, “You might as well ship the fibre south of the border and manufacture in the United States.

    I am particularly concerned about this captain of industry making that kind of statement because NorskeCanada happens to be the biggest employer in my riding.

    The Minister of the Environment is also not telling us that the support of Kyoto by Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada is conditional. Its support is conditional because it demands $1 billion to deal with the consequences of Kyoto. It sees that Kyoto is going to hurt. The union acknowledges a large cost and it wants government to pay for it.

    Some of those people work in the mill in my riding. When they go to buy homes, they check out the costs to ensure they know how much they will be paying for them. How can we expect the provinces, industry, workers of this country to buy the plan when they do not really know the cost?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson: Mr. Speaker, I had a meeting with the president of the union in question only yesterday. We had an extensive discussion. I am quite sure if he wanted a billion dollars from the Government of Canada he would have suggested it at that time. He made no such request. In fact, from that meeting, it was proposed, and I cannot say whether it was him or me, that we have a joint approach of his union and the Government of Canada, and any other union that wants to join forces, so that we could anticipate any potential problems.

    The difficulty we have now is that we really do not see where job losses will occur. In the modelling it does not show up. Therefore, we will have an ongoing approach with him to ensure we follow this in case there could be some way where labour is affected.

    With respect to the company in question, I have to say to industry that the time is over for this type of alarmist talk. What they are doing is driving down the value of Canadian companies and impacting upon the investment climate for Canadian companies overseas. I asked them not to do this because this type of extreme statement is simply wrong.

    Today we put out figures which show very minor costs for certain industries under the most likely scenario. For industry to keep talking about this being a killer of jobs, only suggests to investors overseas that the Canadian industry is not a good place to invest. I wish they would stop.

+-

    Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis (Winnipeg North Centre, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I would like to raise with the Minister of the Environment the question of timing for the ratification of the Kyoto protocol.

    The Liberal government has dropped the ball on Kyoto and is running to catch up as we speak. By delaying ratification, the government is actually ceding the agenda to members of the Alliance who are obviously opposed in principle to the ratification of Kyoto. It is not about the plan. It is not about specifics. They are opposed specifically to ratification.

    Why delay ratification when he is only allowing the opponents of Kyoto to gather momentum to try to stop the ratification of this protocol? Why not, after this coming Monday's meeting on Kyoto, come to the House with a motion for ratification by the Parliament of Canada?

  +-(1625)  

+-

    Hon. David Anderson: Mr. Speaker, may I correct the hon. member's memory of what the Prime Minister said in June of last year in Italy at the G-8 leaders meeting. He said that 2002 was the target year.

    It is true we have delayed the meeting that is taking place next Monday, one week from last Monday, but that is the only delay there has been. We did it for a very legitimate reason, to get more comments, advice and involvement of the business sector.

    There is no change in this. If I adopted her suggestion that we should play on the times to try and avoid a full debate, she is wrong. We are winning that debate because the Canadian people are with us. Overwhelmingly Canadians support ratification of Kyoto.

    I fail to see why we have these nervous Nellies in the NDP who say that only if we rig the system could we possibly win. We will win this argument hands down because we are doing the right thing for future generations.

+-

    Mr. John Reynolds (West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to join in this debate. It is a pleasure to have listened to the Minister of the Environment. I noticed at the start of his speech he talked about our motion as being borrowed from the former minister of finance. I want to say to him that we agree with those comments made by the former minister of finance.

    Members on this side, members of conservative-minded thinking, are not afraid to work with other parties in the House of Commons or across Canada when they have good ideas. I might mention to the Minister of the Environment that it is not unlike when I was the minister of the environment in British Columbia. I hired the present Minister of the Environment to write a report for our department because it was something in which he was a specialist. He did a good job but certainly if I were Minister of the Environment of Canada, I would not be hiring him on this file because I think he has gotten carried away on an international issue that is not going to do a good job for Canada.

    It is our fervent hope that Canadians will soon realize the government is leading them down the path to national financial ruin. The Kyoto accord will go down in Canadian history as the ruinous legacy of the Liberal Prime Minister and his party if the Liberals use their majority to push this accord on Canadians. When Canadians recognize the danger in this reckless and ill-conceived scheme, they will make it clear to all members of Parliament that supporting the Kyoto accord will end their political careers. They will have a wide selection of politicians to choose from because only the Alliance Party stands in opposition to this abomination.

    This is bad legislation. It is bad for Canada, bad for families, bad for seniors living on fixed incomes and bad for our economic future. It is bad as well for British Columbia. That is the province on which I want to focus today, not only as a member of Parliament from British Columbia but as a member who was a former minister of the environment in the province of British Columbia.

    The member for Victoria will have some explaining to do if he has the courage to campaign for election again. He will have to explain why he pushed the Kyoto accord, knowing that the cost of heating the average home will rise by $50 or more a month. He will have to explain why people on fixed incomes will be forced to choose between heat and food. The member for Vancouver Centre will have to answer the same question when she faces angry voters. Will she give them advice on how to eat less or live colder? The minister says that is alarmist but it is not. It is a fact.

    I want to mention an incident in my own past to indicate our own deep concern over the environment in western Canada. When Ralph Klein was the environment minister in Alberta, he introduced the toughest legislation regulating pulp mill emissions ever seen in Canada, if not in North America. Not many eastern or central Canadians remember that, but I do because I was minister of the environment of British Columbia.

    I was so impressed by that legislation that as environment minister for British Columbia I attempted to adopt it word for word. Tragically, the premier of British Columbia refused to agree to let me take that legislation and make it law. It did pass cabinet but after cabinet approval, the premier refused to sign the order in council. I did the honourable thing and resigned as minister of the environment.

    The Liberals should pay heed. Sometimes cabinet ministers leave because they are honourable, not because they did something dishonourable.

    I think too that all members who support Kyoto should be prepared to explain to British Columbians why they are in such haste to support something that will do so much damage. They should tell parents in the suburbs why they will have to get out of bed two hours earlier in the morning to get their hockey and soccer players to the rinks and fields on public transit. The simple fact is there are no feasible or cost effective alternatives to the use of motor vehicles for passenger transportation and the movement of goods in many parts of British Columbia.

    The NDP and the Liberals want to shut down British Columbia and that is not acceptable to British Columbians. Canadians should understand they are being sold down the river of no return on Kyoto.

    Let me explain it in the words of the member for Sarnia--Lambton, a very good Liberal colleague in the House and an outspoken one on issues of importance. He said that he regrets supporting the firearms registry. Expert testimony said that the registry would cost only $85 million and check the flow of weapons to criminals. The cost is now over $1 billion and the ones being checked are innocent and law-abiding Canadian sports people. That is from a Liberal member.

    Canadians should keep in mind as they call their members of Parliament to express outrage and opposition to the Kyoto accord that the Liberals say it will not cost much at all. We just heard the minister say that, but that is what the Liberals said about firearms registration and they were out in their estimates by over 1,000%.

  +-(1630)  

    That is what we have to realize in this House when we hear the Minister of the Environment talk about dollars. There are experts from universities across Canada talking about what this will do to Canada. We just cannot take the government's word.

    Look what happened with the firearms registration. Whether one likes it or dislikes it, the fact is the costs are $900 million more than the government thought it would cost and it is still going up, and it is still not registering all the guns. In reality when we look at what is happening across Canada, we are not any better off than when the government started the whole thing.

    All members in this place should heed the words of the member for Sarnia—Lambton. What guarantee is there that Kyoto will not run into the tens of billions with all the lost investment, the higher taxes, higher consumer prices, higher food costs when all the hidden expenses are totalled up?

    I have some advice for Canadians. Invest in horses. If the majority across the way forces passage of the Kyoto accord, people will need horses to pull their cars and plows because of the cost of gasoline. I would only suggest that they stockpile what the horses leave behind. They could use it as ammunition when the Liberals, New Democrats and Conservatives come looking for votes and brag about supporting Kyoto.

    The Alliance Party is the only party that stands in opposition to this flawed and dangerous scheme. In British Columbia our devastated logging industry will suffer even more and what do the Liberals and New Democrats do? They support Kyoto no matter what the impact would be on the lives of the people who live in my beautiful province.

    The fishing industry will suffer from skyrocketing fuel prices and fuel taxes, and Liberals and Democrats do not care. Our fruit growers, dairy farmers and ranchers will suffer, yet the Liberals and New Democrats laugh and shrug. There will be no offshore oil and gas industry. That would be a tragedy because it might have helped offset the losses suffered because of the bungling by the government on the softwood lumber issue.

    It is true. Liberals and New Democrats do not care how much people will be hurt. I hope every voter in British Columbia whoever wasted a vote on those parties will learn from Kyoto and say never, never again.

    One hundred years ago we had politicians who had national dreams. Today we have Liberals, New Democrats and Conservatives who support international schemes. The Kyoto accord is an international scheme to transfer the wealth from Canada to third world countries that will not sign the Kyoto accord. It is a cruel fraud the government perpetrates under the guise of reversing climate change.

    Canadians should make it clear that they will not accept this dangerous effect to their economic well-being.

    I speak with as much sarcasm as I can muster to those Liberals, New Democrats and Progressive Conservatives for watching and laughing as Kyoto destroys my home province of British Columbia, and whatever the Liberals, New Democrats and Progressive Conservatives support, they certainly will be punished by the voters in the next election.

+-

    Mr. John Godfrey (Don Valley West, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as I listened to the member for West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast, I tried to understand the moral of the tale of when he was an environment minister. As I understood it, he was happy and wished to imitate Ralph Klein as a tough environment minister in producing higher standards in an industry which was polluting: pulp and paper. He was sad that it did not go through.

    The first question would be, how did it work out? Did all of those companies in Alberta go broke or did they do okay? If they did okay, that is the same thing we are trying to do in Kyoto. We are trying to make industrial processes more efficient and less energy consuming. What is wrong with that? I would like a response to that.

    The second thing I would like an answer on is the reference to transport. There was the implication that people taking their kids to hockey games would take two hours longer because they could not get a bus.

    There are really two components to that. Why is it not possible for this society of ours in North America to make more efficient vehicles in terms of fuel consumption? We found out when we had an energy crisis in the late 1970s that we could do so. We had huge improvements in passenger vehicles. Why can we not continue to do that?

    As the member comes from British Columbia, this would be a good question for the former minister. Why is it that we cannot indeed support on the other side of the equation more efficient buses of the sort that would be powered by Ballard fuel cells, whose fuel cells are made in Burnaby, British Columbia? What is it about the hon. member that prevents him from seeing both the economic benefits and the innovation opportunities and why does he not join the parade?

  +-(1635)  

+-

    Mr. John Reynolds: Mr. Speaker, I appreciate that question because it shows me that the member does not understand what he is talking about with regard to Kyoto. That is exactly what we are talking about. We are talking about finding more efficient buses in Canada, not signing some phony international document that is going to do nothing for Canadians.

    When I was minister of the environment in British Columbia an order in council was signed indicating that no more buses would be run by diesel fuel. They would all be run by natural gas to improve our environment. Who changed that? The NDP when it got in. The NDP said it would be too expensive so the buses went back to using diesel fuel and polluting the air.

    The member talked about Ralph Klein and B.C. Yes, what we did was tough on industry, but what we did was force industry to bring in lower emissions. It worked very well. The Kyoto accord does not do that.

    The effort we are putting into Kyoto should be put into working with industry in Canada to have better functioning plants. We should be looking at helping people insulate their homes in a better way so we do not get greenhouse gas emissions.

    We do not have to sign this phony agreement. Why are the Americans not signing this agreement? Those members from central Canada do not understand that they are going to pay dearly when they cannot compete with the Americans across the border. They are going to pay dearly when the Americans drill their oil and gas wells right across the border from Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Ontario because they will not have the same rules we will be under. That is what some of those members do not understand.

    I agree with them with regard to cars. There are a lot of companies, not just Ballard, that do great work on cars. Why do Liberal backbenchers not tell their ministers to stop driving their big limousines and get into some environmentally friendly cars? Only two ministers out of 30 are driving environmentally friendly cars. What kind of government is that? It is trying to sell Kyoto to the Canadian people and its own ministers will not get into something environmentally friendly.

    We talk about new and improved technology. We must encourage people in industry to look at technology. A company in Canada was making a product that could be put in garages so that people could drive their cars and fill them up with natural gas overnight. It was sold back to the Americans because there was no control help at all from any of the provincial or federal governments. The company did not want any financial help. It wanted regulatory help. That is not happening in this country.

    Where is the government in providing assistance and making sure we can get hydrogen into gas stations and other areas across Canada? It is all part of the oil and gas industry. It will not hurt any of them. All of that technology is good.

    Kyoto does just the opposite. It allows us to kick money outside the country to Russia and other countries which is stupid, phony and dumb. Let us start acting as smart Canadians with our smart industries and make sure the environment is a lot better. Let us get some leadership from a government whose members still like to drive limousines instead of cars that will not pollute the environment.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Far be it from me to make a partisan comment but I must admit that I am pleased to see the hon. member for West Vancouver--Sunshine Coast well on his way to a positive mend.

    It is my duty pursuant to Standing Order 38 to inform the House that the question to be raised tonight at the time of adjournment is as follows: the hon. member for Cypress Hills--Grasslands, Kyoto protocol.

  +-(1640)  

+-

    Mr. Vic Toews (Provencher, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the Kyoto accord has been a matter that has divided both ordinary Canadians and the elected officials who represent them.

    At the beginning of public debate on this accord the issues were simplified and indeed oversimplified by the proponents of Kyoto. Pro-Kyoto was thought to mean equal to pro-environment. Being anti-Kyoto meant that one did not care about the environment. However, as the weeks and months have gone on, it has become clear that this false and simplistic dichotomy does not reflect reality.

    Canadians have begun to realize that their elected representatives are being asked to support an international accord that, if ratified, would have significant ramifications on our economy, our industry and our way of life without having any indication of how the accord would be implemented. There is no clear plan, there are no details and there is no price tag.

    Canadians clearly believe that this is an unreasonable request for the government to make of the elected representatives in the House. This belief is indicated in the recent poll showing that while 74% of Canadians support Kyoto and its implementation, the same poll shows that 78% say that the government needs to spend more time investigating the cost and impact of the Kyoto accord before implementing it.

    The Liberal government's draft plan that was hastily released this morning just before the debate began is no plan at all. It is a weak outline that still does not report the costs of implementing Kyoto and contains no comprehensive details.

    This so-called draft plan in fact simply indicates what we already knew, which is that the government has no plan at all. Clearly the government decided for political reasons to push Kyoto through without consulting Canadians, without consulting the provinces and without consulting its own staff about the development of an implementation plan. Apparently the government thought it could simply figure out the details after the fact.

    Although most provinces initially express support for the accord, that support has dropped recently to only one province, my home province of Manitoba.

    Manitoba hopes that credits for its hydroelectric power will prove to be an economic benefit for its economy. The provincial government has estimated that it can achieve at least a quarter of its greenhouse gas reductions through credits through the export of hydroelectricity.

    Unfortunately for Manitoba, its plan to receive credits for hydroelectricity is opposed by the European countries which state that such a change means renegotiating the entire accord.

    Although the draft plan released this morning assumes that these kinds of credits will be approved, there are no guarantees that Canada will be able to convince other ratifying countries to accept them.

    Manitoba officials are also banking on the federal government providing “clear evidence of significant environmental health benefits” as well as “reasonable economic assumptions and a cost benefit analysis”. I have a feeling that once our provincial officials find out that the federal government has not got its facts straight, has not got a plan, has not got any details and has not got a price tag for this accord, they will think very seriously about withdrawing support for this accord.

    The economic forecasts of Kyoto's impact vary greatly. It is clear that it would be considerable. Even taking into account the perceived benefits, the cost would be well over $1,000 per year for every man, woman and child in Canada. Recent studies indicate that Canadians would pay up to 100% more for electricity, up to 60% more for natural gas and up to 80% more for gasoline if the accord is implemented. The average Canadian household would face costs of about $30,000 just to refurbish their homes to meet Kyoto's stringent restrictions.

  +-(1645)  

    Specifically in Manitoba, the average cost to every household has been estimated to be almost $500 every single month. In some lower income families that would be up to one-third or more of their entire household earnings.

    The government is asking for a blank cheque from citizens without anyone, including the elected representatives in the House, having any idea how much the cheque will be written for.

    I would also like to touch briefly on the issues of provincial--federal jurisdiction.

    In many areas of government, Liberal ministers have demonstrated their habit of failing to cooperate or consult with the provinces. We have seen it over the years with health care, and I have seen it personally through the development of the Youth Criminal Justice Act which replaced the Young Offenders Act. The lack of consultations with the provinces and the refusal of the federal government to shoulder its share of the financial burden has resulted in a great deal of lost faith between the two levels of government.

    Now we see the same pattern emerge with respect to the Kyoto accord.

    The Prime Minister had promised that Kyoto would not be signed without the support of all the provinces. He had promised that no one region would be left with the burden of Kyoto. However, by committing to ratify Kyoto by the end of the year, it is obvious to Canadians that the Prime Minister will do none of these things.

    The regulation of emissions effects many areas of provincial jurisdiction. These include laws regarding property and civil rights and the use and conservation of non-renewable natural resources.

    The Prime Minister has shown his disregard for the provinces by failing to consult with the premiers who want to see a better plan with open, transparent consultations.

    Under this accord our provincial governments may be forced to shoulder increased taxes and new fines in addition to the hardships caused to the individual citizens who pay the taxes. It is only fair that they know what to expect before buying on to this agreement.

    The Liberal government has failed to meet the standards of public debate and public disclosure on Kyoto. These were provided for both the free trade agreement and the Charlottetown accord, but somehow the government does not think the standard applies in the case of Kyoto.

    The continual failure of the federal government to provide important details of an implementation plan does not serve the interests of democracy, it does not serve our economic security and, above all, it does not serve the search for effective measures to protect our precious environment.

+-

    Mr. Larry Bagnell (Yukon, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I commend the opposition for a very productive motion. I do not see why everyone in the House could not support the motion. I hope this is a new sign of constructive opposition day motions.

    As a preamble to my question I want to mention some of the input I have had from my riding, which, I believe as in all ridings, is mixed. Of course chambers of commerce have some concern. I know they will appreciate the motion. The motion today is the position I have been taking since the summer.

    There is a lot of mining resource extraction in my riding and so any petroleum effects will be important. In fact yesterday the Mining Association of Canada asked me about a plan and it is great that it has been released today.

    However, on the other side, I have had overwhelming input from first nations and many citizens. Obviously there has been physical evidence. People who were depending on ice river crossings cannot get home now. Many buildings that have been permanently frozen in permafrost for decades are now melting at great expense. The Yukon Medical Association is also concerned and it wants us to speedily ratify Kyoto.

    I have two questions. The member was quite concerned about costs and gave a number on one side of the balance sheet, but, as he said, he would like good debate. On the other side of the balance sheet , I wonder if he could outline a few of the costs if we do not sign Kyoto because I am sure no one would disagree that there are some.

    The second question is as follows. Once again he said that he wanted public debate and democracy. A lot of the Alliance members, just like us, will have received a lot of letters asking us to ratify Kyoto. I would like to know, in his spirit of public debate, what he replies to those people who have asked him to support Kyoto.

  +-(1650)  

+-

    Mr. Vic Toews: Mr. Speaker, those are in fact good questions. What are the costs of not signing? I think that is central to the entire issue. What are the costs of the accord? We simply do not know. We cannot answer that question without having some indication from the government as to what its implementation plan is.

    I think Canadians are good stewards of the environment and that is why there is this initial indication of support for the Kyoto environment. However there is a great concern about the cost of the accord and the cost of not supporting it.

    In terms of not supporting it, I have tried to actually figure out what would be the benefits of the accord. If this is simply a transfer of wealth to other countries that do not need to comply with the requirements, then, on a global basis, there would be no benefit and as a result it would be an unfair cost to Canadian taxpayers.

    I would encourage the member, as a member of the Liberal caucus in the House, to encourage the Minister of the Environment to think carefully before he proceeds with this commitment to an artificial deadline imposed by a lame duck Prime Minister who wants to leave a legacy beyond the corruption and graft that we have seen over the last number of months. Let us forget about that deadline. Let us get the facts on the table. I think Canadians are prepared, as the polls indicate, to wait to see what the costs are and indeed what the benefits are.

    As indicated, my home province of Manitoba indicates support but its support is based on an assumption that simply does not appear in the accord.

+-

    Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member for Provencher might be interested in hearing a Manitoba government news release as of today, October 24, that Minister Sale, the energy, science and technology minister, and Minister Ashton, the conservation minister, will be in Ontario today meeting with environmental groups and with federal ministers in anticipation of the national meeting that will be undertaken by the Minister of the Environment.

    However, what I would like to point out to him is that they are featuring a Energy Probe Research poll done in Manitoba. Mr. Ashton notes that 64% of Manitobans surveyed supported the ratification of Kyoto while 17% were opposed and 21% were undecided. That is a significant number.

    In addition, nearly half of the respondents, 49%, fully believe that the Kyoto protocol represents an economic opportunity for Canada, not an economic liability. Therefore, unless an overwhelming number of the 17% live in the hon. member's riding, I would suggest that a lot of people who support Kyoto live in the hon. member's riding.

+-

    Mr. Vic Toews: Mr. Speaker, the poll somewhat surprises me given that about a month ago the support in Manitoba was over 80% and then the Ipsos-Reid poll indicated support at 74%. Now the support is at 65%.

    What the polling indicates is not only an overall lack of confidence in the accord and that support is beginning to drop, but the Ipsos-Reid poll indicates that 78% of Manitobans want the government to investigate the cost of implementing the accord and the impact of implementing the accord.

    I support what my constituents are saying. They want to know the facts and they want to know the costs. If we had those facts and those costs before us here then we would be able to debate this in an intelligent manner. However we cannot debate it without the availability of those facts.

  +-(1655)  

+-

    Mr. John Godfrey (Don Valley West, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with my colleague and friend from Lac-Saint-Louis.

    Having heard the debate so far it is back to the basics. I assumed that many of the points which have been registered for such a long time were taken for granted but they have not been.

    I want to dwell on the science of the matter, the economic costs, the issue of ratifying now, the question of whether this is a made in Canada plan and finally, the connection between greenhouse gases and other forms of pollutants.

    The Leader of the Opposition said something quite incredible today. He said that climate change was not a problem yet, not a problem today. Dare I ask what planet the Leader of the Opposition is living on? Has he looked out the window lately in Alberta and seen the drought? If he lived in the Arctic and looked out the window this summer he would have seen how the ice had failed to re-form because of the heating of the climate. If he lived in Europe and looked out the window this summer he would have seen the flood waters rising, as the German weather office said, attributable to climate change. If he lived in Asia and looked out the window he would have seen this amazing pile of crud two miles up in the sky contributed to in part by climate change and global warming. It would seem that the evidence of the senses would be overwhelming, but even if that failed it seems to me that the evidence of the science itself is overwhelming.

    We know that the 20th century was the warmest in the northern hemisphere in the past 1,000 years. The 1990s have been the warmest decade on record and this year alone has been the warmest year on record so far. One can look out the window in downtown Toronto to see the number of smog days which is contributed to directly by climate change.

    The science is overwhelming. Who says so? Not just me, but over 1,000 of the world's top scientists and over 100 Nobel laureates. Who says no? Ralph Klein says no. He is not alone. He has a complicit coterie of desperate demagogues from the petroleum club and they are the gang of polluters. Of course they do not want to clean up. It is much easier not to.

    Therefore whom do we trust on this issue? Whom do we trust on the science? Do we trust Ralph Klein, the scientist? Do we trust the polluters? Do we trust the editorial board of the National Post? God forbid I used to be its editor. Or, do we trust the scientists?

    The second point is the costs. The most credible modelling of the costs, of economic growth and job creation over 10 years indicates that the impacts are minimal. Who says so? The analysis and modelling group which is made up of officials from the Government of Canada, every territory, province and industrial sector. That is who says so, including officials from the Government of Alberta. This is the most credible group and they say so. No other group comes close.

    By the worse case, over a 10 year period there will be a total reduction in the increase of jobs of 200,000 over 10 years; that is 20,000 jobs a year.

    The Minister of the Environment said that over the past nine months the Canadian economy this year alone added 427,000 jobs. Therefore, what is the problem?

    The member for Calgary--Nose Hill asked: Whom are Canadians to believe? Whom are they to trust?

    I ask: Do we trust the outlandish scaremongering Premier of Alberta with his whacko figure in yesterday's speech, not in the text, of $27 billion a year additional costs substantiated by nobody, or do we trust the ANG, the people who actually got together on a collaborative basis? Whom do we trust indeed?

    Third, why should we ratify now? We have been consulting with the provinces and the industrial sectors since 1997. This year alone there have been stakeholder meetings with 600 experts from across Canada including 232 from industry and 186 from government and we are having more meetings. I say enough already. We have had the consultation. What do members mean when they say they have not been consulted? We have consulted to death. It is time to get on with it.

  +-(1700)  

    Do members think that in 1939, at the outbreak of World War II, we stood in the House and said that we have a problem admittedly, but we cannot go to war until we know the final cost, job loss figures and the plan for the next 10 years? We would not have done it.

    When the challenge is big enough, we must step up to the plate and say we will do it and get on with it. Either we believe it is true, that it is a problem, or we do not. If we believe it is true we must act and then figure out as we go along how we will do it.

    There is the issue of the made in Canada plan. Of course this is a made in Canada plan. These are made in Canada targets. This is a made in Canada consultation. This is a made in Canada plan that was issued today. It involves the provinces, federal government, territories and industry. If we want something different, do we think that a country will be better off with a bunch of balkanized plans made in Alberta, Calgary or Ontario? This is a country for Pete's sake. That is why we have countries in the first place, to pull it together, to respond to great national crises, and to be there when the international community asks where is Canada. That is why we have a country. That is why we have a made in Canada plan and that is what we are doing.

    The whole question has been raised and confused by the opposition party that there is no connection between climate change, global warming and pollution. Here is the connection. Increased temperatures lead to formation of more ground level ozone and smog which sears the tissues of the lungs. Warmer, moister air masses move more slowly and will reduce the dispersal of air pollutants thereby increasing the concentration of pollutants over major cities.

    Sustained hot spells and heat emergencies, such as those seen in Chicago and Toronto for the first time last year, increase the stress on the human body and make it harder for elderly people, the frail and small children to cope with the effects of air pollution. Lower flows of water in lakes and rivers caused by heat waves and droughts can lead to poor water quality and an increase in water borne diseases.

    This is sustained by the work being done by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development which talks about the ancillary benefits of worrying about climate change:

    In most cases, policies to abate or otherwise reduce GHG emissions lead to lower energy use and to changes in the energy mix towards cleaner fuels. This reduces local air pollutants, leading to lower morbidity and mortality from pollution, better visibility, higher crop yields and less damage to structures (through the reduction of acidrain). Additional benefits can include reduced urban congestion; lower noise levels and possibly roadaccident fatalities as a consequence of lower vehicle-miles travelled; and reduced soil loss and erosionthrough increased tree farming.

    What do members mean that there is no connection? Of course, there is a connection. As we contemplate what will be perhaps the greatest debate that this country will see on our watch as politicians, Canadians will be asking where were members on this, which side of history were we on because we had better be on this side. If anyone thinks this is true, if the scientists have it right, then for the sake of the future of our children and our children's children, we must ratify.

    We must get on with this. We cannot go on consulting to death. We must change things. That is what we are here for and we cannot do it piecemeal. That is what we have a country for. For all of our children, for all of our heritage, and for all of our future, let us ratify.

+-

    Mr. Stockwell Day (Okanagan—Coquihalla, Canadian Alliance): Madam Speaker, as I address the question, the member who just spoke may want to contemplate a response to something he said. Just yesterday, Liberal members bristled and some ran from the House when a passing reference was made about some of their colleagues' pictures being found in various institutions around the country. This member just made a reflection on an elected premier of our country known as the most populist of all premiers as a desperate demagogue. I wonder if he would want to, in his response to my question, reconsider and perhaps address that, especially if somebody is not here to defend himself.

    The member was talking about climate change and he made a millennial reference. Climate change of course has taken place down through history from times of warmth and times of cold. We know that the Vikings, for example, when they came in the first journeys over a thousand years ago talked about Newfoundland. They did not call it that at the time, they referred to it as Vinland because it was so warm, there were vines growing and it was quite a warm area. By the time John Cabot and others came here, it had radically changed.

    Can the member tell us what the influences were down through the ages for climate change, and in those periods of climate change were there people, other than in literally volcanic situations, who were having their lungs seared, and were there other such cataclysmic changes where suddenly people were dropping dead? What were the significant factors leading to climate change down through the ages?

  +-(1705)  

+-

    Mr. John Godfrey: Madam Speaker, let me respond to both parts of the question.

    Did I refer to the Premier of Alberta as a desperate demagogue? No. I referred to his complicit coterie of desperate demagogues from the petroleum club. That was the exact phrase. I will not withdraw the remarks of the irresponsible oil patch which has failed to recognize, even within its own ranks, the virtuous BP, Shell Oil, and Suncor, by scaremongering in a group I referred to as a coterie.

    On the question of the science, I was lucky, in a previous life, to work with the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research and I was attached to the Earth Sciences Program, so I have some passing knowledge of the matter to which the hon. member refers.

    Of course there has been climate change over the years which is not the result of human activity. The difference is that when we impose on the long-term climate change pattern, which certainly exists, human activity has the effect of increasing the rate of change. That is why the carbon story is so important for the last three centuries. We have records on carbon going back 430,000 years, thanks to the ice caps and so on. There is no doubt that human activity, our activity, has increased the rate of change.

+-

    Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP): Madam Speaker, the member for Don Valley West made reference to the possible impact on jobs. I am glad he raised it. Would the member be interested in knowing that the very people who are most affected by the possible impact on jobs of the implementation of the Kyoto accord would be the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada, the third largest private sector union in the country with 150,000 members?

    Last week, along with the leader of the NDP, the member for Halifax, I went to its tenth convention in Toronto and it passed a resolution. The resolution stated that Kyoto must be ratified for the sake of the planet. It stated that there was no evidence that Kyoto would lead to layoffs or an economic disaster for Canada, and the CEP demanded a just transition program to ensure any workers who were affected, and communities, would not be left behind.

    The hon. member can add that to the list of credible authorities on this subject which are convinced and confirmed. This union is not yielding to the fearmongering that the world will come to an end or life as we know it will end if we implement the Kyoto accord. The Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada wants the government to ratify the Kyoto accord.

+-

    Mr. John Godfrey: Madam Speaker, indeed, I met with same union yesterday. I entirely agree with it and with the previous member. However it is an important and appropriate function of government to be there for transitions caused by innovation, in whatever form, just as we had to be there for transition caused by the free trade agreement. That is the role of government.

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): There are only five minutes left for questions and comments. I know there was quite a lot of interest, but if everybody had kept their questions short and their answers short we would have managed to perhaps get two or three more. You can ask for unanimous consent. I am the servant of the House. Is there agreement that the hon. member have a minute to ask a question and a minute to answer?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    Some hon. members: No.

  +-(1710)  

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Clifford Lincoln (Lac-Saint-Louis, Lib.): Madam Speaker, in 1987, when I was Quebec's minister of the environment, I went to the United Nations for the launch of Ms. Brundtland's project, “Our Common Future”.

[English]

    After Mrs. Brundtland tabled her famous report, which created sustainable development, there came to the roster a person nobody had heard of. His name was Abdul Gayoom. He is the president of the Maldive Islands. The Maldives are a string of 1,190 islands south of India, of which 200 are inhabited. When he started to speak I can assure everyone that people could have heard a pin drop. He explained that his island had been a peaceful, peace-loving country without any problems at all. Then he described it in the words of the great Norwegian explorer Thor Heyerdahl. He said “My island, in the words of Thor Heyerdahl, is like a string of pearls on a cushion of velvet blue. Suddenly our peace was destroyed”. In the 1980s, he said, tidal waves started to wash along the shore, creating damage and destruction. A year after they were worse, until the time when he spoke, saying that the last tidal wave had washed over the shore of the main island, causing tremendous destruction as well as death.

    He said “Scientists tell us that the seas are rising faster in the last hundred years than they have risen 1,000 years before. They tell us the seas might rise between one and three metres in the next century. If it is anywhere up to two metres my whole island state will disappear under the sea”. He asked questions of those of us from the rich industrial world. He said “Tell me, you who have created plants and carbon-emitting plants, what have we, the people of the Maldives, done to deserve this?”

    In 1997, ten years later, I was in Kyoto as a member of the Canadian delegation. The opening of the conference was received by two speeches, one by Vice-President Al Gore of the United States and another one by the president of the small island state of Nauru. The president of the island of Nauru said “My fellow citizens are watching the seas rise with fear and trepidation. They see the coral reef disappear. They see the seas continuing to rise and wash along the coast. We ask whether you are going to wait until we are washed under the sea before you start to do something about it”, at which time he turned to Vice-President Gore.

    I strongly believe that far beyond the figures that we exchange here, like the jobs that are supposed to be lost and all the costs to this person and that person, it is a matter of equity and fairness first, because we of this rich world, we of this country, which is almost unlimited in the bounty of its natural resources, in the skill of its people, in its infrastructures, in universities galore, four in my own city alone, we have a duty to the others whom we are polluting. This is something that our friends from the Alliance never mention. It is something we never hear from Premier Klein and the Premier of Ontario.

    What about the people who are being polluted by us? Some talk about 2% of pollution being from Canada, but what they do not say is that Canada and the United States are per capita the greatest users of energy. They are the greatest emitters of carbon gases per capita worldwide. Surely as the champions of energy use, as the champions of gas emissions, we have a duty to those who do not produce these gases. We have a duty to the innocent countries around the world and this is what Kyoto is all about. Kyoto is not for us. It is not for Alberta, Quebec, Ontario or the Maritimes. We can survive ourselves.

    When I hear, in the coziness of living rooms in Alberta or elsewhere, people saying that we should have a made in Canada program, a made in Alberta program or a made in Ontario program, it makes me sick to my stomach. Because it does not respond to President Gayoom. It does not respond to the President of Nauru. It does not respond to Bangladesh, which is being flooded time and again. It does not respond to all the countries that are suffering from our pollution. It certainly does not respond to our own regions.

  +-(1715)  

    I would defy any member of the Alliance Party to speak to Senator Charlie Watt, an Inuit representative in our Senate, to speak to his sister Sheila Watt-Cloutier, or to speak to the chief of the Dene there, whom I have heard speak about the tremendous changes in the Arctic. Members can say it is cyclical, that it is not happening, but these people think it is happening. They see it happening. The ice cover is diminishing with great rapidity. The ice floes are breaking up. The glaciers are breaking up. The polar bears cannot find their prey because the ice floes are breaking up.

    Charlie Watt has told me that polar bears are going way down, way east in Quebec, ravenous, looking for food. For the first time in the Arctic they are seeing dragonflies that they have never seen before. For the first time they are seeing plants growing in the Arctic that they have never seen before. For the last two summers they have had the hottest weather in the Arctic ever.

    Reputable scientists from the Arctic Council have shown me, with graphs to back them up, that by 2070 the Arctic Sea will have no ice at all. It will be an open sea. Is that what we want? Is that what the people there want? They tell me that is not what they want. They want to live the way they have lived for thousands of years. They do not want to be impacted by the pollution that we create in southern Canada or in the United States.

    I heard the MP for Calgary--Nose Hill say that the United States and Australia have not ratified. So what? Does Mr. Bush live in the Arctic? Does he live in Nauru? Does he live in the Maldives? He is ensconced in his beautiful White House and he can make pronouncements that affect the rest of the world for better or for worse, and this time it is for the worse. She did not mention that France has ratified, that Germany has ratified, that Sweden has ratified, that Norway has ratified, that Denmark has ratified, that Finland has ratified, that 93 countries, including Japan, have ratified. What about them?

    An hon. member: And Canada.

    Mr. Clifford Lincoln: And Canada is going to ratify because Canada has always been a leader in the environmental field. We were the first to ratify the biodiversity convention. We were at the head of the climate change process.

    There is something we have to understand here. I get so saddened when I hear Premier Klein speak about climate change and refer to the farts of dinosaurs--he should know dinosaurs--and when I hear the minister of the environment of Ontario saying that Canadians who are in favour of Kyoto do not understand, that they probably think Kyoto is a make of car. How insulting to Canadians.

    What Canadians understand is that this is a matter of fairness and equity toward the world we pollute and that we have to change our ways. We have to use cars a little less. We have to use SUVs far, far less or not at all. We have to use public transportation. We have to insulate our homes. We have to change our ways of living and doing. The examples are many.

    I was just looking at a magazine that crossed my desk about investment opportunities for Kyoto: Suncor, an Alberta firm; BP, which reduced its emissions 10% below 1990 levels at no economic cost and whose earnings went from 17¢ a share to 36¢ by 2001; TransAlta, an Alberta company, whose goal is to reduce emissions of existing Canadian operations by 2024, had a net earnings per share increase from $1 to $1.27; 3M, which has reduced through its program 807,000 tonnes of pollutants and saved $827 million over the years; and Interface, whose waste reduction program, from 1995 to 2001, produced savings of over $185 million worldwide, including the plant in Belleville, Ontario, which has the most efficient production in the Interface group.

    When I hear the naysayers, the people who are always looking for the negatives and the ways of not doing things, I am so saddened because I think of the people in the Arctic from whom I have heard. They do not like it. They do not like what is said. They want us to ratify. The people in Manitoba and Ontario want us to ratify. They are not stupid. They do not think Kyoto is a car. They know it is an international accord which binds us as Canadians to be part of the international community and to do things in favour of our fellow citizens worldwide.

  +-(1720)  

    This is why I will stand proud when the Prime Minister decides that the debate has taken place and we ratify. The dinosaurs in Ontario and Alberta, including Premier Klein, can talk about the farts of dinosaurs, because he should know.

    I really believe that it is time we moved and ratified--

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): Questions and comments. We have three members. If we keep it short we will get everybody in.

+-

    Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance): Madam Speaker, the member talks of dire circumstances. I will set out some facts for this gentleman. I would like him to respond.

    Since 1950 the world's population has increased. Poverty in the world has been decreased. In 1950 the average man's life in this country was 49 years long. It is 78 years today. Women are living much longer. If the climate is getting as bad as he says it is, why is our population not going down? Why is poverty going down and why is our life expectancy not seriously declining? It just defies all his logic. I would be living on borrowed time if I were living in 1950 figures, but somehow the environment in this world has allowed me to live to the age of 56 and with any luck I will be 78 years of age. If the environmental circumstances are as serious as he says, how come we are living longer on this planet and we are living better as human beings as time goes on?

+-

    Mr. Clifford Lincoln: Madam Speaker, I think my colleague over there proved my point. Of course he is living longer. So am I. I am probably living longer than my ancestors did, no doubt. I have a beautiful home. I have a very nice life. I have a very nice quality of life. I run a very nice car. But that is not what I see around the world when I move around.

    In Canada we are ensconced in a little cocoon of selfishness. We should travel around and see that the world is not what the hon. member says it is. There are a lot of places where poverty is rampant. I have been to places in Indonesia, Asia and Africa where poverty, AIDS and all kinds of problems are killing millions of people. I do not even have to go to Africa or Asia. I have been to the Arctic. We can talk to the mothers who breastfeed their children where the level of PCBs is six times higher than in Montreal, Toronto or Vancouver. Is that right?

    We can ask the people in the Arctic if they are happy with the conditions that we are imposing on them with our pollution. He should ask them if their quality of life is the same as it was 10 years ago. They will tell him no, because that is what they have told me. If the hon. member thinks I am exaggerating, Charlie Watt is just next door. He should ask him. He was born there and he will tell the hon. member about the dramatic changes he has seen in his own lifetime.

    We of course are living much better, sure, but at a cost of using much more energy than we should and by creating much more pollution than we should. In fact since Kyoto started we have increased our energy waste by another 20%, for the last decade. That is what we have to change, not them, but us, and make it better so that there is a fairer and a level playing field for all of us.

+-

    Mr. Jim Gouk (Kootenay—Boundary—Okanagan, Canadian Alliance): Madam Speaker, I certainly have listened to both the Liberal members who have just spoken and I do have a couple of quick questions for them.

    First, the previous member who spoke talked about proof that we have to bring in Kyoto, that we have had terrible droughts and we had terrible floods. Yes, we have, but when we hear “the worst drought in 65 years” or “the worst flood in 100 years”, in order to prove those statements there had to have been a worse drought 65 years ago and a worse flood 100 years ago. They dredge up stuff that just does not make a whole lot of sense in that context.

    I have a specific question I would like to ask this hon. member. Kyoto is going to solve all our pollution problems, despite the fact that it only deals primarily in CO2, the CO2 that is man-produced. This is not from bits and pieces taken from desperate demagogues, I think the other member called them. This is from pre-eminent PhDs in departments of climatology and atmospheric sciences and from environmental consultants, all doctorates, experts in this field, who provided this information. The amount of man-made CO2 is less than one-half of 1% of the total amount produced by the planet.

    If we totally eliminate all man-made CO2, we cause a change in the effect of CO2 in the atmosphere of less than one-half of 1%. At the same time, 97% of the greenhouse effect is caused by water vapour, not by CO2, so how will Kyoto address pollution? Not shifting it around the air, but producing pollution, polluting streams, polluting soil, and acid rain, and at the same time, how will it address even climate change when the amount that Kyoto would address is such a little factor?

  +-(1725)  

+-

    Mr. Clifford Lincoln: Madam Speaker, I am prepared to admit that scientists are not unanimous in their views. There are scientists who say one thing and another group of scientists say another.

    The member put out the premise as if his was the golden truth, the irreversible proof. However, just yesterday 27 of the most eminent scientists in Alberta said the exact different thing from what the member just said. There are 2,500 of the most credible worldwide scientists, including top climatologists assigned by the United Nations on a totally objective basis and from all countries of the world have told us that man-made carbon gases are changing climate to an extent that is a very serious risk for mankind.

    Rather than wait to find out whether his scientists are right or mine are right, I think that we take the precautionary approach. As human beings we must take--

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): I apologize to the hon. member but his time is over.

*   *   *

+-Points of Order

+-Bill C-252--Speaker's Ruling

[Speaker's Ruling]
+-

    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): Before we go to the next speaker, I am now prepared to rule on a point of order raised earlier today by the hon. government House leader concerning the bill introduced by the hon. member for Winnipeg Centre. I would like to thank the government House leader for having raised this matter, as well as the hon. member for Winnipeg Centre for his comments.

    The bill proposes an amendment to the Income Tax Act to prevent businesses from deducting fines as an expense for income tax purposes.

    The hon. government House leader raised the objection that the bill would have the effect of increasing taxation levels for businesses affected by it. The bill therefore could only be brought before the House if it were preceded by the adoption of a motion of ways and means.

    Our procedure with respect to taxation matters is clear. House of Commons Procedure and Practice states, at page 758 to 759, and I quote:

    The House must first adopt a Ways and Means motion before a bill which imposes a tax or other charge on the taxpayer can be introduced...

     Before taxation legislation can be read a first time, a notice of a Ways and Means motion must first be tabled in the House by a Minister of the Crown;....

    Furthermore, I will also refer the hon. member to Marleau and Montpetit, at page 898, which states:

    With respect to the raising of revenue, a private Member cannot introduce bills which impose taxes. The power to initiate taxation rests solely with the government and any legislation which seeks an increase in taxation must be preceded by a ways and means motion.

    The case before the House is clear. The bill introduced by the hon. member for Winnipeg Centre seeks to remove an existing tax exemption. If adopted, this measure would have the effect of increasing the tax payable by a certain group of taxpayers. Legislation of this sort, however worthy, may only be introduced when preceded by a motion of ways and means provided by a minister of the Crown, as I said earlier.

    As the bill in question was not preceded by a ways and means motion, the proceedings this morning were not in acceptable form. I therefore rule them null and void and the order for second reading of the bill be discharged and the bill withdrawn from the Order Paper.

    (Order discharged and Bill C-252 withdrawn)

*   *   *

-Supply

+-Allotted Day--Kyoto Protocol

[Supply]

    The House resumed consideration of the motion.

+-

    Mr. Scott Reid (Lanark—Carleton, Canadian Alliance): Madam Speaker, I will be dividing my time this afternoon with the hon. member for Edmonton Southwest.

  +-(1730)  

    I would like to start by talking a bit about provincial opposition to the Kyoto accord. I think we are all aware of the fact that eight of the ten provincial governments in the country oppose the ratification of the Kyoto accord, each for its own reason. If we look at the reasons, we would find they are very sound. The different reasons are the fact that there are a wide variety of different interests geographically spaced across the country which will be negatively affected by the Kyoto accord. The premier of Newfoundland is opposed to it, the premier of British Columbia is opposed to it and so are most of the premiers in between.

    I want to begin my comments today by reading the observations of the premiers of Newfoundland and Alberta. The premier of Newfoundland, Roger Grimes, says the following, “I am at a loss as to what the Prime Minister means when he says we are going to sign on to the Kyoto accord. There are just too many questions”.

    The premier of Alberta has said, along the same lines, signing the Kyoto accord is like “signing a mortgage for a property you have never seen and for a price that you have never discussed”. He goes on to say, “At the very least, the federal government must first evaluate costs, create a realistic implementation plan and then consult with the provinces, including a meeting with the first ministers”.

    Yesterday the Ontario legislative assembly, my province, voted to reject the Kyoto accord as well. That now means that a substantial majority of the provinces in Canada, representing a substantial majority of our population, are opposed to the Kyoto accord.

    This is significant, not really because it represents a wide variety of interests across the country and a wide cross section of the Canadian people, but also because of the fact that the Canadian constitution is written in such a way that it is not possible to implement an international treaty that affects areas of provincial jurisdiction, as this treaty does, without having provincial consent.

    There was a very important court case in 1937 in which our then supreme court, the judicial committee of the Privy Council, ruled that Canadian provincial jurisdictions must be regarded for treaty making purposes as being water tight compartments. They are not within the jurisdiction of the federal government. The federal Crown cannot sign treaties on behalf of each of the provincial crowns.

    As things stand now, eight of the ten provincial crowns are not on side and therefore it is simply impossible to implement a plan in a coherent and efficient manner, if such a thing is even possible under the parameters of the Kyoto accord, because of that provincial refusal to sign on.

    Notwithstanding the bravado of the Prime Minister about ratifying the treaty by the end of the year and in advance of any meaningful and substantive work on a deal that would include the provinces, the fact is that this simply cannot go forward.

    It is possible for the government to ratify the accord with an implementation plan that ignores provincial jurisdictions but it would likely be struck down piece by piece in the courts as being an infringement of provincial jurisdictions. It would certainly be unjust, inequitable and it would inevitably involve transfers of wealth from certain sectors of the economy to certain other sectors and from certain regions of the country to certain others. We can only guess the ways in which this might occur. However we already are getting a taste before we even know what the details of any federal implementation plan would be when we watch the battling back and forth. We are starting to see the war of words developing between some of the different provincial governments as they jostle for position.

    The kind of non-consultative, unilateralism that the federal government is employing of course encourages this sort of thing. Rather than bringing the premiers in to negotiate with each other on our behalf in some form of conclave where we have a sense of where the federal government is going, it has put us in a position where the premiers are forced to try to raise the stakes of offending their region to create pressures on us in this House so that the federal government will wind up adjusting the implementation plan to suit their region at the expense of some other particular region. It strikes me that this is highly divisive and highly destructive of our national unity and of our unity of purpose as a country. All this is without saying anything about the merits of the accord itself.

    Looking at the accord itself, I want to point out some of the problems with it. These have been addressed to some degree already today but they are worth stating again.

    The Kyoto accord and the way in which we might deal with through the purchase and trading of emission credits is treated as if it were some version of the emission credits that exist within some jurisdictions or the trading of pollutants among producers of certain types of pollutants.

    When there is a single country or perhaps a single province in which pollutants can be traded, a cap is set and the amount of pollutants produced by each producer is determined. Low cost producers, those who can reduce their pollutants easily and at a low cost, proceed to lower their amounts of pollutants below the amount that would be legally required. They take additional credits accumulated and sell them to those to whom the cost of producing their pollutants would be greater, thereby producing the maximum possible gain for the least possible amount of dollars.

    That is a great model when it is done domestically. However internationally and under the Kyoto treaty what is produced in fact is a farce because everybody negotiated their own level ahead of time. Canada did not participate nor did it fight hard to get a generous cap set on its emissions of CO2. While the negotiations for Kyoto were underway, the Australians negotiated to have an increase permitted in the level of CO2 that they could produce. Canada did not. Instead we are to reduce our level of emissions to 6% below what they were in 1990, notwithstanding the fact that our current level of emissions is now 20% higher than it was in 1990.

  +-(1735)  

    Other countries in the developing world managed to negotiate a deal where they were excluded from the targets. Countries in the so-called transitional world, the ex-communist countries of eastern Europe, were excluded because they were in the position of transforming themselves from having dirty coal fired and very inefficient factories and mines.

    The countries of the European Union took advantage of the fact that without any population growth, in fact in some cases with the expectation of population decreases, their emissions would basically flatten out on their own. The Americans simply refused to go along.

    Canada finds itself in the position of being the only country in the world that is actually forced to reduce its emissions to any great number. The target of 240 megatonnes of reductions that Canada faces is virtually unique in the world. There are a wide variety of countries that have negotiated their own special deals and to whom we would now turn to buy our credits, perhaps Russia for example, or perhaps from a country that produces far more CO2 than Canada does. If one leaves CO2 aside and talks about actual pollutants, Russia is a far worse polluter than we are, yet it negotiated a better deal for itself.

    We are not talking about transferring within some cap in order to reduce worldwide CO2 levels. We are talking about something that will have no impact on CO2 levels produced either worldwide or even in Canada. We are talking about purchasing a piece of paper that says, for example, that Russia, which has negotiated a better deal with us, is transferring some of the benefit to us at a great cost to our economy in paying the money to it for these credits.

    We are really not talking about pollution. We are not talking about reducing CO2. We are not talking about climate change. The Kyoto accord in practice has the effect of creating a new kind of foreign aid program whereby we are not giving to those who are most needy or those who could make the best use of our foreign aid dollars. We are in fact transferring money from Canada to those countries that have managed to negotiate the best deals for themselves in the original Kyoto negotiations.

    This does nothing for the environment. This is unfortunately a joke. Should this treaty come before the House for ratification, I hope members will decide not to ratify it.

+-

    Mr. Brian Fitzpatrick (Prince Albert, Canadian Alliance): Madam Speaker, it seems to me there is a two stage process involved here. The government could ratify the accord but the implementation of it seems to be something different. There are constitutional problems that exist on implementing a treaty of this nature. The ratification of the accord could be a straw man, to use that term, and the government very well know that legally it could have huge problems in implementing this because of constitutional precedents and the Canadian Constitution.

    Could the hon. member enlighten the House on some of the constitutional hurdles involved in implementing a treaty like this?

+-

    Mr. Scott Reid: Madam Speaker, one of the problems is that the whole Kyoto accord is essentially an accounting shell game. The response of the government in trying to deal with the Kyoto accord has been to engage in its own accounting tricks and games. It is talking about the credits it might get for natural gas exports. It can get supposedly 70 megatonnes of credits, except that the Kyoto accord will not allow it. Therefore, the argument is all nonsense.

  +-(1740)  

    There was a discussion of getting credits for forests and for clean farming which the federal government would take. Those are under provincial jurisdictions. It has no right to make that assertion. The first thing that would happen if the accord were ratified here and we attempted to claim these credits for the federal government is that the provincial governments would say that those were their credits. They would take the federal government to court. In my opinion they would win. Crown land in Canada is provincial Crown land, outside of the territories.

    There has been talk of credits for clean agricultural practices that form carbon sinks. Farming is a joint jurisdiction so it is not clear exactly who gets the credits. Certainly the federal government does not get them all so there would be a battle over that. Not only are the interests of the provinces at stake versus the federal government. Farmers would very much have a legitimate interest if we were to ratify the Kyoto accord. It would result, as many people believe, in higher prices for fertilizer and for the fossil fuels that are used for tractors and for transportation of farm goods, which would generally drive up farming costs and drive down farming incomes.

    We can expect that farmers would have a very legitimate interest as well as having some kind of credit for their farming practices and for the benefits that are produced with those carbon sinks. Those are some of the kinds of problems we would run into. Frankly this thing would be tied up in litigation for a very long time.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. André Harvey (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport, Lib.): Madam Speaker, I thank my colleague for his comments.

    Personally, what I am hearing in my riding and in my region—and all of the polls confirm this—is that the vast majority of people around the world are intuitively aware that we have a common challenge, where the survival of humanity is at stake. The damages caused by climate change are worsening at an alarming pace.

    I would ask my colleague from the Canadian Alliance what he thinks of the comments made by his party's environment critic, who is more and more sensitive to climate change and to disasters. In my own region, there was the flood of 1996. It cost $750 million. So, climate change does have major consequences.

    His party's critic said that despite the increase in natural disasters, he had to convince his caucus. So, it was a challenge for him. He also pointed out—and this is recorded in official texts—that his party was coming out against Kyoto so aggressively because it was to their benefit politically.

    I would like to ask my colleague for his perspective on the difference in position between his party and that of its critic.

[English]

+-

    Mr. Scott Reid: Madam Speaker, the opposition that our party is expressing, that the eight premiers who oppose the Kyoto accord are expressing, that I think 70% of Albertans are expressing, and the opposition that arises in public opinion as awareness of the Kyoto accord and its full implications become clear, is driven by something other than the concerns to which the hon. member was referring to.

  +-(1745)  

+-

    Mr. James Rajotte (Edmonton Southwest, Canadian Alliance): Madam Speaker, it is my honour today to speak to our supply day motion on the Kyoto accord. The motion states:

    That, before the Kyoto Protocol is ratified by the House, there should be an implementation plan that Canadians understand, that sets out the benefits, how the targets are to be reached and its costs.

    In my speech I want to analyze this accord and break it down as to what it is exactly. We hear a lot of passionate dialogue from both sides, but it is incumbent upon us as parliamentarians to truly do some thinking and break down the accord.

    What exactly is the Kyoto accord and why was it signed? The Kyoto accord was an agreement designed and negotiated in 1997. It was designed to force certain nations to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. By signing the agreement Canada committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions to 6% below 1990 levels. The motivation for the accord is that many scientists believe that greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide, caused by human activity, are at least partly responsible for climate change and global warming in ways harmful to humans on a global scale.

    We should distinguish always between global warming and climate change. We must however recognize that there are differences in the scientific community about whether global warming is taking place. We must recognize that there are further differences within the community as to the causes of that warming, how much is due to human activity, and we must recognize that there are differences as to the affects of that warming on our climate.

    I am not a scientist and not qualified to distinguish between which climatologist is right on which side. It is something that speaks to the fact that we should institute a parliamentary office of science and technology that reports to Parliament to help us in these matters.

    It is essential for us to recognize, and I am glad one of the hon. members on the other side recognized it, that there is not a scientific consensus on these issues and we cannot pretend it is science on one side and one premier on the other. It is foolish and wrong to do that.

    If we want to examine the accord itself we should recognize the accord was signed by industrialized nations. In order for Kyoto to have a status of international law a minimum of 55 developed countries representing 55 emissions from industrialized nations must ratify the accord. It is important to keep in mind that so-called developing nations like China and India, who produce approximately 45% of man-made greenhouse gases, are exempt from Kyoto. There are no limits in this accord on the amount of CO2 they can produce.

    If we look at who has ratified it, it is the European Union. If we look at the amounts it has to reduce by, it is certainly not as much as Canada and the fact is that its growth and population rate is stagnant. Those are factors we must consider when we look at this.

    If we look at who has not ratified Kyoto, but who initially did sign on, there are two examples. Both the United States and Australia have refused to sign the accord. The result of their decisions is that the accord must be ratified by both Russia and Canada in order for it to take affect. Russia has postponed its decision on ratification until next year.

    It is important for us to explain to people that if Russia does not sign, the accord will fail regardless of what Canada does, but if Russia does sign then obviously Canada's 2% will be required to meet that 55% hurdle.

    It is interesting to hear some members on the government side talk about President Bush and his motivation for not ratifying the accord. The fact of the matter is that it was debated and discussed before a U.S. senate hearing, a hearing unlike in Canada, where witnesses had to take an oath before the hearing. At the end of those hearings the senate voted on the issue. The senate vote was 95 to 0 against.

    For people to say that it is President Bush and his ties to the oil industry is factually incorrect. Why would people like Ted Kennedy, a strong environmentalist, vote against this accord in the senate? It is because of the evidence presented before the committee. We should keep that in mind and not simply say it was because of one certain person's ties to a certain industry.

    We should keep in mind why Australia, which as my previous colleague pointed out, negotiated an increase in emissions over 1990 levels. Prime Minister John Howard said:

    The reason it is not in Australia's interests to ratify the Kyoto Protocol is that because the arrangements are currently, and are likely under present settings to continue to exclude both developing countries and the United States, for us to ratify the protocol would cost us jobs and damage our industry. That is why the Australian government will continue to oppose ratification.

  +-(1750)  

    Even more important than the question of who has or who has not ratified the accord is by how much do other nations have to reduce their emissions? During the negotiations in 1997 the European Union and Russia already knew that they were in a position to meet their emission targets that they were signing off on. Further more, nations such as China, India, Brazil and Mexico were not even covered by this stage of the Kyoto accord and were not obliged to make any reductions in their greenhouse gas emissions.

    Therefore, given these factors, will Kyoto result in a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions? According to one United Nations estimate even full compliance with the Kyoto accord will only slow the increase of greenhouse gases and worldwide production will still be 30% higher in 2012 than it was in 1990. Again, this is another fact that must be put on the table.

    How does the accord apply specifically to Canada? Canada is responsible for 2.2% of the world's emissions, admittedly one of the bigger emitters proportionately. There are certain factors which make this so: a growing population, a cold climate, a large geographic land mass and a resource based economy. We must reduce our greenhouse gas emissions to 6% below 1990 levels, but that means, depending on whose figures we trust, 23% to 30% below present day or 2012 levels.

    How will we achieve these targets? That is what the motion is about today. That is what is so disappointing about the document that was hastily produced this morning. There is still no implementation plan nor cost analysis. Even the government's own suggestions as to what it would do from a public policy standpoint does not include the costs attached to that. How can we as parliamentarians or Canadians expect to either ratify or not ratify the accord when the government is not even providing those costs?

    Other colleagues have talked about the emissions credits. The Minister of the Environment has said that we should receive credits toward our Kyoto reduction targets by exporting clean energy, such as natural gas and hydroelectric power, to the United States. This notion has been rejected twice by the Europeans and they show no sign of wanting to reopen or negotiate this section of the agreement.

    The Prime Minister has stated publicly that we can be flexible in meeting our targets because we have until 2012 to meet our obligations. That is frankly not true. Article 3 of the accord states that the overall emissions of greenhouse gases must be, in Canada's case, 6% below 1990 levels as an average between 2008 and 2012. We do not have until 2012 to develop an implementation plan. Even further each nation must have made demonstrable progress on commitments by 2005 which is coming upon us very quickly.

    What are the costs of implementing Kyoto? The estimates vary widely. The Alberta government estimates over $33 billion each year. The federal government did estimate $16.5 billion and 200,000 lost jobs. However there are even fights within the government departments themselves, between environment and natural resources, over the figures. The Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters have estimated at least 450,000 jobs lost in the manufacturing sector alone.

    There is another cost that I want to raise which may be a greater cost as it pertains to lost investment and opportunities because of the uncertainty caused by the lack of a plan by the federal government to implement this accord. When businesses and investors do not know how the accord will affect them, it creates uncertainty and they withdraw their funds.

    We have the Minister of Natural Resources stating publicly that we will get credit for clean energy exports. This has been denied twice. We have the Prime Minister stating that we have time to be flexible when we do not. This is unsettling to investors and entrepreneurs.

    That is why the Canadian Alliance opposes this accord. That is why we are proposing the motion today which states that we must have these full costs known before we have a vote on ratification.

    It is incumbent upon us to be clear on why we oppose Kyoto. We oppose it because our major trading partners, such as the U.S. and Mexico, will not be subject to the accord. If Kyoto were ratified, Canada would be the only industrialized nation in the western hemisphere to have to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to any great extent. We oppose it because major emitters, like China and India, will not have to reduce their carbon dioxide emissions at all. In fact, they can increase them and there are no restrictions on them at all.

  +-(1755)  

    There is no credible plan by the federal government on how to implement this. Last, it is very questionable and we believe this accord does not really address preserving our environment because it is not an environmental accord. It is incumbent upon us as the opposition to not just have a debate between Kyoto and no Kyoto--

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): The hon. member's time has expired. Ten minutes does go by fast when a member has a lot to say.

+-

    Mr. Larry Bagnell (Yukon, Lib.): Madam Speaker, I always enjoy debating with the member. I am on a very productive committee with him. It is an excellent interaction so I know he will have excellent answers for my three questions.

    First, to help advance the knowledge in the debate, could he outline on the other side of the coin any benefits or cost savings he sees from signing Kyoto? In a balanced debate, there are things on both sides of the balance sheet.

    Second, I am curious as to how he answers the e-mails of the many people who are in support of Kyoto such as all of us receive.

    Finally, how could he abandon the farmers in his riding? They have been his so drastically by the drought in recent years which has devastated their families as one of the effects of climate change.

+-

    Mr. James Rajotte: Madam Speaker, I should point out that I always enjoy the questions from the member for Yukon. They are very well thought out.

    On the questions about any benefits or cost savings from Kyoto, the fact of the matter is that with the lack of a credible plan by the federal government, that is very hard to answer.

    Part of the issue, and I want to raise this in response to the question, is that many companies such as Suncor, have already made some dramatic reductions in their emissions intensity. They have already done so because it is in their economic interest to try to release as little as energy as possible in their economic process.

    I toured the oil sands this summer and they said over and over again that they are working to reduce their emissions intensity. The problem is that the emissions are up overall because production is up so much. If they want to cut their emissions as a gross total, they will have to ramp down their production by 20% to 30%. We could allow them time to reduce their emissions, particularly Suncor, whose SO2 emissions have been reduced dramatically over the past five years. We have that happening through economic growth. We do not impoverish our way to a clean environment; we do it through innovation and growth which allows that technological change to occur.

    In terms of answering any e-mails from people who support Kyoto, I am very honest about the fact that I oppose Kyoto. I do what I tried to do in the first part of my speech which is to lay out what the accord is and what are some of the details of the accord but then I state very clearly that I oppose it and I give the reason. My responsibility as a parliamentarian is to be as honest with people as possible. I also refer them to government websites and the climate change website and others so they can get that perspective.

    In terms of the farm issue, my family's farm is in Wainwright. It is very unfortunate for members on the other side to tell western farmers that the drought situation is caused by not implementing Kyoto. That is really dangerous and demagogic. There has been no linkage in all the research that I have done to prove that human action on greenhouse gases caused the drought that happened last summer in western Canada. Why did the drought happen in the 1930s in western Canada? Was that a cause of human action on the climate?

    For the people who say that, I talk about people's livelihoods out west, and they should really prove some linkage before they start throwing out statements like that.

+-

    Mr. Clifford Lincoln (Lac-Saint-Louis, Lib.): Madam Speaker, I have listened to the members' positions. What I have failed to hear in all the speeches relating to figures and percentages and the loss of jobs and the gaining of jobs is the whole question of responsibility of countries.

    Does the member agree that Canada, as one of the two champions of energy use per capita and as one of the two champions of gas emissions per capita in the world, has some kind of responsibility within the international context to help countries that are innocent and that are impacted by our pollution, including our own Canadian regions, such as the Arctic, which are polluted by provinces in the south?

    I would remind the member that the per capita energy use in Alberta is three times the national average, six times the use in Quebec. Does this not signify there is something we have to do as part of a collective international body to take steps forward and to be part of the international community to change our way of doing things?

  +-(1800)  

+-

    Mr. James Rajotte: Madam Speaker, we should recognize the fact that the implications of Kyoto go well beyond the oil and gas industry. The majority of the impact will be felt outside the oil and gas producing provinces. As even government ministers have said, 80% of it is through consumption. There is a lot of consumption of greenhouse gases certainly in the central provinces.

    In terms of responsibility of countries, we do have a responsibility to address environmental problems but we have a greater responsibility to address issues like SO2, as well as nitrous oxide in our air that actually does cause smog. We have a responsibility and we as a nation ought to do what we did on the acid rain accord, which is to approach the Americans and sign a continental agreement to address those two issues. It is clear, and I think any scientist would say that those emissions certainly are more harmful than CO2. There is a big debate about what should be done about CO2.

    It is incumbent upon us to see what we can do to reduce our own effects and to leave less of a footprint on the environment. That does not happen, in my view, through things like ratifying the Kyoto accord. No one has convinced me that by ratifying the Kyoto accord the footprint that we leave on our own natural environment will be any less than what it is today.

+-

    Hon. Hedy Fry (Vancouver Centre, Lib.): Madam Speaker, over the past several months everyone has been debating this issue about what action we should take on greenhouse gas emissions. Across the country a growing number of organizations, jurisdictions and individuals have expressed their views on this issue. We have heard members across the way say that there is not enough scientific evidence, that there is too much scientific evidence, that scientists cannot agree on what the impacts are.

    Before I came to the House, I was very involved as chair of the Council on Health Promotion of the British Columbia Medical Association and as a British Columbia member on the Canadian Medical Association Council on Health Care and Promotion. This issue has been one that we have been very concerned about as physicians and as medical organizations for the last 15 years.

    We have seen the cause and effect and the impact of the eight very clear components that affect the health and well-being of Canadians as a result of climate change, of global warming and of greenhouse gas emissions. Those have been extremely important to us. I wanted to focus and concentrate on that a little because health impacts are something that we should really think about.

    There is no debate on this issue. The Canadian Medical Association has recently reiterated its clear support for the Kyoto protocol and for decreasing greenhouse gas emissions by 20%. This resolution was made in 1997 by the CMA. It is not a recent thing. Five years ago it was already talking about the problem.

    If we look at the eight broad health impacts of climate change and variability, we will find that they are related, for instance, to temperature change. There is a very strong morbidity and mortality relationship between temperature change and humans. Cold and heat related illnesses are important for us to consider. For instance, mental health, respiratory and cardiovascular stress, occupational stress are all results of temperature related mortality and morbidity.

    We look at the health effects of extreme weather conditions. We look at flooding. We look at the dust bowls that we are now seeing with our neighbours to the south and the drought that we have perceived here within our Prairies. Those not only bring with them a degradation of the actual crops that the farmers grow, but they also bring with them heat and with that extreme heat comes a whole slew of things in their wake.

    We notice that there are new vector borne diseases that are going to be influenced by heat. For instance, there is the West Nile virus. No one ever believed that the West Nile virus could really make a difference or have an impact in Canada because of our temperature and climate. We felt it just was not warm enough to sustain the West Nile virus and its ability to cause severe harm to populations. Yet because of that kind of warming we are noticing the shifts that are affecting us further up north.

    In fact we are finding vectors such as mosquitoes and certain rats that bring with them certain diseases we have never seen before in Canada. An example is the increased incidence of Lyme disease created by ticks that are living for a longer period of time. That is another health effect brought about by vectors and changes in our ecosystem.

    If we look at air pollution, and I do not need to go over this, there is a rapid increase in asthma not only in children but in adults and in fact in seniors. This is an issue we need to really worry about. The increase has been so dramatic it has almost become epidemic proportions.

    We are looking at cancer that is caused by an increased amount of heat and a thinning of the ozone layer. We are looking at new skin cancers that are occurring in Canada now that we never believed possible. There is not only an increase in the type of skin cancers but in the incidence of skin cancers and the virulence of those skin cancers.

    We are talking about an increase in different allergens that are coming into Canada which are creating brand new allergic responses. The detriment to people who are immunocompromised, such as persons with HIV or people who have very low levels of immunity to some of these allergens, is they are having to deal with new diseases and new allergens that they have never seen before.

  +-(1805)  

    Let us look at floods. We do not need to talk about the Winnipeg floods nor the Saguenay floods. When disastrous climate change occur, the risk of flooding increases the amount of E. coli in the water table, so we are finding that an increased amount of water pollution occurs. Water that we are drinking now is increasing in the amount of E. coli content.

    I could go on and on about the effects of this kind of change in the climate on our ecosystems, in our ability to sustain certain vector borne diseases, in our ability to sustain certain bacteria, in flooding and all the carnage that it brings in terms of increased mortality and morbidity, but we need to look also at the effects of the stratospheric depletion of ozone. We are finding that cancers are increasing, cataracts are increasing and immune suppression is increasing.

    We do not to be a rocket scientist or a physician to understand exactly what that means for the mortality and the morbidity of Canadians and what that means in real costs to the health care system and to the whole concept of having appropriate health care.

    We now know that Canadians are living longer and we know that seniors are particularly affected by greenhouse gas emissions, by the increased pollution and by the increased smog that we are seeing, especially in our cities.

    The health and socioeconomic impacts of climate change cannot be overlooked and should be of extreme concern to us.

    Earlier today one of my colleagues across the way talked about the fact that it was probably a reach for us to suppose that climate change and industrialization were creating huge problems. He went on to talk about BC and that every few thousand years there have been changes, even before the industrialization era.

    That may be true, but we know that the world and the sun have an evolving relationship and we are seeing that in fact climate change has been going on ever since the earth has had populations on it. The difference is that some of those climate changes needed millions of years to have an impact.

    In the post-industrialized era within the last century we have seen an acceleration of the impact of the emissions on the atmosphere, a climb in the carbon dioxide emissions, et cetera, from all the industrialization that was carried on. It is not that industrialization is causing global change and climate change, industrialization is actually precipitating and accelerating it to a degree.

    Let me give an example. In the pre-industrialized era to which my colleague referred, we found that there were 220 parts per million of carbon dioxide by volume. In the last 100 years, in the industrialized era, we found that increased to 350 parts per million of carbon dioxide by volume. What we are seeing is the acceleration of a process. Industrialization is not the simple and only cause but it is accelerating a process that would have taken a fairly long time in human evolution and in the evolution of the world to occur.

    We need to consider this, not only from the perspective of whether we have the kind of science that tells us that there is climate change, that ice caps are melting, that polar ice is going and that the number of floods are increasing, these are important but I would like to concentrate on the fact that it is accelerating and that we have seen diseases in the post-industrialized and in the industrialized era that we had never seen before. We never used to see skin cancer until the industrialized era began. We never used to see diseases such as asbestosis and asthma and the amount of lung disease that we now see in the industrialized era.

    For instance, when the people in Great Britain used enormous amounts of coal to heat their homes we found that there was a huge increase in the number of chronic respiratory diseases, not only in children but in adults and in seniors, and it increased exponentially during the industrialized era and the coal burning era. As the British Isles moved from coal to cleaner fuels we saw that chronic respiratory diseases, tuberculosis and other related diseases began to drop.

    We could even go on to look at some of the evolutionary processes of survival that we have seen. We could look at the black moth and how at one time it was not able to survive.

  +-(1810)  

    When coal was burned during the industrialized era in Great Britain and in Europe the coal created soot on all of the buildings. All of a sudden the black moth, which had not evolved to be able to hide itself, was now able to survive longer because of the soot, while the white moth became endangered. This sounds like a silly example but it shows us how changes in the ecosystem come about because of pollution and climate change. Creatures that were not able to live in certain latitudes are now able to exist in different latitudes.

    We have to be very careful that we are not looking at a future where over the next 10 years diseases that we believed were subtropical become diseases that are endemic in countries such as Canada where we felt we would never have those diseases.

    Human portability, the movement of people around the globe, also increases the chances of infectious diseases spreading, and not only spreading but thriving and growing in our communities.

    As a physician I want to stress that the issue of Kyoto, the ratification of Kyoto and the decrease in greenhouse gas emissions by 20% as recommended by the Canadian Medical Association is something we need to consider, not only in terms of the cost to industry but in terms of the cost in human suffering, in human disease, in mortality and in morbidity rates. There is a cost to what we are looking at now as a health care system that is already overburdened with having to deal with an increasing number of diseases and having to deal with new diseases for which we are not prepared and for which we do not have the expertise among our physicians at the moment to even look at subtropical diseases.

    We do not have a lot of physicians in this country who are experts in subtropical diseases. We need to start asking ourselves what we are going to do about that.

    These are some of the issues that I wanted to highlight because there is a human potential to Kyoto. It is not simply the ecosystem and climate, which are all seeming abstract things sometimes in the minds of some of my colleagues across the way, this is about real human beings. This is about our children. This is about our parents. This is about the increase in morbidity and mortality that we are going to be seeing if we do not ratify Kyoto and if we do not look at what is coming in the wake of the increased amount of climate change, the floods and the water pollution that is going to occur.

    I will close by saying that I hope the members across the way have listened and that they are aware that this affects them even closer than they believe. It affects their children, their families and their communities.

  +-(1815)  

[Translation]

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): It being 6.15 p.m., pursuant to the order made earlier today, every question necessary to dispose of the business of supply is deemed to have been put, and the recorded division is deemed to have been demanded and deferred until Tuesday, October 29, 2002, at 3.00 p.m.

-Adjournment Proceedings

[Adjournment Debate]

*   *   *

    A motion to adjourn the House under Standing Order 38 deemed to have been moved.

*   *   *

[English]

-Kyoto Protocol

+-

    Mr. David Anderson (Cypress Hills—Grasslands, Canadian Alliance): Madam Speaker, as we have just heard, there is a human cost to Kyoto. There will be a particularly large cost in many of the rural communities, especially some of those I represent.

    On October 8, I asked the government two simple questions regarding the impact of Kyoto on agriculture. First, why is the government moving to ratify Kyoto without knowing the effect it will have on Canadian farmers and farm families? Second, why is the government moving to ratify Kyoto when our competitors have determined that it will devastate agricultural economies?

    The lack of study in Canada in particular regarding the impact of the proposed implementation of the Kyoto protocol is alarming. We did a lot of work trying to find any Canadian studies that would address this. There were none. One of the few studies available was a 1998 U.S. study that concluded the following:

--compliance with the Kyoto Protocol could increase U.S. farm production expenses by $10 billion to $20 billion annually and depress annual farm income by 24 percent to 48 percent. Higher fuel oil, motor oil, fertilizer, and other farm operating costs would also mean higher consumer food prices, greater demand for public assistance with higher costs, a decline in agricultural exports, and a wave of farm consolidations. In short, the Kyoto Protocol represents the single biggest public policy threat to the agricultural community today.

    We know that farmers' number one concern is rising input costs and it is imperative that the federal government provide farmers and farm families with a thorough examination of Kyoto's impact on Canadian agriculture, including answers to several questions.

    We have grouped them under three main headings. The first of the three is: What is going to be the impact of higher energy prices on farm families? We know that energy prices and the cost of producing energy will be going up with Kyoto. What will be the impact of higher energy prices? That is one of our questions.

    Second, and also important, is this: What would be the impact of non-implementing countries? If we implement the protocol and other countries, particularly Australia and the United States, do not, what is going to be the impact on Canadian agriculture? We will see a decline in competitiveness. We already compete against European subsidization and against the U.S. treasury. It is important that we know what this protocol would do to our competitiveness in agriculture.

    Third, we need to ask how the protocol mechanisms are going to impact farmers. If the science and technology regarding carbon sequestration is developed, and it is not right now, will the government commit to having farmers retain ownership of the credits? We have talked to people who know about this and they have assured us that there is no accurate way to measure the credits right now, yet the government seems to be giving the impression that it can do that. The question is, will the government commit to having farmers then retain ownership of these credits? It has talked about the fact that it would like to keep them at the government level. We need to know what is going to happen with those protocol mechanisms.

    Other people are asking questions as well. The Grain Growers of Canada are asking how Kyoto will impact agriculture. The Canadian Cattlemen's Association is asking that question. Farmers are asking that question. SEPAC, the Small Explorers and Producers Association of Canada, has determined that Kyoto could push the cost of gasoline to $1 a litre. The Canadian fertilizer industry is concerned.

    A paper presented at the International Agricultural Trade Research Consortium noted its concern as well. The American Farm Bureau Federation has found that Kyoto would push up input costs. A U.S. study done by Sparks Companies found that Kyoto would cause agricultural exports to fall and thus result in a loss of profitability.

    The Canadian Alliance is concerned about the cavalier attitude the government has taken toward agriculture. When it comes to Kyoto, it does not know what it is doing, why it is doing it, or what the impact will be. It appears to be determined to charge ahead despite the negative impacts on agriculture.

  +-(1820)  

+-

    Ms. Sophia Leung (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Revenue, Lib.): Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his questions and concern regarding Kyoto and agriculture.

    Let me be clear, agriculture is very sensitive to climate. Agricultural productivity depends on many interrelated factors, but the importance of the climate change in the agricultural sector cannot be understated.

    To not ratify Kyoto would put our agriculture sector in jeopardy. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a body created by the respected World Meteorological Organization under the United Nations environment program, warns that severe droughts, such as that in southern Canada in 2001, are expected to become more frequent as the climate warms, perhaps doubling in frequency within the next century. Inaction is not an option. Canada needs to be part of a worldwide effort to reduce greenhouse gas concentrations.

    Canada's 247,000 farmers manage 68 million hectares of land and millions of livestock. From my perspective that represents an enormous partnership opportunity to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

    Components of Canada's climate change plan will provide direct economic benefits for Canadian farmers. Ethanol and biodiesel create economic opportunities for agricultural communities. Enabling agricultural participation in emissions trading creates economic opportunity for agricultural and rural communities. This will be a win-win situation. Canadian industry will have access to low cost offsets. Canadian farmers can be financially rewarded by the market for the environmental benefits they provide to society.

    More farmers are adopting environment friendly practices which reduce their emissions while increasing their efficiency. For a farmer this means there can be an economic payback for good environmental management, helping to reduce operating expenses and increase productivity.

    Canadian farmers, whose strong entrepreneurial and innovative instincts are well known, are well aware of these opportunities and are eager to participate in those efforts. This is just one example of the innovation opportunities that our climate change plan will open for Canadians.

    Action on climate change will spur the use of innovative new technologies and greater efficiencies for agriculture and create new farm income opportunities. Those products, technologies and efficiencies will provide new economic opportunities for the agricultural sector.

    We are now working with all sectors, provinces and Canadians to finalize a plan for taking the next step toward meeting our target. The agricultural sector will be an important partner in meeting our Kyoto target. The government's--

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): The hon. member for Cypress Hills--Grasslands.

+-

    Mr. David Anderson: Madam Speaker, I would just like to react to a couple of the things I have heard.

    Farmers have done their part for the environment. My neighbours and my friends have changed their farming practices and they are contributing to a good, solid environment. Interestingly enough, this is the first solid commitment I have heard by the government in giving farmers carbon credits and some opportunity to take advantage of them. I look forward to hearing more about that.

    The problem is that we are talking about a few dollars an acre. The concern that we have is that through the lowered competitiveness and the rising input costs, those costs will be far more than the benefits farmers will get from the few dollars per acre or less than they will get for carbon credits.

    I do not appreciate the fearmongering that we will see more frequent drought and more severe weather. We do not have the information yet that proves that is the case. We are working now with no evidence that climate change is beyond the normal parameters within which it has been predicted, yet we are bringing in an oppressive set of regulations that will devastate Canadian agriculture.

  -(1825)  

+-

    Ms. Sophia Leung: Madam Speaker, we are working with industry, the provinces and Canadian farmers to finalize a plan for taking the next step toward how we will meet our target. The agricultural sector will be a very important partner in working with us toward meeting that target. It is very important for us to be involved with the farmers too.

    I also want to mention that the agricultural policy framework is proof of the government's strong commitment to help farmers attain higher levels of economic and environmental performance through innovation.

[Translation]

-

    The Acting Speaker (Ms. Bakopanos): The motion to adjourn the House is now deemed to have been adopted. Accordingly, this House stands adjourned until tomorrow at 10 o'clock, pursuant to Standing Orders 24(1).

    (The House adjourned at 6.26 p.m.)