Skip to main content Start of 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.

If you have any questions or comments regarding the accessibility of this publication, please contact us at accessible@parl.gc.ca.

Previous day publication Next day publication
PDF

37th PARLIAMENT, 1st SESSION

EDITED HANSARD • NUMBER 159

CONTENTS

Tuesday, March 19, 2002




1000
V     Points of Order
V         Supplementary Estimates (B)
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard (President of the Treasury Board, Lib.)

1005
V         The Deputy Speaker
V ROUTINE PROCEEDINGS
V     Order in Council Appointments
V         Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)

1010
V     Government Response to Petitions
V         Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)
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     Questions Passed as Orders for Returns
V         Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         (Return tabled)
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. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Bob Mills

1015

1020

1025

1030
V         Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont--Petite-Patrie, BQ)
V         Mr. Bob Mills

1035
V         Mr. Keith Martin (Esquimalt--Juan de Fuca, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Bob Mills

1040
V         Mr. Julian Reed (Halton, Lib.)

1045

1050
V         Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Julian Reed
V         Mr. John Herron (Fundy--Royal, PC/DR)
V         Mr. Julian Reed

1055
V         Mr. Benoît Serré (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources, Lib.)

1100
V         The Deputy Speaker

1105
V         Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Benoît Serré
V         Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont--Petite-Patrie, BQ)
V         Mr. Benoît Serré
V         Mr. John Herron (Fundy--Royal, PC/DR)
V         Mr. Benoît Serré

1110
V         Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont--Petite-Patrie, BQ)

1115

1120

1125

1130
V         Hon. Charles Caccia (Davenport, Lib.)
V         Mr. Bernard Bigras
V         Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Bernard Bigras

1135
V         Mr. Benoît Serré (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources, Lib.)
V         Mr. Bernard Bigras
V         Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP)

1140

1145
V         Mrs. Karen Redman (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Ms. Libby Davies

1150
V         Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance)
V         Ms. Libby Davies
V         Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP)

1155

1200
V         Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance)

1205
V         Mr. Pat Martin
V         Hon. Charles Caccia (Davenport, Lib.)
V         Mr. Pat Martin
V         Mr. John Herron (Fundy--Royal, PC/DR)

1210

1215
V         Hon. Charles Caccia (Davenport, Lib.)
V         Mr. John Herron

1220
V         Mrs. Karen Redman (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Mr. John Herron
V         Mr. Gerald Keddy (South Shore, PC/DR)

1225

1230
V         Mrs. Karen Redman (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Mr. Gerald Keddy

1235
V         Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Gerald Keddy
V         Mr. Keith Martin (Esquimalt--Juan de Fuca, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Gerald Keddy
V         Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance)

1240

1245

1250

1255
V         Mr. Julian Reed (Halton, Lib.)

1300
V         Mr. David Chatters
V         Mr. John Herron (Fundy--Royal, PC/DR)
V         Mr. David Chatters

1305
V     Points of Order
V         Supplementary Estimates (B)
V         Mr. John Williams (St. Albert, Canadian Alliance)

1310
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)
V     Supply
V         Allotted Day--Kyoto Protocol
V         Ms. Judy Sgro (York West, Lib.)

1315
V         Mr. Rick Casson (Lethbridge, Canadian Alliance)

1320
V         Ms. Judy Sgro
V         Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP)
V         Ms. Judy Sgro
V         Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance)
V         Ms. Judy Sgro
V         Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.)

1325

1330

1335
V         Ms. Wendy Lill (Dartmouth, NDP)
V         Mr. Geoff Regan
V         Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance)
V         Mr. Geoff Regan

1340
V         Mrs. Betty Hinton (Kamloops, Thompson and Highland Valleys, Canadian Alliance)

1345
V         Mr. Roy Cullen (Etobicoke North, Lib.)
V         Mrs. Betty Hinton
V         Mrs. Karen Redman (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, Lib.)

1350
V         Mrs. Betty Hinton
V         Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance)

1355
V Statements by Members
V     Polyvalente La Samare in Plessisville
V         Mr. Gérard Binet (Frontenac--Mégantic, Lib.)
V     Agriculture
V         Mrs. Carol Skelton (Saskatoon--Rosetown--Biggar, Canadian Alliance)

1400
V     The Environment
V         Hon. Charles Caccia (Davenport, Lib.)
V     Johnny Lombardi
V         Ms. Judy Sgro (York West, Lib.)
V     Foreign Affairs
V         Mr. Mauril Bélanger (Ottawa--Vanier, Lib.)
V     Social Development Fund
V         Mr. Pierre Paquette (Joliette, BQ)

1405
V     Charles Scriver
V         Mrs. Marlene Jennings (Notre-Dame-de-Grâce--Lachine, Lib.)
V     Dalton Camp
V         Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP)
V     Veterans Affairs
V         Mrs. Elsie Wayne (Saint John, PC/DR)
V     Drug Safety
V         Mr. Rob Merrifield (Yellowhead, Canadian Alliance)
V     Post-Secondary Education
V         Ms. Hélène Scherrer (Louis-Hébert, Lib.)

1410
V     Christ-Roi Church in Châteauguay
V         Mr. Robert Lanctôt (Châteauguay, BQ)
V     Dalton Camp
V         Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster--Dundas--Flamborough--Aldershot, Lib.)
V     Christine Diotte
V         Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance)
V     Indian Affairs and Northern Development
V         Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland--Colchester, PC/DR)
V     Golden Jubilee Medal
V         Mr. Lynn Myers (Waterloo--Wellington, Lib.)

1415
V ORAL QUESTION PERIOD
V     Grants and Contributions
V         Mr. John Reynolds (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         Mr. John Reynolds (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         Mr. John Reynolds (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         Mr. Peter Goldring (Edmonton Centre-East, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         Mr. Peter Goldring (Edmonton Centre-East, Canadian Alliance)

1420
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier--Sainte-Marie, BQ)
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier--Sainte-Marie, BQ)
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         Mr. Ghislain Lebel (Chambly, BQ)
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         Mr. Ghislain Lebel (Chambly, BQ)

1425
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg--Transcona, NDP)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC/DR)
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC/DR)
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V     National Defence
V         Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance)

1430
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance)
V         The Speaker
V         Hon. Art Eggleton (Minister of National Defence, Lib.)
V         The Speaker
V     Grants and Contributions
V         Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)

1435
V     The Environment
V         Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V         Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)
V     Taxation
V         Mr. Yvan Loubier (Saint-Hyacinthe--Bagot, BQ)
V         Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.)
V         Mr. Yvan Loubier (Saint-Hyacinthe--Bagot, BQ)
V         Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.)
V     Employment Insurance
V         Mr. Randy White (Langley--Abbotsford, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Jane Stewart (Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.)

1440
V         Mr. Randy White (Langley--Abbotsford, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Jane Stewart (Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.)
V     Zimbabwe
V         Ms. Jean Augustine (Etobicoke--Lakeshore, Lib.)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         The Speaker
V     Grants and Contributions
V         Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby--Douglas, NDP)
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V     Pharmaceuticals
V         Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis (Winnipeg North Centre, NDP)
V         Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Health, Lib.)

1445
V         The Speaker
V     Canadian Heritage
V         Miss Deborah Grey (Edmonton North, PC/DR)
V         Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         Miss Deborah Grey (Edmonton North, PC/DR)
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V     Finance
V         Mr. Monte Solberg (Medicine Hat, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.)
V         Mr. Monte Solberg (Medicine Hat, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of National Revenue, Lib.)
V     Highway Infrastructure
V         Ms. Jocelyne Girard-Bujold (Jonquière, BQ)

1450
V         Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.)
V         Ms. Jocelyne Girard-Bujold (Jonquière, BQ)
V         Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.)
V     Immigration
V         Mr. Paul Forseth (New Westminster--Coquitlam--Burnaby, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Denis Coderre (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.)
V         Mr. Paul Forseth (New Westminster--Coquitlam--Burnaby, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Denis Coderre (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.)
V     The Environment
V         Mr. Tony Valeri (Stoney Creek, Lib.)
V         Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.)
V     Aboriginal Affairs
V         Mr. Reed Elley (Nanaimo--Cowichan, Canadian Alliance)

1455
V         Hon. Robert Nault (Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, Lib.)
V     Shipbuilding
V         Mr. Antoine Dubé (Lévis-et-Chutes-de-la-Chaudière, BQ)
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V     Post-Secondary Education
V         Mr. Loyola Hearn (St. John's West, PC/DR)
V         Hon. Jane Stewart (Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.)
V     Linguistic Minorities
V         Mr. Dominic LeBlanc (Beauséjour--Petitcodiac, Lib.)
V         Hon. Jane Stewart (Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.)
V     Gun Registry
V         Mr. Garry Breitkreuz (Yorkton--Melville, Canadian Alliance)

1500
V         Hon. Martin Cauchon (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Lib.)
V     Canada Customs and Revenue Agency
V         Mr. Claude Bachand (Saint-Jean, BQ)
V         Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of National Revenue, Lib.)
V     Nanoose Bay
V         Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP)
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         The Speaker
V     Privilege
V          Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade
V         Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ)

1505
V         Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby--Douglas, NDP)

1510
V         Mr. Brian Pallister (Portage--Lisgar, Canadian Alliance)

1515
V         Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland--Colchester, PC/DR)

1520
V         Hon. George Baker (Gander--Grand Falls, Lib.)

1525
V         The Speaker
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie
V         The Speaker
V         Hon. George Baker

1530
V         Mr. Randy White
V         The Speaker
V         Hon. Ralph Goodale (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Minister responsible for the Canadian Wheat Board and Federal Interlocutor for Métis and Non-Status Indians, Lib.)
V         Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg--Transcona, NDP)

1535
V         Mr. Paul Szabo (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)
V         Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough, PC/DR)

1540
V         Ms. Francine Lalonde
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Canadian Alliance Communications Material
V         Mr. Brian Pallister (Portage--Lisgar, Canadian Alliance)

1545
V         Mr. Joe Jordan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V     Points of Order
V         Tabling of Document
V         Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.)

1550
V     Privilege
V         Canadian Alliance Communications Material
V         Mr. Brian Pallister

1555
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance)

1600
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Leon Benoit
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Leon Benoit

1605
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Leon Benoit
V         Mrs. Cheryl Gallant (Renfrew--Nipissing--Pembroke, Canadian Alliance)

1610
V         Mr. Geoff Regan
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mrs. Cheryl Gallant

1615
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mrs. Cheryl Gallant

1620
V         Mr. Dennis Mills (Toronto--Danforth, Lib.)
V         The Deputy Speaker

1625
V         Mr. Dennis Mills
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Randy White (Langley--Abbotsford)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Randy White
V         

1630
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. Randy White

1635

1640
V         Mr. Michel Guimond (Beauport--Montmorency--Côte-de-Beaupré--Île-d'Orléans, BQ)
V         The Deputy Speaker

1645
V         Mr. Michel Guimond

1650
V         Mr. Joe Jordan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister, Lib.)
V         The Deputy Speaker
V Government Orders
V     Supply
V         Allotted Day--Kyoto Protocol
V         Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance)

1655
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         The Deputy Speaker

1700
V         Mr. John Herron (Fundy--Royal, PC/DR)
V         Mr. John Williams
V         The Deputy Speaker
V         Mr. John Herron
V         Mr. Jason Kenney

1705
V         Mr. John Herron
V         Mr. Jason Kenney
V         The Deputy Speaker

1710
V         Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.)

1715
V     Points of Order
V         Supplementary Estimates (B)--Speaker's Ruling
V         The Deputy Speaker

1720
V     Supply
V         Allotted Day--Kyoto Protocol
V         The Deputy Speaker

1755
V     (Division 248)
V         The Speaker
V         Allotted Day—Social Programs
V         The Speaker
V         Ms. Marlene Catterall
V         The Speaker
V         Mr. Garry Breitkreuz
V         Mr. Pierre Brien
V         Mr. Yvon Godin
V         Mr. André Bachand
V     (Division 249)
V         The Speaker
V     Supplementary Estimates (B), 2001-02
V         Concurrence in Vote 5B--Industry
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard (President of the Treasury Board, Lib.)
V         Ms. Marlene Catterall
V         The Speaker
V     (Division 250)
V         The Speaker
V         Ms. Marlene Catterall
V         The Speaker
V         Concurrence in Vote 1b--Public Works and Government Services
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard (President of the Treasury Board, Lib.)
V     (Division 251)
V         The Speaker
V         Concurrence in Vote 5b--Public Works and Government Services
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard (President of the Treasury Board, Lib.)
V     (Division 252)
V         The Speaker
V         Concurrence in Vote 15b--Public Works and Government Services
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard (President of the Treasury Board, Lib.)
V     (Division 253)
V         The Speaker
V         Concurrence in Vote 1b--Privy Council
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard (President of the Treasury Board, Lib.)
V     (Division 254)
V         The Speaker
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard (President of the Treasury Board, Lib.)
V         Ms. Marlene Catterall
V         The Speaker
V     (Division 255)
V         The Speaker
V         (Motion deemed adopted and bill read the first time)

1800
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard
V         Ms. Marlene Catterall
V     (Division 256)
V         The Speaker
V         (Bill read the second time and the House went into committee thereon, Mr. Kilger in the chair)
V         The Chairman
V         (On clause 2)
V         Mr. John Williams (St. Albert, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard
V         The Chairman
V         (Clause 2 agreed to)
V         (Clause 3 agreed to)
V         (Clause 4 agreed to)
V         (Clause 5 agreed to)
V         (Clause 6 agreed to)
V         (Clause 7 agreed to)
V         (Clause 8 agreed to)
V         (Schedule 1 agreed to)
V         (Schedule 2 agreed to)
V         (Clause 1 agreed to)
V         (Preamble agreed to)
V         (Title agreed to)
V         (Bill reported)
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard
V         The Speaker
V         Ms. Marlene Catterall
V     (Division 257)
V         The Speaker
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard
V     (Division 258)
V         The Speaker
V         (Bill read the third time and passed)
V     Interim Supply
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard (President of the Treasury Board, Lib.)

1805
V         Ms. Marlene Catterall
V     (Division 259)
V         The Speaker
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard
V         (Motion deemed adopted and bill read the first time)
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard
V         The Speaker
V         Ms. Marlene Catterall
V     (Division 260)
V         The Speaker
V         (Bill read the second time and the House went into committee thereon, Mr. Kilger in the chair)
V         (On clause 2)
V         Mr. John Williams (St. Albert, Canadian Alliance)
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard
V         The Chairman
V         (Clause 2 agreed to)
V         (Clause 3 agreed to)
V         (Clause 4 agreed to)
V         (Clause 5 agreed to)
V         (Clause 6 agreed to)
V         (Clause 7 agreed to)
V         (Schedule 1 agreed to)
V         (Schedule 2 agreed to)
V         (Clause 1 agreed to)
V         (Preamble agreed to)
V         (Title agreed to)
V         (Bill reported)
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard
V         The Speaker
V         Ms. Marlene Catterall
V         The Speaker
V     (Division 261)
V         The Speaker

1810
V         Hon. Lucienne Robillard
V     (Division 262)
V         The Speaker
V         (Bill read the third time and passed)
V Private Members' Business
V     Criminal Code
V         Mr. Bob Speller (Haldimand--Norfolk--Brant, Lib.)

1815

1820

1825
V         Mr. Roy Bailey (Souris--Moose Mountain, Canadian Alliance)

1830

1835
V         Ms. Christiane Gagnon (Québec, BQ)

1840

1845
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)
V         Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough, PC/DR)

1850

1855
V         Mr. John Cannis (Scarborough Centre, Lib.)

1900
V         Mr. Paul Harold Macklin (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Lib.)

1905
V         Mr. Ken Epp
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)
V         Mr. Bob Speller

1910
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)
V Adjournment Proceedings
V         National Defence
V         Mr. Yvon Godin (Acadie--Bathurst, NDP)

1915
V         Mr. John O'Reilly (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence, Lib.)

1920
V         Mr. Yvon Godin
V         Mr. John O'Reilly
V         The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair)






CANADA

House of Commons Debates


VOLUME 137 
NUMBER 159 
1st SESSION 
37th PARLIAMENT 

OFFICIAL REPORT (HANSARD)

Tuesday, March 19, 2002

Speaker: The Honourable Peter Milliken

    The House met at 10 a.m.


Prayers


*   *   *

  +(1000)  

[English]

+Points of Order

+Supplementary Estimates (B)

[Points of Order]
+

    Hon. Lucienne Robillard (President of the Treasury Board, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member for St. Albert raised a point of order yesterday, March 18, on the supplementary estimates. His comments provided the answer to the issue he raised in the point of order of whether there was statutory authority for the expenditures in question. He indicated that section 12 of the Revolving Funds Act states:

The provisions of this Act may be amended or repealed by an appropriation act.

    The government is in no way attempting to legislate through the estimates process. The Revolving Funds Act for the optional services revolving fund sets a maximum limit of $200 million under section 5.3.

    The government, through the supply process, sets appropriate limits within the amount authorized. Section 12 states that the provisions of the act may be amended or repealed by an appropriation act. We have several precedents in this regard.

    In the Supplementary Estimates (A), 1996-97, the aggregate of expenditures was increased from $100 million to $200 million through vote 17a.

    In Supplementary Estimates (B), 1999-2000, an adjustment was made to the limits in the Government Telecommunications and Informatics Services revolving fund by reducing the amount from $64 million to $45 million.

    This request does not seek to extend or exceed a sum of money to be paid out. Therefore, in our view, this request is consistent with Speaker Jerome's ruling in 1977. On that basis alone, this request is completely within the legislative authority established by the Revolving Funds Act as passed by parliament.

    The same argument applies to votes 7b, 8b and 9b included in this point of order.

    Since Speaker Jerome's ruling, we have acted this way on many occasions and this approach has been accepted by successive Speakers.

  +-(1005)  

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: I thank the hon. President of the Treasury Board for the additional information she has provided the Chair. Yesterday I heard the original point of order raised by our colleague from the official opposition, the member for St. Albert.

    That matter was taken by myself under advisement and a decision will be rendered by the Speaker later this day.


+ROUTINE PROCEEDINGS

[Routine Proceedings]

*   *   *

[English]

+-Order in Council Appointments

+-

    Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to table, in both official languages, a number of order in council appointments made recently by the government.

*   *   *

  +-(1010)  

+-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 responses to two petitions.

*   *   *

+-Questions on the Order Paper

+-

    Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, Question No. 108 will be answered today.

[Text]

Question No. 108—
Mrs. Carol Skelton:

    Can the Department of Human Resources Development provide, for fiscal years 2000-01 and 2001-02, the complete list of grants and contributions by federal constituency including: (a) the amount given; (b) the name and address of each recipient individual, company, or organization; (c) the program under which each amount was awarded; (d) the number of jobs created, if applicable; (e) the purpose of the funding; and (f) the type of funding (i.e. grant, repayable contribution etc.) and the date given?

Ms. Raymonde Folco (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.):

    Human Resources Development Canada, HRDC, is committed to being open and transparent in providing information to Canadians about the management of grants and contributions.

    HRDC has been asked to provide the complete list of grants and contributions by federal constituency for 2000-01 and 2001-02.

    Information regarding grants and contributions from HRDC is not normally tracked by federal constituency. Considerable effort has been expended in developing a new database to ensure complete and accurate information that can be compiled and made available to Canadians. The new database will be the source of information for future releases of information about HRDC’s grants and contributions by fiscal year.

    Information is being compiled for fiscal year 2000-01 and will be posted on HRDC’s Internet site by June 2002.

    The information for fiscal year 2001-02 is not yet available as the fiscal year ends on March 31, 2002. Once the information is available for 2001-02, it will be compiled and posted on HRDC’s Internet site shortly thereafter.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Questions Passed as Orders for Returns

+-

    Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, if Question No. 105 could be made an order for return, the return would be tabled immediately.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Is that agreed?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

[Text]

Question No. 105—
Mr. Werner Schmidt:

    What was the total amount spent by each federal government department and agency on wine products for the years 1997, 1998, 1999, and 2000; and, for each year, what was the amount spent on: (a) Canadian produced wine and (b) foreign produced wine?

    (Return tabled)

*   *   *

[English]

+-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 the remaining questions be allowed to stand.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Is that agreed?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.


+-GOVERNMENT ORDERS

[Supply]

*   *   *

[English]

+-Supply

+-Allotted Day--Kyoto Protocol

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance) moved:

That, in the opinion of this House, the government should not ratify the Kyoto Protocol, or bind Canada to its emissions reduction quotas, since:

(a) Canada’s principal economic competitor, the United States, together with most of the world’s developing countries, would not be bound by the Protocol’s emission reduction quotas;

(b) ratification of the Protocol would impose massive costs on the Canadian economy and result in severe job loss; and

(c) the Kyoto Protocol would do little or nothing to benefit the environment.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Since today is the final allotted day for the supply period ending March 26, 2002, the House will go through the usual procedures to consider and dispose of the supply bills. In view of recent practices, do hon. members agree that the bills be distributed now?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills: Mr. Speaker, I rise today to speak to one of the most important issues facing Canadians in the coming months, whether or not Canada should ratify the Kyoto protocol.

    Our decision in this regard should not be taken lightly. Billions of dollars, hundreds of thousands of jobs and even the natural environment itself are at stake on this issue. Indeed, the very fabric of our society may be damaged irreparably if we yield to international and domestic pressure and ratify Kyoto without thoroughly examining the relevant economic, social and environmental implications.

    For the sake of future generations of Canadians, we must take the time to carefully and publicly assess the treaty and its implications before making any decisions at all.

    In November of last year I put forward in the House a private member's motion which stated:

That, in the opinion of this House, the government should renew discussions on climate change through the development of a new transparent, accountable consultation process, based on sound science and economic study, that results in realistic goals for carbon emissions reduction.

    The government ignored that motion and it has led to the predicament that we find ourselves in today.

    Provincial premiers, industry groups and all thinking Canadians are demanding that proper studies be done before the government decides whether or not to ratify Kyoto.

    The Liberals waffle on the issue. The Prime Minister and the Minister of the Environment tell us that their goal is to ratify the accord. The Minister of Natural Resources said that depending on the results of the current studies and promised consultations we may or may not ratify. The government's target dates for ratification also constantly change.

    First, the government said that it wanted to ratify by the G-8 meeting in Kananaskis in June. Then it said no, that it would be September in time for the environmental conference in Johannesburg. Later it said that it wanted it ratified before the end of 2002. Now it says that it does not know. The natural resources minister even said last week that there was no deadline to meet at all. No wonder Canadians are confused about the government's intentions.

    Today I would like to address several key points. First, I will discuss the dangers of ratifying before we have completed thorough consultations and developed a sensible implementation plan.

    Second, I will describe how Kyoto is dangerous in that it takes our attention away from the way in which humans have always reacted to climate change, namely through adaptation.

    Third, I will outline how extensive research and development into cleaner energy technologies will give Canada a far better bang for its buck than an enormously expensive climate change treaty.

    Finally, I will describe how adherence to the Kyoto accord would actually damage Canada's environment.

    First, the risks of premature ratification. If Kyoto is ratified without thorough and transparent studies and consultations, Canada runs some very serious risks indeed. The economic uncertainty would lead to new investment projects being cancelled. This is already happening and is something business analysts warned could be catastrophic for the future of Canada.

    Without an understanding of the real costs and an informed agreement among Canadians that such a sacrifice is worthwhile, we would see significant divisions open up within our country: oil producing regions against central Canada, consumers against producers and ultimately Canada against the U.S.

    It is also important to realize that if we ratify Kyoto, the protocol will legally bind Canada to reduce its emissions to 6% below 1990 levels. One has to wonder what will happen if after ratifying we then do not meet our treaty obligations. This will almost certainly happen if we have not agreed upon a realistic and comprehensive plan beforehand.

    The international sanctions and penalties that could be imposed on Canada are yet unknown. However they would undoubtedly be far more serious than the political fallout of simply not ratifying in the first place. Even while promising proper consultation and studies before ratifying, the Minister of the Environment reminds Canadians that the government can simply go ahead and ratify without the support of the provinces.

  +-(1015)  

    He is right. The government does have the authority to ratify international treaties on its own. However, doing so would be a big mistake since the environmental and energy policies required to actually meet Kyoto fall under the jurisdiction of the provinces. Without provincial support, how could the government propose to implement Kyoto?

    The government could introduce policies through the tax system or through transport policy. It could also go to court to seek authority to proceed under the peace, order and good governance clause if it can make a case that it is a critical issue of Canadian governments. Either way it is very messy.

    Ratification is permissible even if the federal government does not have prior agreement from the provinces and an implementation plan, but actually implementing policy would be grounds for a lawsuit by the provinces. Alberta is already considering legal action.

    There are so many important and unanswered economic questions about the impact of Kyoto that we would need several years to properly assess the treaty. The fact that the Liberals feel in a rush to ratify is unquestionably their own fault. After all they are the ones who have delayed, obstructed and denied proper debate on Kyoto throughout the four years since they signed the accord. The government cannot seriously expect Canadians to waive their right for a proper and public cost benefit analysis just because the Prime Minister wants to play hero on the international stage.

    The government has apparently accepted the myth that we can magically stop the earth's climate variations by simply fiddling with our carbon dioxide emissions. In putting its faith in Kyoto to accomplish this impossible task, the government has diverted us from properly considering the ways humans have always coped with change, whatever its cause, speed or direction, and that is through adaptation and movement.

    Regardless of what happens to greenhouse gas emissions, we will unquestionably have to develop new crops through biotechnology, new methods of irrigation and habitation and recognize that we cannot afford to defend all our human and natural habitats against change.

    A good example of adaptation is illustrated by a NASA funded study that found that cotton yields are likely to increase in the southeastern United States if carbon dioxide levels continue to rise as projected. However benefits such as these will be realized only if farmers can adapt their agricultural practices to resulting climate change.

    What is the government doing to encourage adaptation? Not much. It says it is worried about the prairie drought. How about an honest evaluation of the state of the prairie irrigation infrastructure. It says it is worried about the Saguenay floods. How about looking at flood management infrastructure? These are real responses that are needed regardless of the role, if any, of fossil fuels.

    Money wasted on Kyoto is money that cannot be spent on valuable adaptation measures. Adopting policies that would force up the costs of energy for farmers will not help them with strategies to deal with their water shortage.

    Internationally, the situation is even more ridiculous. If the funds that would be needed for the developed world to follow Kyoto were used to help those less fortunate than ourselves, we would pay off the public debt of the 49 poorest countries of the world. Alternatively, the money wasted on Kyoto could provide clean drinking water for everyone in the developing world. We have a responsibility to help these countries develop economically. The more developed they are, the better they can adapt.

    If global warming is going to happen, Kyoto will not stop it or even slow it down by any measurable amount. Estimates are about six years.

    However, by reducing real incomes and economic growth, Kyoto would make everyone less able to adapt to any climate changes that do occur, regardless of the cost.

    Clearly, we need a new national and international strategy for constant technological adaptation to environmental change, remembering always that it is the poor who suffer most from these changes.

    Part of our adaptation to the new world we are approaching would involve gradual movement away from fossil fuels toward renewable, relatively clean energy sources. I am not talking about pie in the sky approaches to quickly replace major nuclear or coal burning facilities with solar or wind power. That would require enormous land areas and produce significant amounts of pollution just in the building of such massive facilities.

  +-(1020)  

    I am speaking about the use of alternative energy to supply what will at first be modest amounts of localized power. Examples would include using solar energy to heat water and to provide space heating in residential and commercial facilities. I am also referring to the further development and implementation of fuel cell technology in automobiles and other forms of transportation. Already we see hydrogen fuel cells being used in buses in Vancouver. By 2004 we could be able to buy fuel cell powered automobiles directly from car dealerships. We need much more support for this industry to allow this to actually happen.

    In the present climate of uncertainty and heightened security it also makes sense to support the continued development of other relatively clean domestic energy sources such as natural gas, ethanol and hydro. It is fitting that I am able to speak in the House immediately after attending the Globe 2002 conference in Vancouver last week. The future was unfolded in front of us as speaker after speaker demonstrated the new technologies that would help us solve our environmental problems. Yet one got the numb feeling that the government was not there to listen and could not understand the direction we must take. Instead, it hangs on to last century's Kyoto accord and its reliance on flawed concepts such as emissions trading.

    Although alternative energy currently supplies only a tiny portion of Canada's base load, there are many ways that this situation may change significantly in the not too distant future. However to make this goal a reality, we need to dedicate more serious funding to research and development in the field. Last week the government announced $7 million for climate change technology programs. Such a small effort is hardly sufficient. The government says it has spent $1.4 billion on Kyoto and $7 million over three years on new technologies. That is disgraceful. If even a small fraction of the billions of dollars that Kyoto would cost Canada were devoted to alternate energy development, we would reap enormous benefits.

    Let me use a few examples to emphasize the point.

    I think one of the neat ones is where CO2 is sequestered in the ground and pushed down to the coal beds that underlie the whole country. Those coal beds are rich in methane gas. When the CO2 is pushed down, it pushes the methane gas out and it is then collected. Methane gas burns much cleaner than any fossil fuel we have today. That is how we can use our coal resources.

    There will be some new advancements in clean coal technology. A new project using clean coal will be up and running by the year 2007. Everything that comes out of the stack will be captured and re-used. These are the technologies that the government should be involved in.

    We could talk about some of the projects having to do with wind power. I had the opportunity to visit a wind farm in Germany to see how it operated. Ireland is installing a huge wind farm 50 kilometres out in the ocean. It will have huge generators producing up to five megawatts. These wind powered generators will provide enough energy for 1,000 homes. This is what is happening in the world and Canada is falling behind.

    In Alberta a wind farm is being established by TransAlta . It has committed to reduce its CO2 emissions to almost zero by 2020.

    We have biomass where garbage and sewage is used to produce methane gas, which is then used to heat water, which is then used to heat homes and buildings. In Edmonton a recycling plant captures between 70% and 80% of garbage, which is then turned into compost and used to enrich poor soils.

    A trial plant will be up and running in Toronto in two months which will digest garbage using bacteria. That garbage can then be used for compost. If it works, it will take care of all Toronto's garbage. These new technologies are happening but not because the government is dedicated to them.

    There is a solar factory with a huge collector on top that rotates with the sun. The factory captures the solar energy and takes it into the plant. It splits the water molecule creating hydrogen which is captured in pressurized tanks. It can then be used as a fuel for factories, homes and cars. Oxygen is the end product that is given off to the environment.

  +-(1025)  

    This is happening and it is not happening because of Kyoto. It is happening because governments have a vision and know where they are going on this kind of technology. If we show leadership in the provision of tax incentives, public education, research and development, I believe that we will see a time when these alternatives will make a major contribution to Canada's energy mix. However, that will only happen if we are prepared to open our minds to these possibilities and excite the public about the clean energy future that would lie ahead for Canada. Industry is waiting for direction from the government.

    We also need to invest in technologies that allow us to use energy far more efficiently. Here are just a few examples. We know what we could do for public transit. Railways are a far more efficient method of moving than trucks and cause less environmental damage. We need the infrastructure however.

    We need to conserve far more energy than we do by turning down the heat, turning out the lights and using more efficient appliances. A good example is a 100 watt light bulb. It can produce light using 25% of the energy. Just imagine, if we changed all the light bulbs of the world we would save 75% of our electrical requirements. Instead of building new power plants, we could get equivalent benefits without any of the negative environmental effects by merely focusing on conservation.

    I had my four year old grandson, Nicholas, with me for one session at the convention. It is his generation for whom we must act when we make decisions today. Those decisions must be based on the knowledge of what is possible, not the fearmongering we hear so often from the government.

    Kyoto is bad for the environment. Many people believe that we should simply ratify Kyoto and get on with the business of meeting the treaty restrictions of greenhouse gas limitations no matter what the cost. After all, they say that protecting our environment is of paramount importance and we must do that for future generations. If I believed that, I could stand up here and support that as well. That is an out of date piece of contract that we are opting into that just will not work.

    However most who support the Kyoto accord have yet to realize that the treaty would actually hurt our environment. Reaching Kyoto's greenhouse gas emission targets would lead to a recession in Canada and that recession would mean that existing environmental programs would be seriously compromised. Efforts to protect our rivers, lakes, soil, air and even endangered species would all have to be scaled back as the effects of Kyoto would devastate government finances.

    It would also reduce our ability to help developing nations leapfrog the terrible industrial pollution levels that they will face in the coming decades. We would no longer have the resources to help them develop alternatives to the burning of dung or high polluting coal using 1950s technologies. They would be forced to continue massive damming projects and other environmentally damaging practices. It would also mean that our greenhouse gas emissions would not reduced but only omitted from other countries.

    I do not have time to get into emissions trading, but obviously the damage that would cause could be tremendous.

    In conclusion, I have been an environmentalist for most of my life. I have worked as a conservation biologist and have educated people about energy efficiency and resource conservation. If I believed that Kyoto would do any good for the environment, I would support it. However the treaty is an enormous mistake. It hurts Canada and indeed the whole world. All Canadians concerned about the future for themselves and their children should do everything they can to stop the Kyoto express before it runs over us all.

    I look forward to the day's debate and the questions that will follow from many other speeches.

  +-(1030)  

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont--Petite-Patrie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I would like to begin with congratulations to my colleague, who sits on the standing committee on the Environment, for his motion and for opening up this fundamental debate on climate change.

    Along with the congratulations, however, I would like him to know that I am far from being in agreement, not only with the premises of the motion, but also with calling upon this parliament to have Canada not ratify the Kyoto protocol.

    I would like clarification of the third aspect of my colleague's premise, which is that ratification of the Kyoto protocol “would impose massive costs on the Canadian economy and result in severe job loss”.

    In recent weeks, we have heard statements being made by various public figures, including Alberta's energy minister, who predicted a cost of $40 billion for the economy, and the Chamber of Commerce, whose estimate was $30 billion. However, there have been other studies as well.

    According to Nick Marthy, a researcher, the cost for Alberta alone would be $9 billion, or an impact of 0.58% of the GDP. The recent study by Environment Canada, dated March 4, which has had press coverage, said that the impact on the Canadian economy would not be that great: 0.14% of the Alberta growth rate.

    My question then is as follows: His motion states that the costs for the Canadian economy will be very high, so what is his evaluation of the costs of ratifying the Kyoto protocol?

[English]

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills: Mr. Speaker, I thank my hon. colleague for the question. That is the point. Yesterday the minister tabled in the House a paper which I hold in my hand. It tells about the studies which have been done to this point. To try to justify the $300 million the minister uses such things as the $5 billion cost of the prairie drought and the $6 billion cost of the 1998 ice storm. He uses the figures to say it would not cost much.

    If we had signed Kyoto and it had been in effect for the last 20 years it would not have made any difference to the figures. That is the point. Canada accounts for 2% of the world's CO2 emissions. Unless we can get developing countries and major countries like the United States and Japan onside we will not stop the effects.

    The government has a pie in the sky notion that it would stop droughts. What Canadian believes that by ratifying Kyoto the Canadian government would stop weather changes? There are ways to stop it. If we want to get rid of CO2 we must help China do it. We must help Brazil do it. We must help Mexico do it. We must use some of the technology the Americans are developing.

    Instead we put our heads in the sand and say we will sign the accord and that will fix it all. We cannot change climate that easily. That is the point. How can we estimate the costs? What has the government been doing for four years? Why are the models not here? Most of what it is doing is based on modelling anyway. It could not model the last 100 years. There is no way it could have modelled that and have been able to predict what would happen. Members can check our weather forecasting and see how accurate it is on a day to day basis.

  +-(1035)  

+-

    Mr. Keith Martin (Esquimalt--Juan de Fuca, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I thank my hon. colleague for his speech. We are dealing with the issue of greenhouse gas emissions and global warming. The question of whether there is global warming is a valid one. The bulk of scientific experience says there is. Some say there is not. Regardless, a precautionary principle must apply. The question is, would Kyoto do the job?

    Kyoto would involve the reduction of 5% to 7% of greenhouse gas emissions based on 1990 levels. The United States, the most important country dealing with the issue, has increased its greenhouse gas levels by 30% since that time.

    Kyoto would not achieve the objective of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The timeline is too rigid. The targets are too inflexible. To accomplish the objective we must take other approaches. These could include utilizing and expanding carbon sinks, utilizing new technology, and perhaps utilizing our tax structure to encourage companies to use new technologies.

    The problem is that the technology we have and are developing could not be implemented for Kyoto. That is why the United States rejected it 95 to 0 in its senate, effectively killing the Kyoto protocol.

    We need to be able to reduce greenhouse gas emissions over a longer period of time, even more than what Kyoto asks for. Does my hon. colleague believe the way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the long term, which is most important, is to encourage the development and protection of carbon sinks which include bogs and forests? Does he believe we need greater investment in research and development and new cleaner technologies? Does he believe we need to use our tax structure to encourage the private sector to utilize and embrace new technologies? Does he believe we need a renegotiated deal that would involve more flexible targets over the long term so we could bring in the United States and developing countries and have the treaty ratified? At present Kyoto does not have the international support we would like. Only one country in the developing world, Romania, has ratified it.

    Does my hon. friend see that what I have mentioned would be a reasonable alternative for reducing greenhouse gas emissions over the longer term so we would be able to address global warming in a meaningful way?

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills: Mr. Speaker, we are not arguing about climate change. Yes, there is climate change. Yes, humans are probably having an impact on it. What will we do about it? The point we are trying to make is that we need to show leadership. What is happening today?

    I learned last week that the world is moving forward to new technologies. The Americans are probably leading the way in developing the technologies but the Danish and the Germans are close behind. The Canadians are not. That is because the government has not provided the direction, the leadership or the excitement. It has not involved Canadians or gotten them excited about the changes that are possible. That is the point.

    My hon. colleague mentioned protecting sinks. Yes, sinks are important. Yes, we should do more with them and understand them better. However the science is not there because we have not developed it. We have used it as an excuse.

    Let us look at emissions trading. We could trade emissions with third world countries. For instance, the Dutch could send $300 million to buy emissions credits. Where would the money go? It would go to the top guys in government in corrupt countries. It sure would not end up helping the environment or helping industries in those countries develop clean energy. It would go into Swiss bank accounts. The countries would never develop. They would never get cleaner. They would never get better.

    If we want to fix the world's environment we must do something about it. The government must show leadership and direction.

  +-(1040)  

+-

    Mr. Julian Reed (Halton, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will be sharing my time with the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources.

    An ancient Chinese proverb states that the journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step. The proverb is as true today as it was thousands of years ago. It is also true that there are two things on the planet human beings need: air and water. Without one the other is irrelevant.

    My hon. friend from Red Deer said Canada was irrelevant because it only produced 2% of the world's emissions. That 2% is the basis for leadership in the world.

    My hon. colleague said we needed more research and development and new technologies to begin to tackle what is now known as the Kyoto accord but which is an old problem that began before the turn of the last century. Does he not remember that all of Ontario was industrialized with renewable energy? Has he forgotten that Ontario became the heartland of the country with renewable energy before oil was discovered in North America in the 1870s in southwestern Ontario? Many of the technologies were mature by the turn of the century but have fallen into disrepute and disuse. Reviving the technologies would be a simple and straightforward move.

    My hon. friend criticized emissions trading. He suggested the money being transferred would go to corrupt governments that would put it in Swiss bank accounts. The money would have to go to non-polluting industries. Over time this would mean a transfer of capital from polluting to non-polluting industries.

    I will point out for the record that it has become timely to take action as soon as possible because three major oil companies have gone on record supporting renewable energy development. At least one of them has publicly committed $100 million and set targets for 50% of its sales to be of renewable energy within 25 years. That should say something to my hon. friend who comes from Alberta where the oil companies reside. We did not go on the record. The companies have gone on the record and are advertising it on television today.

    The hon. member suggested Kyoto was dangerous and would be costly to the economy. That is economic fearmongering of the first order. Many of the problems were happening before the Kyoto accord and have been going on all through the years.

    In Canada it is an established fact that there are 5,000 premature deaths a year because of dirty air. The polar ice cap is much thinner than it was. The Pacific Ocean has risen 12 centimetres. If the Pacific Ocean were to rise one metre it would displace 95 million people in China alone. This has been going on since long before Kyoto and the debate about whether there was global warming.

  +-(1045)  

    Insurance companies came to the government years ago and told us about the severity of insurance claims and how they were increasing every year. They believed that global warming was real, whether others did or did not.

    My hon. friend talks about insufficient consultation. The minister has told the House that consultation would go on as we speak and would continue to go on. He made it very clear that within the next six weeks or so the evidence that has been accumulated to this date would be released for public consideration.

    The suggestion that applying Kyoto would somehow stifle industry has to be looked at in the light of what happened historically in Ontario. International Nickel in Sudbury was told it had to clean up its act. There was much wailing, gnashing of teeth and wringing of hands in that industry. What happened as a result? International Nickel had to stop and put on its thinking cap, develop a way to utilize the sulphur that was damaging the environment around Sudbury and make money out of the technological change.

    I have said this a number of times and people grow tired of the statement, but the strongest most powerful force on the face of the earth next to gravity is the status quo. It is easy to preserve the status quo. My friend talks about burying our heads in the sand. We can ignore 5,000 premature deaths. We can ignore the permafrost leaving the Mackenzie Valley and the disappearance of the Arctic ice cap. But can we?

    This process began a long time ago and has accelerated as our use of combustible fuels has accelerated in the world. It will continue to accelerate. I am not so naive as to believe that somehow we will put a stop to that, but at least we can begin to turn the corner with our ingenuity and our recognition of the problem. Canadians recognize the need for parliament to do something concrete about global warming. The people recognize it just as the government does.

    Now is the time to take action and not wait any longer. As William Shakespeare said:

    

There is a tide in the affairs of men
Which taken at the flood leads on to fortune;
Omitted, all the voyage of their life
Is bound in shallows and in miseries.
On such a full sea are we now afloat,
And we must take the current when it serves,
Or lose our ventures.

  +-(1050)  

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I really do not know where to start. First, the hon. member talked about pollution. Kyoto is about CO2 emissions. CO2 is a natural gas that plants use for photosynthesis. It is not a poison to humans. The hon. member should first understand what Kyoto is.

    Second, he talked about the transfer of capital. The transfer of capital is a UN concept and passing it on to third world countries is what it is all about. That would be great if it would help those people in those poor countries but that would not happen.

    The member talked about consultation. This document is an example of consultation. The assumptions in here are ridiculous. I have talked to the environment ministers of the provinces. They have not been consulted. If we were to talk to Canadians and ask them what they understand about Kyoto and if they were consulted I do not think they would say that they have been.

    Finally, as far as industry is concerned, it is waiting for leadership. It is prepared and wants to deal with climate change. It is real and it is good for business to deal with it but it needs to know where the government is going based on facts and science.

    That is what it is all about and what the member just told us deals with none of those issues in any kind of depth. It is about as shallow as I have ever heard.

+-

    Mr. Julian Reed: Mr. Speaker, I challenge the hon. member to go into a chamber filled with carbon dioxide and write to me from in there. If he does not think carbon dioxide has any poisonous qualities I am not sure where he is coming from. He is the scientist and I am not but I challenge him to do that.

    I also challenge him to investigate all of the work that the federal government is doing in terms of technology development, partnering with industry, which is happening as we speak.

    Simply avoiding adopting these measures and taking the first step of a thousand mile journey is just a way of burying our heads in the sand one more time and going back to sleep which we have done in the past. We did it in 1979 after crude oil prices which were accelerating created a perceived crisis and then they dropped. Now my hon. friend would like us to do it again. However, I want him to talk to those three oil companies that have gone on record supporting renewable energy.

+-

    Mr. John Herron (Fundy--Royal, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, why are we having this particular debate today? Is it because the government for the last five years has done nothing to have an informed debate on whether we are capable of meeting our greenhouse gas target under the Kyoto protocol? I have a simple question for the hon. member. All members in this Chamber should agree, before having mere blind ratification, about what the Government of Canada may or may not be getting this country into.

    Would it not make sense for us to ensure to Canadians that we carry out a sector by sector analysis, a province by province analysis and that a full scale debate take place from coast to coast to coast on what behavioural expectations the national government may have upon them? Should those three analyses not be done prior to ratification?

+-

    Mr. Julian Reed: Mr. Speaker, my hon. friend should know that consultations with the provinces are underway.

  +-(1055)  

+-

    Mr. Benoît Serré (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the Government of Canada is serious about reducing greenhouse gas emissions and as a result has already invested or committed about $1.5 billion to implement a broad based climate change action plan. When fully in place it is expected to take us about one third of the way to our Kyoto target.

    Our approach is multi-faceted: to reduce energy consumption through conservation and greater energy efficiency; to promote investment in capital stock turnover toward cleaner industrial processes; to encourage the removal of CO2 from our atmosphere through natural carbon sinks and industrial sequestration; and to develop less carbon intensive power sources, including natural gas, hydroelectricity and others, as well as a growing portfolio of renewable and alternative energy supplies.

    It is clear that to reduce greenhouse gas emissions we must develop and deploy innovative, new technologies. These new energy technologies are important to achieving sustainable development and social and economic goals.

    Canada has a well respected capability and experience in energy research and development and in transferring leading edge technologies. Investment in energy efficiency, renewables, alternative and cleaner fossil fuel technologies are central to our efforts.

    Indeed, the Minister of Natural Resources has just announced at Globe 2002 in Vancouver, eight new partnerships to develop and deploy innovative technologies to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions.

    Canada's approach to energy research and development activities is focused on working in partnership with national and international clients and stakeholders to develop and deploy advanced energy technologies that have strong economic and environmental impacts. Partnership is a way of business for the Government of Canada.

    Our plans address the transportation sector, upstream oil and gas production, electricity generation, the industrial sectors, residential and commercial buildings and communities. All of this is underpinned by determined efforts for innovation, the creation, dissemination and commercialization of new knowledge, the development and deployment of new technologies.

    Natural Resources Canada is Canada's catalyst in energy science and technology, the key player in the network of public and private sector collaboration.

    Today we are starting to see the payoff from decades of research, development and support in a wide range of energy technologies: better energy efficiency, new transportation technologies, a slate of renewable energy sources and new generation hydrocarbon based technologies.

    NRCan's long term vision for Canada's energy future sees a Canada that enjoys: a sustainable Canadian hydrocarbon energy supply with reduced emissions of greenhouse gases; a dramatically increased contribution of renewable energy from biomass, wind, solar and small scale hydro to Canada's energy mix; elimination of noxious emissions, including greenhouse gases from large scale combustion, notably from coal, and viable technologies and techniques for cost effective CO2 capture and sequestration; fully integrated small scale energy conversion systems; a low emissions future transportation system; an eco-efficient processing sector in Canadian industry; ultra-efficient buildings with low life cycle impacts; and sustainable communities throughout Canada.

    Canadian leadership in these energy areas would create new opportunities for economic development, new jobs, scientific sophistication and new trade potential. It would provide us with strategic global positioning by making Canada a place of excellence to whom the world would turn for the best energy and environmental solutions.

    Like the decades of work that resulted in energy technologies we are seeing today, reaching this energy future would take years of patient research and development in a wide variety of potential technologies. NRCan is committed to working with its public and private sector partners and through available S&T programs to develop and deploy the technologies we need to fulfill our vision for tomorrow. We can be confident about these future technologies.

  +-(1100)  

    Let me offer a few examples that illustrate some of the exciting advances Canada is making and our resolve to meet our climate change objectives. Fuel cell technology is one such illustration. Canada is in the forefront of this revolutionary field of research and development, which could reshape the automobile industry and slash emissions in the transportation sector. Today NRCan is working to develop the fuel cell infrastructure, like the network of gas and service stations. NRCan is partnering on the development of technologies for hydrogen production, utilization, safety and storage and is managing a program to demonstrate a variety of fuel cell vehicle fueling facilities.

    A Canadian company is a world leader in the development of technologies for the production of biomass ethanol, a renewable, virtually CO2 neutral transportation fuel. For more than 15 years, NRCan has supported the development of Canadian biomass to ethanol technology, an investment that has brought the process from the idea stage past the demonstration phase and today to the brink of commercialization.

    NRCan is focusing on ways to improve industrial energy efficiency through work on advanced industrial products, processes and systems, advanced combustion technologies, process integration, intelligent sensors and controls, and bioprocessing technologies.

    Canada's climate extremes have made this country a world leader in housing and energy efficient building technologies, both in retrofitting and new construction. NRCan's work in this area has led to heating, ventilation and air conditioning technologies and construction techniques that use almost half the energy and emit significantly less carbon dioxide.

    Solar energy is another promising area. Canadian innovations like the Solarwall for ventilation air heating and the EnerWorks water heating system have broken new ground, cutting both emissions and energy supply costs.

    On another technological front, Canadian scientists and our private sector are perfecting the best techniques to capture CO2 from our atmosphere and store it benignly and permanently underground in older oil fields and deep coal seams.

    NRCan is leading in the development of oil sands technology that will make development cheaper and easier, working on, for example, improved bitumen extraction processes that reduce tailings, save energy, cut emissions of greenhouse gases, extract more bitumen and recover process water and reuse it.

    NRCan is working on technologies to negate environmental problems, notably greenhouse gas emissions and air pollutants from fossil fuel production, as well as technologies to improve our ability and the economics of tapping into existing and new fossil fuel sources, particularly coal. In fact, NRCan's national laboratory in Bell's Corners, just west of here, is leading the national program of research in advanced combustion and conversion of fuels to cleaner sources of energy.

    Although closing the combustion cycle is still a distant goal, progress is being made in reducing emissions from fossil fuel combustion. Emerging technologies include new forms of power generation such as natural gas combined cycle plants and advanced fluidized bed combustion.

    These are some of the many innovative technologies the Government of Canada is supporting. Clearly we are making progress but we know we must do more. Our vision is to continue to develop technologies that support sustainable energy production and consumption for Canadians now and into the future.

    By developing new technologies that mitigate climate change for future generations we create opportunities for new businesses, new jobs, new economic sophistication and new trade potential from Canada's rich energy endowment. By transforming how we generate and use energy, move people and materials, heat our homes and operate our industries and businesses, Canadian technology is a forerunner in addressing the challenges associated with climate change, not only for today but for tomorrow.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Given the numbers of colleagues seeking the floor for questions, if the questions and replies could be somewhat brief then we will get as many as possible on the record.

  +-(1105)  

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the member mentions the commitment of the government to this matter and that is great. Those words are great and all the things that he mentioned are wonderful things, but the reality is that while we have spent $1.4 billion on Kyoto we have just recently announced $7 million for some of these new technologies. That $1.4 billion went to conferences and those kinds of things, not to new technology.

    Does the member not think that we should be doing more to encourage industry, possibly with incentives, tax breaks and those kinds of approaches, like we see in the U.S. and in some European countries? Would that not be a better way to encourage this to develop even faster?

+-

    Mr. Benoît Serré: Mr. Speaker, I would invite the hon. member to look at the record of the government. The key word in reducing greenhouse gas emissions is partnership. The hon. member was asking the federal government to prove its leadership. We have done that. Just last week the hon. Minister of the Environment announced eight new partnerships, eight new programs in Vancouver worth some $400 million. That proves the commitment of the government to partnering.

    We will give the private sector the guidance and the leadership it needs and we will provide some funding. That is what we are doing, with $1.5 billion. We did not wait to sign Kyoto to take action. We are already taking it.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont--Petite-Patrie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I would like to point out the member opposite's paradox with regard to Canada's natural resources policy.

    It is a bit of a paradox that he is talking to us about developing clean modes of energy and promoting certain technologies. When it comes to the facts, it is important to note that, since 1970, $40 billion has been spent in fossil fuel exploration and development in western Canada. All this, for what purpose? To promote and provide a better supply of fossil fuels, or polluting energy, to the Americans.

    My question is the following. Would it not be better for the environment and sustainable development if, instead of using the $40 billion invested since 1970 to explore western Canadian tar sands and subsidize exports, this money were injected into developing clean technologies?

+-

    Mr. Benoît Serré: Mr. Speaker, my hon. colleague seems to forget that we live in a country that requires a great deal of energy. We live in a very cold country.

    If our government and previous governments had not invested in the production of new energy resources in this country, we would probably be freezing right now.

    Our approach is a dual one. While developing our energy sources and creating jobs for Canadians, we must also continue to develop non-polluting sources such as hydroelectricity, wind energy and others.

[English]

+-

    Mr. John Herron (Fundy--Royal, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I can demonstrate how void the government has been when it comes to taking action on this file or actually providing any kind of leadership.

    The member said that the government has been vigorous in engaging industry on this issue and wanted to reward early action taken by industry. For instance, the CME has advised Canadians that greenhouse gas emissions already have been reduced by 2% below 1990 levels. Industry has done this on its own. Could the member actually name just one regulation or one incentive whereby the government actually fostered an industrial response to greenhouse gases?

    On November 2, 1999, the Minister of Natural Resources stated:

Mr. Speaker, Canada has engaged the active assistance of the provinces--

    I doubt that.

--environmental organizations and the private sector all across the country in developing a Kyoto implementation plan. The work is going ahead with a great deal of vigour.

    It has been three years since that statement so my question is quite simple. Could he name one regulation whereby industry actually can state that it really knows the rules of early action and engagement on this file? Just one.

+-

    Mr. Benoît Serré: Mr. Speaker, I will remind the hon. member that his party was in power for nine years and never put a dime into climate change, but this government has acted. In budget 2000 and the 2000 fall economic statement, the government committed $1.5 billion over five years for climate change initiatives. We have increased that since then. These initiatives include the development and demonstration of innovative technologies for reducing greenhouse gas and other emissions, increasing the uptake of energy efficiency.

    Tonight I will be attending the Museum of Nature with my colleague from the Ministry of Agriculture and Agri-Food and the Minister of the Environment. We will announce a further $6 million BIOCAP project. The government is serious about climate change and we are acting.

  +-(1110)  

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Bernard Bigras (Rosemont--Petite-Patrie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise today to address the Canadian Alliance motion on the ratification of the Kyoto protocol.

    I am taking this opportunity to sincerely thank the hon. member for Red Deer for bringing forward this motion in the House, thus allowing us to have a debate on this issue. We must not wait for the government to consult us or to consult parliament, because there is no consultation. Even though I basically disagree with the hon. member's motion, I thank him for initiating this debate in the House of Commons today.

    During oral question period and debate, I have said repeatedly in the House that, as far as we are concerned, the Kyoto protocol is essential from an environmental point of view, not only to provide increased protection for our ecosystems and our natural heritage, but also to deal with the issue of costs now. It is not true that this international agreement has only an environmental dimension, as I will try to demonstrate over the next few minutes.

    In our opinion, there is a major economic dimension to the challenge posed by the Kyoto protocol. It is true that, in western Canada, there is some opposition to the protocol as such, but all the letters written by provincial premiers that I read show that they support the principle underlying the Kyoto protocol. I emphasize the term principle, because it is ultimately the essence of that agreement.

    In recent weeks, some provincial ministers from western Canada—I am thinking of Alberta's energy minister—alluded to the possibility of dire consequences for the Canadian economy, should Canada ratify the Kyoto protocol. A cost of close to $40 billion to the Canadian economy was mentioned. A few days later, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce indicated that the costs to Canada would be some $30 billion.

    These figures attracted a great deal of attention because, after all, they were from a provincial minister and a chamber of commerce. However, we have seldom seen a breakdown of costs for each province. This is why I have serious reservations about the figures mentioned so far by some industry and private sector representatives.

    There have been other studies, and it is important to mention this, because the Alberta minister's presentations are not the only ones. There is also Nick Marthy, a renowned researcher my colleagues probably know, who did an estimate based on an econometric model of the possible costs of ratifying the Kyoto protocol. It was his view that the cost to Canada's economy would be on the order of 0.17% to 0.19% of GDP. Clearly, there would be an impact, but it would not be as great as certain representatives of western Canada and the Canadian Alliance claim.

    The Canadian Alliance says that this impact would take the form of negative growth of $2 billion a year for ten years. In other words, a cost to Canada of approximately $22 billion, in 1995 dollars.

    Representatives of western Canada have said that the costs would be approximately $40 billion but, according to this researcher's study, they would be only $5 billion to $9 billion for the Alberta economy. This would be four to six times less than certain provincial ministers from western Canada and Canadian Chamber of Commerce representatives have estimated.

  +-(1115)  

    In terms of GDP, this would represent a reduction for the province of Alberta of 0.58%, if the European formula is used, but I will come back to this. We know that there are basically two methods of sharing the burden of the Kyoto objective; the European method based on a triptych approach to sharing the burden, or the 6% approach, which is better known internationally.

    Using the European approach, however, the impact on Alberta's GDP would be 0.58%, while the impact on Canada's GDP using the 6% international approach would be 0.38%. What would a 0.19% reduction in GDP mean for Ontario? It would mean $8.5 billion. For Quebec, the reduction in growth would be 0.06%, or $1.4 billion. And I could go on like this.

    Having said that, studies must be considered in a context, because it is impossible to come up with figures as astronomical as the ones that some people have been suggesting over the last few weeks. I obtained a copy of a brief from Environment Canada dated March 4, 2002, which forecasts that the annual costs would vary between $300 million and $7.3 billion. This is a recent study prepared by Environment Canada, and it demonstrates that there will indeed be costs, as well an impact on the growth of the economy, but that the costs are not as high as some would imagine.

    We have talked of costs, however it is equally important to talk about benefits. If we only see the Kyoto protocol in terms of how much it will cost to implement, as seems to be the case with the motion moved by the member for Red Deer, then we are not really taking into consideration the reality of the situation. This is what explains that the forecasts, the estimates indicate that the decline will not as sharp as some would imagine.

    It is important to point out that some industries will experience growth, in particular those in the environmental sector, which are expected to grow from $427 million to $7 billion per year. This according to a study from November, 2001 by the analysis and modelling group of the national climate change process. Therefore, for some sectors of the Canadian economy, the benefits will be considerable.

    We also need to look at this issue in terms of social benefits. If there is doubt about the science, and denial that climate change has any effect on human health, we are not starting from the same premise. I believe that greenhouse gases and fossil fuel production, whether it be coal, natural gas or oil, have a direct impact on public health.

    The most recent studies on the social benefits, savings and health advantages puts the savings at $500 million per year. These are benefits relating to public health in economic terms.This is another benefit resulting from the implementation of the Kyoto protocol.

    There is one other major advantage, which my colleague has mentioned. The Canadian insurance industry is probably in the best position at this time to estimate the actual costs of climate change. This industry has, and will continue to be, affected. To give Quebec as an example, no one can forget that the two greatest natural disasters relating to climate in Canada occurred in Quebec: the ice storm and the floods in the Saguenay region.

  +-(1120)  

    The 1998 ice storm alone is estimated to have cost insurers $3 billion, and this is for a single climate-related event. According to current estimates for the Saguenay flood, the economic loss for the region totals $6 billion.

    All this to say that I am indeed in agreement with my colleague that there are costs associated with ratification of the Kyoto protocol. There cannot, however, be a fair, equitable and realistic evaluation unless consideration is also given to the benefits as far as public health is concerned, as well as the economic repositioning of certain industries as far as the choices relating to the Kyoto protocol are concerned. There are, therefore, major benefits as well.

    I would like to quote the findings of one final study. They are not the only ones who can make use of studies. A recent Standard & Poor's study—a firm not to be taken lightly—feels that there will be continuing growth. I will just read one except, which says:

Growth will continue in all regions of Quebec subsequent to ratification of the Kyoto protocol. In Alberta, there will be an average annual downturn of 0.14% between 2000 and 2014.

    I am not saying that there will not be a downturn. Growth will slow down, but 0.14% is far from the catastrophic $40 billion prediction by ministers of certain western Canadian provinces or by the Chamber of Commerce. The latter predicted approximately $30 billion would be lost to the Canadian economy.

    As for Ontario and Quebec, this study continues:

—growth would develop at 0.10%.

    For Ontario and Quebec, growth would develop at 0.10%, so this would not be a downturn.

    Why? Because there would be a repositioning of certain industries within the Canadian economy.

    This is the end of my presentation on costs, because this is now being debated. I wanted to take at least half of my time, if not more, to discuss the pros and cons of ratification of the Kyoto protocol.

    There is one other aspect of the motion which troubles me, namely paragraph (c), which reads as follows:

(c) the Kyoto Protocol would do little or nothing to benefit the environment.

    Since when do greenhouse gas reduction requirements not provide increased benefits to the environment? With all due respect for his presentation, if this is the hon. member's premise, he must not believe that fossil fuels, be it coal, natural gas or oil, or the energy generated by these three sources, have a negative impact on the environment. It seems to me that if we reduce greenhouse gas emissions, it will benefit the environment.

    I am also concerned by paragraph (a) of the motion, which reads:

(a) Canada's principal economic competitor, the United States, together with most of the world's developing countries, would not be bound by the Protocol's emission reduction quotas;

    According to the hon. member, the fact that the United States are not ratifying the Kyoto protocol will have a negative impact on Canada.

  +-(1125)  

    When one is familiar with the emissions trading system, one should know that if the Kyoto protocol is not signed by the United States, this will directly impact on the costs of such trading, and thus on demand. Therefore, it is wrong and biased to say that the fact that the United States are not ratifying the Kyoto protocol will impact negatively on Canada, quite the contrary. Our emissions trading system will have a positive effect.

    Some studies, which were not done in Canada but in other countries and which I read just last week, confirm that this would indeed be the case for Canada. I do not know whether there are Canadian studies that demonstrate this, but last week I read studies from foreign countries which show that there will be very positive consequences resulting from the fact that the United States will not be ratifying this protocol.

    I cannot believe that there are still people who think that the energy produced by the three fossil fuel sources I mentioned earlier does not affect climate.

    In 1998, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, founded by the United Nations and jointly sponsored by the United Nations environment programme and the World Meteorological Organization, presented its conclusions regarding the level of knowledge about climate change. Their 2001 report is even more pessimistic than their earlier reports. Confirming the impact of human activity on global climate, the group announced that temperatures will continue to climb during the next century and could cause “serious damage”, including a rise in sea level of 88 centimetres by 2100. The group also reported that Arctic glaciers have already shrunk 15% over the past 40 years and that the snow cover has retreated by 10% over the past 30.

    The report also gives various examples of the impact of human activity on the increase in temperatures recorded over the past 50 years. It contains new analyses of data from certain cambium layers, trees, corals, glacial core samples and northern hemisphere records showing that the increase in temperature over the past 100 years has undoubtedly been the greatest recorded for a single century in the past 1,000 years.

    The authors note that the 1990s have probably been the warmest decade, and that 1998 has probably been the warmest year on record.

    In conclusion, I wish to say that our party will not be supporting the motion put forward by the member for Red Deer. Once again, I thank him for having raised this issue in the House of Commons.

    I see this evening's vote as follows: should this parliament vote against the Canadian Alliance motion calling on the government not to ratify the Kyoto protocol, the vote should be interpreted as meaning that this parliament wants the federal government to ratify the Kyoto protocol. It is all very fine and democratic to move this motion, but there has to be consistency.

    People should be aware that if parliamentarians vote against this motion, it can only be interpreted as meaning that they want the government to ratify the accord by June, as the Quebec coalition requested last week, and we hope that this will extend to the rest of Canada.

  +-(1130)  

+-

    Hon. Charles Caccia (Davenport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I would like to ask a question of our colleague from Rosemont--Petite-Patrie. I am totally in agreement with his speech and the point he raises.

    He has done a good job commenting on parts (a) and (b) of the motion, but I would invite him to say a few words on the third part of the opposition motion, which reads:

(c) The Kyoto Protocol would do little or nothing to benefit the environment.

    While not wishing to be unkind to our colleague from Red Deer, I find this somewhat of an exaggeration. I hope that my colleague from the Bloc Quebecois can comment on this third and very important part of the motion.

+-

    Mr. Bernard Bigras: Mr. Speaker, I am especially surprised about the third part of my colleague's motion, because over the last weeks and months, there has been a certain evolution on the part of some Canadian partners who would not be described as environmentalists. There are more and more of them who admit, according to certain environmental groups—they too have noticed this—that certain partners from western Canada acknowledge that climate change and energy from fossil fuels have an impact on the environment.

    I do not see how the member for Red Deer can believe that an anticipated decrease in greenhouse gas emissions in a given territory, be it 6% less than levels from 2008 and 2012, will not have a positive effect on the environment. If he is basing his argument on this premise, then my colleague who moved this motion must not believe that producing energy using fossil fuels has an impact on the environment.

    Given that some provincial ministers have said that they agree with the principle—and I stress this—of the Kyoto protocol, because this is what I have seen in letters, I do not see how my colleague can move a motion such as this one. He will certainly have an opportunity to respond to my comments in a few minutes.

[English]

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, fossil fuels have an impact on the environment and on climate change. We all agree that climate change is occurring.

    I want to address my questions to the hon. member. First, should the government not be doing something to encourage alternate energy research faster? Is it doing enough?

    Second, regarding the model we are to be seeing in April, the U.S., where 90% of our trade is, is not part of it. China, India, Brazil, Mexico, et cetera, are not part of this agreement. The Europeans can change because the U.K. went from coal to gas. France is nuclear and Germany through reunification deindustrialized the east bloc and took advantage of it. Does he believe that the government's report will consider all those things? If he does, we need to talk.

    Third, does he believe that had we signed Kyoto the Saguenay floods and the ice storm would not have happened?

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Bernard Bigras: Mr. Speaker, as for the last question, I cannot give the member any guarantee that the ice storm and the Saguenay floods would not have happened. However, I do believe the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which predicts significant climate change. I will not comment on specific cases. However, I would believe groups of international experts and the UN before presuming that the ice storm would not have occurred. Based on the comments made by the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, I do in fact believe that we need to act right away.

    Regarding the first question about renewable technologies, I would simply say that in my opinion, when we look at the federal government's investment of close to $40 billion since the 1970s in tar sands development in western Canada, excluding the funds allocated, it seems as though the time has come to make some big changes. Perhaps we should reallocate funding, take the public dollars that are invested in certain polluting sources of energy, and redirect it toward renewable sources, such as wind and solar energies.

  +-(1135)  

+-

    Mr. Benoît Serré (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I note that Canadian Alliance members are saying that, as a government, we are going too fast with the Kyoto protocol. However, the other opposition parties are telling us that we are not acting quickly enough. This makes me say that we may be going at just the right speed.

    I want to congratulate the Bloc Quebecois member for his analysis, which is very well balanced between the costs and the benefits that would result from the ratification of the Kyoto protocol. I fully agree with him when he says that, in the long term, the fact that the United States is not signing the agreement will benefit Canadians and Canadian businesses involved in environmental technologies. This will give us an economic advantage over the Americans.

    The hon. member spoke at length of the costs and benefits relating to the Kyoto protocol, as well as studies on the subject. I wonder if any data or studies were put together, that he is aware of, regarding the social and economic costs that would result from not doing anything about climate change and not ratifying the Kyoto protocol?

+-

    Mr. Bernard Bigras: Mr. Speaker, it is difficult to evaluate the costs of non-ratification because we cannot predict what future climate changes will be.

    What we do know, based on studies done by Environment Canada and by various Canadian companies, is that the social benefits would amount to over $500 million a year. I think that when we look at the public health benefits, it is clear that there are benefits not only for individual citizens, but also for our public administration, in terms of making better choices.

    In terms of the economic costs alone of the Kyoto protocol, I am prepared to debate the issue tomorrow morning if need be. I would suggest instead that we hold a debate on both the costs and the benefits.

    I would be very open to debating the economic costs of the Kyoto protocol tomorrow with any member of this House. I am certain that I could convince my western Canadian colleagues.

[English]

+-

    Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I will be sharing my time with the member for Winnipeg Centre. I am pleased to rise today on behalf of the federal New Democrats to speak to this motion. Having looked at the motion very carefully, we in the NDP disagree with every line that it puts forward.

    It is quite astounding to listen to the comments of the Alliance member for Red Deer. They reminded me very much of the famous novel 1984 by George Orwell. This is a very good example of doublespeak.

    The Canadian Alliance is telling the Canadian public that Kyoto is dangerous and harmful to the environment, that we should not proceed with it, that we should scotch the whole thing, pack it up and go somewhere else.

    Alliance members are also saying that we should rely on human adaptation. In other words, we should tell all farmers facing drought or coastal communities facing flooding as a result of a rise in the ocean level to adapt. I have never heard any comment as utterly ridiculous. It completely flies in the face of real scientific evidence that has been developed over decades which tells us that we are facing an environmental catastrophe unless we as a global community are willing to act.

    While I am pleased to have the opportunity to debate the motion, it is nothing more than a scare tactic. Reports from the Alberta oil companies are telling us that it will cost $40 billion to implement the Kyoto protocol.

    Let us get real. There are costs to implementing Kyoto. Why should there not be? It has taken a number of years for society to destroy our environment. Destruction is all around us in terms of air quality in urban communities and the quality of the oceans. Yes, there is a cost to cleaning that up and to reversing the decisions we have made, but it is not the kinds of economic costs now being put forward by vested interests propagated by the Canadian Alliance. One study from the national institute of public health in the Netherlands shows that in Canadian terms it is something much closer to $198 million to $700 million, not $40 billion.

    If we wanted a proper examination of this issue, why would we not put on the table one of the positive sides of Kyoto, the fact that it has been estimated that it will produce 65,000 new jobs, and the whole issue of the green economy? We could talk about investments in public infrastructure. We could talk about investments in retrofitting our buildings to save energy. Those are costs we would actually save. Those are issues where we would produce jobs and a green economy.

    Contrary to what the hon. member for Red Deer was saying, that Kyoto would lead to a recession, I find it very insulting that he would put forward that kind of argument in the House to literally scare people away from the true reality of what is facing them.

    We must recognize that as Canadians we consume more energy per capita than any other country in the world. We use more total energy than 700 million people on the African continent.

    We in the NDP understand that this is not just a Canadian issue. This is an issue of global justice. This is an issue about what we do in the north and what happens in the south. If we somehow expect to maintain our privilege and our incredible levels of consumption and to say to developing countries that they cannot do the same, that they cannot enjoy the privileges we have, this truly is an issue of global justice.

  +-(1140)  

    We also have to look at other costs to our society. Anyone who has kids will know that there has been an incredible increase in asthma among children. Why? Because of our environment, our polluted air and global warming. We are now seeing a tremendous impact in terms of environmental health issues, which is costing our health care system billions of dollars.

    I was very interested to hear the comments from my Bloc colleague who spoke about the ice storm and its $3 billion impact and about how those kinds of environmental catastrophes will continue to happen.

    I think the motion today gives us an opportunity to raise the question as to whose interest is being served. It seems to me that the true colours of the Alliance Party have come through very strong today, colours, I might add, that are very polluted, because they are clearly sending out a message. They are articulating and defending a false position put forward by corporate Canada. I am proud to say that we in the NDP are in the House to uphold the public interest and I believe that is why we are elected.

    Just in case the Liberals think they will get off scot free, I hope they will vote against this motion and I know there are individual Liberal members who have actually done a very good job of raising these issues within their own government and have taken a very good stand, but the Liberal government, I have to say, is not much better. For five years now it has been waffling on this issue. We have had conflicting statements from the Prime Minister, the Minister of Natural Resources and the Minister of the Environment. They have been all over the map and we are no further ahead. We want to call on the Canadian government today to really show leadership and to not only reject the motion but to move ahead and ratify the Kyoto agreement and Canada's commitments.

    By contrast, real leadership is coming from the community. We have environmental organizations like the David Suzuki Foundation, Greenpeace Canada and the Sierra Legal Defence Fund, all of whom have been producing excellent information to show us the reality of what will be happening in our environment if we do not adopt Kyoto. In fact, Greenpeace and the Sierra Legal Defence Fund released a study in February which shows that we could improve our urban air quality and meet one-third of the Kyoto commitment if only we would have stronger vehicle emission regulations on our automobiles. It is pretty shocking to know that SUVs, for example, will not be covered by any regulations until the year 2009. It is really astounding that as we escalate the degradation to our environment, regulations covering some of these very harmful gas guzzling vehicles like SUVs will not even come into effect for another seven years.

    We have also seen a lot of leadership from groups like the Federation of Canadian Municipalities. Jack Layton, president of that group, has made it his business and his mission to bring together the municipalities to say that if the federal government will not do anything and the provincial governments are all mucking around, then at least at the municipal level, where 80% of Canadians live in urban environments, they will show leadership and take a stand on this issue. We congratulate them for that.

    Finally, let me say that we in the NDP have been unequivocal in our support of Kyoto. Our member for Windsor--St. Clair, our environment critic, has stood up in the House day after day pressing the government as to why it is waffling on this issue. We will continue to do that, along with the Canadian public, until the government meets its commitments that were laid out in the Kyoto accord. We have to hurry up and do this before it is too late. We have to meet our commitment because the survival of our planet and the future of our children depend on it.

  +-(1145)  

+-

    Mrs. Karen Redman (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I listened with great interest to the hon. member's intervention on this opposition motion. While she touched on many aspects of the Alliance motion, one of the things she did not talk directly to was the fact that the Alliance Party feels this will make Canada uncompetitive.

    The significance of Kyoto is actually the fact that it is a global initiative and I have a question for my NDP colleague. Canada has taken great pains to continue to bring the United States to the table, and when we hear the fearmongering about the fact that it may cost jobs and it may cost economic gains, I look south to the United States. While it has opted out of being a signatory to Kyoto, it is doing some very significant things. I look to the $4.6 billion package of clean energy tax incentives that the president of the United States announced. I wonder if my colleague would comment on the fact of this assumption that there will be an economic downturn from this because we are in such close partnership with the United States. I know that jobs are something that her party is always keen to protect.

+-

    Ms. Libby Davies: Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the comments from the hon. member but I have to say that if the Canadian government has been pressuring the U.S. government to ratify Kyoto we would actually like to see some good evidence of that because that has been one of our big concerns.

    However, I certainly would agree that a mythology has been developed that somehow Kyoto is bad for the economy and that we will have a massive bleed of jobs. I think there is much evidence out there to show that, first, those figures are grossly overrated and overestimated and, second, that in actual fact a green economy is something that will produce jobs, whether it is in terms of transit and urban infrastructure, upgrading water plants or dealing with agricultural issues. There is a lot of evidence to show that Kyoto is good for the environment but is also good for our economy.

    In terms of the U.S. position, it is very unfortunate that the Alliance is playing this game of saying that such and such a country will not ratify and will not do anything, so why should we? This is an issue of international agreements. I would think that it is an opportunity for Canada to show its leadership. If the U.S. is reluctant and if Bush is changing his tune, as he does all the time, it is up to us as their economic partners to convince them that this is the right path to take and that Kyoto should be approved.

  +-(1150)  

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I have a couple of questions. I think what we are really saying is that we need to move beyond Kyoto, that Kyoto is an out of date piece of legislation because so many countries are not signing on.

    I want to ask the member about the new jobs. I agree with her that it would be great to have those new jobs, but the Canadian government is not doing enough to help establish our environmental industries so that those jobs will be there. The other countries are progressing way beyond us. In Vancouver last week one could see the technology levels of different countries.

    What I really would like this member to explain is the transferring of dollars from the rich countries to the poor countries to buy credits. How is that really going to help, first, the people there, and second, the environment? What we are doing is buying the credits so we can release more CO2 into the environment. How does that help the environment?

+-

    Ms. Libby Davies: Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his comments and questions. If he has been listening to the debates in the House and question period over the last couple of years, he will know that we in the NDP have been very clear about our position that we do not buy into the whole notion of transfers of credits.

    I tried to say in my comments that this is about an issue of global justice. It is about the north taking responsibility for its history environmentally and not saying that we will somehow palm it off on other countries and have a little exchange going on. We believe it is critical that Canada meets its commitments to reduce the greenhouse gases. This is about lowering our consumption. If we say that is not the case, then we are simply fooling ourselves. We have been very clear on that point.

+-

    Mr. Pat Martin (Winnipeg Centre, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to be able to take part in this opposition day motion on Kyoto from the Canadian Alliance.

    Let me start by saying that the member for Red Deer has the toughest job in the whole Canadian Alliance Party. It is not a beach party being a member of that party lately anyway, but frankly he has the job of trying to sell the Canadian Alliance position on Kyoto, which has been one of shifting sands. Since I have been here in 1997 it has been an absolutely moving target. When Kyoto was brought forward to the international arena, the Alliance's first position was to deny it completely, to say that global warming was not the result of human activity on this planet, that it was not a problem. That was its first position. I heard the leader of that party say that a couple of times. Those members were the chief apologists for the oil industry. They were the corporate shills for oil interests or big oil.

    They took that job very seriously until the oil industry matured beyond their position. It is kind of embarrassing to be out-greened by the oil industry in North America, but that is exactly what happened. They were forced to shift their position and then they started challenging the science by which the measurements were being taken in terms of global warming. For the next six to ten months they were talking about bad science and how could we commit our country to such a radical change in the way we conduct business when it was based on bad science, as if they had a team of scientists somewhere that was better than the leading scientists in the world who congregated at Rio and then at Kyoto to decide to finally do something about global warming. They had members like the members from Athabasca and Red Deer who were willing to challenge the leading minds of the century on this issue.

    Then they were forced to recognize that the Pacific Ocean has risen 12 centimetres. They were forced to recognize that on the Canadian prairie due to global warming the area I come from and the area that those members come from are close to being a desert. We are two or three degrees of global warming away from going from a prairie agricultural economy to the next Gobi Desert. That is the fear in the area I live in, but their narrow, blinkered focus was only on the oil patch. They had their heads deeply in the oil sands. They refused to acknowledge the emergency taking place internationally when the rest of the world was coming to an agreement.

    Finally they had to give up on that and start admitting that given the ice storms, given the change in climate, something goofy was happening, that maybe mankind was in fact responsible for some of this global warming. Maybe burning fossil fuels was soiling our own nest to the point where human beings would not be able to live on this planet.

    Now they have had to shift their tactics again, to fearmongering about how much it would cost to fix the problem, but not talking about the cost of not fixing the problem. They are trying to sell the fact that there is some immediate negative cash outlay necessary and that is where they find themselves now.

    A fourth angle that they have tried to float today is that Kyoto is last century's solution and we are looking for a 21st century solution. Kyoto was agreed upon in the very twilight hours of the last century for implementation in this century, so let us not try to sell it as an outdated ideology or as obsolete in any way. That is completely disingenuous.

    Now we find Canadian Alliance members scrambling to find some way to be faithful to their old arguments and still recognize the undeniable fact that this planet has agreed as a global entity that we must do something about our global climate change.

    I was lucky enough to take part in a cross-country conference on climate change, in five different locations, with the global task force on climate change which Canada hosted in 1993. Prior to Rio we were dealing with these issues. One of the things that came up at that time is that we are too much concerned with supply side management and that maybe this is how we have to break out of the box: we have to start talking more about demand side management. As a contractor, a journeyman carpenter and the head of a building trades union, for me it was absolute heresy to stand up in any public setting and say that we were against building more hydro generating stations, we were against building more nuclear power plants or we were against building the oil tar sands in Fort McMurray, because that was where the people I represented hoped to get jobs. Therefore we had to do some research.

  +-(1155)  

    We had to get some real hard facts to find the trade-off . We were happy to learn something which I am happy to share with the members for Red Deer and Athabasca and the other champions of the other point of view. Empirical evidence now exists that there is far more job creation opportunity on the demand side management of energy resources than there is in manufacturing on the supply side.

    If members are interested at all in demand side management they will probably be interested in hearing this. A unit of energy that we harvest from the existing system through demand side management conservation measures is indistinguishable from a unit of energy that we crank out at a generating station, except for a number of things.

    First, it is available online immediately. As soon as I turn off the light switch in my house that unit of energy is there so I can sell it to someone else, instead of a five year lag period for building a new generating station.

    Second, it creates as many as seven times the number of jobs. A unit of energy harvested from the existing system through demand side management measures creates seven times the person years of employment as a unit of energy created at a new generating station.

    The third and most obvious benefit given this argument is that we actually reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions. Surely that is an enormous benefit that we all want to achieve now that we have convinced the Canadian Alliance that greenhouse gas and global warming are in fact issues.

    The fourth thing is that we do not have to borrow any money to do it.

    The final one is the real sinker. As it pertained to the building trade unions that I represented, we offered a whole program where we would energy retrofit public, private and municipal buildings free of charge by using our union pension fund investment money to undertake the retrofitting. In other words, we would create jobs with our own union pension funds to renovate the building. The property owner would then pay us back slowly out of the energy savings, so it was off balance sheet, zero cost financing to retrofit every building in the country.

    We proposed this to the federal government and it agreed. The federal government introduced the federal building initiative, albeit on a painfully small scale, far smaller than we recommended. However there are financiers out there who would be willing to retrofit every one of the government's 68,000 buildings across the country at no upfront cost to the taxpayer. This would reduce operating costs by 40%, reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions by God knows how much and reduce fossil fuel consumption at no cost to the taxpayer. Why are we not doing this right across the country?

    Why did the Canadian Alliance not use its opposition day opportunity, a votable day I might add, to call for real leadership in this cold, harsh, winter environment of Canada so that we could be the centre of excellence in energy conservation and show the world how to create jobs, conserve energy and save money all at the same time? Perhaps some of that money that we would save by demand side management energy conservation measures could be used toward implementing our obligations under Kyoto.

    That is why it is painful for me to watch the House of Commons seized for the entire day on whether Kyoto is real or not real, whether we should implement or not implement it, and then have to listen to bogus arguments that because we only generate 3% of the greenhouse emissions, even if we cut our emissions by 50% it would be meaningless on a global scale. That is nonsense.

    We are a leading nation. We are one of the G-7 nations that could by example show the rest of the world how to conserve energy and reduce their consumption of fossil fuels through demand side management measures. We could export that technology again so that Canada could generate some benefit from the measures that we take to come into compliance with Kyoto.

    We call upon the government to ratify Kyoto and sign on despite what the Americans are doing. We call on the members of the Canadian Alliance to get with the 21st century, get their heads out of the oil sands at Fort McMurray and come along with us as we speak for Canadians and for the global community to reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions and hopefully breathe fresh air together.

  +-(1200)  

+-

    Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I cannot help but respond to those comments because, clearly, there were some pretty sharp jabs at myself, my constituency and the people who earn an honest living in my constituency.

    We may have our heads in the oil sands but I would suggest that the hon. member who just spoke perhaps has his head in another orifice. He should perhaps remove his head and take a look at the reality.

    The whole concept, as he pointed out, of demand side economics has merit. The government introduced its program with great fanfare and great promise to retrofit government buildings. Strangely enough we do not hear anything from the government, and have not for some time, about the success of that program. We do not hear why it did not catch on and why more of the many buildings the government owns were not retrofitted. We would be interested to know the reasons.

    The government has launched a number of initiatives to deal with climate change and emissions, including not only the retrofit of buildings but also the conversion of the government fleet to a cleaner burning fuel. Strangely enough, when it introduced that particular program it committed to converting 75% of the government fleet to cleaner burning fuel by the year 2000 but in reality only about 5.5% was converted.

    If these programs have such merit and would be of benefit to Canadians, could the member explain why they are not being implemented and why they have not caught on with Canadians and caught the imagination of Canadians?

  +-(1205)  

+-

    Mr. Pat Martin: Mr. Speaker, under the federal building initiative, I believe that out of the 68,000 buildings that the government owns, about 1,100 energy audits have taken place. Of those 1,100 audits, about 100 comprehensive retrofits have in fact taken place, many of them hugely successful, and the benefits have been well monitored and well chronicled.

    Rose Technology Engineering wanted to use the Harry Hayes Building in downtown Calgary, right in the heart of oil country and the oil industry, as an example of what one can do with the latest technology in terms of energy conservation without comprising comfort or having to freeze in the dark.

    We are missing an opportunity. We have been calling upon the government to actually do comprehensive retrofits on 1,000 buildings per year. It would still take 60 years but we should at least let the private sector put out an RFP on the buildings. The private sector engineers should be allowed to put forward proposals stating “Here is a million square foot post office in Mississauga. We believe that you are paying too much money in your energy costs. We have ideas that we can retrofit that and do it at no upfront cost to the taxpayer”.

    Why in God's name would we not act on many of those buildings and show by example to the private sector what can be done with the new energy technology that exists in Canada today?

+-

    Hon. Charles Caccia (Davenport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, would the hon. member for Winnipeg Centre elaborate for a moment on the study produced in Holland on Canada's predicted possible costs in the ratification of the Kyoto process, something that was briefly referred to by his colleague, the member for Vancouver East but only en passant, as we say?

+-

    Mr. Pat Martin: Mr. Speaker, I doubt I could elaborate at length for two reasons. First, I saw the report for the first time today when it was circulated to my colleague, although I have been aware of the report for quite some time. Second, I have very little time.

    What is necessary to point out, and may be the key salient point about the report generated from Holland on the impact of implementing Kyoto in Canada, is that the cost, when one considers the benefits versus the initial outlay, is more like $800 million for implementation, not the $40 billion and $50 billion that we keep hearing. Some people with vested interests have been fearmongering about the cost of the implementation. We challenge that and we now have good research to assist us in that challenge.

+-

    Mr. John Herron (Fundy--Royal, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, the hallmark of the government over the past eight years has been its propensity to avoid dealing with difficult issues. We know as a point of fact that Canada is now falling behind in critical areas where we once led, whether it be the economy, the development of natural resources, leadership or stewardship on the environment. This is a very complex file. In true Liberal tradition, it has ducked the issue essentially for the last five years without really engaging Canadians on this particular issue of public policy.

    I would like to tip my hat to the member for Red Deer for his leadership within the context of his own caucus in actually dedicating this supply day to this issue of public policy.

    Having said that, I would have preferred if the wording of the amendment had gone toward a more constructive debate so that we could have actually held the government to account for its actions and we could have focused on the need to postpone any decision on ratification until Canada had developed a full implementation plan that would have included a detailed impact analysis.

    The impact analysis has to be the starting point. We clearly need to ensure that a detailed impact analysis is done on a sector by sector and province by province basis before implementing any kind of strategy .

    The Government of Canada should fully engage the Canadian public to inform them about what behavioural expectations the federal government would have on the Canadian populous at large.

    Given the void created by the government in actually providing any kind of leadership on this issue, we have recently seen a myriad of cost analyses or projections produced by a vast array of interest groups and, quite legitimately.

    Before I continue, Mr. Speaker, I will be sharing my time with the member for South Shore who carries the natural resource file.

    Various stakeholder groups have been advocating at least two reasons for the need to have the analysis done. One reason is that having an impact analysis in terms of what a ratification plan or an implementation would be in terms of what cost that may have with respect to the economy is a reasonable question to ask. I do not think anybody would have any grave objection to that aspect of it.

    The real aspect I would like to advocate is that the environmental community has no desire for the Government of Canada to merely ratify an accord that it clearly has no game plan in place or no genuine interest to ever implement in the future.

    The challenge of climate change is a very difficult file for most countries to address but it is more complex in the Canadian context than in most other industrialized nations. Canada has a large land mass with a small population base that provides transportation challenges. We have a cold climate. We have an export driven, energy intensive economy.

    When we look at our challenges we see other countries that are facing the same challenges. Let us look at Sweden. The Swedes are actually allowed to have a reduction rate significantly less than what we have here in Canada. They have done their homework and have convinced their EU partners that their country's circumstances make climate change a more arduous process than perhaps it would be in other EU based countries.

    To state the obvious, the Government of Canada really did not have its act together prior to going to Kyoto in the first place.

  +-(1210)  

    I was a member of the delegation involved in the Kyoto process. On November 12 the federal government finally met with the provinces. It thought it was a good idea to get together with them. Regardless of what the national government may want to do, the provinces will have to implement any decision the federal government may take. We know in this federation that if we do not have that consensus, it is very difficult to implement anything, including this challenge on climate change.

    The November 12 accord, I will call it, was agreed to by the provinces. There was a consensus so that the Government of Canada could at least go to Kyoto and say that we at least had our subnational governments on board. What happened? The very next morning the Globe and Mail quoted the Minister of Natural Resources as saying that may be our position.

    We got off to this process in a very haphazard way that really betrayed the trust of the provinces. We went to Kyoto without any plan for implementation and really without any target or timeline. We were there to sort of take orders per se. Immediately upon return from Kyoto, Ralph Klein, the premier of the province of Alberta, said quite clearly that this accord, which was agreed to by Canada, in no way reflected the Canadian position that was established in Regina. That was said on December 12, 1997. The Alberta environment minister, Ty Lund, also said at that time that only with governments working co-operatively in partnership with industry, environmental groups and individual Canadians could we reduce our emissions of greenhouse gases and that together we could address our international commitments in such a way that no region or sector would be asked to bear an unreasonable share of the burden.

    The Alberta government has actually led our nation in moving the yardstick in reducing greenhouse gases by some of the issues it has brought forward under the best efforts regime.

    That is what the Government of Canada should have been doing for the last five years. It has been five years and we still do not have a provincial consensus.

    I pay tribute to the member for Athabasca who asked a question in question period yesterday. It was a very simple and genuine question. He asked if the Government of Canada would agree to have a consensus reached with the provinces before ratification. In the view of the Progressive Conservative Party this is a necessary component before even considering ratification.

    We know there is a lot of trepidation within the Canadian populace at large. There is a legitimate fear by individuals who live in western Canada and even in the east where there is a petrochemical industry in Nova Scotia and Newfoundland offshore. The last thing they want from the government is another national energy program. Without knowing what the rules and regulations will be on an implementation strategy and without having that impact analysis done sector by sector and province by province, it is totally legitimate for these individuals to be concerned in that way.

    Industry is indeed willing to do its part. The Canadian manufacturers and exporters and the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers have really stepped up to the plate to take a constructive approach as opposed to a mere rant. They have taken the position that they are willing to do their part if the government tells them what the rules are, but they need to be assured that the objectives are achievable and will not wreak havoc with their economy.

    I wish to reiterate quite clearly that the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada has not been in favour of blind ratification without having the proper homework done, without having a provincial consensus reached in advance and without having a detailed impact analysis done industry by industry, sector by sector.

  +-(1215)  

    I heard the member from the Bloc's interpretation of the motion. We are taking the liberty to say that how we interpret the vote today is that we would have preferred that the homework had been done, with an impact analysis, sector by sector, province by province, and it has not, so we will be supporting the Canadian Alliance motion today.

+-

    Hon. Charles Caccia (Davenport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I congratulate the member for his intervention which was quite fine until the last few minutes when he indicated his party's policy. He indicated the fact that there would not be any ratification on the part of a Progressive Conservative government without provincial consensus.

    The hon. member is well aware of the fact that there are two provinces that are and will continue to be definitely opposed to the ratification of Kyoto, namely Alberta and Ontario. The question therefore to the hon. member is this. Are the Progressive Conservatives taking an ambiguous position, knowing very well that two provinces will not agree to the ratification?

+-

    Mr. John Herron: Mr. Speaker, I would like perhaps to take a moment to advocate what we have advocated all along in terms of what should be done. I know that the chair of the environment committee is a strong environmental parliamentarian. It is possible, but maybe not probable, that he may not be here in the House of Commons by the year 2008 or 2012 when Kyoto becomes more binding. From that perspective, does he want the Government of Canada to ratify a document that it has no genuine interest in ever implementing?

    We have been advocating a “no regrets” strategy all along by having massive tax incentives on renewable sources of energy, massive tax incentives fostering blended fuels such as ethanol, massive tax incentives for the R and D on energy efficiency initiatives as well as renewables in that regard and having a loan guarantee program with respect to the retrofit of buildings that the federal government would fund. These are things that would complement the initiatives brought forth by the Canadian Federation of Municipalities as well.

    We have a simple position. We have never supported blind ratification. If we cannot demonstrate that we have a plan in place, tabled with the regulations about how that plan would be achieved, why would we go forward and agree with any accord or any agreement, regardless of whether it is Kyoto or any public policy decision that the Government of Canada may undertake?

  +-(1220)  

+-

    Mrs. Karen Redman (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I too listened with great interest to the speech of the hon. critic of the environment. I found the last line very interesting as well, that they would feel compelled to support the Alliance in its opposition day motion.

    I want to respond to the cost of not ratifying Kyoto and the cost of inactivity. We look to the fact that a billion dollars a month is spent by Canadians on extreme weather situations. We heard today about the 1998 ice storm that cost $5.4 billion. There is real climate change and it is impacting Canadians. As we speak, we have seen the warmest winter on record. We have seen droughts in western Canada. I wonder about the position of the hon. member opposite when he says that they will not ratify Kyoto. Can we afford not to?

+-

    Mr. John Herron: Mr. Speaker, my comment with respect to the question that was asked was that regardless of whether we were in the framework of the Kyoto protocol or not, the Government of Canada would have to have a comprehensive climate change strategy that would foster real reductions of greenhouse gases.

    Our position is the Government of Canada has been grossly negligent over the last five years. To this moment it still has not been able to develop a provincial consensus. It has not even done its homework on an impact analysis that the Aussies and the Swedes did prior to Kyoto. We are still waiting for a sector by sector, province by province analysis. Until that homework is done, until it is proven that ratification makes sense or is even doable, then why would we want to ratify it?

    It is incumbent on the Government of Canada to provide that plan. If that plan is reasonable and there is consensus by the provinces, then it should be considered. However without a plan blind ratification makes no sense. We are serving notice that we need to have the provinces on board and a plan in place.

+-

    Mr. Gerald Keddy (South Shore, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, like my colleague from Fundy--Royal, let me say it is a pleasure to rise on debate on this supply day motion brought forth by the member from the Alliance Party.

    Before I begin debate, I would like to reference some of the comments made by my colleague from Fundy--Royal which are extremely critical to the position we have taken on this supply day motion and extremely critical to the entire issue of whether the government ratifies the Kyoto accord or not.

    He commented that there was no provincial consensus. The job of the federal government is to go out and get provincial consensus. It has had five years to do it. Where has it been? Where has it been on a lot of other issues, which I will bring into my speech later?

    The other point is there has been absolutely no sector by sector impact analysis. This is on the verge of the asinine. This is ridiculous. The government has a certain responsibility here. We are trying to point out that responsibility to it. It should not be something done at the last minute in great haste to satisfy some whim with which the Prime Minister woke up one morning. We are talking about a comprehensive, detailed, organized plan of how this could even remotely begin to be implemented. It is not there.

    I noticed there was one thing that all opposition parties agreed upon, which is a point worth repeating. We did not all agree to support the motion but we did agree that the government had shown zero leadership on this file. That is absolutely true. It has been five years since Kyoto. Where is the plan and how will it be implemented?

    The government itself is not singing from the same song sheet. Its own ministers are contradicting one another. Regarding Kyoto, the Minister of Natural Resources, as early as March 15, stated in Calgary:

We have to make sure we do it right and that's what the government's intention is, to make sure we have all the information, have an analysis and work with the provinces and then make a decision on whether we can ratify or not

    I like that position. That is halfway responsible. On the same day, reported in the same paper, was a quote from the Minister of the Environment, who stated “We'd like to ratify and our aim is to ratify”.

    One person is saying that the government plans to ratify, apparently at all costs, and the other minister is saying that maybe it should take a second look at this because there are costs.

    Let us take a look at what is being discussed here. For example, we are talking about a government that is prepared to ratify an accord without a number of issues being clearly defined. Canadian negotiators are still pushing for clean energy credits. We have not defined clearly whether or not we will be able to use our carbon sinks, and we really have not defined clearly how emissions trading might or might not work. However those are more clearly defined than clean energy credits, which are not defined at all.

    For example, Canadian negotiators who currently are pressing for this, and are not expected in the short term to succeed, are arguing that we should get credit for being a large producer and exporter of relatively clean natural gas and hydroelectricity.

  +-(1225)  

    It is a good argument. The Canadian government argues this can be used to displace energy sources, such as coal, which produce higher levels of greenhouse gases.

    Let us back up to the emissions trading that is at least quasi recognized under the Kyoto protocol. This allows countries or individual companies with higher emissions of greenhouse gases to accumulate credits by investing in projects internationally that would reduce emissions. This may allow a country to continue to emit levels of greenhouse gases above its own targets without penalty. This is being seriously discussed and allowed in the protocol. I will say it again however that we are not being given any credit for the thousands of megawatts of clean energy exported from Canada every year in hydroelectricity and natural gas. The federal government has a lot of homework to do on this file, as it has a lot of homework to do on other files.

    What are the facts? The Kyoto protocol which was signed by 186 nations in December 1997 committed Canada to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 6% from 1990 levels by 2012. We are 10 years away from target, five years away from the original meeting in Kyoto and there has been very little done, and what has been done does not have an ounce of accountability from the government, not even a wee bit.

    The government does not even have real numbers to discuss. It has said it has committed $1.5 billion to combat climate change. From its own numbers it has committed $4.2 billion over the next five, six or seven years. Most of that is completely unaccountable to the general public, the auditor general and the Access to Information Act.

    Much of Canadian industry and most of the provinces are worried that they will be at a competitive disadvantage if Canada ratifies the accord, especially since our largest trading partner, the United States, which happens to represent 25% of greenhouse gas emissions worldwide has stated that it will not ratify the accord. Canada is looking for recognition of its clean energy exports. I have already discussed natural gas and hydroelectricity. Even if we did get recognition of those clean energy exports, as long as the United States does not sign on to the accord we do not get recognition from it. It is a veritable Pandora's box. We are worse than the dog chasing its tail. The government says one thing but on investigating what it has been saying, there is nothing to back it up.

    The Minister of Natural Resources has stated that natural gas and electricity come from Canada but the environmental benefits occur elsewhere. Yes, and what are we doing about that? The bottom line is global emissions are lower because of our exports. We need to find a way to encourage and recognize that trade and the use of cleaner energy produced in exporting countries like Canada should not be unfairly and unduly penalized as it will be if we sign on to the accord.

    Ten minutes is not a very long time to debate this subject. To quickly sum up, the point I take issue with the most is the cost. I challenge the government to do its math. It has all kinds of different cost estimates out there, from $1.5 billion to $300 million to $3.3 billion. We are talking huge numbers of dollars.

  +-(1230)  

    I think most members here have read “Pain Without Gain: Canada's Kyoto Challenge” by the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters Association. This is a matter of having faith in the ability of the government to meet this challenge.

+-

    Mrs. Karen Redman (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I was at a presentation given by the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters Association. When asked what those very inflated statistics were based on, the answer quite simply was that the statistics were two years old. A survey was done of the association's membership who were asked how many jobs they thought would be lost through climate change and what a business would lose through climate change.

    Is this the kind of lax and loose scientific data that my hon. colleague would choose to move forward with on such an important issue?

+-

    Mr. Gerald Keddy: Mr. Speaker, that would be the purview of the Government of Canada.

    What I find most interesting about what the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters Association had to say is in its executive summary which almost sounds like a mission statement. It expects to be part of a meaningful international strategy for limiting atmospheric greenhouse gases. I do not have a problem with that. It wants to lead in a genuine reduction in greenhouse gas emissions that are measurable, verifiable, practical and economically feasible. I do not have a problem with that. It also wants to make a real and meaningful contribution in controlling greenhouse gas emissions over a long period of time. I would suggest that is what the government should have been doing five years ago, not today.

  +-(1235)  

+-

    Mr. Bob Mills (Red Deer, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the environment minister has told us that we will get a report next month. He also tabled something yesterday in the House which he said was up to date information. However when we read this very carefully we find a whole bunch of innuendoes. The cost of the drought in Saskatchewan has been priced in. The cost of the 1998 ice storm was also included. The government says that all of these will be savings once Kyoto is in place.

    What does the member think the report in April is going to be like? Does he think it will be similar to this? Does he have confidence the government will do its homework and that the economic models designed by it will in any way relate to what the real facts might be on the ground?

+-

    Mr. Gerald Keddy: Mr. Speaker, those are very good questions and the member guessed my answers before he asked them.

    I do not have any confidence the government will bring out a report that is at all accountable.

    Bill C-4, the Canada Foundation for Sustainable Development Technology Act, which most opposition parties voted against, was passed in the House by the government. It was supposed to reduce greenhouse gases. The sum of $100 million was put into an open-ended piece of legislation and the government is allowed to put more money in at any time. It is not accountable to the auditor general's office and the Access to Information Act is not applicable. The government talks about spending money, but we have no idea how it is doing it. There is no accountability in the legislation and there is no accountability from government ministers.

+-

    Mr. Keith Martin (Esquimalt--Juan de Fuca, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, my question is very simple. Does the member agree with a more flexible level of objectives in terms of greenhouse gas emissions over a longer period of time? That would enable us to bring in countries like the United States and developing countries so there would be a broader group of countries that could adhere to a long process of diminishing greenhouse gases. Or does he adhere to the Kyoto agreement that is determined to have an effect on GDP of between 2% and 10% as well as not being able to be ratified by the 55 countries required?

+-

    Mr. Gerald Keddy: Mr. Speaker, our future in energy and in greenhouse gases is inextricably linked to the future of the United States. Absolutely we need to find a way to move forward with our partners, in particular the United States. It may not be through Kyoto. Without question, we may have to find another avenue to do it.

+-

    Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, it is a pleasure to engage in the debate on this topic today.

    Certainly I do not pretend in any way to be a scientist. I am simply a layman, as I think are the vast majority of members and Canadians. I approach the topic from the position of a layman. From that position, there are some glaring holes in the whole argument perhaps on both sides of the issue.

    I do not apologize for representing a riding that supplies 15% of Canada's fossil fuel energy. I am proud to do that. My riding plays a vital part in producing Canada's GDP and keeping the lights on and homes warm in Canada. Industries in my riding are doing some amazing things in an effort to reduce emissions. I approach the whole issue from that perspective.

    So many agendas appear to be at play on the issue of climate change and the greenhouse effect that a layman has no idea who to believe and who not to believe.

    The whole thing started some time ago at the conference in Rio in which Canada took part. Canada's delegation to Rio, as I understand it, was headed by Canada's environmental representative to the United Nations, Maurice Strong, a well-known figure. The member for Davenport is shaking his head and I may be mistaken. However, that particular individual has been very vocal on the issue. I apologize if I am in error and he did not lead the delegation, but he certainly was part of it and he certainly has had a lot to say about it.

    It is my understanding that after promoting the need to reduce CO2 emissions and emissions generally and to transfer huge amounts of wealth to the underdeveloped world to allow it to catch up with the technologies available in the developed world, that same individual is now involved in an Asian power corporation conglomerate. It is engaged in creating a huge electricity generating development in China with the use of very polluting high sulphur soft coal.

    Those contradictions lead me to wonder about the legitimacy of this whole issue. The list goes on and on.

    Certainly the commitment Canada made in Rio was to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels. The government did not even begin to meet that commitment and it has moved on now to Kyoto where our commitment is in fact 6% below 1990 levels. This will put us about 25% above 1990 levels by the time we are to make that commitment and introduce those changes. We have a huge distance to go. In my opinion the chances of our meeting that commitment are very unlikely.

    When we look at the requirement to do that, most Canadians think that industry has a problem and in particular fossil fuel industries have this problem they have to solve. However, the reality is that only one-third of the problem has to be solved by industries, including the fossil fuel industries. One-third of it has to be solved through changes in the transportation system. One-third of it has to be solved by the consumers, Canadians driving their cars, heating their homes and all the other things they do.

  +-(1240)  

    Unfortunately it reduces the government's credibility on the issue. Heading into Kyoto there was a lot of discussion in the House and in political circles all over Canada about how we might meet our commitment. Prior to the trip to Kyoto I attended a federal provincial conference of energy and environment ministers in Regina where the provinces in good faith engaged in a discussion of the commitment we would make in Kyoto.

    Canada was the only country in the G-8 that did not have a public position before going to Kyoto. That aside, the provinces in good faith sat in a discussion and agreed we should do what we could to invoke the precautionary principle. They hammered out an agreement which was never made public by either level of government. However we were told there was an agreement.

    The Canadian delegation then went to Kyoto and far exceeded the agreement reached in Regina. It broke faith with the agreement that had been made with the provinces. It betrayed the confidence of the provinces. It got caught up in the euphoria of saving the planet and far exceeded what the provinces thought we could achieve.

    That was just the beginning of the government's loss of credibility on the issue. Here we are in 2002, five years later, and the government has yet to produce a credible or verifiable plan to implement Kyoto. Such a plan would need to take into consideration the costs of Kyoto and what we are capable of doing. It would need to commit Canada to becoming an expanded supplier of energy to our neighbour the United States.

    Even before the whole energy crisis and the George Bush energy plan the provinces had legitimate concerns about our ability to reach the Kyoto targets. After hearing George Bush's plea for a stable and more reliable source of energy the federal Liberal government jumped at the opportunity to commit Canada to be the supplier. The Prime Minister went to Washington and encouraged Americans to invest in Alberta's tar sands. He said there was enough potential there to meet the U.S. demand for energy so it would not have to depend on unstable Mideast sources.

    At the same time the Prime Minister told Canadians and the House he intended to ratify Kyoto. There seemed to be no question in his mind he would do so.

    His ministers are all over the map. The Minister of Natural Resources says he would not sign a contract in his private life unless he knew the cost of the contract. He says committing to sign something when the cost is not known is an unacceptable and dangerous business practice. I agree completely.

    However the minister seems confident the government will come up with a credible business plan to meet the Kyoto protocol. In response to a question I had in the House the environment minister produced a report yesterday by the federal provincial group studying the costs of Kyoto and how we might achieve our targets. I got a copy immediately after he had tabled it. I studied it and was amazed. If it is the environment minister's idea of a credible plan it is frightening.

  +-(1245)  

    I read the report as a layman. In the report the group acknowledged the costs of meeting the Kyoto commitment would be substantive. The report deducted the costs of the ice storm in Ontario and Quebec and the drought on the prairies, thereby mitigating the costs of the Kyoto agreement. In some instances it said it would be a profitable commitment.

    A couple of weeks ago I attended a conference on climate change at the Chateau Laurier in Ottawa. A number of environmental groups spoke and made presentations. It was acknowledged that when the Kyoto commitment of 6% below 1990 levels was input into computer systems there was no discernible effect on the environment. According to the computer models the effects of climate change we are now seeing would continue under the Kyoto commitment.

    If that is the case and it is recognized by the experts, how in the world could a working group studying the issue suggest that if we met our commitment the costs of the ice storm and the drought on the prairies could be deducted because they would no longer happen under Kyoto? The computer model says they would continue to happen as frequently as they do today because Kyoto would have no discernible effect on the environment.

    As a layman it raises all kinds of red flags for me. I have a problem with the credibility of the minister in producing the report. It frightens me that it is the minister's idea of a credible cost benefit analysis Canadians can use when examining the whole Kyoto issue and deciding whether we should make the commitment.

    There has been discussion in the House that this is a foolish position that would not do the climate any good. However the scientists presented the position. It is not something our party dreamed up.

    The discussion goes on against a backdrop of nine years of the government making promises and commitments, telling us things that did not turn out, and citing costs that were unrealistic. I know some members will take offence but I cannot help bringing up the issue of gun registration, the old chestnut of our party.

    When the Liberal government brought in gun registration it said our party was fearmongering. It said we were incorrect because it would make our streets safe and all the rest. It said the registry would only cost $85 million. We are now in excess of $700 million and the guns still are not registered.

    Why would Canadians and laymen like myself believe the government when it produces the kinds of figures in this report? It says we are fearmongering. It says the costs would be nowhere near that high. The government's history of credibility on the issues is sadly lacking. It truly worries me.

    The Prime Minister and several of his ministers have repeatedly told western Canada not to worry because it would not be another national energy program. They say they would not consider a carbon tax because it would be out of the question. They say they made that mistake once and would not make it again.

    As the government is making these commitments government bureaucrats are speculating publicly about the need to put carbon caps on industry. They say the only way to do it is to put a cap on industry. Then industries could produce so many tonnes of CO2 and if they went above the cap they would either have to reduce the emissions or buy credits to cover them.

  +-(1250)  

    Carbon caps amount to a carbon tax. We can couch it in all kinds of terms and use smoke, mirrors and rhetoric to hide it. However it is a carbon tax by another name. In 1997 the former natural resources minister promised no unreasonable share of the burden would be placed on any region or sector in Canada. He said many times that there would be no carbon tax.

    Given the history of the country and the influence Quebec has had on government policy, when we hear the representatives of the Bloc Quebecois shouting in the House that we should immediately implement Kyoto we have to wonder about their agenda. Quebec produces huge amounts of hydroelectricity and non-emitting sources of energy. It would be eligible for substantial credit for sale to parts of the country that could not meet the commitment. As an Albertan I am suspicious of the agenda being followed there.

    In the House in February the Prime Minister said:

Mr. Speaker, that is why we hold meetings between the federal and provincial ministers, in order to have all the facts on the table. The objective of this government, however, is to ratify the Kyoto protocol when we have obtained satisfaction.

    Satisfaction for who? All kinds of people might find satisfaction for different reasons. The Prime Minister makes statements about federal provincial consultations and at the end of the sentence says he intends to ratify. Why in the world do we hold consultations in the first place if the intention is to ratify regardless of what the consultations produce?

    Since the Prime Minister's remarks in February some ministers have backed away from that position. The natural resources minister did not quite say it but he suggested the government would probably not ratify unless it could come to a consensus. That is a more acceptable and reasonable business practice. I hope the Prime Minister will adopt it. However I am suspicious.

    I will spend a minute on the whole issue of the science. I am a layman. I am not a scientist and would not pretend to be. However there are issues around the science.

    The government has a history of getting into trouble. The hon. member for Davenport and other members in the House well remember what happened regarding the issue of manganese in gasoline. In the House and in committee we were presented with bogus science on the issue. The government chose to go ahead and ban the manganese additive in gasoline. The issue ended up in court under the free trade agreement. The government lost because the science was not reliable. The government and the taxpayers of Canada paid $20 million to the Ethyl Corporation because of that foolishness. I have a sense we are facing the same thing here.

    The science that supports Kyoto is based on computer modelling. I do not know how reliable the computer models are but I have doubts. Environment Canada suggested if we inputted Canadian weather data from the last 50 years into the same computers they could not replicate what happened with the weather. Why would we blindly believe the same computer models could predict what would happen down the road?

    I have no doubt whatsoever that climate change is happening. Only a fool would not admit the climate of the globe is changing. That is accepted. However is it a natural process or is it man made? Questions are raised when we look at the drought on the prairies in the 1930s and how oil was formed in the Arctic millions of years ago.

  +-(1255)  

+-

    Mr. Julian Reed (Halton, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I wonder if the hon. member for Athabasca would agree with the ancient Chinese proverb “a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”.

    I wonder if he would also agree with the people who are the base of his bread and butter in his own riding, namely, Suncor, Shell and BP. They have set targets for the marketing of renewable energy over the next 25 years. Suncor is the most vocal by committing $100 million and setting a target of 50% of its sales to be renewable energy over the next 25 years. It considers itself to be in the energy business now, not the oil business. It is the same with what were British Petroleum and Shell Canada Ltd.

    How does the member tout this line that flies right in the face of his own oil companies that provide the base of his tenure here in the House of Commons?

  +-(1300)  

+-

    Mr. David Chatters: Mr. Speaker, I could only wish they were my own oil companies. As far as the proverb is concerned any journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step but it ends very shortly if the first step is on a precipice. I am afraid perhaps that is where this first step is taking us.

    I fully intended in my presentation to talk about those very companies that the member referred to. There are wonderful things that the energy industry is doing and has done under the voluntary challenge program. The energy industry itself has already under the voluntary challenge program reduced greenhouse gas emissions by some 15% with all kinds of new and innovative ideas on the horizon that it is working on.

    That has been the benefit of this whole Kyoto debate. It has awakened Canadians to this whole issue of environment and emissions and has produced some wonderful results and technologies that are on the horizon that will take us far past Kyoto. It will take us to where Environment Canada says we must get to to mitigate climate change and that is a 75% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

    We can get there but we cannot get there by the year 2010 and we cannot get there by committing to spend billions of taxpayer dollars funnelled into the developed world on projects that allow us to continue business as usual. That would be an idiotic way to go in my opinion.

+-

    Mr. John Herron (Fundy--Royal, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I would like to provide two bits of information before I ask my question relative to the hon. member's speech.

    First, on the issue related to MMT the Government of Canada went wrong with that particular issue. It should have banned it as a toxin under schedule 1 of the Environmental Protection Act. It then would not have been subject to a challenge by Ethyl Corporation because it was challenged on the basis that it was banning a tradable commodity. The science on the precautionary perspective was fine. It was how the Government of Canada went about banning that particular substance.

    Second, the United Nations and the scientific community as a whole have said that there is a discernible human influence related to greenhouse gases that are precipitating the change on a climatic basis.

    The hon. member asked a very constructive question in question period yesterday. I would like to give him a chance to reiterate it. The Government of Canada should at least have a consensus reached with the provinces on whatever implementation strategy it may develop before it goes for ratification.

+-

    Mr. David Chatters: Mr. Speaker, I do not want to get into the debate on MMT again. We went around and around on that one. I obviously do not accept the member's analysis. It was some time ago and it makes no sense to go back to that. I only used it as an example of where the government should have taken some time to analyze what was before it and that it would not have gone down the road it went down if it had been a little more objective in its analysis.

    I am pleased to see the Progressive Conservative members representing their party taking the position on this supply day motion that they have because their position has not always been that way. The former prime minister, the member for Calgary Centre, said in a conference in Toronto that we had better follow through. He told the conference if we were not to come through on our commitments we would surely face fines or other financial penalties and, more important, our reputation as a reliable responsible partner in international agreements would be severely tarnished. He went on to chastise the government for dragging its feet and taking too long to meet the commitment that it made

    I am glad to see the turnaround. It was probably led by the prospective candidate in Calgary Southwest running for the Conservative Party who emphatically said over and over again that the Progressive Conservative Party was not in favour or ratifying Kyoto. I am glad to see the positive influence it has had on the members in the House today.

    It has been my position from day one in the debate, and I think the position of others here, that there is no question the climate is changing. Having grown up in northern Alberta there is no question the climate is changing. I worked for a good part of my working life in the Canadian Arctic and the signs are certainly there, the climate is changing.

    However, the science, based on the computer modelling, that attributes that change solely to the influence of man and the burning of fossil fuels is suspect. The scientists involved have not been able to get the computers to replicate the reality of what has already happened and, therefore, it raises some questions.

    I spent a lot of years drilling oil wells, looking for oil and gas in the Canadian Arctic. It was pretty obvious when we checked the bit cuttings as they came up from beneath the surface of the earth that they were full of tropical plants and animal fossils from millions of years ago. In fact, science tells us that oil and gas are formed from the rotting and the dying of plants and animals. Over eons it becomes compressed and produces coal and oil and gas. It was clear that at some time in the past history of the planet the Canadian Arctic was a tropical region.

    There is all kinds of evidence through ice samples and scientific analysis from Greenland and the Canadian Arctic that there were times in our past history when CO2 in the atmosphere was much higher than it is now.

    It is clear that the climate of the planet is continually changing. It will always be changing. For us to think that we have the power to overcome nature, to mitigate climate and to control climate is giving us far more credit than we as humans deserve.

    Let us stop and give some sober second thought to this thing. Let us do what we can to develop the technologies that reduce all kinds of emissions in Canada and around the world. We can then sell those technologies and get way past Kyoto, as we must. We can end our dependence on fossil fuels and we shall.

*   *   *

  +-(1305)  

+-Points of Order

+-Supplementary Estimates (B)

[Points of Order]
+-

    Mr. John Williams (St. Albert, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order subsequent to my intervention of March 18 with regard to the Supplementary Estimates (B) for 2001-02.

    I have uncovered additional information through further research and would like to amplify my argument for striking the votes from the Supplementary Estimates (B) which I mentioned in my previous intervention.

    In 1968 the standing orders were amended to clearly separate debate on legislation and the supply process. It was agreed, and I pointed out numerous references yesterday, that we cannot legislate through the estimates process. Marleau and Montpetit on page 742 states:

Although, theoretically, a Supply bill is debatable, and therefore amendable, at all stages after first reading, it generally passes without debate or amendment on the last allotted day.

    There is generally no debate because the supply bill does not contain legislative amendments. Footnote 275 on the same page states:

On occasion, through special orders, the House has agreed to debate a Supply bill at the second reading stage and at the Committee of the Whole stage.

    And examples are given.

    The estimates are presumably debated in committee prior to the supply bill being introduced which is why there is normally no debate on the supply bill itself assuming there are no legislative changes. Proposed legislative changes are always debatable in this House, therefore Mr. Speaker, if you rule that my point of order yesterday is out of order and that the votes are to remain in the supply bill, I ask that you allow debate on the supply bill when it is before the House later this day.

  +-(1310)  

+-

    The Acting Speaker (Mr. Bélair): I thank the hon. member for St. Albert for the information which will be added to his point of order of yesterday. The Speaker will rule on it as soon as possible.

*   *   *

+-Supply

+-Allotted Day--Kyoto Protocol

[Supply]

    The House resumed consideration of the motion.

+-

    Ms. Judy Sgro (York West, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with a fellow maritimer, the parliamentary secretary to the House leader, who represents Halifax. Too often we find ourselves going over issues that are now beyond serious debate. I am surprised that 15 years after the first global climate change conference held in Canada I have to continue reminding people why it is so important to take action on greenhouse gases. Today's debate shows that it is needed again and I will state the case as clearly as I can.

    Scientists have pointed out that we are already approaching the end of the 19th consecutive season of above normal temperatures across Canada. The 20th century was the warmest century of the last millennium. The 1990s were the warmest decade of the last century, and 1998 and 2001 were the warmest years yet. The U.S. government reported two weeks ago that its country had just experienced the warmest temperatures for the November through January period in 107 years since it began keeping national records. These are clear facts on which there can be no dispute.

    Around the world we are seeing record losses and damages due to extreme weather events, losses that cannot simply be explained by changes in population or in settlement patterns. The 1996 Saguenay flood cost $1 billion and repeated itself not long ago. The 1997 Red River flood caused the evacuation of more than 25,000 people in southern Manitoba. It also resulted in over $300 million in damages.

    The ice storm we experienced in eastern Canada a few years ago saw three million Canadians without electrical power and total damages of about $5.4 million. The impact of southern Alberta's current drought problem may be $5 billion, pressuring prairie agriculture revenues and crop insurance. Clearly these are issues about which my colleagues across the way should be concerned.

    The best estimates of scientists about climate change are that we will see more of these severe weather events, not fewer. We will see more people affected by floods or drought in the country, not fewer. We will see more impacts on agriculture and our forests, not fewer.

    Our government is tackling the issue of climate change. We are doing it through our own initiatives and in collaboration with the widest range of partners domestically and internationally. We are taking action in the context of the Kyoto protocol and in the context of the commitment that the Prime Minister made some five years ago to reduce our emissions of greenhouse gases in Canada to 6% below the 1990 level by 2012. That is quite a commitment.

    There is much I could say about the climate change issue, the Kyoto protocol and what it may mean for Canada. I could spend all my allotted time in this debate responding to the parade of comments and claims that have been advanced recently. Instead I will focus on making it clear that our government will continue to take action by building on the solid base of initiatives we have implemented already. Before I do so I must respond to the claim that Kyoto will do little or nothing to benefit the environment.

    I remind that House the every long journey starts with a single step. If we are not prepared to take that step we are doomed to stay where we are forever. International trade negotiations started more than 50 years ago and only developed countries were involved. Perhaps the opposition believes we should not have taken the small steps that got these negotiations started because they were not to do a lot for international trade.

    Let us talk about our financial commitments. Since 1995 the Government of Canada has spent $1.95 billion to develop new climate change programs and to enhance existing ones in an effort to meet its various climate change commitments. Even before the Kyoto protocol took shape in 1997 we began efforts to support innovative new technologies. We began to address the potential offered by energy conservation measures and improved energy efficiency throughout the entire economy. We began our outreach to Canadians to help them understand what they could do. We started this process in a major way in the 1998 federal budget when we established a new climate change action fund.

  +-(1315)  

    In the 2000 budget the government announced $625 million for climate change initiatives. That decision coincided with a consultation process involving experts from across Canada to help us identify priorities on which we could act. That consultation process helped to shape Government of Canada action plan 2000 that we launched in October 2000. That action plan was supported by an additional $500 million on top of budget 2000 commitments.

    A further $390 million worth of measures were announced in budget 2001. The action plan 2000 commitments was designed to get Canada well on its way toward our Kyoto goals. Companies across Canada such as Dow Chemical, Shell, British Petroleum and Ford have invested in improved processes and facilities that have cut greenhouse gas emissions and saved money through a more efficient use of fuel and other resources. Our government is getting its own house in order in terms of our energy use choices and other initiatives.

    Municipalities across Canada are tapping the methane from landfill sites as an energy source with great success. Individual Canadians are improving the energy efficiency of their homes and workplaces through the leadership shown by the government.

    The list goes on and on but my point is quite straightforward. Climate change is not something that Canadians or the government have just discovered. It is one on which we already have a substantial record of commitment and results. It is an issue on which our previous action has generated a lot of the momentum that will allow us to meet our goals.

    Let me conclude with a few final thoughts. We will reshape the future in a way that gives us cleaner air, cleaner water and a more stable climate. We will reshape the future to give us a more efficient and less wasteful economy, to improve the health of Canadians and to have a better protected environment for all living creatures.

+-

    Mr. Rick Casson (Lethbridge, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the member who just spoke. She piqued my interest when she mentioned the drought in southern Alberta.

    My riding is in southern Alberta and drought are a terrible problem facing it right now. Some of the people most adversely affected by the drought is a group of farmers down around Foremost, the county of Warner and over toward the Sweetgrass hills. They have been trying to get a water system brought in. They have been working on it for years. They have the provincial government and everyone else on side. Now the Canadian environmental assessment process has kicked into gear and threatens to hold the project up or even stop it from going ahead.

    The member mentioned the drought. I remind her that we are very much aware of the drought situation in southern Alberta. One of the programs that has been put in place to help alleviate some of the ramifications of drought has been held up by her government.

    She spent a lot of time talking about other issues that have affected the climate. No one is saying the climate is not changing. It is just to the degree we need to act to bring it around. The Canadian Chamber of Commerce has put out one estimate of $30 billion a year for implementation. Would she comment on what effects she feels it would have on the families in her riding?

  +-(1320)  

+-

    Ms. Judy Sgro: Mr. Speaker, as the minister has indicated previously, there is an ongoing mechanism for consultation with the provinces and all other partners over and above the board of trade. I believe at the end of the day we will all share the same commitment on the issue of trying to find a way of meeting our target of having cleaner air while at the same time wanting to make sure we achieve our goals in co-operation with the others.

+-

    Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I listened with interest to the member's comments. She is also the chair of the Liberal urban task force. She spoke about the government taking first steps in Kyoto with regard to improving our environment. The comment I would have is that the first step is taking an awfully long time. We are talking about five years of the government dragging its feet on Kyoto.

    Are all the ministers of the government taking the same first step? We have had very conflicting information in the House from the Prime Minister, the Minister of Natural Resources and the Minister of the Environment on where we are at with Kyoto. There is a very big question of whether or not the federal government is committed to ratifying Kyoto. Would the member comment on when that will be, or will we simply have to live with more task forces?

+-

    Ms. Judy Sgro: Mr. Speaker, the issue of consultation with all partners that I indicated earlier is clearly very important. I am the first one to recognize along with my colleague how frustrating it gets when we are trying to move the Titanic.

    By the same token we have to recognize how important the initiative is and how we have to make sure we bring in these initiative in a positive way. We do that in collaboration and with no intentions of having extreme negative impacts on anyone.

    As we need patience to deal with these issues and want it moved along faster, we have to recognize that it will have significant impact on a variety of businesses and people. We want to make sure that we have thoroughly consulted with everyone.

+-

    Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member stood in the House and brought forward some good points. I have listened to a number of members across the floor today talk about the first step. It reminds me of NDP members. When they talk about the first step in world peace the first step would be to lay down our guns. I guess that is one way to have a first step toward peace, but it is also one quick way to get shot in some conflicts.

    This is not really a step. It is a kick to Alberta and its economy. It is a kick that will cause nothing but grief down the road. Many countries are not signing on to Kyoto. My quick summation of it is that when other countries do not sign on, when we have ratified the agreement and when costs of production and other costs are difficult, those other countries can go into production much more easily. This will hurt our economy.

+-

    Ms. Judy Sgro: Mr. Speaker, it is interesting that on one side of the House we hear about a step and on the other side it is figured to be a kick.

    The original agreement was signed in 1997. I made reference to moving the Titanic along. We are still moving along in the right direction, but we are trying to do it in consultation with all other partners to make sure it is the best deal we can make. We will continue on with those discussions. Hopefully they will move quickly rather than slowly.

+-

    Mr. Geoff Regan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am delighted to speak to this very important topic. I am certainly pleased the issue of the Kyoto protocol has been raised.

    Personally, I hope the government will ratify the treaty. The government is going through an important consultation process which will continue. I hope it will lead to ratification by this country and many other countries.

    We should reflect for a moment on what has led us to this. People have become more and more concerned in recent years about climate change, global warming and the CO2 gases that are increasingly leading to global warming. We once had the idea that there was lots more where that came from, whether it be air or water, but it has become clear to us that these are limited things. In our lifetime we have had to question the idea that there is no end to our water and no end to our air.

    I heard the member for Red Deer say that CO2 occurs naturally, that trees consume CO2, as they do, and return it to the earth as carbon. That is accurate, but we have to consider the fact that we can have too much of a good thing. In other words, carbon is a necessary part of life, a necessary part of trees and of the environment but it does not mean it is impossible for us to have too much of it. It does not mean it is impossible for us as a civilization to produce too much of this gas and thereby cause real damage to our atmosphere. It does not mean our atmosphere is unlimited.

    We can actually measure how much oxygen there is in the atmosphere around the world. People who have gone to the moon talk about looking at Earth and how tiny it seems to be. We can recognize that it seems awfully enormous to us but in fact there are limits to the amount of water and oxygen we have.

    Going back to the matter of CO2, it is true also that water is essential for life. We know that. We have talked about it. We have seen it. We have looked at whether there is water on Mars. There are indications there may be ice on Mars. It is very interesting. Scientists say it may indicate that at some point there could have been or could be life on Mars.

    Water is essential to us. We all need it to survive. It is essential to allow the nourishment we take in to go throughout our bodies, yet we can drown. Water can kill us.

    The suggestion that we should not worry about CO2 because it is a naturally occurring gas is ridiculous. The point is we can have too much of it. As a member said earlier, if we were put in a room with only CO2, we would not last very long. If we were put in a room with only water, we would not last very long. We need a balance of these elements on our planet.

    It would be awful if our children or our children's children were unable to enjoy the natural beauty of our planet the way we do today.

    Unlike many in the Alliance and in the PC/DRC I believe protecting our environment at a moderate cost to industry is the only responsible thing to do. We have to do this for the future. It is difficult and it will not be easy, but are we going to allow our planet to become overheated? What would that do? What would happen if the planet got hotter and hotter? In the last decade we have seen the hottest years on record.

    I heard the idea across the way previously that this was happening naturally and why are we so convinced that the production of all these gases is because of human action? It is conceivable that in the course of the changing environment over millions of years, as science tells us, there have been changes in temperatures. Sometimes they have been rather swift.

    When scientists in the 1970s and 1980s began to look at this question, they became concerned about it and predicted what would happen. They predicted violent weather patterns, increasing numbers of storms and so on. We are beginning to see it is not just a question of it being an accident. It is becoming more clear that it is probably being caused by human actions, that human actions are producing CO2 and other gases. All the pollution we create is having more of an impact on the world.

  +-(1325)  

    We can no longer say there is lots more where that came from. We have to be concerned about what we are doing to the water in our oceans, lakes, streams and rivers, about what we are doing to our air and to our environment generally. We have to be concerned about all of those things.

    For us only to consider things like job losses, the possible costs are short term. These are important considerations. We have to weigh these things as the government is doing as it considers and consults on these issues. At the same time those costs are short term when compared to the health of our planet and what is at stake for the future.

    The truth of the matter which is often overlooked is that there is a real and immediate opportunity for Canada to make up ground lost to harmful industries by becoming a world leader in green industries. Areas like fuel cell technology, alternative energy and cleaner, renewable sources of power like ethanol provide bountiful opportunities for Canadian businesses already poised to take advantage of them.

    As Jeff Passmore, executive vice-president of Iogen Corporation said in the Ottawa Citizen recently:

The whiners and complainers lining up against Canadian ratification of the Kyoto Protocol are masters of single ledger accounting. Whether Canada likes it or not, the world is moving in the direction of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and we can either be a participant or a non-participant in this new world. But if we choose not to participate, there will be significant economic and social penalties to pay.

    The development of these green industries will undoubtedly work to counteract possible losses from lessening the use of fossil fuels. In fact, we have not heard from the Alliance or the PC/DRC on this. When they talk about the costs, we have not heard about the benefits of moving to more green industries. We have not heard about the benefits to our health. We have not heard about the benefits to our health care costs of having to pay less when dealing with respiratory illnesses and other kinds of illnesses that result from air pollution and overheating.

    There has been a great increase in the heat in the last few years. Last year was the hottest year on record. When we actually say this was predicted to happen and that every year seems to be the hottest on record, we ought to get a little concerned. When is it going to happen?

    I recognize that not every Canadian is seized with this issue and is convinced it is vital that we act now. More and more Canadians are becoming concerned. Year after year we see more very warm years and more causes for alarm. We recognize that yes, there have been storms in the past and that ratifying Kyoto will not prevent those storms that have already happened, but we also have to think about the future. Those storms are harbingers of things to come.

    We have to consider what other storms there will be in the future and what will happen in the future if the global climate keeps heating up. What will it mean for our ability to produce food? How will we grow anything on our prairies? In the Annapolis Valley how will we grow apples if it is too hot to grow anything, if our crops cannot survive? We have to consider these vital questions.

    Members across the way should know that the American senate is currently considering legislation that would put renewable fuels in all gas sold in the U.S. Would that not be a remarkable stance. That is a case where hopefully it is moving forward in the area of a renewable fuel, whether it is ethanol or other things of that nature.

    To quote again from the article I mentioned earlier, it states:

The United States is already the second largest producer of renewable fuels in the world (after Brazil), consuming more than six billion litres annually in the form of ethanol.

    This has created 192,000 jobs, improved the U.S. trade balance by $2 billion and provided a net annual savings to the federal treasury of $3.6 billion.

    We can see that the use of ethanol and other kinds of renewable energy sources is a way for us to go. It can be a source of economic growth. It can be a counterbalance to some of the costs associated with trying to reduce our CO2 emissions and our other emissions. We cannot just leave it at CO2. We have to consider the impact on our overall environment.

    In southwestern Nova Scotia many of the rivers and lakes are dying. Fish cannot live in the rivers in much of my province. In fact, something like 10% of the pollution that drops in my province comes from Canada. The rest comes from the U.S.

  +-(1330)  

    I hope members will oppose the motion today and that the government will support ratification of the Kyoto agreement.

  +-(1335)  

+-

    Ms. Wendy Lill (Dartmouth, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I listened with interest to the member.

    I share the city of Halifax-Dartmouth with the member. Some say it is the tailpipe of the continent. We suffer from the smog and pollution that comes up from the eastern states. Our hospitals tell the tale. There are extremely high levels of asthma as the member across the way mentioned.

    The member asked when we will correct the problem. I would like to throw the question back to him. One of the very obvious ways we could start dealing with this would be to look at fuel emissions.

    A report recently said Canada could improve urban air quality and meet one-third of its Kyoto commitments by enacting stronger vehicle emission regulations right away. I would like to hear what kinds of means the government has to immediately work on very obvious problems such as fuel emissions and regulations around SUVs, which we have been told will not be in place for another five years.

+-

    Mr. Geoff Regan: Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for raising the questions and pointing out that these days sometimes our dear province is unfortunately referred to as the tailpipe of the continent. What is most unfortunate is not that it is said but that it seems to be reasonably accurate. The amount of emissions that arrive from the Ohio River valley and areas across the continent is cause for great concern.

    On the question of the costs, it is important to recognize that we have to consider what the impacts will be. The government is consulting with the provinces and industry on how we can implement the Kyoto protocol. It is important to do that. We cannot ignore those impacts. We cannot ignore the fact that while Canadians are concerned about the environment, they are also very concerned about their families and their jobs. They are concerned about the health of their families and having clean air and also about providing their families with their needs day to day.

    It is important to look at the question of fuel emissions and for ways to reduce those emissions constantly. I am confident the government will keep doing that. It is vital. There are other ways to do things in the cities.

    I am a member of the urban issues task force which was referred to earlier. We are looking at a number of things which we think are important, investments that need to be made in our cities to assist them. We must make sure they are more environmentally friendly and that they operate better, that there are better transit systems. Perhaps we can encourage cities to do things in a way so that their development processes do not lead to more traffic and air pollution. There are very important things we can do in those areas.

+-

    Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, it is presentations like the one the hon. member just made that reduce the credibility of this whole argument.

    This debate is about lowering the emission of greenhouse gases. Those greenhouse gases would include mainly water vapour, carbon dioxide and some other much more minor things. When members wander off and talk about water and air pollution, smog in cities and all the rest of it, it takes away from the credibility of this argument. As a matter of fact, the greenhouse industry in Canada pumps carbon dioxide into greenhouses because it makes plants grow much better.

    Could the member opposite focus on the issue we are debating, which is the reduction of greenhouse gases?

+-

    Mr. Geoff Regan: Mr. Speaker, as I said, while we are talking about this it is important to focus on and mention that also as an aside. Perhaps the member did not hear all my comments.

    When we talk about carbon dioxide it is clear to me that as we cut the emissions, for example from automobiles that produce carbon dioxide, we will also cut other kinds of pollutants into the atmosphere. That has a significant benefit. It is important not to ignore that benefit. It is vital that we act on those things as well.

    It is not reasonable to say that we only talk about CO2. Certainly that is the issue of Kyoto but does that mean we as a government or we as members of parliament should ignore other air pollutants? Should we ignore the impact on respiratory illnesses? Should we ignore the impact on the ability of people to breathe and plants to survive? I do not think so.

  +-(1340)  

+-

    Mrs. Betty Hinton (Kamloops, Thompson and Highland Valleys, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I will be splitting my time with the member for Calgary Southeast.

    During negotiations at the Kyoto protocol, Canada fought to have carbon sinks included in the wording. Apparently it wanted the 6% credit it can claim for sinks to offset the 25% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions our country has to implement by 2010. Once again the Liberal government has jumped on the easy way out with little thought as to how this would affect the people in the fields and the forests of this country. Is this yet another example of exploiting the rural areas to compensate for urban sprawl, for the pollution spewing transportation and industrial equipment of large urban areas? Perhaps.

    What is a carbon sink? It is not some place in the kitchen where one's better half does the dishes. A carbon sink is a method of using plants, soil and trees to sequester, store and absorb carbon. Many environmentalists and scientists are saying it is the biggest loophole to be found in the Kyoto protocol. Why? It avoids the main issue the protocol was designed to address: reducing the emissions of carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, sulphur hexafluoride, hydrofluorocarbons and perfluorocarbons.

    The Liberal government concluded quite cavalierly that carbon sinks are found in existing forest and prairie lands anyway and are encouraged by agricultural practices such as low tillage. Apparently, the thinking of the Canadian negotiators was that if they are there already let us take credit for them.

    Yes, they are there already and they may not be a problem when they occur as a natural course of events, but what costs will there be if creating carbon sinks becomes the prime focus on our lands and forests? How much is too much when it comes to storing carbon in large amounts? Do we know? Does the government side of the House care?

    When Bill Hare, climate policy director of Greenpeace International, talked of the inclusion of sinks in the protocol, he said:

If the rules of the Kyoto Protocol were to allow this kind of loophole, its environmental integrity would go out the window.

    I agree.

    Are we not just a little embarrassed that Canada was the country pushing for the inclusion of this so-called loophole? We did not have the nerve, as our cousins to the south did, of dropping off the protocol altogether. Instead we asked for an out without fully researching what that out might do to the future use of our lands.

    Some scientists have indicated that the maintaining of carbon sink forests for long periods will be difficult. David O. Hall says that although trees and other forms of biomass can act as carbon sinks at maturity, they must eventually be used as a source of fuel or timber product as the carbon will be lost through decay or naturally occurring forest fires.

    Where will the drive to create these carbon sinks stop? Will the government encourage clear cutting of old growth forests so that it may claim extra carbon credits from the resulting reforestation? With everything else that has been thrown at our forest industry, what is one more environmental component to deal with? Is that the thinking?

    With regard to our farmers, what reward will they get for participating in the storage of carbons on their lands? Many farmers out there, as the agriculture committee heard in its travels across the country, are dealing with an increase in pressure from a variety of sources. Whether it is encroaching urban development, difficulty with crown land issues or adhering to the strict fisheries and oceans codes regarding streams, it is all time taken away from the production of the food necessary to feed this country. When they try to help the environment by such methods as organic farming and integrated production, both of which are good for the environment, society and the economy, are they rewarded? No. We slap more regulations on their operations.

    The whole concept of sinks was hotly debated at the Kyoto negotiations. In 1999 the topic closed down talks being held in the Hague. The idea was objected to by those countries that believe we need to do something to eliminate the greenhouse gases that are being created by all of us. Canada chose to support the sinks, thereby creating a way to bypass the intent of the protocol. Earlier this month, the Prime Minister even associated the ratification of Kyoto with the importance of clean air. This is a ridiculous argument.

  +-(1345)  

    Kyoto is designed primarily to control CO2 emissions. Unlike nitric oxides, sulphur dioxide and soot, CO2 is not a pollutant. Indeed, it is the very elixir of life. It is the primary nutrient of plants, and without its warming effect earth would be stuck in a perpetual ice age. A far better way to control real pollution would be to expand upon targeted and far less expensive pollution control programs, or in other words, use some common sense.

    No one seems sure what stockpiling of carbon dioxide in plants and soil eventually will do to our ecosystems. Carbon dioxide is a natural byproduct of fossil fuel combustion, volcanoes and rotting vegetation as well as breathing. Carbon dioxide pollution has been on the rise since humans moved away from the rural lifestyle and embraced the industrial age.

    Now we are asking those in rural communities to fix the mess urban sprawl has created. Considering how we treat our farmers when they ask for assistance or how we treat our forest workers when they are attacked by foreign lobby groups, do we now have the nerve to ask them to rescue us?

    In addition to asking the hewers of wood and the tillers of the land to carry the burden of stored carbons, there is also the concept of storing carbons under the sea, an idea that could have a great impact on our fish farmers. Science News magazine says that many of the proposed biological storage schemes may have short term benefits at best and some may actually spawn huge problems of their own.

    If we decide to use the oceans as a large carbon reservoir, what happens to the micro-organisms called phytoplankton? These tiny creatures live near the surface of the ocean and form a broad base of the ocean's food supply. They also serve as a biological pump. They take in carbon dioxide as they grow. Those that do not get eaten carry the carbon they have absorbed to the bottom of the ocean when they die. There, if undisturbed, they form a layer that eventually turns into limestone sediment. Has anyone researched what the addition of 10%, 25% or 50% more carbon will do to this delicate balance?

    As my colleagues have indicated, the Kyoto protocol is not the answer to our environmental woes. We need to address the gas emissions, not avoid them by sweeping the offending gases under the rug.

+-

    Mr. Roy Cullen (Etobicoke North, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, in reference to the remarks of the member opposite, one of the things that often has puzzled me in the debate around CO2 is that we seem to miss out on methane gas from time to time. As I understand it, methane gas is perhaps 20 or 21 times more damaging than CO2 in terms of the ozone layer and greenhouse gases.

    If we look around Canada, we see all these landfills. If a landfill does not have a ducting system underneath to suck out the methane, the methane travels up into the atmosphere. It can cause incredible damage to the ozone layer. In fact in Toronto, where my riding is, there was a proposal to haul garbage to northern Ontario and put it in a big hole without any ducting or piping system to capture the methane. That methane would have risen up into the atmosphere.

    I am wondering if the member opposite is aware of the technologies that can convert municipal solid waste into electricity and avoid the release of methane and whether she thinks that would be a less painful route on which to proceed.

+-

    Mrs. Betty Hinton: Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for the question. The city of Edmonton actually is addressing some of the concerns he has raised today.

    On the subject of methane gas, we are in partial agreement. I believe that the member's government should be helping out. It should be giving grants for that kind of research. That is the key here: research and development. We need to find solutions and they need to be practical solutions.

+-

    Mrs. Karen Redman (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I too was listening intently to the speech just given by the Alliance member. I am a little puzzled and I would ask her to reconcile the two points of views that I hear her putting forward.

    She talks about greenhouse gas emissions as largely an urban issue and the fact that we are looking at sinks in agricultural practices as a way, in her words, to sweep it under the rug. Yet at the Kyoto protocol negotiations in Bonn, Germany, Canada was not alone. Canada was part of an umbrella group with Australia, Japan and Great Britain. We were looking at the kind of flexibility needed in order to ratify Kyoto and make it workable. Indeed, rather than pitting rural and urban Canada against each other we were looking at some kind of indication as to how we could reach those goals realistically.

    Carbon sinks are not tree museums. There is an acknowledgement that we will have to figure out how to deal with this as we go along.

  +-(1350)  

+-

    Mrs. Betty Hinton: Mr. Speaker, I am sorry, I did not actually hear a question, but I will address some of what was said. My understanding is that European countries signed the Kyoto agreement under the understanding that Canada was to use these sinks. That is what they are using, but just because Europe went that way does not make it right. It does not change anything that I talked about with regard to the sinks. It is the wrong way to approach this. The fear is that we will be using old growth to keep these levels up to meet the protocol. It is the wrong way to do it. We need to use common sense in this entire issue.

    Yes, there are all kinds of carbon dioxide producers, including breath, but what we have to concentrate on is what is happening in the major cities in transportation. We need to look at research and development for alternative fuels. Those are the kinds of things on which we should concentrate our energy if we really want to change this world and make it better.

+-

    Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise in debate on the opposition motion which I would like to read again into the record. It states:

That, in the opinion of this House, the government should not ratify the Kyoto Protocol, or bind Canada to its emissions reduction quotas, since:

(a) Canada’s principal economic competitor, the United States, together with most of the world’s developing countries, would not be bound by the Protocol’s emission reduction quotas;

(b) ratification of the Protocol would impose massive costs on the Canadian economy and result in severe job loss; and

(c) the Kyoto Protocol would do little or nothing to benefit the environment.

    Colleagues of mine have already addressed various aspects of this. I, as finance critic, have a particular concern about the enormous devastating, not potential but very real, and concrete economic consequences of this utopian scheme should it be imposed on our economy.

    Sources, including the Government of Canada's own Department of Industry, the government of Alberta, the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters Association, and various private sector and non-partisan think tanks have all made assessments of the cost to our economy at reducing emission targets as outlined in the Kyoto protocol. All agreed the cost would be massive to our economy. It could be as much as 5% of our gross domestic product, could result in as many as 400,000 jobs lost across the country, 70,000 alone in my province of Alberta, and would deal a crippling blow to our economy's efforts to become more productive and competitive.

    In the past 10 years Canada has seen its relative ranking as a productive and competitive economy slide against those of other developed countries. If we were to ratify we would be giving a free pass to countries, including Mexico, our NAFTA partner, including the People's Republic of China, the largest major developing economy in the world, to continue emitting enormous pollutants through carbon emissions where they would not be bound to the targets included in this agreement.

    Colleagues of mine have already addressed these issues and others will throughout the course of the day. I must say that I turn with some great interest to my friends in the Progressive Conservative Party. I understand that they intend to vote in support of this motion. I will be interested to see if they do so. If they do it will be totally contradictory to everything they have stated on the record as a matter of policy in this place and in federal politics since the Kyoto deal became an issue in 1997.

    It is shocking of the environment critic of the Tory Party, and I hear one of the Tory members who was elected as an Alliance MP heckling. I hope she is uncomfortable with the fact that she now belongs to a party which has consistently for five years supported the economy destroying policy of Kyoto.

    I do not invent this position. I have looked at all of the statements of that party's critic for the environment, and in fact its leader, and its previous leader. I will ask the Tory member for South Surrey--White Rock--Langley to listen to what her own environment critic has to say. At an environment committee meeting in 1997 he said “we need drastic initiatives or policy changes in order for us to get any hope for civilization by the year 2010”.

    If there is to be any hope for civilization eight years from now we need drastic initiatives or policy changes. The member for Surrey South--White Rock--Langley, the environment critic, said that five years ago. The same member also said that Canada should still proceed with its own initiatives with respect to developing its own implementation program to meet the Kyoto objectives if the deal did not go through. What he said five years ago was that if Kyoto was not agreed to, which is still a possibility that 59 countries do not ratify it, Canada ought to proceed to getting to the 1990 targets by the year 2010 anyway.

  +-(1355)  

    His party signed on to the recommendations, of the environment committee in that year, whereas the official opposition at that time issued a dissenting report drawing on the excellent presentation before the House at that time by the then member for Calgary Southwest.

    The Tory Party signed on to recommendations, including that the Prime Minister assume responsibility of implementing Canada's climate change commitment in Kyoto. It was very clear, in black and white. It included that Quebec tax expenditures and other subsidies to the fossil fuel industry be gradually eliminated. What was meant by that? Finally, the committee recommended that the federal government initiate a discussion and consultative process to ensure efficient and full implementation of the Canadian commitment at Kyoto.

    That is the record. I turn to remarks the member made in 1998 in the House. Usually when he is expostulating his environmental scaremongering he does so in the relative obscurity of committee where he does not think that sensible people like those involved in the energy industry will see where his party stands. He said that he believed categorically in the science of climate change. Well, there is enormous evidence that there is no categorical, conclusive evidence on that front.


+-Statements by Members

[S. O. 31]

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Polyvalente La Samare in Plessisville

+-

    Mr. Gérard Binet (Frontenac--Mégantic, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise today to pay tribute to young people in the riding of Lotbinière--L'Érable. On March 21, 22 and 23, a theatre group from Polyvalente La Samare in Plessisville will be presenting its 14th production.

    The Ensemble theatre company was started at the Plessisville comprehensive school in 1988 by its community and spiritual awareness department. It has nearly 100 members between the ages of 14 and 17, and its mission is to raise awareness of certain social and human realities.

    The group promotes values dear to the hearts of Canadians: tolerance, respect, justice and solidarity.

    The young performers are noteworthy for their leadership and the good examples they set both in school and in the community. Through theatre, song and dance, this is a generation of young people who are expressing a vision of a better society.

    These young people are being trained to be responsible and committed members of their community. Congratulations to these young people of Lotbinière--L'Érable.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Agriculture

+-

    Mrs. Carol Skelton (Saskatoon--Rosetown--Biggar, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, there appears to be a breakdown in communication between the federal and provincial Liberals. In Saskatchewan, the Liberal leader is saying there is indeed federal money available for drought stricken farmers.

    If the federal agriculture minister's own provincial colleague maintains that there is money for farmers, why does the government continue to refuse to help? Last year the Saskatchewan government asked for $250 million in additional assistance. The government delivered a paltry $1.5 million. Considering the devastating effect of the current drought in Western Canada, this was a slap in the face to farmers.

    The government's own provincial colleague declares there is federal money available. When will the agriculture minister do the right thing, the civilized thing, and deliver working agricultural programs that are adequately funded to suffering Saskatchewan farm families?

*   *   *

  +-(1400)  

+-The Environment

+-

    Hon. Charles Caccia (Davenport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, ratifying the Kyoto protocol will result in energy efficiency, innovation and conservation to Canada's great economic advantage. Rather than talking about the cost of ratifying Kyoto we should act because of the increasing cost of inaction.

    Current temperature levels several degrees above normal accompanied by floods and ice storms are causing economic damage to many sectors including the shipping, insurance and tourism industries.

    In addition, farmers and ranchers face severe economic damage because of droughts. Droughts also lead to more frequent forest fires. Thus, the cost of inaction is overtaking the cost of ratifying Kyoto. Industry Canada reports that $7 billion in economic activities can be generated by the ratification of Kyoto. By contrast, the projections made by the petroleum association, Esso, the BCNI and the chamber of commerce are wrong and misleading.

    The benefits from energy efficiency and innovation are enormous. Let us catch up with the technological progress and the economic opportunities before the cost of inaction becomes too great.

*   *   *

+-Johnny Lombardi

+-

    Ms. Judy Sgro (York West, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I rise today to honour the passing of a remarkable man, Johnny Lombardi, founder of CHIN radio and TV.

    I knew Johnny Lombardi very well and his wonderful family. Indeed, it seemed that everyone in Toronto knew him or at least knew his name. Johnny Lombardi led the way in broadcasting in Canada in a manner that embodies the very heart of our nation. As an immigrant he understood the cultural diversity of Canada and through radio and TV gave our multicultural communities a public voice.

    Johnny Lombardi built a broadcasting empire based on talent, energy, drive and passion. He was passionate about broadcasting but was equally passionate about Canada and served them both with honour and dignity. Johnny has left a legacy that will continue so that hundreds of Canadians who arrive here from all over the world can enjoy the voice of this nation for many years to come.

    We express our deepest regrets to the Lombardi family.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Foreign Affairs

+-

    Mr. Mauril Bélanger (Ottawa--Vanier, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, on January 27, 2001, Catherine MacLean and Catherine Doré, both of Ottawa--Vanier, were hit by a drunk driver while walking on an Ottawa sidewalk. Catherine MacLean lost her life, tragically, and Catherine Doré was seriously injured.

    A Russian diplomat, Andrei Knyazev, was at the wheel of the vehicle involved. We have learned today that this same individual has been found guilty and sentenced to four years detention in a Russian penal colony.

    After serving his sentence, he will not be allowed to drive for three years. He must also pay the travel expenses of the members of the MacLean and Doré families who attended the trial in Moscow.

[English]

    Mr. Knyazev's sentence will not lessen the loss of Ms. MacLean nor will it take away the injuries suffered by Mrs. Doré. However, I am certain that the residents of the national capital region are pleased that justice is being served.

    I congratulate the Department of Foreign Affairs, the current minister and the immediate past minister for their total and constant support to the families involved in this matter.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Social Development Fund

+-

    Mr. Pierre Paquette (Joliette, BQ): Mr. Speaker, the UN conference on the funding of development, which the Prime Minister will attend, began yesterday in Monterrey. We are urging the Prime Minister to promote the idea of a development fund for the Americas, as are doing Mexico's president, Vicente Fox, the leader of the Bloc Quebecois and the Quebec government.

    On Friday, in Mexico, the Inter-Parliamentary Forum of the Americas, or FIPA, unanimously passed a resolution to promote a social development fund to build social infrastructures that would reduce the gap between the very rich and the very poor. The support of the Bloc Quebecois and of the Quebec civil society was stressed by the Mexican delegation that made the proposal.

    The resolution adopted by the parliamentarians representing 23 countries of the Americas will be sent to the Monterrey conference. The Prime Minister of Canada must seize this opportunity. The have nations of the Americas have a responsibility to work to eliminate social and economic inequalities.

    Should the Government of Canada oppose the creation of this development fund, it would not show the solidarity that it is supposed to show to its partners from the Americas.

*   *   *

  +-(1405)  

+-Charles Scriver

+-

    Mrs. Marlene Jennings (Notre-Dame-de-Grâce--Lachine, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, a resident of my riding of Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, Dr. Charles Scriver, who is a researcher emeritus in human genetics, was just inducted in the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame, and I am taking this opportunity to pay tribute to him here in the House.

[English]

    Dr. Scriver is recognized worldwide for his active involvement in the field of applied and clinical genetics research. His work has focused on children and infants and his discoveries have been invaluable in improving the conditions of children nationally and internationally. Dr. Scriver is also the founder of the DeBelle Laboratory in Biochemical Genetics at the Montreal Children's Hospital.

    It is a privilege and honour to pay tribute to such a distinguished man of science and to congratulate him on having been inducted in the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame.

*   *   *

+-Dalton Camp

+-

    Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP): Mr. Speaker, remembering Dalton Camp is what Canadians are doing today in every nook and cranny of this country which Dalton loved so passionately and so vehemently.

    A staunchly partisan figure in earlier life Dalton left partisan politics behind to become a distinguished political commentator and a respected voice for progressive wisdom. With wit and insight, eloquence and ferocity Dalton strove to bring to bear on public life values embraced by Canadians.

    In an era where cynicism about politics is too common Dalton spoke in favour of public service, celebrated citizens' participation and championed vigorous public discourse. Dalton's philosophy is best remembered in his own words, “Do what you think you have to do. Do it the best you can. And never look back.”

    On behalf of the New Democratic Party I extend heartfelt condolences to Dalton's family. It is a privilege to count myself and my partner, David, among his host of friends. Our grief is shared by Canadians across the country as we say farewell to Dalton.

*   *   *

+-Veterans Affairs

+-

    Mrs. Elsie Wayne (Saint John, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, the French government is reviewing plans to build a third airport for the city of Paris on the battlefields in the Somme area. The proposed airport will disturb the resting place of more than 1,200 soldiers who died fighting in the great wars.

    The graves of 412 Canadian soldiers, almost one-third of the marked graves which includes a Victoria Cross recipient, will be affected by the proposed airport.

    Should this plan go ahead, regardless of where the airport is located, the airport will be on sacred land where the cemeteries sit, as it will be placed over the bodies of thousands of unknown soldiers.

    I am happy to hear that the Minister of Veterans Affairs is committed to fight against the airports planned location.

    This plan should stop in the planning stages. I would encourage the Minister of Veterans Affairs, in co-operation with the War Graves Commission and other affected Commonwealth countries, to make this a top priority.

    Urban expansion is an issue that affects cities around the world but there is only one Somme battlefield and the marked and unmarked graves of thousands of soldiers should be left to rest in peace.

*   *   *

+-Drug Safety

+-

    Mr. Rob Merrifield (Yellowhead, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, two years ago today, 15 year old Vanessa Young collapsed and died in front of her father. The Oakville teenager had been taking Prepulsid, an anti-heartburn drug that had already been linked to 80 deaths in the United States and 25 deaths in Canada.

    CBC Marketplace warned about Prepulsid back in 1999. Health Canada knew about the concerns in 1996.

    A coroner's inquest into Vanessa's death heard about serious problems in adverse drug reporting schemes at Health Canada. The failure to adequately inform doctors and patients about associated risks was highlighted.

    The jury recommended one year ago that a joint body be created to review and monitor drug safety in Canada.

    We are calling for an independent drug safety agency. The government's inaction has left a trail of deaths. The time for action has long since passed. Human lives are in the balance.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Post-Secondary Education

+-

    Ms. Hélène Scherrer (Louis-Hébert, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, this week, members of the Canadian Alliance of Students' Associations are on the Hill to bring to the attention of senators, MPs and ministers the difficulties being encountered by their 310,000 members enrolled in post-secondary programs.

    With their theme “Education Builds a Nation”, these young students want to get across the message that they want the Government of Canada to realize that it has a role to play in encouraging higher education.

    Their recommendations have mainly to do with accessibility for all Canadians to grant and scholarship programs. They are also reminding us that the significant increase in students' living expenses is not reflected in the size of scholarships. Finally, they are getting us to focus our attention on the need for greater flexibility in the repayment process criteria for the debt reduction program, which was introduced by the Canadian government in 1998.

    I urge all my colleagues to open their offices and their minds and to be receptive to what these young people have to tell us as they take charge of their future.

*   *   *

  +-(1410)  

+-Christ-Roi Church in Châteauguay

+-

    Mr. Robert Lanctôt (Châteauguay, BQ): Mr. Speaker, it is with regret and disappointment that we learned of the destruction of Christ-Roi church in Châteauguay this morning. In minutes, the flames, which were suspicious in nature, destroyed a part of our history and our religious heritage.

    Parish priest Gaétan Daoust said he was deeply saddened by the loss which, according to him, is a heavy one for the parish and for the entire Châteauguay community.

    As the member for the riding of Châteauguay, I am saddened by this terrible news and hope that those responsible for this tragedy will soon be found and made to face the consequences of what they have done.

    My thoughts are with all members of the community at this difficult time.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Dalton Camp

+-

    Mr. John Bryden (Ancaster--Dundas--Flamborough--Aldershot, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, yesterday Canada lost its favourite curmudgeon of political commentary with the passing away of Dalton Camp.

    Familiar, especially to Toronto Star readers, Mr. Camp was an intelligent and witty writer whose Tory vision of Canada was too liberal for some and not conservative enough for others, but enormously influential nonetheless.

    Dalton Camp passionately cared about the political process and the Progressive Conservative Party in particular. He deplored extremism of every stripe and was outspoken in his criticism of political opportunism. He demanded intellectual honesty of friends and enemies alike.

    Mr. Camp has left an indelible mark on the political history of Canada and we all shall miss him.

    As one of his former editors who knew firsthand something of his peppery personality, it is with both sadness and fondness that I say a final 30, a goodbye to Dalton.

*   *   *

+-Christine Diotte

+-

    Mr. Kevin Sorenson (Crowfoot, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, exactly one month ago today I rose in the House to pay respect to Toronto police constable, Laura Ellis. Constable Ellis was killed while responding to an emergency call.

    It is with a very heavy heart that I rise again, this time out of respect for RCMP constable, Christine Diotte, who also lost her life in the line of duty. The 35 year old constable was killed near Banff last week as she investigated a highway accident.

    Yesterday, 600 police officers from across Canada joined other emergency workers and the small community of Banff to bid farewell to their fallen comrade.

    Christine's death is a tragic loss. It is a tragic loss to the RCMP force. It is a tragic loss to the many people of the community that she assisted in the DARE program. It is a tragic loss to all Canadians who owe a great deal of gratitude to all police officers who daily risk their lives to make our lives safer.

*   *   *

+-Indian Affairs and Northern Development

+-

    Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland--Colchester, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, the recent census report indicating that Canadians are moving to major population centres in Canada and away from rural Canada comes as no surprise to us in rural Canada. Government policies since 1993 that encourage this phenomenon are a virtual attack on rural Canada and smaller communities.

    A perfect example is the recent effort by Indian affairs to relocate its Atlantic regional office from the small town of Amherst, Nova Scotia, to a larger centre, which will result in the displacement of 140 employees and their entire families. These employees would prefer to stay right where they are but senior officials in the department are determined to move the office. The cost would be high with no improvement in service. Families will be split up. Once again, we are a victim of the Liberals' attack on rural Canada. There is no justification for this move.

    I ask the minister of Indian affairs to cancel the study and leave the regional office right where it is.

*   *   *

+-Golden Jubilee Medal

+-

    Mr. Lynn Myers (Waterloo--Wellington, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as we all know, this year is the golden jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II.

    To celebrate her 50 years as Queen of Canada, the Governor General has struck a commemorative medal to mark this occasion. This golden jubilee medal will be awarded to about 46,000 Canadians who have made an outstanding contribution to their fellow citizens, their community or to Canada. The recipients will be selected by federal, provincial and territorial governments, professional, educational and cultural organizations, and charities.

    This medal is a part of the jubilee year celebrations organized by the Department of Canadian Heritage. It was established to honour those Canadians who have made Canada what it is today and who will impact the Canada of tomorrow.

    I ask the House to join me in saluting all the potential nominees and, indeed, all Canadians whose achievements have shaped this great country of ours.


+-ORAL QUESTION PERIOD

[Oral Questions]

*   *   *

  +-(1415)  

[English]

+-Grants and Contributions

+-

    Mr. John Reynolds (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, yesterday the Minister of Public Works and Government Services said that the sponsorship contracts given to Groupaction were fine and that the contracts had gone to the lowest bidder.

    Today the minister said that he will send it to the auditor general and possibly even to the police to investigate these contracts. How things change in a day.

    Does the minister now admit that this contract was nothing but a kickback scheme for the Liberal cronies operating within his department?

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is confusing two issues. Insofar as the advertising contracts are concerned, I indicated to the member yesterday that they were awarded competitively.

    Insofar as the issue of the report is concerned, even though a sworn affidavit was produced yesterday, which I have and am ready to table in the House, I am not satisfied the reports were different. Therefore, I have asked the auditor general to conduct an audit.

+-

    Mr. John Reynolds (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the minister can say what he wants but it is a fact that an influence peddling scheme, headed by Pierre Corbeil, existed inside the government and inside the Liberal Party.

    Companies, including Groupaction, gave almost a quarter of a million dollars in donations to the Liberal Party for government contracts, including half a million for a report that was never written.

    Will the minister assure the House that the investigation will not only examine the missing report but also whether there was any link between Groupaction's contracts and its donations to the Liberal Party?

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member already made an allegation in the beginning part of his question in which he suggested wrongdoing. He does not even know that yet, let alone the rest of it.

    I have asked the auditor general to investigate forthwith. I personally spoke to her this morning and she agreed to do the job and to produce a report. I have undertaken to table that report here in the House of Commons.

+-

    Mr. John Reynolds (Leader of the Opposition, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the minister will be tabling things day after day. Yesterday things were fine and now we have the auditor general and possibly the police looking into things.

    This is not only about the possibility of Groupaction defrauding the taxpayer, it is also about the government's decision to spend tax dollars on companies that give the Liberal Party big donations.

    Will the Prime Minister explain how his government's plans are to clear the air and prove that there was no link between Groupaction, Groupe Everest and other firms getting work for their donations to the Liberal Party?

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the hon. Leader of the Opposition should know that the Auditor General of Canada is a person who he and his own colleagues have said does work of unimpeachable integrity. We trust the auditor general, a servant of the House and parliament, to do a proper and thorough job regarding this.

    I invite the hon. member to wait for the tabling of the report.

+-

    Mr. Peter Goldring (Edmonton Centre-East, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, on March 14 the minister stated that the information received confirmed that the work was carried out.

    Yesterday I informed the House that it was my opinion that the report was never written and that a full refund must be demanded.

    Today the minister agreed with my request and he is now about to ask for a full refund.

    While the minister is asking for a full refund from Groupaction, will the Liberal Party also be asked for a full refund of its commission cheque from Groupaction?

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will ignore the last part of the question because it obviously has nothing to do with the functioning of government. I will respond to the issue raised by the hon. member.

    What I asked the auditor general, which is clear in the note I sent to him--and I contacted him personally to offer him a copy--is that should the auditor general determine that it is the same report we will then proceed to recover the funds and take any other action, including police action, should that be necessary.

+-

    Mr. Peter Goldring (Edmonton Centre-East, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the report was visible when the cheques were written. The report was visible when the Liberal contribution was made. The report went invisible when a copy was requested from government. The report remained invisible when a copy was requested from Groupaction. The minister then vanished, or was banished, to Denmark when the heat started to be turned up?

    Will the minister tell the taxpayers that the gross mismanagement of the past will not be repeated again?

  +-(1420)  

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, my predecessor did a very good job for the people of Canada. He defended the interests of his constituents and of Canada. He did an honourable job of being a member of the House and a member of the government.

    These accusations are not necessary. The auditor general is conducting an audit. The hon. members asked for that. Now they should wait for the reply. They should be able to take yes for answer for a change.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier--Sainte-Marie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, in April 1998, Groupaction was awarded an initial contract for $550,000. Strangely, Groupaction received a second contract in May 1999 to do the same thing, this time for $575,000. Worse yet, Public Works agreed to pay the entire amount to Groupaction, even without the qualitative analysis called for in the contract.

    Will the Minister of Public Works admit that, not only is the 1998 report nowhere to be found, as I think he has admitted, but Groupaction never fulfilled its mandate, even if the company was paid not once but twice for the same contract and the second one was never completed?

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member claims that the second job was not completed. This is specifically what the Auditor General of Canada is going to determine.

    I accept that the Auditor General of Canada is going to do so independently. The hon. member across the way should accept the same thing, and wait for her report to be produced. I make a commitment to table it in the House, and then the truth will be known. The accusations being made by the members across the way, even before the evidence has been heard, do not represent the truth.

+-

    Mr. Gilles Duceppe (Laurier--Sainte-Marie, BQ): Mr. Speaker, one needs only to read the exchange of correspondence between Groupaction and the department to see that it admits that the qualitative aspect was not met but that nevertheless $575,000 had been paid out.

    On May 8, 2001, a senior department official wrote about a “request for upward amendment” in connection with the qualitative component. In other words, he is saying that there may be a request for more. They admit that they did not, but the payment was made regardless. There is no need to seek proof, it is already there.

    Was there a third contract, as requested by Groupaction, for the qualitative component. In addition to the two contracts, was there a third, by any chance?

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member refers to affidavits. Affidavits have been signed by a senior government official who was in place at the time, indicating that he had received the documentation, that there were two distinct reports involved, and so on.

    Today the Auditor General of Canada has been mandated to carry out this audit. She will do so. She will table her findings. I will table them in the House of Commons, and we will take whatever action is necessary.

+-

    Mr. Ghislain Lebel (Chambly, BQ): Mr. Speaker, in the 1999 contract, the one that was never lost, we know that the “qualitative analysis” component was abandoned at some point by Groupaction, which focused its efforts strictly on the listing of events.

    Since the mandate was only partly fulfilled—I would say about half the job was completed—could the minister of public works tell us whether a refund claim or a formal claim has yet been sent to Groupaction?

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the question may be turned around 14 times, the facts will not change. The facts are the following: the Auditor General of Canada will conduct the audit; following that, she will make recommendations. I pledge to table that document in the House and to take appropriate steps, including getting a refund or involving the police, if necessary.

+-

    Mr. Ghislain Lebel (Chambly, BQ): Mr. Speaker, it is obvious that the minister has not read the report he tabled in this place. It is in the file.

    How does the minister explain that Public Works Canada, which awarded a half a million dollar contract, did not automatically ask Groupaction for a refund when the minister realized—assuming he read the documents—that only half of the job had been done?

    In law, this is called a “claim for overpayment”. Will the minister make such a claim?

  +-(1425)  

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, again, we asked the auditor general to conduct an audit. Members opposite, at least some of them, asked for exactly the same thing.

    Why can they not take “yes” for an answer to the question they asked?

[English]

+-

    Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Prime Minister. Canada's name is still worth something abroad, although there is an astounding lack of self-respect within the government. The public works minister asks us to await the auditor general's report on the Groupaction fiasco.

    Pending the auditor general's report, will the Prime Minister do the decent thing and suspend the appointment of the new ambassador to Denmark?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I think we have allegations here. If something has been proven then one acts, but we cannot act on a smear campaign when there is no proof. We do not know the facts. When we know them we will act.

    It is completely unacceptable to hear these smear attacks all the time about a member of parliament who served parliament for years in a very honourable way.

+-

    Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg--Transcona, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I have a supplementary question for the Prime Minister. The Prime Minister knows that it is quite common political practice, or it used to be, for ministers to resign or for appointments to be suspended pending an inquiry into matters that might reflect on the integrity of the appointee.

    I say this to the Prime Minister. He can make history by being the first Prime Minister to recall an ambassador before he even gets there. Let us have the inquiry. For the sake of Canada's honour, let us make sure that nothing untoward happened in Mr. Gagliano's department before he became the ambassador.

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, there are no allegations at all against the minister. Something might have been wrong in the department. The auditor general will find out the facts. It is completely premature to claim that there is a link between some work in the bureaucracy and the minister. I want to know the facts. When I have the facts, as usual, I will act.

+-

    Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, it would be interesting to know what other departments have paid for reports they did not receive.

    My question is for the public works minister and it is simple. Will the auditor general's investigation include an indepth review of other reports that public works has paid for that may be missing from the files? Specifically, will her officers investigate every contract that was signed or approved by the former executive director of the communications co-ordinating service branch, Mr. J.C. Guité?

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, this is a gratuitous accusation against a senior civil servant who worked both for our government and for the government of the right hon. member across. I do not know why he chooses to accuse civil servants.

    The direct answer to the question is that the auditor general is verifying both reports in order to reconcile and determine whether they are the same or whether they are different. Then her recommendations will be provided to me, and I have undertaken to table them in the House of Commons.

[Translation]

+-

    Right Hon. Joe Clark (Calgary Centre, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, the minister has admitted that public works paid $500,000 twice for the same report.

    Now he wants the auditor general to look at the contracts awarded to Groupaction. But she has no authority to determine whether Groupaction acted illegally, or criminally. That would require the RCMP.

    Why was this problem not referred immediately to the RCMP? Why not two investigations at the same time?

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the right hon. member opposite said that I had admitted that the two reports were the same. I made no such admission.

    I ask the right hon. member opposite to establish the proof before making these accusations.

    I have asked the auditor general to establish the proof. Proof, truth and the right hon. member are not necessarily synonymous.

*   *   *

[English]

+-National Defence

+-

    Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, Canadian troops continue to do a great job in spite of this government not because of it. The Prime Minister has left the military with a wounded minister of defence. General Fitch says that the army is on starvation rations. General Jeffery says that the military is living on borrowed time. We have 30 year old helicopters and planes with no sign of replacements in the near future. We have to rely on the Americans to get our troops around and the Prime Minister says that he is happy with that.

    Has the Prime Minister now closed the door on purchasing strategic airlift for our Canadian forces?

  +-(1430)  

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I said that only the United States and Great Britain have the type of plane to do that type of job. The French, the Germans and other countries do not need it. I think the best way is to rent when we need them.

    In terms of the helicopter they refer to all the time, they do not mention to the Canadian people that the president of the United States uses exactly the same type of helicopter to go from the White House to Camp David.

+-

    Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I think it was the wrong answer. The Prime Minister was incorrect when he said it was only the United Kingdom and the United States that have strategic airlift, so do Russia, Belarus, the Ukraine and others. No wonder the Americans are now saying that the Prime Minister does not quite get it. Canadians have been saying that for years.

    The current U.S. ambassador to Canada has suggested that Canadians start finding its own ride to get its troops places. Unbelievably, it is the Americans who had to lift our troops from western Canada to eastern Canada during the ice storm. It was the Americans we had to depend on to respond to the Manitoba floods in 1997.

    How can this Prime Minister possibly justify this--

+-

    The Speaker: The hon. member I am afraid has run out of time. The hon. Minister of National Defence.

+-

    Hon. Art Eggleton (Minister of National Defence, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we are part of an alliance such as NATO. We are allied with the United States in terms of this continent, and we work together. Yes, the Americans help us in a number of areas but we also help them. For example, we have the Coyote vehicle which is in Afghanistan. They do not have that kind of vehicle. We both contribute to the teamwork going on there. At one point not too long ago, we were leading an American force as part of the operations in Afghanistan. We work together as team and will continue to do that.

    Instead of being picky like this, the hon. member should be focusing--

[Translation]

+-

    The Speaker: The hon. member for Mercier.

*   *   *

+-Grants and Contributions

+-

    Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ): Mr. Speaker, in what we have to call the Gagliano affair, the Prime Minister's response is that these are only allegations, the same attitude government representatives took in the CINAR affair.

    Is this fine assurance not, in fact, a way to play down the importance of these allegations? Would it not be more prudent, given that the ambassador is the chief person concerned, to postpone his assignment and keep him here until an investigation has laid to rest any doubts regarding him?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I do not believe that these sorts of insinuations deserve the attention the member is seeking.

    The individual in question served this House very well. There will be no ties between a contract awarded by his department and the former member.

    These allegations are completely unfounded, and I think that the ambassador to Denmark is an honourable man who will represent Canada very well.

+-

    Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ): Mr. Speaker, given Mr. Gagliano's track record, how can the Prime Minister refuse to put off his assignment until the end of the investigation, given the serious credibility issue now hanging over his ambassador?

    Is this an indication that the Prime Minister is trying to tell us that regardless of the results of the investigation, his mind is made up, and that ambassador Gagliano will stay in Denmark, to the detriment of the interests of Canadians and Quebecers?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, these are pure allegations at this point, and that is not how we operate.

    It is a law in this country that the benefit of the doubt shall prevail. Accusations are made without proof, and then, someone has to carry this with them for years.

    Mr. Gagliano served his constituents very honourably for many years, and he served this House exceptionally well.

*   *   *

  +-(1435)  

[English]

+-The Environment

+-

    Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the report tabled in the House yesterday by the Minister of the Environment lacks scientific credibility. The report acknowledges the economic costs of implementing Kyoto but then goes on to propose deducting the cost of the drought in the prairies and the ice storm in Ontario and Quebec.

    By their own admission, the computer models show that implementing the Kyoto commitment will have no discernable impact on climate change. If implementing Kyoto will not mitigate the effects of climate change, how does the minister justify deducting the costs of prairie drought and the eastern ice storm from the economic cost of Kyoto when these events will continue in their opinion?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, that is exactly the type of question that has come up in the House during their opposition day debate on Kyoto, which we are having today. Unfortunately the member is mixed up as to what part of the day he is in.

    On climate change and on the report I tabled in the House yesterday, there is a variety of analyses done by a number of international agencies ranging from New Zealand to Australia to Holland. The hon. member dismisses them all as being irrelevant. I suggest he look at them a little more carefully. Not everyone everywhere happens to be as consistently wrong as he is.

+-

    Mr. David Chatters (Athabasca, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, it is pretty clear that the environment minister cannot provide us with any credible analysis at this time. The finance department has been conducting economic research and analysis to assess the potential cost of policy options to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases.

    To start the public consultations, will the Minister of Finance immediately table the reports of his department that it has already produced on the cost of implementing the Kyoto accord?

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the critical words of the hon. member's question are “at this time”. He knows, because it has been said in the House time after time, that there is a federal-provincial-territorial working group of officials involving 14 governments looking at the impact of implementing Kyoto on the Canadian economy and other matters.

    If he is willing to wait until this group of federal-provincial-territorial officials do their work, he will find out what they come up with. That is expected at the end of next month or early in May.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Taxation

+-

    Mr. Yvan Loubier (Saint-Hyacinthe--Bagot, BQ): Mr. Speaker, last week the Minister of Finance said that he was prepared to include fiscal imbalance on the agenda for the next meeting of finance ministers, provided he was asked to do so.

    Pauline Marois has specifically made that request in a letter dated March 8, 2002.

    Is the Minister of Finance going to include this topic in the agenda of the next meeting of finance ministers?

+-

    Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I have answered this twice already. If my provincial counterparts ask me to put a certain item on the agenda, I am certainly very open to doing so.

+-

    Mr. Yvan Loubier (Saint-Hyacinthe--Bagot, BQ): Mr. Speaker, since 1997, the provincial first ministers, and their finance ministers moreover, have spoken out against fiscal imbalance.

    Since Mrs. Marois is basing her request for discussion of this matter at the meeting of finance ministers on the very recent and very credible Séguin commission study on fiscal imbalance, should the minister not be faithful to his own word and announce clearly and formally today that he agrees to have this matter discussed at the meeting to be held this coming April 25 and 26?

+-

    Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, again, I have made it very clear to the House that I am prepared to discuss the conference board projections, projections which demonstrate unequivocally that there is no fiscal imbalance.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Employment Insurance

+-

    Mr. Randy White (Langley--Abbotsford, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, let me quote one EI umpire: “The board agrees with Mr. Wong that no claimant should have to repay more in benefits than what they have received”. Let us think about that: penalties, wrongly assessed victims where the government actually makes money, is a tax. That is a Liberal fundraiser.

    Would the minister stop blaming everyone else and be responsible enough to fix this problem and repay all those individuals who were wrongfully assessed moneys out of their pockets?

+-

    Hon. Jane Stewart (Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the persistence of these questions suggests to me that perhaps the hon. member does not fully understand the process at play here. Let me try to explain it again.

    In these cases we are talking about individuals who are in receipt of employment insurance benefits and at the same time have earnings because they worked, received back pay, shift premiums or vacation pay and did not declare the earnings.

    In these cases the government sets up an overpayment and works to collect that amount of money which is equivalent to the undeclared earnings only, except in very rare cases associated with the two week waiting period.

  +-(1440)  

+-

    Mr. Randy White (Langley--Abbotsford, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, talk about not understanding the problem. The minister just does not quite get it. The formula is wrong. Subsection 19(3) is incorrect. That is why the government changed it. It realized it was wrong. We are talking about a five year period where the government ripped off a whole bunch of workers and will not admit it is wrong.

    Why does the minister not stand in the House and say she will look at all these problems, try to fix them, and give these people back the money that came out of their pockets incorrectly?

+-

    Hon. Jane Stewart (Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is suggesting that somehow we created some additional overpayment or penalties. With great respect that is not the case.

    Let me very clear that what we changed in August 2001 was an administrative practice. Right now the overpayment will only be deducted from the specific weeks in which the undeclared earnings were received. In the past the undeclared earnings could be collected over the whole period of the claim. The amount of the overpayment remains the same pre or post regulatory change.

*   *   *

+-Zimbabwe

+-

    Ms. Jean Augustine (Etobicoke--Lakeshore, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we are all concerned about the situation in Zimbabwe. Is there anything new? What is Canada's position? Could the Prime Minister update us on the situation in Zimbabwe?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, a few minutes ago I had the occasion to speak with the president of South Africa, and Zimbabwe has been suspended from the Commonwealth.

    I congratulated Mr. Mbeki who told me that yesterday he and President Obasanjo met with Mr. Mugabe. They told him that Zimbabwe was to be suspended. They talked about reconciliation and they invited the government to take some people in the opposition to be part of the government.

    I had discussions with these two leaders and the prime minister of Australia over the weekend. I have urged them to act positively because it was unacceptable--

+-

    The Speaker: The hon. member for Burnaby--Douglas.

*   *   *

+-Grants and Contributions

+-

    Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby--Douglas, NDP): Mr. Speaker, that is very good news indeed. The auditor general is investigating whether there was fraud in the Groupaction contracts and the RCMP may be investigating whether there is corruption in the awarding of those two contracts.

    In view of the fact that the potential fraud and corruption occurred on the watch of Alfonso Gagliano when he was minister of public works, I want to ask the Prime Minister just what action he is prepared to take.

    The Prime Minister said that if something is proven one acts. Will the Prime Minister clearly act to fire Alfonso Gagliano as ambassador if these allegations are proven accurate?

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, what is being audited by the auditor general right now are two documents, not the former minister. They are two documents: the 1998 report and 1999 report.

    She will produce a report on that which I have undertaken to table in the House of Commons and to take whatever corrective actions are necessary at the time.

*   *   *

+-Pharmaceuticals

+-

    Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis (Winnipeg North Centre, NDP): Mr. Speaker, two years after the tragic and preventable death of Vanessa Young and six years after the government first learned about possible fatal reactions from the drug Prepulsid, has the government taken any concrete steps? Not one.

    Have we even seen something as basic as the mandatory reporting of adverse drug reactions recommended by the Ontario coroner? No. What do we have? A lot of talk and maybe another office being set up to review and monitor drug safety.

    Will the health minister at least ensure Canadians that any office she sets up will be separate from the administrative quagmire in her department and totally free of any influence from the drug industry?

+-

    Hon. Anne McLellan (Minister of Health, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, let me reassure the hon. member and everyone in the House that we take very seriously our regulatory obligations in post-marketing surveillance of drugs in relation to their safety and efficacy.

    Obviously the Vanessa Young situation was a terrible tragedy. My department, Health Canada, is responding to the 14 recommendations of the coroner's inquest. As Dr. Peterson who heads up the drug approval agency in my department mentioned earlier today, as of April 1 we will create a new directorate in the Department of Health to ensure that--

  +-(1445)  

+-

    The Speaker: The hon. member for Edmonton North.

*   *   *

+-Canadian Heritage

+-

    Miss Deborah Grey (Edmonton North, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, the case of the missing reports just simply does not end. There is trouble now in the heritage department and who knows where else across there.

    In 1996 that department gave a $56,000 contract to Olson & Olson to provide land use regulations for Lake Louise, but guess what? Six years later we find out that there is only a “draft document”. There is not a hint of a final report yet. “Drafts R Us” seems perfectly acceptable to the government. Why?

+-

    Right Hon. Jean Chrétien (Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the minister has replied to all the questions. The auditor general is looking into that situation and we will know exactly what happened.

    If there was a document that was lost we will find out. One thing I know is that it took three elections for the hon. member to find the proper form to sign for her pension.

+-

    Miss Deborah Grey (Edmonton North, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I can understand it is hard for them to keep up with, but that is the wrong scandal. This was another report out of the heritage department.

    The Prime Minister obviously cannot even keep control of his rat pack. He eliminated honest John Nunziata a few years ago over the GST. Tobin is toast. The minister of binders seems to just heartily defend photocopies of a draft report. Now nobody's baby has nobody's report. Why has the Prime Minister not taught his rat pack the value and defence of taxpayer dollars?

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, all of us on this side of the House are unanimous in ensuring the proper expenditure of taxpayer dollars. That is why I have asked the Auditor General of Canada to do a verification pursuant to these two documents and I have undertaken to table it in the House of Commons.

*   *   *

+-Finance

+-

    Mr. Monte Solberg (Medicine Hat, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the province of Manitoba has said it cannot even deliver a budget until this mess with the $3.3 billion that the government overpaid the provinces has been sorted out. Manitoba is supposedly owing $608 million. That is a lot of money for a province the size of Manitoba.

    Could the finance minister explain to Canadians why their provincial governments have been left hanging while this government figures out whether or not it will clawback the $3.3 billion?

+-

    Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, when one has to go back as far as one has to go back to determine what all the facts are, quite clearly it will not surprise the hon. member to know that this becomes a matter of considerable complexity.

    The fact is that the government wants to act fairly. It wants to act fairly certainly in the case of the province of Manitoba as well as all the other provinces. That is why it takes time.

+-

    Mr. Monte Solberg (Medicine Hat, Canadian Alliance): Thank you, Arthur Andersen. Mr. Speaker, the provinces have been trying to get answers for weeks. They have been petitioning this minister, the revenue minister and the auditor general.

    Will the finance minister force the province of Manitoba and the other provinces to pay up for what is yet another Liberal screw up?

+-

    Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of National Revenue, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the context of the member's question is wrong. We have been working very closely with the provinces. We shared immediately that there was a problem.

    In fact we told them that our intention was to act fairly with both Canadian taxpayers as well as the provinces. They have been fully informed and we are working together.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Highway Infrastructure

+-

    Ms. Jocelyne Girard-Bujold (Jonquière, BQ): Mr. Speaker, recently, the Minister of Finance told the House that Quebec could count on funding other than that allocated to the Strategic Infrastructure Fund for the highway construction promised by the Liberals before and during the last election campaign.

    Knowing the five priorities of the government of Quebec, those being highways 175, 30, 50, 185 and 35, will the Deputy Prime Minister tell us whether, with the money in the fund and the other amounts mentioned by the Minister of Finance on Wednesday, he intends to invest in these five projects? If not, which highways will be his priorities?

  +-(1450)  

+-

    Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, as I have already explained, I met with my counterpart, Mr. Ménard, and we discussed all the highways in the province of Quebec.

    I emphasized that we had infrastructure money in this budget and in the Minister of Finance's 2000 budget. We also have a strategic program for highways. We have many programs and we are going to discuss this issue.

    I noted, however, that the Bloc Quebecois voted against the budget yesterday and is therefore not in a position to criticize our government.

+-

    Ms. Jocelyne Girard-Bujold (Jonquière, BQ): Mr. Speaker, I challenge the Minister of Transport to tell us whether Bill C-49 contained any reference to the highways I mentioned earlier.

    March 31 is 12 days away. Not only did the government make all sorts of election promises with respect to Quebec's highway system, but it promised $2 billion in its budget for infrastructure.

    What does it intend to do between now and March 31? Will it use these 12 days to hand over this money in order to keep its promises, which everyone, including the government of Quebec, is waiting for it to do?

+-

    Hon. David Collenette (Minister of Transport, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it is obvious that the Bloc Quebecois is against the infrastructure program, including the highways, because yesterday it voted against the budget.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Immigration

+-

    Mr. Paul Forseth (New Westminster--Coquitlam--Burnaby, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the minister of immigration. Canadians have a right to be upset. Even after the revelations of September 11 the government continues with low border security at Pearson airport. A people smuggling ring brings in dozens of phony refugees every week from countries such as Costa Rica and India which are both democracies.

    When will the government bring in a list of third safe countries and stop this abuse of a well intentioned law?

[Translation]

+-

    Hon. Denis Coderre (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.) Mr. Speaker, this is obviously a very serious matter. People smuggling is a serious crime. We are taking the necessary action.

    For certain countries, we require a visa when necessary. With the new immigration and refugee protection legislation, we are able to give our immigration officers the tools they need.

    Right now, we are keeping an eye on the situation and, if necessary, I will take the necessary action.

[English]

+-

    Mr. Paul Forseth (New Westminster--Coquitlam--Burnaby, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, human cargo may travel via many countries to get to our soil for social and legal benefits. A lot of money changes hands to be smuggled into Canada by criminals. The refugee system is being abused and the minister knows it.

    When will the government bring in a list of safe countries such as the European Union and the United States to raise our security and reduce the trade in people?

+-

    Hon. Denis Coderre (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, regarding safe third countries we are already negotiating with the Americans. I think it is a good proposition also to look to our European friends. We have to look ahead, and that is exactly what we have planned right now.

    However we have to be very careful. This is the week against racial discrimination. I do not want to put the label of human smuggling on every refugee. We must be very careful of that.

*   *   *

+-The Environment

+-

    Mr. Tony Valeri (Stoney Creek, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Minister of Finance. There has been a lot of discussion on the issue of brownfield sites and municipalities are suggesting changes to the tax system to allow the deduction of the capital costs of remediation in the year incurred.

    Other G-7 countries are ahead of Canada in dealing with this issue. When can we expect action on this file so that more brownfield development opportunities can be acted upon?

+-

    Hon. Paul Martin (Minister of Finance, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, thanks in large part to the hon. member's encouragement and interest in this field, the government is acting on a number of fronts.

    We are examining increased support in terms of remediation, that is, both applied and basic research. As the hon. member also knows, we have asked the National Roundtable on the Environment and the Economy to look at ways to remove obstacles to brownfield development and at the same time provide tax incentives. I am also pleased to announce once again that as a result, the $250 million green fund is now eligible for brownfield development.

*   *   *

+-Aboriginal Affairs

+-

    Mr. Reed Elley (Nanaimo--Cowichan, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, today I met with the Manitoba chiefs to discuss their concerns about the proposed first nations governance act and how it is to be implemented in Manitoba under the existing framework agreement initiative. The FAI is in place until the year 2004 and through negotiation is intended to take Manitoba first nations out from under the Indian Act.

    How does the minister intend to get a first nations governance act equally applied across the country when he already has a signed agreement in force to do the very same thing with the Manitoba first nations?

  +-(1455)  

+-

    Hon. Robert Nault (Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, the hon. member is factually incorrect.

    We have an agreement to negotiate and discuss governance with the first nations in Manitoba. We have been doing that for the last almost eight years. We are a long way from arriving at an arrangement outside the Indian Act. We will move forward with the governance initiative as an interim step toward self-government in the future.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Shipbuilding

+-

    Mr. Antoine Dubé (Lévis-et-Chutes-de-la-Chaudière, BQ): Mr. Speaker, the entire area of Lévis fought to save Davie Shipbuilding Limited, and now the shipyard is in danger of falling victim to a grave injustice by the federal government, which is apparently contemplating awarding a frigate repair contract to the second lowest bidder, in Halifax.

    Given that we all fought for this shipyard, does the minister of public works intend to assure us that this contract will be given to the lowest bidder, Davie Shipbuilding, and not to another yard?

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his question, and I also thank my colleagues, the Secretary of State responsible for the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec, who raised this issue yesterday, as well as other members from this side of the House.

    Davie Shipbuilding, through its trustee, was the lowest bidder. Earlier today, I asked that Davie be given an extension until Friday at 4.00 p.m. to produce the necessary guarantees that they have not been able to provide until now to satisfy the call for tenders. If they cannot, then obviously at that point, but not before then, the government will have to go to the next lowest bidder.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Post-Secondary Education

+-

    Mr. Loyola Hearn (St. John's West, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, one of the main flaws with the Canada student loans program is that it does not take into consideration the issue of regional disparity.

    Will the minister responsible make the necessary revisions so that loans are adjusted for students who live in the more affluent areas and require extra funding and for people who come from outside the university towns where board and lodging is a factor? Both groups need much more than the average funding they can get under the present program.

+-

    Hon. Jane Stewart (Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, assisting Canadians with higher education is a priority for the government. That is why every year we invest $1.6 billion in the Canada student loans program and assist 350,000 Canadians. That is also why we have expanded our Canada study grants. It is why we introduced the millennium scholarship program. It is why in 1998 we introduced and implemented a series of debt management measures and expanded interest relief and debt reduction.

    We continue to look at the effective tools that Canadians need. We will commit to work with Canadians to ensure that in the 21st century they have what they need to participate fully in our economy.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Linguistic Minorities

+-

    Mr. Dominic LeBlanc (Beauséjour--Petitcodiac, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it was vital that minority language communities in Canada be able to develop.

    Can the Minister of Human Resources Development tell us what measures she has taken to ensure that these rights are respected by her department?

+-

    Hon. Jane Stewart (Minister of Human Resources Development, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to announce today that $24 million will be allocated over two years to official language minority communities throughout Canada.

[English]

    Our objective is to assist both language communities in building their capacity to improve their socioeconomic development. The government will continue to work with minority communities, in French and in English, to ensure they have the tools they need to be full participants in Canada.

*   *   *

+-Gun Registry

+-

    Mr. Garry Breitkreuz (Yorkton--Melville, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, documents from the justice minister's own department reveal that he has already lost track of over 38,000 licensed firearms owners, despite the fact that firearms owners can get a two year prison term if they do not report their change of address.

    The same problems that plagued the old handgun registry since 1934 are clearly evident in the new one, namely huge errors in the system.

    How can the police rely on a gun registry that is missing hundreds of thousands of guns and missing tens of thousands of gun owners?

  +-(1500)  

+-

    Hon. Martin Cauchon (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, first of all the government is very proud of the choice it has made in terms of policy. We are proceeding with gun registration, making sure as well that to carry sidearms in this country will be seen as a privilege and not as a right, and including the framework to ensure we will continue to have a safe and secure country and communities.

    Second, the gun registry system works well. Of course we did proceed with it lately and public works department will proceed with outsourcing to ensure that we keep offering the population very good services. The licence process is over and now we are proceeding with the registration.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Canada Customs and Revenue Agency

+-

    Mr. Claude Bachand (Saint-Jean, BQ): Mr. Speaker, recently, the Canada Customs and Revenue Agency fired about 20 customs officers who had excellent evaluation reports and who had been given increased powers by the federal government to protect our borders.

    At a time when the government claims that national security is the number one priority, how does the Minister of National Revenue explain that she is firing valuable and well-trained officers and replacing them with students who do not have the necessary qualifications, and who are not authorized to use the increased powers provided under the law?

[English]

+-

    Hon. Elinor Caplan (Minister of National Revenue, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I thank the member for the question because in fact there is a misperception.

    Customs officers are not replaced by students. There has been a student program in place at customs since 1960. That is for summer students. Since 1987 students have been hired year round for peak periods. All students are properly and appropriately trained for the duties that they have. They have full supervision. They pose no security risk whatever. In fact, they are properly and appropriately supervised and trained. As a result of monitoring the work they do, they provide excellent work. I hope the member will support the student program.

*   *   *

+-Nanoose Bay

+-

    Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP): Mr. Speaker, the federal court recently struck down the expropriation of Nanoose Bay by the federal government. Now we have learned that the government is not only seeking a stay of judgment, but is going forward with an appeal amid speculation that it is a stalling tactic while negotiating a sweetheart deal with Gordon Campbell.

    Will the Minister of Public Works and Government Services assure the House that the terms of a new lease will include an assurance that no nuclear powered vessels or weapons will be allowed at Nanoose and that there is a commitment to clean up the horrible mess that is already there? Will he give that assurance?

+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I can confirm that Canada has appealed the decision by the federal court and has filed an application for a stay of the order pending a hearing of the case. Given that the issue is now back before the court, obviously it would be inappropriate to discuss anything else about the case.

+-

    The Speaker: Before proceeding with orders of the day, there are a number of issues that the Chair has to deal with.

[Translation]

    I received notice of a question of privilege from the hon. member for Mercier regarding an incident that took place in committee today. We will consider this matter first.

[English]

    We will then go on to hear the members who are replying to a question of privilege raised on February 28 by the hon. Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister relating to comments made in connection with the inquiry now before the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs. They are the hon. member for Portage--Lisgar, the hon. member for Lakeland, the hon. member for Renfrew--Nipissing--Pembroke and the House leader for the official opposition.

*   *   *

[Translation]

+-Privilege

+- Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade

[Privilege]
+-

    Ms. Francine Lalonde (Mercier, BQ): Mr. Speaker, let me first present the facts.

    A motion was tabled on February 14, 2002, and adopted on February 19, to have Mr. Gagliano appear before the committee, regarding his appointment to the position of Canadian ambassador to Denmark. This notice to appear was made in compliance with Standing Orders 110 and 111, and more specifically Standing Order 111(2), which reads, and I quote:

(2) The committee, if it should call an appointee or nominee to appear pursuant to section (1) of this Standing Order, shall examine the qualifications and competence of the appointee or nominee to perform the duties of the post to which he or she has been appointed or nominated.

    This is the reason why Mr. Gagliano was summoned.

    We had a right to expect to be able to ask appropriate questions regarding the candidate's ability to duly fulfill his duties, including his previous work experience, considering that he does not come from the diplomatic circles.

    In fact, the House of Commons Procedure and Practice provides the following on page 876, and I quote:

The scope of a committee's examination of Order-in-Council appointees or nominees is strictly limited to the qualifications and competence to perform the duties of the post.

    This is precisely why we wanted to ask him about his qualifications and his competence. His curriculum vitae, as forwarded by the minister, dealt only with his political and ministerial experience.

    However, the opposition's questioning, particularly mine, was interrupted and not allowed by the chair, who felt that any questions regarding Mr. Gagliano's previous work history as a minister were out of order, because they were irrelevant to his ability to perform the duties of ambassador.

    She referred to page 876 of House of Commons Procedure and Practice, which provides that:

Questioning by members of the committee may be interrupted by the Chair, if it attempts to deal with matters considered irrelevant to the committee's inquiry.

    But, still on page 876, it is also clear that, and I quote:

Any question may be permitted if it can be shown that it relates directly to the appointee's or nominee's ability to do the job.

    It is therefore obvious that the chair was in no way entitled to use this passage to interrupt the opposition's questions.

    Furthermore, in a Department of Foreign Affairs document, it is stated that:

Ethical values such as honesty, integrity and probity, which mean the ability to hold a public trust and to put the common good ahead of any private or individual self-interest must be considered.

    The decision by the Chair of the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade not to allow me the right to question the witness properly prevented me from examining the appointment of Mr. Gagliano as ambassador pursuant to Standing Orders 110 and 111.

    The opposition appealed this decision to the committee, to no avail. That is why I am appealing to you, Mr. Speaker, as, to quote House of Commons Procedure and Practice, at page 261:

—guardian of the rights and privileges of Members and of the House as an institution.

    My parliamentary privileges have been violated. I have been denied freedom of speech. Yet, this same reference work says, again on page 261, that:

Freedom of speech may be the most important of the privileges accorded to Members of Parliament; it has been described as:

—a fundamental right without which they would be hampered in the performance of their duties. It permits them to speak in the House without inhibition, to refer to any matter or express any opinion as they see fit, to say what they feel needs to be said in the furtherance of the national interest and the aspirations of their constituents.

  +-(1505)  

+-

    Mr. Svend Robinson (Burnaby--Douglas, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I am intervening in support of the matter of privilege raised by my hon. colleague from Mercier.

    I too was in committee this morning, and as you are well aware, Mr. Speaker, this affects more than what goes on in committees. The chair is indeed the guardian of the privileges of all members of parliament.

[English]

    Standing Order 111(2) of the House states:

The committee...shall examine the qualifications and competence of the appointee or nominee to perform the duties of the post to which he or she has been appointed or nominated.

    In calling Alfonso Gagliano before the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade today an essential element of the responsibility to examine qualifications and competence was to examine the standards in place for heads of missions representing Canada.

    The standards are set out in the conflict of interest and post employment code for the public service. Mr. Gagliano signed a document certifying he had read and understood the code. According to the code every employee shall conform to the following principles:

Employees shall perform their official duties and arrange their private affairs in such a manner that public confidence and trust in the integrity, objectivity and impartiality of government are conserved and enhanced.

    It is clear that in his capacity as the head of mission the ambassador to Denmark is in a position to make decisions with respect to the hiring of locally engaged staff. He is also in a position to let contracts. Clearly the ambassador designate has had experience in precisely those roles. The letting of contracts and the hiring of personnel are within his qualifications and competence and should have been permitted in the context of the examination.

    It was denied. As members of the committee we were muzzled, shut down and prevented from doing our job on behalf of the people of Canada. For that reason this is a serious question of privilege.

    The chair of the committee is here today. I have great respect for the chair but she made it clear she would not permit any questions that related to the conduct of the minister prior to his appointment as ambassador to Denmark. How on earth can we examine the qualifications and competence of the minister if we are not in a position to ask questions that relate directly to his role as ambassador about the time that he served as minister?

    The Speaker knows there was a serious cloud with respect to the conduct of the minister. There are suggestions he hired and recommended the hiring of friends and political cronies. There are suggestions he helped his son in law's firm get a contract. All this is directly relevant to the qualifications and competence of the ambassador designate but we were not permitted to ask questions about any of it.

    Mr. Speaker, we are in your hands.

  +-(1510)  

[Translation]

    For this reason, it is very clear that I very strongly support the question of privilege raised by the hon. member for Mercier.

    If the ambassador were in Denmark at this time, he would be having to make very important decisions concerning embassy employees and contracts. If there is already an odour of corruption surrounding this former minister as a result of his actions while minister, it is totally unacceptable and repugnant for the committee members not to have been able to ask questions on his behaviour while a minister.

    For this reason, I support the question of privilege of the hon. member for Mercier.

[English]

+-

    Mr. Brian Pallister (Portage--Lisgar, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I rise in support of the motion brought by the hon. member for Mercier. I will add some comments I hope will help you in your deliberations.

    Our diplomatic corps is vital to the effective execution of Canadian foreign policy. It is clear that our diplomatic corps should represent Canadian values and interests abroad. Canadian ambassadors are the standard bearers for our country and Canadian values. Given the importance of the role it would seem important to select ambassadors according to a rigorous screening process. However such is not the case for political appointees.

    New ambassadors recruited from within the foreign service typically possess a minimum of 20 years experience. They must go through a competitive and exhaustive process to ensure their merits are examined in detail and taken into account before they are made into ambassadors.

    The current nominee has no diplomatic experience. Today's committee meeting was to be our sole means of reviewing his merit or lack thereof.

    It is central to our responsibilities as members of the committee to examine behaviour. Ethical behaviour is vital for an ambassador. That goes without saying. One must adhere to the values Canada wishes to project abroad if one is to represent those values.

    I think most Canadians consider fairness, honesty and merit to be ethics we should follow and associate ourselves with at all times. There have been numerous accusations against the nominee we were to question today that call into serious doubt his adherence to those ethics. Today again was our sole opportunity to examine his ethics.

    Oxford defines ethics as the moral principles governing or influencing conduct. If we are unable to consider and examine the conduct of an applicant how can we possibly examine the ethics of the person?

    The responsibilities charged to us under the standing order tell us we should examine the qualifications and competence of appointees. Today we were not permitted to raise questions about numerous well publicized allegations concerning the former public works minister. I will not repeat the allegations here but they are numerous.

    I can understand the chair, to a degree at least, trying to make sure factual information is presented prior to a question being asked. However when the chair decides to rule out all references and questions relating to past political activity it is going too far.

    Mr. Speaker, what that does and what you will do if you do not rule in favour of the motion is say it is all right to charge committees with responsibility for examining the competence of individuals but render them unable to examine the way the individuals have fulfilled their responsibilities. In other words, we would be totally unable to make references to past behaviour in the examination of witnesses. If we cannot make references to past behaviour how can we possibly establish whether a person before us is credible or not?

    My father used to tell me not to listen to what a man says but to look at what he has done. That is the way to evaluate a person's ethics, capabilities and competence. How can we possibly do that in committees which are not allowed to raise questions about a person's past conduct?

    Mr. Speaker, I understand you will need to rule based on certain precedents. On numerous occasions the committee has examined applicants for foreign ambassadorial postings. If you examine the minutes of those meetings you might well find that questions about the past activities of such applicants as Sergio Marchi and others abound. Questions about their behaviour, decisions and conduct as ministers of the crown are in the minutes of the committee meetings.

  +-(1515)  

    There is a well established precedent of the committee being charged with the responsibility of examining and evaluating the capability of applicants. Perhaps not all applicants have been burdened with the same allegations of misconduct as this one. Nonetheless, applicants have had to be examined by committees of their former colleagues which were able to raise questions about their past decisions and activities as political people.

    Departing from that precedent would render the committee unable to ask questions about the past actions of applicants. When the Prime Minister chose to appoint colleagues to foreign ambassadorial positions ahead of others who were much more deserving, as he has continued to do, the committee would be unable to properly examine them.

    Why have the committee? It would be a rubber stamp. It would exist only to give the appearance of credibility to something incredible. It would give the perception of validity to something totally invalid. It would give the appearance of legitimacy to something entirely illegitimate. The activity this morning was an insult to the intelligence of the Canadian people.

    Mr. Speaker, I urge you to find in favour of the suggestion of my hon. colleague from Mercier.

+-

    Mr. Bill Casey (Cumberland--Colchester, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I rise to support the motion by the hon. member for Mercier.

    I will be brief. There are two issues I will raise. First, at an earlier meeting I asked that the committee be allowed to hear witnesses to explain how the process of appointing ambassadors or high commissioners works. We were refused the witnesses. We were told we could have access to all the material the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade had. We were told we could have briefings and all the information ambassadors are provided with.

    We went along with that. We had a briefing. However when we asked for the material it was refused until this morning at 9 o'clock. The moment the meeting started it was placed on our table. We had asked for it as early as February. The instructions said the committee did not need witnesses because we had access to the material. However we were denied the material until 9 o'clock this morning, the minute the committee started. It made it impossible to do any homework or be prepared for the meeting.

    Second, in the briefings we had with foreign affairs officials we asked what the criteria were for ambassadors or high commissioners. One of the main ones is the quality of the people and their track record of ethical behaviour. The only way we can determine whether the ambassador designate has a good track record or strong principles is to question him about his track record as a minister. We were denied the right to ask even one question about his background. We wanted to ask him about certain allegations but we could not do our job and determine whether he had done a good job in the past.

    It is not we who are making the allegations. In the paper today it says “Boudria blames predecessors: Gagliano was in charge of department”. The opposition is not making the charges. The government is making them. We want to find out if they are real.

    If an ambassador representing our country is tainted with allegations which may or may not be true we should find out if they are true. If he is tainted it taints the entire foreign service. It tarnishes the reputation of Canada which is so important to all of us. I therefore support the motion.

  +-(1520)  

+-

    Hon. George Baker (Gander--Grand Falls, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I will say a few words concerning the motion. You will have noticed that the hon. member from the official opposition mentioned the word ethics a moment ago. He asked, how else can we as a committee examine the word ethics? Then he gave a definition of the word ethics. Mr. Speaker, you know full well that the word ethics does not appear in the outline of any examination of any witness who appears before a standing committee that is to judge the person's qualifications as an ambassador, or of anybody else.

    Where does the word ethics come from? It comes from the direction to the U.S. senate. The senate in the United States, under the U.S. constitution, examines the qualifications of every ambassador, by law.

    Mr. Peter MacKay: This is Canada.

    Hon. George Baker: That is right and that is the point. That is exactly right and that is why members from the opposition should get it straight. This is Canada. This is not the United States.

    Not only in the U.S. under the constitution are the ambassadors examined, but also members of the cabinet and also members of the supreme court in the United States. That is in the constitution of the United States. Now what is in the constitution of Canada? We know that it is the Prime Minister, the executive branch of government, that appoints those three groups of people: the ambassadors, the cabinet and the supreme court.

    So the word ethics is in the U.S. senate direction under the constitution that determines what the senate committee will report to the senate and to the government. They have an ultimate veto. In other words, the president of the United States has to go back after the senate determines that someone is not appropriate and the president of the United States has to delay it and go back to it the next year.

    What is in the Canadian act? What is in Standing Order 111 in the House of Commons? What are the words found there? I do not hear anybody from the opposition mentioning what the words are. The words were determined by a standing committee headed by a member of the official opposition, supported by the NDP, and were voted on by every party in the House wholeheartedly and passed. What were those words? The words were “qualifications and competence”. That is from Standing Order 111 of our standing orders. It gives the committee 30 days after the tabling of the name of the nominee or the appointee to a position by order in council.

    Here is the point. Under our rules, Beauchesne for the Canadian House and Erskine May for the British house, if we look at citation 863, there is a famous paragraph. What it states is that any witness who appears before a standing committee cannot claim not to answer because his answer might incriminate him. He cannot say that. A witness cannot refuse to answer on the basis that he or she took an oath in a cabinet. No, our rules are very clear, as are the rules in the British house, as are the rules in the Australian house. It is in citation 863. Members can look it up. It says a person cannot claim as an excuse a contract or solicitor-client privilege. It also states, in one clear sentence, that in regard to the excuses used for witnesses not to answer in a court of law, because in a court of law there are certain things that a witness can say and refuse to answer, that is not the case before a standing committee of the House of Commons.

  +-(1525)  

    That famous Newfoundlander James McGrath, who was a PC but pretty straightforward and a good thinker, chaired the committee in 1986, just after--

    Mr. Bill Blaikie: You are abusing his memory now.

    Hon. George Baker: If the hon. member would listen he might learn something.

    It was just after the charter was brought in. Members of the House of Commons, if the hon. member will remember correctly, brought in a unanimous report. In that unanimous report, which Mr. Blaikie cannot remember, although I am not supposed to mention the name of the hon. member for Winnipeg--Transcona, he cannot seem to remember very clearly, he took part in it and he should remember it. He should remember what is in the committee, but anyway--

+-

    The Speaker: The hon. member for Winnipeg--Transcona is rising on a point of order.

    I am not sure I should recognize him since this is a question of privilege, which takes precedence, but I hope he will clarify something for the House.

+-

    Mr. Bill Blaikie: Mr. Speaker, it is odd that in the course of lecturing others about parliamentary decorum the member should break one of the fundamental rules of the House.

    I would remind the hon. member that, as he said, I was a member of that committee, I am the last member of that committee in the House, I remember what we recommended, and it is far different from the codswallop that the hon. member is trying to put before the House now.

+-

    The Speaker: I had a suspicion this was not a point of order, but we have had some elucidation from the hon. member for Winnipeg--Transcona as the last surviving member of that committee.

+-

    Hon. George Baker: Mr. Speaker, the first committee that examined this question was held in 1976. Members of that committee included the hon. Stanley Knowles and also the hon. Walter Baker and James Jerome, and also myself in 1976, so I predate the hon. member by about 10 years.

    The hon. member has raised an interesting question: What was in that report? What was in that report is exactly this: that the power of veto would be used for regulatory bodies such as the CRTC. Does the hon. member remember that? He recommended a veto power by committees for appointees to the CRTC, to the Canadian Transport Commission, to regulatory bodies, to positions of the House of Commons. Just imagine that, but this was a very good recommendation.

    The final recommendation the committee made on veto, which all members of the House agreed to, concerned not only regulatory bodies, but also the privacy commissioners, commissioners that are appointed by cabinet.

    The point is this: that what the committee recommended unanimously was that there would not be a veto for positions that included ambassadors or anybody else and that is what is in our standing orders. That is what the opposition agreed to and that is now what it is disagreeing with.

  +-(1530)  

+-

    Mr. Randy White: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. This is an opposition day of debate. I ask the members, in particular the member who just got through babbling on for 20 minutes, to try to get to the point. We do have another point of order coming up that is rather lengthy.

+-

    The Speaker: Of course the Chair is very interested in getting to the point. I thought we got to the point. The hon. member for Gander--Grand Falls has completed his remarks. It was perhaps a circuitous route to get to the point he wanted to make, but we will now hear from the government House leader.

+-

    Hon. Ralph Goodale (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, Minister responsible for the Canadian Wheat Board and Federal Interlocutor for Métis and Non-Status Indians, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I note that my great friend from Newfoundland always has such a calming influence on the House of Commons that I am delighted to be able to speak after him on the very important point he has made. I have four quick points I wish to make very briefly.

    First, having listened to the discussion over the last number of minutes involving people who were participants in the committee work earlier today, what I hear from those representations is obviously a disagreement among committee members with respect to work that went on in the committee this morning. Some obviously are satisfied with what the committee did, others are dissatisfied, but it is important to note that what we have here primarily is a dispute among members with respect to the satisfactory nature, or not, of the committee's work.

    Second, it would appear that some members in the committee wish to pursue a line of questioning that has to do with certain allegations and accusations. I think that in all of the representations that have been made, it has been conceded that while different members may have different views with respect to those allegations and accusations, they are in fact in the category of things that are unproven and unsubstantiated, allegations or accusations that members may or may not believe but are not in the realm of that which is proven.

    Third, it appears to me from the time during which I was able to watch some of those committee proceedings through the television service of the House of Commons that the ambassador designate provided a very fulsome and extensive description of his view of his qualifications and his aspirations as a representative of Canada overseas. He was very fulsome in coming forward with his description of those things. I would note that in fact it was a three hour meeting, which provided a very substantial opportunity for views to be expressed and questions to be asked.

    Finally, I would note that in any event, as is well established by the procedures of the House, a committee is in fact the master of its own procedure. There is obviously a complaint about the committee's work on the part of some members, but I would observe that whether a member is particularly happy or unhappy with what a committee has done, a complaint about the nature of the work does not constitute a question of privilege. In fact, what we are left with is a disagreement among members about what that work was, the overriding consideration being that the committee is in fact the master of its own procedure and is able to determine these things for itself.

+-

    Mr. Bill Blaikie (Winnipeg--Transcona, NDP): Mr. Speaker, just briefly because I know you probably would like this to end and so would the official opposition so they can get back to the business of their opposition day, I have a few things to say.

    I would not want you to pay too much attention, Mr. Speaker, to the remarks of the hon. member from Newfoundland, because he was refuting an argument that nobody is making. Nobody is arguing that the committee has the power to veto the appointment of Mr. Gagliano as ambassador to Denmark. As fine an argument as that is and as well grounded in the facts of the McGrath report as it is, it is completely irrelevant to the claim being made on the floor of the House here today, which really is about what would constitute the full power of the committee to review, not to veto, the appointment of Mr. Gagliano.

    What is being argued here is basically that by virtue of the decision that was taken in committee today, the committee is not able to live up to the responsibilities that it is assigned by the standing order that came out of the McGrath report, not some imaginary standing order that the member from Newfoundland has done such a great job of refuting, but the real standing order, which says that there shall be an ability to:

examine the qualifications and competence of the appointee or nominee to perform the duties of the post to which he or she has been appointed or nominated.

    It would seem very odd to me that in fulfilling this kind of responsibility it would be against the rules to inquire of anyone about the job the person just had, about the responsibility the person just finished executing. That is the nub of the debate here: whether or not the ruling in the committee today prohibits members from asking questions about the newly appointed ambassador's former responsibility. That is the question before the House, not whether or not there is a veto, not whether or not we are the United States, and not all the other things that the member from Newfoundland brought up to sort of puff up and fill the House with gas and have us diverted from the real point.

    I would urge you to rule on the real point here, Mr. Speaker, and not on the straw man that the member from Newfoundland has erected for our entertainment but certainly not for our enlightenment.

  +-(1535)  

+-

    Mr. Paul Szabo (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I was at the three hour committee meeting. The member for Portage--Lisgar made reference to past accusations against Mr. Gagliano. I think that with due care there have been no accusations against the former minister.

    In fact, this issue has to do with allegations and innuendo. Other than the Groupaction issue which has come up now, all of the other allegations or innuendo are all matters which have been before the House previously, all matters which have been disposed of by the ethics councillor or otherwise disposed of.

    The last speaker, the member for Winnipeg--Transcona, also questioned whether the prior job was relevant to the ability to do the job. He is quite right, Mr. Speaker, and I think you would agree that the experience and expertise of an individual is relevant. What is not relevant though is whether or not we can dig into allegations and innuendo. There have been no charges laid; there have been no legal proceedings. There have been no questions that have been unanswered.

    Mr. Speaker, from this standpoint the issue is a matter of using allegations as the basis for questions and fishing rather than using proven facts and evidence that is prima facie.

    Finally I point out that the Minister of Public Works and Government Services did not, as a headline suggests, blame some issue on some previous member. All he simply did was to refer to the fact that there have been three directors general and two ministers since this event occurred. That was a spin of the media and certainly not the representation of the minister.

    The chairman of the committee was very forthright with the committee. He read out the terms of reference and also outlined in great detail exactly what we could do in terms of the examination under question. There was also a reaffirmation by the clerk of the committee and there was a ruling. As soon as the issue came up in the first instance by the member for Portage--Lisgar, it was challenged on the basis that the chair had laid it out. There was a challenge to the chair and the chair's decision was sustained.

    The committee fully exhausted the grounds on which it could explore this thing. It did not exclude references to any aspects of the job and prior jobs of Mr. Gagliano, but it certainly dealt directly with allegations and innuendo as being inappropriate in regard to that examination.

+-

    Mr. Peter MacKay (Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I concur with the suggestion that this issue of the veto has been really put forward as an attempt to lay out some rabbit tracks, so I will not delve into the gaseous emissions from the Newfoundland member.

    With respect to the actual report and the relevance of the committee work I think what is important in your ruling on this point, Mr. Speaker, is the ability of the committee to bring forward a negative report, that is, if members of the committee wish to bring forward a negative finding and in order to do so need to expound upon the evidence that would enable them to do so.

    This goes to the very root of committees work, its ability to garner evidence that allows it to bring forward a negative report, a dissenting report, other than that which the Liberal dominated majority of the committee may decide upon. That is the crux of the matter here. It is important that you, Mr. Speaker, take that into consideration.

    As for the delay, I will not touch upon the Janus faced tears of the official opposition House leader when he suggests that somehow this is an important matter to discuss. Of course it was important for him to delay a supply day motion on behalf of the PC/DR coalition just last week so I will leave that to the Chair.

  +-(1540)  

[Translation]

+-

    Ms. Francine Lalonde: Mr. Speaker, thank you for hearing us. I have a great deal of respect for the chair of our committee, but my question goes beyond my respect for her, because I believe—and this is what I would like you to consider—that the committee was not able to exercise its powers pursuant to Standing Order 111(2).

    The order reads, “—examine the qualifications”, therefore he is accountable, “and competence—”.

    If in the French version, there is a distinction between skills and competence. The only way to examine someone's competence is to look at their experience. There is no other way. If we cannot consider their experience, there is no way of gauging their competence, and if that is the case, we are not able to exercise our judgment.

    Then, the French version refers to the ability of the appointee or nominee to perform the duties. We said, and it is a fact, or at least it is a fact in Quebec, that the reputation of the hon. Gagliano is seriously tarnished and damaged. This is a fact. This is not an allegation, but a fact. The committee, and its review, cannot ignore this, and we cannot help but ask the ambassador for his thoughts about carrying out the duties of his future position.

    Therefore, we were not able to do our job, and that is what I want to point out to you.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: I would like to thank the hon. member for Mercier for raising this question, as well as all of the hon. members who took part in the discussion: the member for Burnaby--Douglas, the member for Winnipeg--Transcona, the member for Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough, the member for Cumberland--Colchester, the member for Gander--Grand Falls, the member for Mississauga South, as well as the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons. I hope I did not forget anyone.

    I will take the matter under advisement and get back to the House later with my decision on this important matter.

    We can carry on. The hon. member for Portage--Lisgar has another question of privilege.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Canadian Alliance Communications Material

+-

    Mr. Brian Pallister (Portage--Lisgar, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, on February 28 the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister raised a question of privilege claiming that the dignity of the House was in question and suggested that it had something to do with statements I made outside the House.

    I have the utmost respect for the House, its members and the authority of the Speaker. I have the utmost respect even for the member for Leeds--Grenville but I take offence to these kinds of accusations.

    The member's charge of contempt involves my charge of contempt against his colleague, the Minister of National Defence. His case appears to be more a prima facie case of tit for tat than it is one of contempt.

    I raised my question of privilege against the Minister of National Defence because I believed that parliament deserved, and its members required, truthful and precise information. The fact that it was a minister of the crown involved made it that much more serious because the principle of ministerial responsibility provides the foundation of our constitutional system for the control of power. Providing parliament with accurate information and being responsible for that information is a key responsibility of a minister.

    The parliamentary secretary would have us believe that he is protecting the dignity of the House. The way I see it and the way Canadians will see it is that the Prime Minister through his parliamentary secretary is trying to protect the Minister of National Defence and the reputation of his government. If he were interested in the dignity of the House he would not be trying to censor the opposition from exposing his government's disrespectful and dismissive view of the House and its members. As John Diefenbaker once said:

If parliament is to be preserved as a living institution, His Majesty's Loyal Opposition must fearlessly perform its functions. The reading of history proves that freedom always dies when criticism ends.

    My accuser is noticeably upset with my charge of contempt against his colleague, the Minister of National Defence. He desperately wants the criticism of the way his government is handling this issue to end but it will not end. If anything, the way in which the government has responded to this criticism will encourage it.

    My responsibility and the responsibility of members on this side of the House is to protect Canadians from the tyranny of the majority. Such tyranny must be guarded against. We saw ample evidence of that this morning in the committee examining the ambassadorial appointment of former public works minister Alfonso Gagliano.

    The government has aborted the committee's inquiry into the defence minister's conflicting statements about prisoners in Afghanistan in order to prevent further embarrassment for the minister. Liberal MPs vehemently opposed requests for more evidence after going through a preliminary round of 11 witnesses. The Liberals on the committee used their majority to defeat motions, to call witnesses, to gather more facts, to get more information, to recall the minister, and to resolve questions raised by contradictions between his testimony and that of the Canadian military chief of staff.

  +-(1545)  

+-

    Mr. Joe Jordan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. If the member were to review the transcript and look at the point of privilege I raised he would see that it was a very specific issue. The issue was that the language that was being used on the question of privilege one was allowed in making the charge before the Speaker by using phrases like deliberately misled when making the charge.

    My question of privilege pointed out, and I backed it up with transcript evidence, that it continued outside this place, that is the use of words and phrases like, lied and deliberately misled, which were unparliamentary. My question of privilege dealt with the issue of whether a member of the House can say outside the House what the member is not allowed to say inside the House. It is as simple as that. The re-arguing of the issue that was before the committee does not have any relevance to the point of privilege.

    As far as I am concerned the issue is very straightforward. If it cannot be said in here members cannot say it outside the House. That is the issue, Mr. Speaker, that you need to rule on.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: The hon. member for Leeds--Grenville had an opportunity to bring his case to the House through the Chair. I would hope and will do my best not to allow a debate to take place. I would like to hear further from the hon. member for Portage--Lisgar.

*   *   *

+-Points of Order

+-Tabling of Document

[Points of Order]
+-

    Hon. Don Boudria (Minister of Public Works and Government Services, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order.

    First, I apologize to the hon. member.

    I am willing to table the document “Affidavit--Analysis and Sponsorship Opportunities”. This is the affidavit provided by the company Groupaction that was promised.

[Translation]

    So, this is the sworn affidavit provided by Groupaction which I promised to table in the House, and I am doing so right now.

*   *   *

  +-(1550)  

[English]

+-Privilege

+-Canadian Alliance Communications Material

[Privilege]
+-

    Mr. Brian Pallister: Mr. Speaker, again my intention is to address the member's question of privilege. Despite his admonitions to the contrary I am attempting to deal with the specific accusations he has levelled against me, as frivolous as I believe them to be.

    The statements by the minister of defence to the committee, which were contradicted subsequently by the chief of defence staff and by the deputy chief of defence staff, would be something that hon. members would think committee members would want to get to the bottom of. I raise this as an example of something that illustrates where the tyranny of the majority who want to get to the end of the process rather than the bottom of it was used.

    I give this as an example to you, Mr. Speaker, because I think it is important. The Prime Minister's parliamentary secretary who has raised this question of privilege against me, said in advance of the committee's work that he would vote against all motions for more witnesses. That he would vote against all witnesses coming before the committee clearly betrays the government's desire to simply get to the end of the process as fast as it can, not to get to the bottom of it.

    Now the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister is trying to use a question of privilege to discourage the opposition from criticizing the minister. I would like to tell the parliamentary secretary through you, Mr. Speaker, that he cannot silence me and he will not silence the members of the Canadian Alliance in this way.

    He cannot end allegations of cover-up and manipulation of information on the part of the government by continuing that kind of behaviour. If he wants to end the criticism, he should begin for example by telling the member for Toronto--Danforth to stop threatening the witnesses who appear before the committee. He should urge the minister of defence to come clean and apologize. He should suggest to the Prime Minister that he get a new minister of defence. This bogus question of privilege will not end a thing.

    As I said earlier, I respect the rules of the House and your authority, Mr. Speaker. I would not accuse any member of deliberately misleading the House unless I was prepared to formally raise it as a question of privilege with a motion so that the House might make a decision.

    I did so in the case of the minister of defence in accordance with our rules and practices. Accordingly you, Mr. Speaker, permitted me to move my motion. I noted that the government members tried to spin your ruling and claim that you did not find a prima facie question of privilege.

    At the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs on Thursday, February 28, Joseph Maingot, the author of Parliamentary Privilege in Canada, was asked that specific question. He responded by saying that finding a prima facie question of privilege was the only basis on which the Speaker could allow a motion to be put. Apart from unanimous consent that is the procedure.

    Just because the Speaker did not use those words does not mean there was no prima facie question of privilege. To the disappointment of certain members, a prima facie question of privilege was found. A motion was moved. The motion was adopted. The matter was then sent to the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs for consideration.

    In my presentation in the House and at committee, I had no choice but to use words such as “deliberately misleading” in reference to the minister's behaviour because that was my specific charge. The rules require that I make a specific charge when I raise a question of privilege.

    I reviewed the presentation of the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and I see no specific charge against me. The member claims that material put in the public domain reflects on the dignity of the House. It is fair to say that it reflects on the reputation of the minister of defence. That is the consequence of being charged with such a serious offence as the minister of defence has been charged with.

    It is ironic that what I assert is that the minister was deceptive in his behaviour to the House, but I have not asserted his incompetence. If the minister in his own defence claims he is neither devious nor is he incompetent, he is incompetent to understand his own briefings, he is incompetent to forward relevant information to the Prime Minister. It is ironic that he would contradict in his own testimony, the testimony of the chief of defence staff with whom he has to work so closely and that the committee would then dismiss that issue as if it meant nothing when of course it does.

  +-(1555)  

    The committee's behaviour and the conduct of the member for Leeds--Grenville as a member of that committee demonstrate again better than I can the irony of this situation. In their attempt to pass this process on and to move it quickly forward, what they have done is they have raised more questions about the competence of the minister of defence than the opposition could ever have raised.

    In closing, I followed the procedures of the House with respect to my charge against the minister. I respected the rules. My remarks were parliamentary. What I said was said at the appropriate time in the appropriate way.

    With respect to the remarks I made outside the House referred to by the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister in his presentation, it should be noted that what I said outside the House was consistent with what I said inside the House and it was consistent with what I said in committee. If the circumstances allowed me to use certain words uttered inside the House, uttered inside committee, then those same circumstances allow for the same words to be uttered outside the House.

    The charge against me is weak. It is a poor and desperate attempt to diffuse the real affront facing parliament today. The real affront facing parliament is the behaviour of the government and its flippant and arrogant attitude toward the processes of the House and the principle of responsible government.

    As an opposition member of parliament I will continue to expose wrongdoing when I see wrongdoing, corruption when corruption is found. I shall continue to defend the dignity of the House. I will call to task any minister who deliberately misleads the House.

    As Lester Pearson once said, the opposition functions as the detergent of democracy. It has been my experience that the dirtier things are, the more important it is to have good detergent.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: If I may, before recognizing the hon. member for Lakeland, the Chair has tried to demonstrate some latitude to both the member for Portage--Lisgar and of course the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister, but I hope that with the other testimony we can focus somewhat as quickly as we possibly can on the question of privilege raised by the parliamentary secretary.

+-

    Mr. Leon Benoit (Lakeland, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister has raised a question of privilege claiming that I brought up issues in public which should have been left under the auspices of the committee and dealt with by committee. The fact is that this debate was already in the public domain.

    The charges against the minister are widespread and have been openly discussed in public and had been at the time we put out our press release. They have been in televised meetings of the procedure and House affairs committee. They have been talked about in scrums and in the media in quite a wide way. I have said nothing that can be considered new that has not first been said at either the procedure committee or even discussed by the minister himself outside the confines of the House of Commons. What did I say that had not been said before by someone else? I think the answer to that is nothing.

    We have not said anything that differs from what was said inside or outside the House by the government itself in fact. We are simply stating the obvious and what the minister himself has already admitted to in some detail and very clearly in fact. Several major newspaper editorial boards have also come to the same obvious conclusion. I think almost everyone in the country has come to the same conclusion except the government members on the committee.

    As well, I personally have heard government members say in scrums and in media interviews that there is nothing they have heard yet which constitutes contempt. In other words, they themselves outside committee have been saying that from what they have heard at committee, there is no reason to find the minister in contempt. The hon. parliamentary secretary has come to the House and has claimed that because members of the opposition have gone outside the House that somehow they are in breach of his privilege. Why on the one hand is it wrong, but when it is government members doing exactly the same thing it is not wrong? I cannot understand that.

    The parliamentary secretary is simply trying to stifle open debate on this important issue. That is exactly what is going on. We have seen this type of goonish bullying lately by the government whip. This type of intimidation may work with frightened timid Liberal backbenchers but I can tell the House that it will not work with me and it will not work with my colleagues on this side, nor should it work. We will not be intimidated.

    I will fight to the end for my right as a member of parliament to free speech regardless of whether or not it offends the government or that particular member. It is important that I can speak on behalf of myself and on behalf of my constituents without coming under this type of attack that I find myself under right now.

    It is important to read the press release the member was referring to in his presentation to the House when he claimed this breach of privilege. It is important that the press release he referred to be read into the record. I hope everyone understands that when I read this, of course I cannot use the names as they are in the press release. What I will do is change those names to the name of the riding as is appropriate in the House. It is critical that we have all of this on the record for the public to see, for members of the House to see, and for you to see, Mr. Speaker.

    The title of the press release is “Eggleton's Excuses Contradicted”.

  +-(1600)  

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: The practice of the House is quite clear that we cannot do indirectly what we cannot do directly. If the reference is to the Minister of National Defence, maybe the member for Lakeland would like to start over.

+-

    Mr. Leon Benoit: Mr. Speaker, just after I said I would change the names to the ridings or to the position I went ahead and read the name. I apologize for that.

    The press release states:

It is clear that [the] Minister of Defence...deliberately misled the House of Commons when he changed his story about when he knew about the full details of capture and turnover of prisoners by Canadian soldiers in Afghanistan, say several members of the Official Opposition.

The Canadian Alliance reasserted charges against the Minister today after testimony by Vice-Admiral Gregg Maddison before the Procedure and House Affairs Committee. Maddison, under questioning from the Alliance Justice Critic...described the briefing he gave [the Minister of National Defence] on January 21--

“The Minister was briefed that we had been on a successful mission, that we had followed the appropriate rules of engagement, that none of our people were hurt, that we had captured suspected Afghani terrorists, or al-Qaida terrorists, that they had been transported safely, that they had been turned over to the Americans”.

    The press releases further states:

“The Minister's feeble defence that he did not fully understand the extent of Canadian involvement has been shot full of holes by senior military commander”, said Canadian Alliance Foreign Affairs Critic...[The Canadian Alliance foreign affairs critic] was the first witness before the committee to testify about [the Minister of National Defence's] misleading statements in the House. “Vice-Admiral Madison made it...clear today that the briefing he gave the Minister on January 21 was complete and unambiguous”, said [the foreign affairs critic for the Canadian Alliance].

“The evidence is now very clear that [the] Minister [Minister of National Defence] deliberately misled the House of Commons and Canadians”, said--

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Order, please. I am again experiencing some difficulty with regard to the same principle of not being able to do indirectly what we cannot directly do in the House. All members would recognize that if a member accused another member of “deliberately misleading”, he or she would be asked to withdraw.

    I know it is difficult and I know the member is doing everything possible to meet the spirit and the letter of the rules of the House by naming the portfolios and the riding, but I hope we can avoid that in what remains in the particular correspondence or press release that is being read.

+-

    Mr. Leon Benoit: Just two short quotes left, Mr. Speaker. It is very difficult when four members of the official opposition brought before the House a claim of breach of privilege when we cannot read into the record the press release that the claim is based upon. I am sure you can understand that.

    The last two paragraphs of the press release state:

The evidence is now very clear that [the] Minister [Minister of National Defence] deliberately--

    I am sorry, Mr. Speaker, but I do not know how else to say this to get it on record.

  +-(1605)  

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: The Chair has, as best as I possibly can, shown some latitude. I obviously did not interrupt the first time it was stated but I would hope that we could avoid that same charge that has already been laid and has been part of a press release, I believe, by the hon. member and some of his colleagues using the words “deliberately misled”.

    However, I must state again that it is not our practice nor do we ever accept it. It is already on the record. I would hope we could avoid that in the remaining paragraph or two that the hon. member for Lakeland might have.

+-

    Mr. Leon Benoit: Mr. Speaker, I certainly do not want to do anything to offend you.

    The last two paragraphs are as follows:

“The evidence is now very clear that [the] Minister [Minister of National Defence...misled the House of Commons and Canadians”, said [the member from Lakeland, the Canadian Alliance defence critic]. “Of course the Vice-Admiral would give the Minister a full briefing--our military personnel are thorough and professional at all times. It's a shame that the Minister chose to [mislead] Canadians. And it's sad that we had to pull Mr. Maddison away from his important duties to show that the deception was indeed intentional”.

[The] Alliance Deputy House Leader [the member for Renfrew--Nipissing--Pembroke] added, “I hope that [the] Minister [Minister of National Defence] will now be willing to come forward and admit that his misleading statements were indeed intentional. Now that his explanation has been contradicted, the right thing to do would be to admit that he...misled the House of Commons, and Canadians”.

    That was the press release upon which these allegations were made. I appreciate being allowed read it for the record because it was important.

    The Liberals were successful in using their majority to shut the committee down and to kill the democratic process but I will not allow them to intimidate or stop me from voicing my views or the views of my constituents. I have taken an oath as a member of parliament and have an obligation to protect my freedom of speech and to protect the freedom of speech of my constituents. I think the member is interfering in that right.

    The behaviour on the part of the parliamentary secretary is the type that has marginalized this House and its committees over time. This government has mused and mouthed words that it wants parliamentary reform. We hear that in here all the time. However, until it actually backs its words up with appropriate behaviour, its lofty pledges concerning parliament will be dumped into the trash bin of history.

+-

    Mrs. Cheryl Gallant (Renfrew--Nipissing--Pembroke, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, I rise to respond to the question of privilege raised by the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister on Thursday, February 28.

    First, I ask for the Speaker's indulgence in the remarks that I am about to make. I have had a considerable amount of time to reflect on the events surrounding the Minister of National Defence and the Prime Minister which have led to the question of privilege by the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister.

    While I appreciate that my comments are to be directed to the matter at hand and not debate, the seriousness of the issue at hand demands a full discussion as the health of our parliamentary institution is at stake.

    Let us examine what was said outside the House and how it was said. The Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister is objecting to a media release that was posted on the Canadian Alliance website. Specifically, he gives the following quote attributed to me:

I hope that [the Minister of National Defence] will now be willing to come forward and admit that his misleading statements were indeed intentional. Now that his explanation has been contradicted, the right thing to do would be to admit that he deliberately misled the House of Commons, and Canadians.

    As a member of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs, I want the record to show that I have indeed been very careful in not seeking out media interviews or issuing any media releases from my office on the subject before the committee.

    On the other hand, my colleagues on the government side have had freedom of speech outside the House when referring to committee proceedings.

    It is with much consideration then that I look at this question of privilege, particularly when the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister makes the comment that he is uncomfortable with the timing of his question of privilege.

    Perhaps the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister would be more uncomfortable if he would be required to confirm to you, Mr. Speaker, and to this House that at precisely the same time he was rising in the House on his question of privilege, the Prime Minister's deputy minister, the Clerk of the Privy Council, delivered a letter to the chair of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs, the member for Peterborough.

    The letter accuses me, in the words of the Prime Minister's deputy, of alleging that the Deputy Clerk of the Privy Council, and I quote the letter:

--that the Deputy Clerk...may have intentionally misled Parliamentarians with respect to the deployment of the JTF-2 on a military operation outside Canada.

    By way of explanation, the Prime Minister's deputy then quoted the Chief of the Defence Staff, as if the Deputy Clerk himself were not able to answer on his own when in fact he is counsel, security and intelligence co-ordinator for the Privy Council.

    I ask, Mr. Speaker, that you dismiss this question of privilege on the grounds that it is an attempt to intimidate a member of parliament for the questions asked in a committee of this House looking into the misleading statements that were made by the Minister of National Defence.

    I believe this point to be of such a serious nature that I will now read into the record the relevant sections from the Prime Minister's deputy's letter to the chair of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs as well as my response to the chair. It states:

I must also express to you my strong concern about the allegation by the Member for Renfrew--Nipissing--Pembroke--

  +-(1610)  

+-

    Mr. Geoff Regan: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I need to ask how this is relevant to the question of whether the member did or did not make certain statements outside the House. I do not see how this is relevant to whether she did or did not.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: I know from past experience that the matter of relevance can be stretched a great distance. However, in most cases, if not all times, we get back to the essence of the subject matter. Sometimes we need a little bit more time to make the case.

    The Chair has demonstrated the same latitude to both sides of the House. I would ask members to bear with the Chair and give colleagues an opportunity to make their case and then we can come to a ruling at some point in time.

+-

    Mrs. Cheryl Gallant: Mr. Speaker, I promise in the end of my statements to show my comments now relate to the matter at hand.

    I am quoting from the letter from Mr. Cappe, the Clerk of the Privy Council, to the chairman of the Standing Committee on Procedures and House Affairs. He states:

I must also express to you my strong concern about the allegation by the Member for Renfrew--Nipissing--Pembroke that the Deputy Clerk of the Privy Council, Mr. Richard Fadden, may have intentionally misled Parliamentarians with respect to the deployment of JTF-2 on a military operation outside Canada.

    I will now quote my letter to the chair of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs in response to the allegation of the deputy of the Prime Minister's. It states:

As a Member of Parliament for Her Majesty's Official Opposition, my constitutional role is clearly defined to scrutinize the actions of government in an atmosphere of professionalism.

A careful perusal of the unedited transcripts of our committee show at no point did I use the word “intentional” in reference to deputy clerk Fadden's testimony. It was a statement of the facts given to our committee on this point by Fadden and certainly if he was in error on a key historical fact as to whether or not Joint Task Force 2 (JTF2) had been deployed outside Canada in the past, then he might have been in error on other points. I was not aware that questioning the reliability of a witness, regardless of who they are, in that manner is inappropriate.

I believe you recognized this when you acknowledged that I kept to parliamentary language in my questioning.

It would seem that it is Mr. Cappe who is drawing an inference from my remarks and stating it as a given fact in his letter when he writes “intentionally misleading”. I draw your attention to the actual exchange:

(Myself):

As part of the combined force sent to Rwanda, elements of the JTF2 were also deployed. Given those facts, would you not agree that your deputy clerk has misinformed the committee?

(The Clerk of the Privy Council):

Did he mislead the committee? I don't think he did it intentionally, if that was your inference.

It is clear from this exchange and the rest of my testimony that at no point did I use the words “intentionally” or “misled”. Curiously, Mr. Cappe is not denying that Mr. Fadden may have misled the committee, only that he did not do so intentionally. In fact it would appear that Mr. Cappe was drawing an inference from my use of the word “misinformed” even though I pointed out that Mr. Fadden had not qualified his words when he repeated that the JTF2 had never been deployed outside Canada for any reason previously.

As the most senior political appointment to the federal public service by the Prime Minister, the Clerk of the Privy Council does have a duty and a responsibility to maintain the professional integrity of all servants. Equally so, I am sure you will agree, Mr. Chairman, that it would be inappropriate for a public servant, even if it was unintentional, to suggest limits on parliamentarians, certainly when it comes to what is appropriate in a parliamentary committee.

    Unfortunately in my experience this is not the first time the Privy Council, through the counsel of security and intelligence co-ordinator, has found it necessary to write to the chair of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs to clarify comments to our committee recently. Mr. Fadden wrote to our committee chair on January 2 of this year regarding the contempt charges against the Minister of Justice in the premature release of the information outside the House on Bill C-36.

    This evidence demonstrates that the Prime Minister's parliamentary secretary is not alone in this campaign of intimidation. The Prime Minister's ministry, the Privy Council, has been fully engaged in this campaign of intimidation. After the Deputy Clerk of the Privy Council appeared before the committee, and after I questioned the Prime Minister's deputy, the Liberal member for Toronto--Danforth openly threatened to fire witnesses who contradicted the Minister of National Defence.

    These are hardly the actions of people concerned about the dignity of parliament. These actions themselves should be considered contempt. From the procedural book written by the member for Scarborough--Rouge River, The Power of Parliamentary Houses to Send for Persons, Papers & Records, at page 78 it references a resolution passed by the U.K. House from March 8, 1688.

  +-(1615)  

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Order, please. I hope you will find that the Chair has been patient. However, in fairness to the House, I have a suspicion that maybe there is a fair amount in that text remaining and yet another colleague to be heard and possibly others. As I stated earlier with regard to relevancy, I have tried to demonstrate some latitude but I would hope that in the next minutes we could focus on the actual, if I may use the term charge or more appropriately the question of privilege. It would be very helpful to the Chair and to the House.

    Without taking anything away from the member's ability to state her case, could the Chair ask for as much co-operation as possible without minimizing the ability of the member to state her own case in this very important matter.

+-

    Mrs. Cheryl Gallant: Mr. Speaker, the arrogance of the government, its track record of intimidation and ruthlessness are cause for concern. You must take these factors into consideration in your role as defender of the minority against the tyranny of this majority.

    I will give you, Mr. Speaker, another example as to why you should not allow this matter to proceed.

    I participated in three contempt charges against a minister at the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs. Despite the testimony, the Liberal majority on the committee failed to take any action to curtail ministers from making a mockery of parliament and members of parliament. They did not invoke any consequences to the former minister of justice with respect to her briefing the media on Bill C-15 ahead of members and before the bill was tabled in the House. They let her off the hook entirely the second time when Bill C-36 was also leaked to the media.

    It appears that the outcome of the question of privilege involving the minister of defence is heading in the same direction of a Liberal cover-up as a result of public comments made in advance of the Standing Committee and Procedure and House Affairs report to the House.

    We have witnessed over the years the persuasive powers of the Prime Minister in directing the Liberal majority in the House. I cannot accept that the Prime Minister's parliamentary secretary has been permitted to pursue this question of privilege if the government were not concerned that the truth could become known to the Canadian people. This is obviously just an intimidation tactic.

    My colleagues have already made the point that the use of words such as deliberately misleading outside the House, under these circumstances, is perfectly in order and does not amount to contempt. No statements contributed to me and my colleagues in any way tarnish the reputation of the minister of defence. Public debate has already passed comment on the competence of the minister.

    The point I do want to make is the fact that there is a real attempt on behalf of the government members and the Prime Minister's deputy minister to intimidate opposition members. In this situation, the only protection afforded to us is your decision not to allow the Prime Minister's parliamentary secretary to move his motion because once the motion is moved, our fate is in the hands of the Liberal majority, which is controlled by the Prime Minister.

    The Prime Minister is bent on defending his minister at all costs. His determination and ruthlessness in doing so has no bounds.

    We had an example the other week, during the election of the chairman of the finance committee. The government whip was threatening opposition members and staff, as well as government members, to get the Prime Minister's choice for chairman elected.

    It would be irresponsible to hand over to the majority Liberal government the fate of opposition members whose only crime is that we were being effective members of the opposition. That is what you are charged with protecting. In this scenario, that means you should sooner as opposed to later rule that this matter is not a prima facie question of privilege.

    From a communications point of view, bringing this matter up in the way the parliamentary secretary has done, has been calculated as doing less damage than a positive finding in the committee. If the actions of the defence minister embarrasses the government, then why is it inviting more debate in the House? If it is worried about hearing the words deliberately misleading associated with the minister of defence, then I point out that because of this question of privilege I have heard those words again several times.

    I looked at the Hansard from February 28, when the parliamentary secretary first brought up this matter. The words deliberately misleading were mentioned at least six times in the short debate on the question of privilege of that day. I would not be surprised if it is repeated a few more times before we complete today.

    Maybe now the parliamentary secretary gets it. The issue is before parliament in a formal way, as a formal charge. Therefore, we can say the D word and the M word. We are not fooling anyone by not saying them. Everyone knows what the issue is.

    Through you, Mr. Speaker, to the parliamentary secretary, I stand by my statement. I will not be intimidated. This I do to protect our democratic institution and the rights of all Canadians.

  +-(1620)  

+-

    Mr. Dennis Mills (Toronto--Danforth, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I had no intention of participating here this afternoon, but I was listening to the member's remarks in my office. The member suggested that I had instructed or wished that witnesses would lie, when in fact that was not the case.

    What I did say was that anybody who worked for me who tried to publicly embarrass me on national television, I would dismiss them. In no way, shape or form did I ever suggest that the deputy chief of defence staff should lie.

    I would ask the member to please withdraw her remarks that I suggested that those people lie. I have served in the House--

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Respectfully to the hon. member for Toronto--Danforth, I believe we are engaging in debate. I do not want to hear any more about that matter.

  +-(1625)  

+-

    Mr. Dennis Mills: Mr. Speaker, I have served in the House for 14 years and you are aware of my high regard for both you and the chair. I do not believe it is right that it be left to stand on the record that a member can refer to me as lying in the House. I do not find that acceptable.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Respectfully again to the hon. member for Toronto--Danforth, with regard to the specifics of the matter raised by him, I will review the blues to be certain as to what might have been said.

    I do not believe, in my limited experience from the chair, that I could ask a member to withdraw something that was said about someone else. I want to be sure exactly what the transcripts say before I make any ruling or follow up on the point of order raised. Upon review of the blues, if necessary, I will return to the House to continue on that particular matter.

+-

    Mr. Randy White (Langley--Abbotsford): Mr. Speaker, I have several comments. My colleague read a speech which she is checking to determine exactly what she said and we will get back to you on that.

    Through no fault of the Canadian Alliance, this was brought up at a time when we were debating the circumstances around the Kyoto agreement. Would the House be prepared to give unanimous consent to allow us to continue that debate for the time lost as a result of bringing this question of privilege forward. It was not at our request.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Does the House give its consent?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    Some hon. members: No.

+-

    Mr. Randy White: Mr. Speaker, I advise the House that we will take appropriate time during the government debates to use its allotted times in concurrence motions and so on. We will get our time back on this whether government members like it or not. They will have to pay for the time.

    This is a serious accusation placed before three of my colleagues which cannot go without action, so I will recommend a motion here today that perhaps will fix the issue. It is time that perhaps we take this issue to a committee and study it. We will also be insisting on a various number of witnesses, which I will outline a little later. We have no problem at all in bringing this to a committee and having that motion brought up.

    My contribution to this question of privilege will point out a few flaws in the argument put forward by the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister. The member's complaint has identified press releases and statements made outside the House by certain members of the opposition regarding the minister of defence, namely that the minister of defence deliberately misled the House.

+-

     The Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister has not demonstrated how his privileges have been breached by statements made by other members about another member. On page 247 of Joseph Maingot's Parliamentary Privilege in Canada it states:

In the event that another Member wished to have these same matters debated, the matters would have to be brought forward on notice...

    On the other hand, the Minister of National Defence being the so-called victim could raise this matter with you, Mr. Speaker, and seek your opinion on whether he has a prima facie question of privilege which, as you know, would allow him to move a motion without notice and have that motion take precedence over all other business. It is not up to the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister to bring the grievances of the Minister of National Defence to this House.

    It was suggested by the member for Okanagan--Shuswap on February 28 at page 9389 of Hansard:

As the member across the way has stated, this issue is being dealt with in committee. I would think that is where it should be dealt with first.

    If the member were to demonstrate how these statements are offensive to the committee he is free to do so, but I fail to see how these words would be offensive to the committee when these words describe the mandate of the committee's study.

    On February 28 the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister claimed on page 9388 of Hansard:

...even though when a member brings a question of privilege, at that particular time and during that motion...the member is allowed to use a term like misleading the House. That language is not allowed in parliament under normal circumstances and the fact that this charge has been made in the House and referred to committee I would suggest does not give licence for members to be repeating these things outside the House.

    Mr. Speaker, I would argue the very opposite is true. By virtue of a legitimate procedure of this House a charge against the minister of defence of misleading this House has been laid. A decision of the House has sent that charge to committee. Because of these decisions the question of whether or not the minister deliberately or inadvertently misled this House is in the public domain.

    The member for Lakeland and the member for Renfrew--Nipissing--Pembroke did not put it there. While the member for Portage--Lisgar initiated this debate he did so legitimately as he described earlier.

    Mr. Speaker, once you put the motion to the House it was this House that put the issue of the minister's reputation in the public domain and on the records of the House and of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs. My colleagues have been invited to and have a duty to comment on this issue.

    On page 86 of Marleau and Montpetit Speaker Fraser is quoted as saying on April 14, 1987:

“The privileges of a Member are violated by any action which might impede him or her in the fulfilment of his or her duties and functions. It is obvious that the unjust damaging of a reputation could constitute such an impediment.”

    I can see that the reputation of the minister of defence is damaged, but it is damaged by his own actions and the decision of this House and the investigation presently underway by the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs into the conflicting statements he made in the House. The damage to his reputation is not unjust. This House has the right to question a minister's actions and the standing committee has an obligation to question the minister's intent.

    Mr. Speaker, if you review the comments made by my Alliance colleagues and cited by the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister, you will note that they never detract from the question before the standing committee. They do not introduce any new charge or accusation that would further tarnish the reputation of the minister of defence.

    For example, the press release dated February 26 cited by the Prime Minister's parliamentary secretary states:

It is clear that Minister of Defence Art Eggleton deliberately misled the House of Commons when he changed his story about when he knew about the full details of capture and turnover of prisoners.

    One of the tasks of the committee is to determine whether or not the minister deliberately misled the House. Therefore this statement is a fair comment considering the committee's mandate and the debate emerging in and out of committee. The parliamentary secretary read more of the press release into the record basically saying the same thing but implicating other members. He attributes the following statement to the member for Lakeland:

The evidence is now very clear that the Minister of Defence deliberately misled the House of--

  +-(1630)  

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Order, please. Again, I would ask the co-operation of the hon. member. I know we have already put that phrase on the record knowing that in the House the Chair would not accept one member from one side of the House to charge another with that type of action. If we could at best blank the word deliberate, it would be helpful.

    I know it is difficult when we have taken the time to prepare text to respond to a question of privilege but I do ask for the utmost co-operation possible from the hon. member.

+-

    Mr. Randy White: Most editorials and Canadians concluded the same thing and have the right to grapple with the question and consider the evidence presented in an open public meeting of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs.

    The parliamentary secretary, in an effort to cast his web further and implicate the member for Renfrew--Nipissing--Pembroke, cited her statement:

I hope that the Minister of Defence will now be willing to come forward and admit that his misleading statements were indeed intentional. Now that his explanation has been contradicted, the right thing to do would be to admit that he...misled the House of Commons, and Canadians.

    I did not use the word deliberately, Mr. Speaker.

    All of these statements address the issues of the question of privilege raised by the member for Portage--Lisgar. These issues are legitimately being considered by a committee of the House in an open forum. The reputation of the Minister of National Defence in this matter cannot be attributed to the statements made by the member for Lakeland, the member for Renfrew--Nipissing--Pembroke or the member Portage--Lisgar.

    It is the House that brought the question of the minister's capacity as a member into public view. In the public and parliamentary debate words such as deliberately misleading are being used.

    Words are very important to communicate and the proper words are essential to do it right. If someone is being fined for spitting on the sidewalk words like spitting and sidewalk must be used. If one were trying to determine a murder case then the m word must be used in order not to send someone away for 25 years for poor hygiene and bad manners.

    Further evidence that the question of privilege of the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister had no legs emerged from the testimony of Joseph Maingot when he appeared before the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs as an expert witness. On Thursday, February 28 at 3.30 p.m. the member for Halifax West asked Mr. Maingot:

What is the responsibility of members of the committee looking at a question of privilege, a charge of contempt in terms of not prejudging the matter? If they make comments indicating that they have prejudged the matter, what is your view of that?

    Mr. Maingot responded:

Well, that's just human nature I think. It's human nature to do that sort of thing, but then eventually you sit down and look at all the facts and decide as a body, putting everything together and even though comments have been made by members, it's still a question of deciding, of looking at everything that's been said and done and you govern yourselves according to your own integrity.

    So it is human nature that the members would comment and draw conclusions on the testimony of the committee. I submit they did so responsibly and I venture a guess that public opinion is on their side.

    It is not uncommon for politicians to raise public support for their point of view. In fact, some Liberal members have commented in the media on the very same issue. While they have taken a different view, their comments drew attention to the issue. The issue being whether or not the Minister of National Defence is guilty of contempt for his misleading statements. We cannot pretend that this is not the issue by restricting members' use of certain words.

    Mr. Speaker, I draw to your attention a similar case made to the House not that long ago. On Monday, December 10, 2001, the hon. member for New Westminster--Coquitlam--Burnaby referred to statements of the then Minister of Citizenship and Immigration quoted in a newspaper article.

    He argued that the statements constituted a personal attack on him and an offence against the dignity of parliament. The minister suggested that the member's conduct in parliament was treasonous. The Speaker ruled that he had no authority to rule on statements made outside the House by one member against another. The Speaker could not find that a prima facie question of privilege existed.

    I suggest that there is no prima facie question of privilege in this case either.

    For the record, I do not condone those members who would make unfounded accusations against another member inside or outside of the House. I would not expect members to send out press releases containing libellous and unjust statements against a colleague. That would be wrong.

    If we examined all the prima facie cases of contempt involving members making statements about another member outside the House we would discover that the statements were not based on any formal charge but a personal opinion expressed by a member that could be considered damaging to another member's reputation.

  +-(1635)  

    The reference made by the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister from Joseph Maingot's Parliamentary Privilege in Canada on page 9389 of Hansard addresses my point. I looked at the Speaker's ruling associated with that reference. It is from June 4 and 5, 1964 at pages 3919-3920 and 3971 and 4139 to 4141 of Hansard.

    That specific case had nothing to do with comments made of a member charged with contempt by the House. All precedents cited in the ruling did not involve statements made of a member who had been formally charged with an offence by the House. The reference the parliamentary secretary attempts to use in Joseph Maingot's book addresses statements made by members that were unfounded.

    The charges against the minister of defence which led some members to comment publicly are not unfounded. They are by virtue of your decision, Mr. Speaker, prima facie. There is enough evidence against the minister of defence to give these charges priority consideration by the House and the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs. The discussion of these charges by the committee may very well lead to the conclusion that the minister deliberately misled the House. It would be impossible to come to that conclusion without being allowed to use the words necessary to describe the conclusion.

    It is perfectly in order for the members for Lakeland, Portage--Lisgar and Renfrew--Nipissing--Pembroke to use the words they used to describe the legitimate charges against the minister of defence.

    I challenge the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs to make the case against these members. Unlike the government we have nothing to hide. While I have just made the case that a prima facie question of privilege does not exist, this does not preclude the House from considering this matter or sending it to committee.

    On page 270 of Joseph Maingot's Parliamentary Privilege in Canada it references a Speaker's ruling from June 19, 1959:

“In finding that a question of privilege of the House is not prima facie...I am making a procedural decision the effect of which will not prevent the further discussion by the House of the matters in issue.”

    Therefore, Mr. Speaker, I would suggest to you that it is fully in order for the House to deal with the motion upon your decision.

    The motion we would like to see is that the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs undertake a study into the allegations made against the member for Lakeland, the member for Portage--Lisgar and the member for Renfrew--Nipissing-Pembroke by the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister and that the witnesses include but not be limited to the following persons: the Minister of National Defence, various editorial boards, various officers from the national defence department, and witnesses from the PMO and the PCO. Let us not forget we should have this televised. We are quite open to that. If the hon. member on the other side thinks we were the least bit intimidated about this he has another thing coming.

    I reiterate in the House that because this has been brought up by the government it has cost us now well over an hour, probably two hours of debate and this will cost the government double time in its debates.

  +-(1640)  

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Michel Guimond (Beauport--Montmorency--Côte-de-Beaupré--Île-d'Orléans, BQ): Mr. Speaker, first, I want to tell Canadian Alliance members that I have no intention of unduly extending my presentation, so as not to penalize them further on their opposition day on a topic very important to the Bloc Quebecois, namely the Kyoto protocol.

    However, before beginning my presentation, I need some clarification from the Chair. I would like to know if it is allowed to mention the name a member of parliament when that name is included in an article. When we quote from a newspaper article in which the name of a member of parliament is mentioned, are we allowed to quote it verbatim?

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: The rule has always been that we cannot do indirectly what we are not allowed to do directly in the House.

    Therefore, if we have a quote from a newspaper article or other, we must be very careful not to repeat words that would normally be deemed to be unparliamentary in the context of a debate here, in the House of Commons. This is the best advice I can give to the hon. member, and I hope that he will comply with these rules.

  +-(1645)  

+-

    Mr. Michel Guimond: Mr. Speaker, I believe that the question of privilege raised by the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister is a clear case. There are three colleagues involved in this question of privilege on which you need to make a ruling. While taking nothing away from the presentations by the other Canadian Alliance members, I was particularly sensitive to, and appreciative of, the approach taken by the hon. member for Portage--Lisgar in his presentation.

    We must acknowledge that there is a direct connection between the fact that the hon. member for Portage--Lisgar himself has submitted a question of privilege concerning the minister of defence, a question currently under study by the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs, on which I sit, and the question raised by the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister.

    In my opinion, Mr. Speaker, you have before you a clear case of a member who is the victim of intimidation—I would be tempted to go still further and say harassment—by another colleague. He has merely made use of a parliamentary privilege to which he is entitled as an elected member of this House.

    I am certain that you will give this question all due attention and will examine it with the care which we are accustomed to seeing you use on such matters, and which we are entitled to expect from a Speaker.

    In connection with the questions raised by the Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister regarding a release that I have no intention of rereading—to avoid doing indirectly what cannot be done directly—and the comments made by colleagues outside of the House, through a press release, I would respectfully submit that certain government members of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs do this.

    Allow me to quote the member for Halifax West, from an article published in the Globe and Mail on February 28, 2002, entitled “Eggleton Committee concludes inquiry”, signed by Allison Dunfield. In this article, the member for Halifax West is quoted. This quote is placed in quotation marks. Therefore, he uttered the words; he cannot therefore deny having spoken them. The reporter quotes him with quotation marks. The member for Halifax West told a CBC Newsworld reporter, and I quote, “I think it has become a huge bit of a circus”.

    The member for Halifax West should also then be cited for a question of privilege for having commented the issue outside the House.

    Mr. Speaker, to conclude, I would like to thank you for the numerous times that you prevented the members of the Canadian Alliance from repeating the word “deliberately”. When we drafted the report of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs this week, the Liberal majority said to us repeatedly “The notice of motion, the order of reference do not mention the word 'deliberately'”. You yourself mentioned that if we use the word “deliberately” in reference to comments made by a colleague, it would be considered unparliamentary.

  +-(1650)  

    This explains why, in the order of reference for the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs, the word “deliberately” does not appear. We have our work cut out for us.

    I thank you for the countless times you said that the word “deliberately” needed not be considered. This will be extremely useful when we consult the blues and prepare our report.

[English]

+-

    Mr. Joe Jordan (Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I want to congratulate you because these issues are not easy issues to preside over. I think you have allowed a certain amount of latitude as we are trying to work through this issue.

    I feel I need to point out a couple of key points. One is that the issue of hearing this today was not a decision by the government. It was a decision by the Speaker. If opposition members have a problem with that I suggest they take it up with the Speaker's office. I brought this issue on February 28 because under the rules of the House I had an obligation to bring it to the House at the earliest opportunity and that is what I determined to be my earliest opportunity. I would ask if the issue of timing could be addressed in the ruling, because it has been brought up numerous times that this issue somehow was not raised properly. I think if we could clear that up it would go a long way to moving this discussion forward.

    Second, in no way and at no time did I ever try to imply that opposition members could not do their job. My entire point deals with the language that they used, not their right to do their job.

    I would conclude by reading one paragraph from Maingot's Parliamentary Privilege in Canada, at page 254. I think this is demonstrated and reinforced by the fact that the opposition was not allowed to read the press release here. It states:

Language spoken during a Parliamentary proceeding that impugns the integrity of members would be unparliamentary and a breach of order contrary to the Standing Orders. But not a breach of privilege.

    If it is spoken in the House.

Spoken outside the House by a Member the same language reflecting on the Member's Parliamentary capacity would be considered contempt of the House.

    That was the issue I was raising. I think it is a very narrow and simple issue. The opposition members have confirmed they made the statement.

    Mr. Speaker, the ruling is in your hands and I look forward to your judgment.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Let me give my assurance to the House that the Chair has in fact taken this matter very seriously, from the outset when the question of privilege was first raised by the parliamentary secretary. The ruling will reflect the seriousness of the matter. I am sure that it will be made in the most reasonable time allowable to in fact give it the serious consideration and study that is required.

    I wish to thank the hon. Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and the hon. member for Toronto--Danforth, on whose issue within the context of one of the interventions from an opposition member I will again recommit myself to reviewing the blues and returning to the House if it should be necessary.

    I want to thank the hon. member for Portage--Lisgar, the hon. member for Renfrew--Nipissing--Pembroke, the hon. member for Lakeland, l'honorable député de Beauport--Montmorency--Côte-de-Beaupré--Île-d'Orléans pour leurs interventions, and also let me not forget the hon. member for Langley--Abbotsford, the House leader of the official opposition. I thank everyone for their participation and also their co-operation in what has been a sensitive and difficult matter to deal with, particularly from the context sometimes of what is parliamentary and not parliamentary within the confines of our Chamber under normal circumstances, understanding that I think the latitude was fairly distributed. I thank members for their co-operation.

    I would like to return to the debate on the official opposition motion. The hon. member for Calgary Southeast has approximately three minutes remaining in his debate, with five minutes of questions and comments.


+-Government Orders

[Supply]

*   *   *

[English]

+-Supply

+-Allotted Day--Kyoto Protocol

    The House resumed consideration of the motion.

+-

    Mr. Jason Kenney (Calgary Southeast, Canadian Alliance): Mr. Speaker, before question period I was reiterating the record of the Progressive Conservative Party on the Kyoto accord and quoting at some length from transcripts, from here and at the environment committee, of the environment critic of that party and the leader of that party who clearly and consistently have since 1997 supported the Kyoto accord. In fact during question period my friend from Fundy--Royal challenged me to come up with a quote where he actually explicitly supported the accord. He has been very artful about trying to play both sides of the field, but not artful enough, because he actually let honesty get the better of him on March 5, 1999, when he said in the House:

The Minister of Finance should step into the real world and see that climate change is for real and so is the Kyoto challenge. The truth of the matter is that we are 25% behind our goal and environmental issues continue to be a low priority for this Liberal government. Another Liberal budget has just passed and so has another opportunity for the minister to take concrete action to combat climate change. When will this government put an end to its paltry environmental record and announce new and significant economic instruments so Canadians can meet their Kyoto target?

    What could be clearer? I do not know. He then went on to state:

A target a decade or more away is likely to become irrelevant as the science continues to evolve. However the PC party will accept reaching 1990 levels by the year 2010 as an interim target--

    I understand. If he opposes Kyoto, it is because the targets are not aggressive enough and the economic damage done is not big enough. His own leader said in a recent op-ed on February 20:

Should it be made evident, following an analysis of the impact and the costs of the Kyoto protocol...I will actively support ratification.

    That is the comment of the leader of the fifth party.

    Finally, in a press release today the member for Fundy--Royal very clearly said in regard to the Tory Party:

We would have engaged in more constructive debate...on the need to postpone any decision on ratification--

    It is quite clear that the member from the Tory Party and his party are consistently in favour of this devastating accord. We will not be fooled by the political trickery of their trying to support this motion.

    In closing, pursuant to Standing Order 26(1), I move:

That the House continue to sit beyond the ordinary hour of daily adjournment for the purpose of considering the supply motion in the name of the member for Red Deer.

  +-(1655)  

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: If I could just beg the indulgence of the House to deal with another housecleaning item before 5 o'clock, 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 Acadie--Bathurst, National Defence.

    The House has heard the terms of the motion. Will those members who object to the motion please rise in their places?

    And more than 15 members having risen:

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: More than 15 members having risen, the motion is deemed to have been withdrawn.

  +-(1700)  

+-

    Mr. John Herron (Fundy--Royal, PC/DR): Mr. Speaker, I tried to be quite judicious in my earlier comments. The hon. member for Athabasca has made some constructive comments in the debate as has the hon. member for Red Deer. However we have seen the hon. member for Calgary Southeast sink to an all time low. It is indicative of the company he keeps in terms of people like Ezra Levant and his dear friend from Calgary Southwest.

    I will talk about--

+-

    Mr. John Williams: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I thought we were debating an environmental issue, not talking about friends of the hon. member for Calgary Southeast. I ask that the hon. member restrict his remarks to the issues before the House.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: If we are talking about relevance, I have seen it stretched to the limit from time to time. In fairness the hon. member was just warming up. I am sure he would have gotten to the relevance of the question before the House today.

+-

    Mr. John Herron: Mr. Speaker, I will talk about the flip flops we have seen from the Canadian Alliance in terms of its position.

    The Alliance Party had a protracted debate challenging the science with respect to climate change. It asked whether there was discernible human influence or proof that carbon dioxide was causing climate change. Alliance members are now saying they endorse it. The member for Esquimalt--Juan de Fuca stated here in the House earlier that he wanted to go beyond Kyoto in terms of carbon dioxide reductions. That has been another change. We have seen a flip flop of massive proportions.

    The only party in the House that ever proposed a carbon tax was the Reform Party. Bill Gilmour, the former Reform critic, was quoted in the Ottawa Citizen on October 24, 1997 as saying environmental taxes could be part of the equation if they were dedicated. Reform and the hon. member for Calgary Southeast advocated carbon taxes at one point in time. I call it the Kenney-Levant-Gilmour tax.

    Why does the hon. member spend so much time worrying about the Tories when it is the government we need to hold to account? We cannot have blind ratification of the accord without a sector by sector, province by province impact analysis and a provincial consensus. That is the minimum we owe Canadians. Canadians need to know the behavioural expectations the Government of Canada would put on them.

    On what date did the hon. member begin to believe in the science of climate change?

+-

    Mr. Jason Kenney: Mr. Speaker, it is peculiar that the Tory environment critic would say I have sunk to a new low. My entire speech consisted of quotes from his words in the official parliamentary transcript. He thinks that is a new low and I can understand why.

    I did not focus my remarks on the government because its position is absolutely clear. The Minister of the Environment has been clear that he is in favour of ratifying the accord the government has negotiated. It does not care about the disastrous economic consequences. It does not care about the fact that other countries including the United States are not signing on.

    One party in the House has tried to have it both ways. That is a level of political dishonesty I will not accept. The hon. member says he supports economic instruments so Canada can meet its Kyoto targets. He says the PC party would accept reaching 1990 levels by the year 2010 as an interim target. He says Kyoto would be an interim target.

    His leader said if certain studies were commissioned and done and more talk and blabber went on he would actively support ratification. In the hon. member's news release today he suggested we needed to “postpone any decision on ratification”.

    I commend the Minister of the Environment who is absolutely clear about the issue. He wants to ratify. He does not care about the jobs that would be lost. However the member of the Tory Party is trying to have it both ways. It is clear from the record that he supports the Kyoto protocol and does not care about its economic consequences. Shame on him for trying to shade it. Why does he not come out and tell us he thinks the Kyoto protocol should be ratified and that it is merely an interim target? He wants binding, job killing targets that go beyond Kyoto. That is what he said on the record.

  +-(1705)  

+-

    Mr. John Herron: Mr. Speaker, the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada is saying that regardless of whether we are part of the Kyoto protocol, as a modern country and a modern society we must have a plan to ensure we live up to our responsibilities in the world community of addressing the challenges of climate change.

    My attack is not directed toward the government at the moment, but it has been unable to develop a plan in the context of the last five years. Until it has tabled an implementation strategy of which Canadians know the impact on a sector by sector, industry by industry, province by province basis, and until we know the plan can get us there, I am not advocating that we ratify something the Government of Canada has no plan to implement.

    The Progressive Conservatives are trying to have a balanced approach. If the Government of Canada can demonstrate it has a plan which can get us there without evoking serious economic harm we will look at it. However we are not in favour of blind ratification. We never have been. The hon. member can look through his notes as much as he wants but he will not find a quote. We have never supported blind ratification.

+-

    Mr. Jason Kenney: Mr. Speaker, I spent ten minutes and then another two answering the hon. member's first question. I quoted the PC party as saying it would accept reaching 1990 levels by 2010 as an interim target. The party's leader said if more studies were done he would actively support ratification.

    The hon. member is like a watermelon. He is green on the outside but red on the inside. In 1997 he said:

--we need drastic initiatives or policy changes in culture in order for us to get to any hope for civilization by the year 2010.

    The hon. member should be ashamed of himself. As a watermelon he should stand and take pride in his support for destroying the Canadian economy through the accord.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: Order, please. Does anyone care to listen to the Speaker? I do not know how members can expect to be heard when I am standing.

    If the hon. member for Lac-Saint-Louis is rising on a point of order I will hear the point of order. However I will put something on the table. The proceedings this day on the official opposition motion must conclude at 5.15 p.m. and the question must be put.

    I have indication from the government side that the Minister of the Environment is the next to speak. That would leave him five minutes and then I must make a ruling. If we can put aside any other procedural matters I will give the floor to the hon. Minister of the Environment.

  +-(1710)  

+-

    Hon. David Anderson (Minister of the Environment, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I appreciate the opportunity to contribute to the debate. It is an important one. I am amazed the Alliance has managed to filibuster its own motion on an opposition day, a motion critical of the government.

    The Alliance motion is based on three premises, all of which are flawed. First, with respect to the United States, Ambassador Cellucci said today in the Globe and Mail:

A major component of our international (and continental) effort will be co-operation with Canada. On March 7, the United States and Canada announced an agreement to expand and intensify our existing bilateral efforts to address global climate change...This can benefit both our environments and both our economies. I look forward to working closely with Canada's political leadership to see that North America is as innovative in addressing climate change as it always has been in responding to global environmental and economic challenges.

    The ambassador reaffirmed the president's commitment to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and its goal of stabilizing greenhouse gas emissions. The article reads:

--Mr. Bush reaffirmed the U.S. commitment to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and its central goal, to stabilize atmospheric greenhouse-gas concentrations at a level that will prevent dangerous human interference with the climate.

    The United States is taking action. As the ambassador has made abundantly clear, we are working extremely closely with them. I will skip the remaining paragraphs of the ambassador's interesting article. However I urge all hon. members to read it.

    Second, the motion makes flawed assumptions about the costs of ratifying the protocol.

[Translation]

    In recent months, there has been a wide range of estimates thrown around regarding the impacts of ratification on the Canadian economy. Many of the estimates were built on old data and old assumptions, and not on the most recent elements of Canadian plans or the Bonn and Marrakesh agreements.

[English]

    This part of the motion focused solely on out of date studies and costs which are irrelevant to the issues we must face tomorrow. The federal provincial territorial Analysis and Modeling Group of the National Climate Change Process co-chaired by the federal and Alberta governments is working to complete its analysis of the economic costs and benefits of the Kyoto protocol. As I said in question period in response to a question from the Alliance, we expect to have its results at the end of April or early May. They will provide the most current understanding of the issue.

    This is why the motion is so inopportune at this time. As we have said time after time, we are waiting for the federal provincial territorial group to finish its work. We cannot come to the same conclusions as the Alliance motion because the work has not yet been completed.

    We should recognize that a number of companies have done excellent work in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and thus the threat of climate change. British Petroleum has reduced emissions between 8% and 10% over the last four years. According to the British deputy prime minister the value of the company went up 640 million pounds in the same period. It is not impossible.

    The scaremongers in the Canadian Alliance who assume Canadian companies are incapable of competing with international companies deny we can do what other nations can. However Canadian corporations are doing just that. There are many examples. Alcan is one. It is doing a great job.

    Third, the motion says Kyoto would do little or nothing for the environment. That is rubbish. It is an international agreement involving about 179 countries. It is the first step in the process of reversing a trend which has been taking place for the last 200 years. It is vital that we start now.

*   *   *

  +-(1715)  

+-Points of Order

+-Supplementary Estimates (B)--Speaker's Ruling

[Speaker's Ruling]
+-

    The Deputy Speaker: I am now prepared to rule on the point of order raised on Monday, March 18, by the hon. member for St. Albert concerning the procedural acceptability of vote 6b under Public Works and Government Services in Supplementary Estimates (B), 2001-02.

[Translation]

    I would like to thank the hon. member for St. Albert for having drawn this matter to the attention of the Chair and to thank as well the hon. President of the Treasury Board for her contribution on this subject.

[English]

    In raising this issue the hon. member for St. Albert pointed out that the one dollar item in vote 6b under Public Works and Government Services concerning the optional services revolving fund is included expressly for the purpose of amending section 5.5 of the Revolving Funds Act, Revised Statutes of Canada, chapter R-8 as amended.

    He pointed out that dollar items, that is amounts of one dollar which are included in the estimates to authorize various sorts of financial transaction using only existing funds or financial authorities, may be used only for certain very specific purposes. The hon. member for St. Albert cited House of Commons Practice and Procedure at page 733 which states:

Supplementary Estimates often include what are known as “one dollar items”, which seek an alteration in the existing allocation of funds as authorized in the Main Estimates. The purpose of a dollar item is not to seek new or additional money, but rather to spend money already authorized for a different purpose. Since “estimates” are budgetary items, they must have a dollar value. However, because no new funds are requested, the “one dollar” is merely a symbolic amount. Dollar items may be used to transfer funds from one program to another, to write-off debts, to adjust loan guarantees, to authorize grants, or to amend previous appropriation acts.

[Translation]

    The citation continues:

The inclusion of one dollar items in the Estimates also gave rise to the issue of using Estimates to “legislate” (i.e., Estimates going beyond simply appropriating funds and attempting to obtain new legislative authority which would otherwise require separate enabling legislation through the regular legislative process, outside the Supply procedure).

[English]

    Previous speakers have ruled very clearly concerning the procedural acceptability of legislating by way of an appropriation act. The hon. member for St. Albert quoted from a ruling by the hon. Speaker Jerome on March 22, 1977, who stated at page 607 of the Journals:

--it is my view that the government receives from Parliament the authority to act through the passage of legislation and receives the money to finance such authorized action through the passage by Parliament of an appropriation act. A supply item in my opinion ought not, therefore, to be used to obtain authority which is the proper subject of legislation--

    The Hon. President of the Treasury Board pointed out in her remarks that, as the hon. member for St. Albert stated in raising this matter, explicit permission to amend the Revolving Funds Act by an appropriation act is provided for in the Revolving Funds Act itself. She went on to provide a number of examples when such amendments have been approved in this way.

    That, I point out in passing, is the solution to the difficulty raised by the hon. member for St. Albert concerning the amount that is being affected by the recurrent request. Section 5.5(3) of the Revolving Funds Act as it appears on the justice department website indicates that the amount in the optional services revolving fund by which expenditures may exceed revenues is $200 million.

    In vote 6b the government is seeking the approval of parliament to reduce the amount in that section from $75 million to $35 million. The justice department website was last updated on August 31, 2001, at which time the figure of $200 million was accurate. In December 2001 parliament, by approving Appropriation Act No. 3, 2001-02, approved the reduction of that amount from $200 million to $75 million. What is now before the House is a request to further reduce the amount from $75 million to $35 million.

    As the hon. President of the Treasury Board indicated, section 12 of the Revolving Funds Act which authorizes the amendment of that act by an appropriation act was approved by parliament. Parliament has in fact used this method of amending the Revolving Funds Act on a number of occasions, as recently as this past December as I have just indicated. There exist therefore both statutory authority and past practice of the House to justify the current method of proceeding. This applies to votes 7b, 8b and 9b as well as to vote 6b. Under these circumstances I cannot find that the hon. member for St. Albert's point of order is well founded.

  +-(1720)  

[Translation]

    In addition to a ruling on the specific issue before us, the hon. member, in raising this matter, sought some guidance as to how our rules concerning one dollar items are to be understood. It might be useful in this regard to return to the words of Speaker Jerome.

[English]

    In addressing the request for a decision concerning the use of one dollar items he stated at page 606 of the Journals of March 22, 1977:

--this conflict leads to some consideration of the function of the Chair, which is not to dictate what Parliament can or cannot do but, rather, to ensure that what Parliament attempts to do is procedurally correct.

    In a subsequent ruling on the issue of one dollar items Mr. Speaker Jerome outlined the basis for separating substantive legislation from the supply process at page 184 of the Journals of the House of Commons of December 7, 1977:

--it has long been a tenet of the House that supply ought to be confined strictly to the process for which it was intended; that is to say, for the purpose of putting forward by the government the estimate of the money it needs, and then in turn voting by the House of that money to the government, and not to be extended in any way into the legislative area, because legislation and legislative changes in substance are not intended to be part of supply, but rather ought to be part of the legislative process in the regular way which requires three readings, committee stage, and, in other words, ample opportunity for Members to participate in debate and amendment.

    He continued at page 185:

The point at issue is whether the...items seek legislative authority which does now exist or does not exist...The test to which I put them is whether or not in these items the government is putting forward a spending estimate under authority it already possesses, or whether it is seeking new legislative authority for these...items.

    In the present case parliament has given its approval to the Revolving Funds Act following the usual legislative process, including the provision in section 12 which permits modification of the dollar limit in the optional services revolving fund by way of an appropriation act.

    With respect to the question raised earlier today by the member for St. Albert concerning the necessity of debating the measures contained in the supply bill, I simply point out that in permitting that amendments be made to the Revolving Funds Act by an appropriation act, section 12 makes no suggestion that any other than the normal supply process be followed.

    Members have the opportunity to give detailed consideration to the estimates at the committee stage. Further, there is nothing to prevent any party from making consideration of any part of the estimates the subject of an opposition supply day motion. Finally, the House could under our rules as currently framed choose to debate the supply bill at its various stages on the final supply day, provided it did so before the end of government orders and within the parameters contained in the standing orders.

    Under the circumstances, while I commend the hon. member for St. Albert for his admirable vigilance in matters related to supply, I can see no justification to depart from our usual practices in this case.

*   *   *

+-Supply

+-Allotted Day--Kyoto Protocol

[Supply]

    The House resumed consideration of the motion.

+-

    The Deputy Speaker: It being 5.24 p.m. it is my duty to interrupt the proceedings and put forthwith every question necessary to dispose of the business of supply.

    The question is on the motion. Is it the pleasure of the House to adopt the motion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    Some hon. members: No.

    The Deputy Speaker: All those in favour of the motion will please say yea.

    Some hon. members: Yea.

    The Deputy Speaker: All those opposed will please say nay.

    Some hon. members: Nay.

    The Deputy Speaker: In my opinion the nays have it.

    And more than five members having risen:

    The Deputy Speaker: Call in the members.

*   *   *

  +-(1755)  

[Translation]

    (The House divided on the motion, which was negatived on the following division:)

+

(Division No. 248)

YEAS

Members

Abbott
Anders
Bachand (Richmond--Arthabaska)
Bailey
Benoit
Breitkreuz
Cadman
Casson
Chatters
Clark
Duncan
Elley
Epp
Fitzpatrick
Forseth
Gallant
Goldring
Gouk
Grey
Harris
Hearn
Herron
Hinton
Jaffer
Johnston
Keddy (South Shore)
Kenney (Calgary Southeast)
Lunney (Nanaimo--Alberni)
MacKay (Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough)
Mark
Martin (Esquimalt--Juan de Fuca)
Meredith
Merrifield
Mills (Red Deer)
Pallister
Pankiw
Penson
Reid (Lanark--Carleton)
Ritz
Schmidt
Skelton
Solberg
Sorenson
Spencer
Stinson
Strahl
Toews
Vellacott
Wayne
White (Langley--Abbotsford)
Williams
Yelich

Total: -- 52

NAYS

Members

Alcock
Anderson (Victoria)
Assad
Assadourian
Augustine
Bachand (Saint-Jean)
Bagnell
Baker
Bakopanos
Barnes
Beaumier
Bélair
Bélanger
Bellehumeur
Bennett
Bertrand
Bevilacqua
Bigras
Binet
Blaikie
Blondin-Andrew
Bonin
Boudria
Bourgeois
Bradshaw
Brien
Brown
Bryden
Bulte
Byrne
Caccia
Calder
Cannis
Caplan
Cardin
Carignan
Castonguay
Catterall
Chamberlain
Charbonneau
Chrétien
Coderre
Collenette
Copps
Crête
Cullen
Cuzner
Dalphond-Guiral
Davies
Desjarlais
DeVillers
Dion
Discepola
Dromisky
Drouin
Dubé
Duceppe
Duplain
Eggleton
Eyking
Finlay
Fontana
Fournier
Fry
Gagnon (Québec)
Gagnon (Champlain)
Gallaway
Gauthier
Girard-Bujold
Godfrey
Godin
Goodale
Guarnieri
Guay
Guimond
Harb
Harvard
Harvey
Jackson
Jennings
Jordan
Karygiannis
Keyes
Kilgour (Edmonton Southeast)
Kraft Sloan
Laframboise
Laliberte
Lalonde
Lanctôt
LeBlanc
Lee
Leung
Lill
Lincoln
Longfield
Loubier
MacAulay
Macklin
Mahoney
Malhi
Manley
Marceau
Marcil
Martin (Winnipeg Centre)
Martin (LaSalle--Émard)
Matthews
McCallum
McDonough
McGuire
McKay (Scarborough East)
McLellan
McTeague
Mills (Toronto--Danforth)
Minna
Mitchell
Murphy
Myers
Nault
Neville
Normand
Nystrom
O'Brien (Labrador)
O'Brien (London--Fanshawe)
O'Reilly
Owen
Pagtakhan
Paquette
Paradis
Parrish
Patry
Peric
Perron
Peschisolido
Peterson
Phinney
Picard (Drummond)
Pickard (Chatham--Kent Essex)
Pillitteri
Plamondon
Pratt
Price
Proulx
Provenzano
Redman
Reed (Halton)
Regan
Richardson
Robillard
Robinson
Rocheleau
Rock
Saada
Sauvageau
Savoy
Scherrer
Scott
Serré
Sgro
Shepherd
Speller
St-Hilaire
St-Jacques
St-Julien
St. Denis
Stewart
Szabo
Telegdi
Thibault (West Nova)
Thibeault (Saint-Lambert)
Tirabassi
Tonks
Valeri
Vanclief
Venne
Volpe
Wasylycia-Leis
Wilfert
Wood

Total: -- 178

PAIRED

Members

Asselin
Bellemare
Bergeron
Bonwick
Carroll
Desrochers
Easter
Graham
McCormick
Ménard
Roy
Tremblay (Lac-Saint-Jean--Saguenay)
Tremblay (Rimouski-Neigette-et-la Mitis)
Ur

Total: -- 14

+-

    The Speaker: I declare the motion lost.

*   *   *

+-Allotted Day—Social Programs

    The House resumed from March 18 consideration of the motion.

+-

    The Speaker: The House will now proceed to the deferred recorded division on the motion regarding the business of supply.

[English]

+-

    Ms. Marlene Catterall: Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. If you were to seek it I think you would find consent in the House that those who voted on the immediately previous motion be recorded as voting on this motion, with Liberal members voting no.

+-

    The Speaker: Is there unanimous consent to proceed in this fashion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

+-

    Mr. Garry Breitkreuz: Mr. Speaker, Canadian Alliance members will vote yes to this motion.

[Translation]

+-

    Mr. Pierre Brien: Mr. Speaker, Bloc Quebecois members will vote in favour of this motion.

+-

    Mr. Yvon Godin: Mr. Speaker, NDP members will vote yes to this motion.

+-

    Mr. André Bachand: Mr. Speaker, in addition to the hon. member for Cumberland—Colchester, PC/DR coalition members are pleased to support this motion.

*   *   *

    (The House divided on the motion, which was negatived on the following division:)

+-

(Division No. 249)

YEAS

Members

Abbott
Anders
Bachand (Richmond--Arthabaska)
Bachand (Saint-Jean)
Bailey
Bellehumeur
Benoit
Bigras
Blaikie
Bourgeois
Breitkreuz
Brien
Cadman
Cardin
Casey
Casson
Chatters
Clark
Crête
Dalphond-Guiral
Davies
Desjarlais
Dubé
Duceppe
Duncan
Elley
Epp
Fitzpatrick
Forseth
Fournier
Gagnon (Québec)
Gagnon (Champlain)
Gallant
Gauthier
Girard-Bujold
Godin
Goldring
Gouk
Grey
Guay
Guimond
Harris
Hearn
Herron
Hinton
Jaffer
Johnston
Keddy (South Shore)
Kenney (Calgary Southeast)
Laframboise
Lalonde
Lanctôt
Lill
Loubier
Lunney (Nanaimo--Alberni)
MacKay (Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough)
Marceau
Mark
Martin (Esquimalt--Juan de Fuca)
Martin (Winnipeg Centre)
McDonough
Meredith
Merrifield
Mills (Red Deer)
Nystrom
Pallister
Pankiw
Paquette
Penson
Perron
Picard (Drummond)
Plamondon
Reid (Lanark--Carleton)
Ritz
Robinson
Rocheleau
Sauvageau
Schmidt
Skelton
Solberg
Sorenson
Spencer
St-Hilaire
Stinson
Strahl
Toews
Vellacott
Venne
Wasylycia-Leis
Wayne
White (Langley--Abbotsford)
Williams
Yelich

Total: -- 93

NAYS

Members

Alcock
Anderson (Victoria)
Assad
Assadourian
Augustine
Bagnell
Baker
Bakopanos
Barnes
Beaumier
Bélair
Bélanger
Bennett
Bertrand
Bevilacqua
Binet
Blondin-Andrew
Bonin
Boudria
Bradshaw
Brown
Bryden
Bulte
Byrne
Caccia
Calder
Cannis
Caplan
Carignan
Castonguay
Catterall
Chamberlain
Charbonneau
Chrétien
Coderre
Collenette
Copps
Cullen
Cuzner
DeVillers
Dion
Discepola
Dromisky
Drouin
Duplain
Eggleton
Eyking
Finlay
Fontana
Fry
Gallaway
Godfrey
Goodale
Guarnieri
Harb
Harvard
Harvey
Jackson
Jennings
Jordan
Karygiannis
Keyes
Kilgour (Edmonton Southeast)
Kraft Sloan
Laliberte
LeBlanc
Lee
Leung
Lincoln
Longfield
MacAulay
Macklin
Mahoney
Malhi
Manley
Marcil
Martin (LaSalle--Émard)
Matthews
McCallum
McGuire
McKay (Scarborough East)
McLellan
McTeague
Mills (Toronto--Danforth)
Minna
Mitchell
Murphy
Myers
Nault
Neville
Normand
O'Brien (Labrador)
O'Brien (London--Fanshawe)
O'Reilly
Owen
Pagtakhan
Paradis
Parrish
Patry
Peric
Peschisolido
Peterson
Phinney
Pickard (Chatham--Kent Essex)
Pillitteri
Pratt
Price
Proulx
Provenzano
Redman
Reed (Halton)
Regan
Richardson
Robillard
Rock
Saada
Savoy
Scherrer
Scott
Serré
Sgro
Shepherd
Speller
St-Jacques
St-Julien
St. Denis
Stewart
Szabo
Telegdi
Thibault (West Nova)
Thibeault (Saint-Lambert)
Tirabassi
Tonks
Valeri
Vanclief
Volpe
Wilfert
Wood

Total: -- 138

PAIRED

Members

Asselin
Bellemare
Bergeron
Bonwick
Carroll
Desrochers
Easter
Graham
McCormick
Ménard
Roy
Tremblay (Lac-Saint-Jean--Saguenay)
Tremblay (Rimouski-Neigette-et-la Mitis)
Ur

Total: -- 14

+-

    The Speaker: I declare the motion negatived.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Supplementary Estimates (B), 2001-02

+-Concurrence in Vote 5B--Industry

+-

    Hon. Lucienne Robillard (President of the Treasury Board, Lib.) moved:

Motion No. 1

    That Vote 5b, in the amount of $131,520,000, under INDUSTRY—Department—Grants and contributions, in the Supplementary Estimates (B) for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2002, be concurred in.

+-

    Ms. Marlene Catterall: Mr. Speaker, I think you would find consent in the House that the vote on the previous motion be applied to Motion No. 1 in reverse.

+-

    The Speaker: Is that agreed?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

    (The House divided on Motion No. 1, which was agreed to on the following division:)

+-

(Division No. 250)

YEAS

Members

Alcock
Anderson (Victoria)
Assad
Assadourian
Augustine
Bagnell
Baker
Bakopanos
Barnes
Beaumier
Bélair
Bélanger
Bennett
Bertrand
Bevilacqua
Binet
Blondin-Andrew
Bonin
Boudria
Bradshaw
Brown
Bryden
Bulte
Byrne
Caccia
Calder
Cannis
Caplan
Carignan
Castonguay
Catterall
Chamberlain
Charbonneau
Chrétien
Coderre
Collenette
Copps
Cullen
Cuzner
DeVillers
Dion
Discepola
Dromisky
Drouin
Duplain
Eggleton
Eyking
Finlay
Fontana
Fry
Gallaway
Godfrey
Goodale
Guarnieri
Harb
Harvard
Harvey
Jackson
Jennings
Jordan
Karygiannis
Keyes
Kilgour (Edmonton Southeast)
Kraft Sloan
Laliberte
LeBlanc
Lee
Leung
Lincoln
Longfield
MacAulay
Macklin
Mahoney
Malhi
Manley
Marcil
Martin (LaSalle--Émard)
Matthews
McCallum
McGuire
McKay (Scarborough East)
McLellan
McTeague
Mills (Toronto--Danforth)
Minna
Mitchell
Murphy
Myers
Nault
Neville
Normand
O'Brien (Labrador)
O'Brien (London--Fanshawe)
O'Reilly
Owen
Pagtakhan
Paradis
Parrish
Patry
Peric
Peschisolido
Peterson
Phinney
Pickard (Chatham--Kent Essex)
Pillitteri
Pratt
Price
Proulx
Provenzano
Redman
Reed (Halton)
Regan
Richardson
Robillard
Rock
Saada
Savoy
Scherrer
Scott
Serré
Sgro
Shepherd
Speller
St-Jacques
St-Julien
St. Denis
Stewart
Szabo
Telegdi
Thibault (West Nova)
Thibeault (Saint-Lambert)
Tirabassi
Tonks
Valeri
Vanclief
Volpe
Wilfert
Wood

Total: -- 138

NAYS

Members

Abbott
Anders
Bachand (Richmond--Arthabaska)
Bachand (Saint-Jean)
Bailey
Bellehumeur
Benoit
Bigras
Blaikie
Bourgeois
Breitkreuz
Brien
Cadman
Cardin
Casey
Casson
Chatters
Clark
Crête
Dalphond-Guiral
Davies
Desjarlais
Dubé
Duceppe
Duncan
Elley
Epp
Fitzpatrick
Forseth
Fournier
Gagnon (Québec)
Gagnon (Champlain)
Gallant
Gauthier
Girard-Bujold
Godin
Goldring
Gouk
Grey
Guay
Guimond
Harris
Hearn
Herron
Hinton
Jaffer
Johnston
Keddy (South Shore)
Kenney (Calgary Southeast)
Laframboise
Lalonde
Lanctôt
Lill
Loubier
Lunney (Nanaimo--Alberni)
MacKay (Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough)
Marceau
Mark
Martin (Esquimalt--Juan de Fuca)
Martin (Winnipeg Centre)
McDonough
Meredith
Merrifield
Mills (Red Deer)
Nystrom
Pallister
Pankiw
Paquette
Penson
Perron
Picard (Drummond)
Plamondon
Reid (Lanark--Carleton)
Ritz
Robinson
Rocheleau
Sauvageau
Schmidt
Skelton
Solberg
Sorenson
Spencer
St-Hilaire
Stinson
Strahl
Toews
Vellacott
Venne
Wasylycia-Leis
Wayne
White (Langley--Abbotsford)
Williams
Yelich

Total: -- 93

PAIRED

Members

Asselin
Bellemare
Bergeron
Bonwick
Carroll
Desrochers
Easter
Graham
McCormick
Ménard
Roy
Tremblay (Lac-Saint-Jean--Saguenay)
Tremblay (Rimouski-Neigette-et-la Mitis)
Ur

Total: -- 14

+-

    The Speaker: I declare Motion No. 1 carried.

[Translation]

    The next question is on Motion No. 2 under opposed votes.

[English]

+-

    Ms. Marlene Catterall: Mr. Speaker, I think you would find consent in the House that the vote taken on Motion No. 1 be applied to Motions Nos. 2, 3, 4 and 5.

[Translation]

+-

    The Speaker: Is there unanimous consent to proceed in this fashion?

    Some hon. members: Agreed.

*   *   *

[English]

+-Concurrence in Vote 1b--Public Works and Government Services

+-

    Hon. Lucienne Robillard (President of the Treasury Board, Lib.) moved:

Motion No. 2

    That Vote 1b, in the amount of $34,826,049, under PUBLIC WORKS AND GOVERNMENT SERVICES—Department—Operating expenditures, in the Supplementary Estimates (B) for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2002, be concurred in.

    (The House divided on Motion No. 2, which was agreed to on the following division:)

+-

(Division No. 251)

YEAS

Members

Alcock
Anderson (Victoria)
Assad
Assadourian
Augustine
Bagnell
Baker
Bakopanos
Barnes
Beaumier
Bélair
Bélanger
Bennett
Bertrand
Bevilacqua
Binet
Blondin-Andrew
Bonin
Boudria
Bradshaw
Brown
Bryden
Bulte
Byrne
Caccia
Calder
Cannis
Caplan
Carignan
Castonguay
Catterall
Chamberlain
Charbonneau
Chrétien
Coderre
Collenette
Copps
Cullen
Cuzner
DeVillers
Dion
Discepola
Dromisky
Drouin
Duplain
Eggleton
Eyking
Finlay
Fontana
Fry
Gallaway
Godfrey
Goodale
Guarnieri
Harb
Harvard
Harvey
Jackson
Jennings
Jordan
Karygiannis
Keyes
Kilgour (Edmonton Southeast)
Kraft Sloan
Laliberte
LeBlanc
Lee
Leung
Lincoln
Longfield
MacAulay
Macklin
Mahoney
Malhi
Manley
Marcil
Martin (LaSalle--Émard)
Matthews
McCallum
McGuire
McKay (Scarborough East)
McLellan
McTeague
Mills (Toronto--Danforth)
Minna
Mitchell
Murphy
Myers
Nault
Neville
Normand
O'Brien (Labrador)
O'Brien (London--Fanshawe)
O'Reilly
Owen
Pagtakhan
Paradis
Parrish
Patry
Peric
Peschisolido
Peterson
Phinney
Pickard (Chatham--Kent Essex)
Pillitteri
Pratt
Price
Proulx
Provenzano
Redman
Reed (Halton)
Regan
Richardson
Robillard
Rock
Saada
Savoy
Scherrer
Scott
Serré
Sgro
Shepherd
Speller
St-Jacques
St-Julien
St. Denis
Stewart
Szabo
Telegdi
Thibault (West Nova)
Thibeault (Saint-Lambert)
Tirabassi
Tonks
Valeri
Vanclief
Volpe
Wilfert
Wood

Total: -- 138

NAYS

Members

Abbott
Anders
Bachand (Richmond--Arthabaska)
Bachand (Saint-Jean)
Bailey
Bellehumeur
Benoit
Bigras
Blaikie
Bourgeois
Breitkreuz
Brien
Cadman
Cardin
Casey
Casson
Chatters
Clark
Crête
Dalphond-Guiral
Davies
Desjarlais
Dubé
Duceppe
Duncan
Elley
Epp
Fitzpatrick
Forseth
Fournier
Gagnon (Québec)
Gagnon (Champlain)
Gallant
Gauthier
Girard-Bujold
Godin
Goldring
Gouk
Grey
Guay
Guimond
Harris
Hearn
Herron
Hinton
Jaffer
Johnston
Keddy (South Shore)
Kenney (Calgary Southeast)
Laframboise
Lalonde
Lanctôt
Lill
Loubier
Lunney (Nanaimo--Alberni)
MacKay (Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough)
Marceau
Mark
Martin (Esquimalt--Juan de Fuca)
Martin (Winnipeg Centre)
McDonough
Meredith
Merrifield
Mills (Red Deer)
Nystrom
Pallister
Pankiw
Paquette
Penson
Perron
Picard (Drummond)
Plamondon
Reid (Lanark--Carleton)
Ritz
Robinson
Rocheleau
Sauvageau
Schmidt
Skelton
Solberg
Sorenson
Spencer
St-Hilaire
Stinson
Strahl
Toews
Vellacott
Venne
Wasylycia-Leis
Wayne
White (Langley--Abbotsford)
Williams
Yelich

Total: -- 93

PAIRED

Members

Asselin
Bellemare
Bergeron
Bonwick
Carroll
Desrochers
Easter
Graham
McCormick
Ménard
Roy
Tremblay (Lac-Saint-Jean--Saguenay)
Tremblay (Rimouski-Neigette-et-la Mitis)
Ur

Total: -- 14

+-

    The Speaker: I declare Motion No. 2 carried.

*   *   *

+-Concurrence in Vote 5b--Public Works and Government Services

+-

    Hon. Lucienne Robillard (President of the Treasury Board, Lib.) moved:

Motion No. 3

    That Vote 5b, in the amount of $22,916,944, under PUBLIC WORKS AND GOVERNMENT SERVICES—Department—Capital expenditures, in the Supplementary Estimates (B) for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2002, be concurred in.

    (The House divided on Motion No. 3, which was agreed to on the following division:)

+-

(Division No. 252)

YEAS

Members

Alcock
Anderson (Victoria)
Assad
Assadourian
Augustine
Bagnell
Baker
Bakopanos
Barnes
Beaumier
Bélair
Bélanger
Bennett
Bertrand
Bevilacqua
Binet
Blondin-Andrew
Bonin
Boudria
Bradshaw
Brown
Bryden
Bulte
Byrne
Caccia
Calder
Cannis
Caplan
Carignan
Castonguay
Catterall
Chamberlain
Charbonneau
Chrétien
Coderre
Collenette
Copps
Cullen
Cuzner
DeVillers
Dion
Discepola
Dromisky
Drouin
Duplain
Eggleton
Eyking
Finlay
Fontana
Fry
Gallaway
Godfrey
Goodale
Guarnieri
Harb
Harvard
Harvey
Jackson
Jennings
Jordan
Karygiannis
Keyes
Kilgour (Edmonton Southeast)
Kraft Sloan
Laliberte
LeBlanc
Lee
Leung
Lincoln
Longfield
MacAulay
Macklin
Mahoney
Malhi
Manley
Marcil
Martin (LaSalle--Émard)
Matthews
McCallum
McGuire
McKay (Scarborough East)
McLellan
McTeague
Mills (Toronto--Danforth)
Minna
Mitchell
Murphy
Myers
Nault
Neville
Normand
O'Brien (Labrador)
O'Brien (London--Fanshawe)
O'Reilly
Owen
Pagtakhan
Paradis
Parrish
Patry
Peric
Peschisolido
Peterson
Phinney
Pickard (Chatham--Kent Essex)
Pillitteri
Pratt
Price
Proulx
Provenzano
Redman
Reed (Halton)
Regan
Richardson
Robillard
Rock
Saada
Savoy
Scherrer
Scott
Serré
Sgro
Shepherd
Speller
St-Jacques
St-Julien
St. Denis
Stewart
Szabo
Telegdi
Thibault (West Nova)
Thibeault (Saint-Lambert)
Tirabassi
Tonks
Valeri
Vanclief
Volpe
Wilfert
Wood

Total: -- 138

NAYS

Members

Abbott
Anders
Bachand (Richmond--Arthabaska)
Bachand (Saint-Jean)
Bailey
Bellehumeur
Benoit
Bigras
Blaikie
Bourgeois
Breitkreuz
Brien
Cadman
Cardin
Casey
Casson
Chatters
Clark
Crête
Dalphond-Guiral
Davies
Desjarlais
Dubé
Duceppe
Duncan
Elley
Epp
Fitzpatrick
Forseth
Fournier
Gagnon (Québec)
Gagnon (Champlain)
Gallant
Gauthier
Girard-Bujold
Godin
Goldring
Gouk
Grey
Guay
Guimond
Harris
Hearn
Herron
Hinton
Jaffer
Johnston
Keddy (South Shore)
Kenney (Calgary Southeast)
Laframboise
Lalonde
Lanctôt
Lill
Loubier
Lunney (Nanaimo--Alberni)
MacKay (Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough)
Marceau
Mark
Martin (Esquimalt--Juan de Fuca)
Martin (Winnipeg Centre)
McDonough
Meredith
Merrifield
Mills (Red Deer)
Nystrom
Pallister
Pankiw
Paquette
Penson
Perron
Picard (Drummond)
Plamondon
Reid (Lanark--Carleton)
Ritz
Robinson
Rocheleau
Sauvageau
Schmidt
Skelton
Solberg
Sorenson
Spencer
St-Hilaire
Stinson
Strahl
Toews
Vellacott
Venne
Wasylycia-Leis
Wayne
White (Langley--Abbotsford)
Williams
Yelich

Total: -- 93

PAIRED

Members

Asselin
Bellemare
Bergeron
Bonwick
Carroll
Desrochers
Easter
Graham
McCormick
Ménard
Roy
Tremblay (Lac-Saint-Jean--Saguenay)
Tremblay (Rimouski-Neigette-et-la Mitis)
Ur

Total: -- 14

+-

    The Speaker: I declare Motion No. 3 carried.

*   *   *

+-Concurrence in Vote 15b--Public Works and Government Services

+-

    Hon. Lucienne Robillard (President of the Treasury Board, Lib.) moved:

Motion No. 4

    That Vote 15b, in the amount of $3,451,000, under PUBLIC WORKS AND GOVERNMENT SERVICES—Communication Canada—Program expenditures, in the Supplementary Estimates (B) for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2002, be concurred in.

    (The House divided on Motion No. 4, which was agreed to on the following division:)

+-

(Division No. 253)

YEAS

Members

Alcock
Anderson (Victoria)
Assad
Assadourian
Augustine
Bagnell
Baker
Bakopanos
Barnes
Beaumier
Bélair
Bélanger
Bennett
Bertrand
Bevilacqua
Binet
Blondin-Andrew
Bonin
Boudria
Bradshaw
Brown
Bryden
Bulte
Byrne
Caccia
Calder
Cannis
Caplan
Carignan
Castonguay
Catterall
Chamberlain
Charbonneau
Chrétien
Coderre
Collenette
Copps
Cullen
Cuzner
DeVillers
Dion
Discepola
Dromisky
Drouin
Duplain
Eggleton
Eyking
Finlay
Fontana
Fry
Gallaway
Godfrey
Goodale
Guarnieri
Harb
Harvard
Harvey
Jackson
Jennings
Jordan
Karygiannis
Keyes
Kilgour (Edmonton Southeast)
Kraft Sloan
Laliberte
LeBlanc
Lee
Leung
Lincoln
Longfield
MacAulay
Macklin
Mahoney
Malhi
Manley
Marcil
Martin (LaSalle--Émard)
Matthews
McCallum
McGuire
McKay (Scarborough East)
McLellan
McTeague
Mills (Toronto--Danforth)
Minna
Mitchell
Murphy
Myers
Nault
Neville
Normand
O'Brien (Labrador)
O'Brien (London--Fanshawe)
O'Reilly
Owen
Pagtakhan
Paradis
Parrish
Patry
Peric
Peschisolido
Peterson
Phinney
Pickard (Chatham--Kent Essex)
Pillitteri
Pratt
Price
Proulx
Provenzano
Redman
Reed (Halton)
Regan
Richardson
Robillard
Rock
Saada
Savoy
Scherrer
Scott
Serré
Sgro
Shepherd
Speller
St-Jacques
St-Julien
St. Denis
Stewart
Szabo
Telegdi
Thibault (West Nova)
Thibeault (Saint-Lambert)
Tirabassi
Tonks
Valeri
Vanclief
Volpe
Wilfert
Wood

Total: -- 138

NAYS

Members

Abbott
Anders
Bachand (Richmond--Arthabaska)
Bachand (Saint-Jean)
Bailey
Bellehumeur
Benoit
Bigras
Blaikie
Bourgeois
Breitkreuz
Brien
Cadman
Cardin
Casey
Casson
Chatters
Clark
Crête
Dalphond-Guiral
Davies
Desjarlais
Dubé
Duceppe
Duncan
Elley
Epp
Fitzpatrick
Forseth
Fournier
Gagnon (Québec)
Gagnon (Champlain)
Gallant
Gauthier
Girard-Bujold
Godin
Goldring
Gouk
Grey
Guay
Guimond
Harris
Hearn
Herron
Hinton
Jaffer
Johnston
Keddy (South Shore)
Kenney (Calgary Southeast)
Laframboise
Lalonde
Lanctôt
Lill
Loubier
Lunney (Nanaimo--Alberni)
MacKay (Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough)
Marceau
Mark
Martin (Esquimalt--Juan de Fuca)
Martin (Winnipeg Centre)
McDonough
Meredith
Merrifield
Mills (Red Deer)
Nystrom
Pallister
Pankiw
Paquette
Penson
Perron
Picard (Drummond)
Plamondon
Reid (Lanark--Carleton)
Ritz
Robinson
Rocheleau
Sauvageau
Schmidt
Skelton
Solberg
Sorenson
Spencer
St-Hilaire
Stinson
Strahl
Toews
Vellacott
Venne
Wasylycia-Leis
Wayne
White (Langley--Abbotsford)
Williams
Yelich

Total: -- 93

PAIRED

Members

Asselin
Bellemare
Bergeron
Bonwick
Carroll
Desrochers
Easter
Graham
McCormick
Ménard
Roy
Tremblay (Lac-Saint-Jean--Saguenay)
Tremblay (Rimouski-Neigette-et-la Mitis)
Ur

Total: -- 14

+-

    The Speaker: I declare Motion No. 4 carried.

*   *   *

+-Concurrence in Vote 1b--Privy Council

+-

    Hon. Lucienne Robillard (President of the Treasury Board, Lib.) moved:

Motion No. 5

    That Vote 1b, in the amount of $4,546,087, under PRIVY COUNCIL—Department—Program expenditures, in the Supplementary Estimates (B) for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2002, be concurred in.

    (The House divided on Motion No. 5, which was agreed to on the following division:)

+-

(Division No. 254)

YEAS

Members

Alcock
Anderson (Victoria)
Assad
Assadourian
Augustine
Bagnell
Baker
Bakopanos
Barnes
Beaumier
Bélair
Bélanger
Bennett
Bertrand
Bevilacqua
Binet
Blondin-Andrew
Bonin
Boudria
Bradshaw
Brown
Bryden
Bulte
Byrne
Caccia
Calder
Cannis
Caplan
Carignan
Castonguay
Catterall
Chamberlain
Charbonneau
Chrétien
Coderre
Collenette
Copps
Cullen
Cuzner
DeVillers
Dion
Discepola
Dromisky
Drouin
Duplain
Eggleton
Eyking
Finlay
Fontana
Fry
Gallaway
Godfrey
Goodale
Guarnieri
Harb
Harvard
Harvey
Jackson
Jennings
Jordan
Karygiannis
Keyes
Kilgour (Edmonton Southeast)
Kraft Sloan
Laliberte
LeBlanc
Lee
Leung
Lincoln
Longfield
MacAulay
Macklin
Mahoney
Malhi
Manley
Marcil
Martin (LaSalle--Émard)
Matthews
McCallum
McGuire
McKay (Scarborough East)
McLellan
McTeague
Mills (Toronto--Danforth)
Minna
Mitchell
Murphy
Myers
Nault
Neville
Normand
O'Brien (Labrador)
O'Brien (London--Fanshawe)
O'Reilly
Owen
Pagtakhan
Paradis
Parrish
Patry
Peric
Peschisolido
Peterson
Phinney
Pickard (Chatham--Kent Essex)
Pillitteri
Pratt
Price
Proulx
Provenzano
Redman
Reed (Halton)
Regan
Richardson
Robillard
Rock
Saada
Savoy
Scherrer
Scott
Serré
Sgro
Shepherd
Speller
St-Jacques
St-Julien
St. Denis
Stewart
Szabo
Telegdi
Thibault (West Nova)
Thibeault (Saint-Lambert)
Tirabassi
Tonks
Valeri
Vanclief
Volpe
Wilfert
Wood

Total: -- 138

NAYS

Members

Abbott
Anders
Bachand (Richmond--Arthabaska)
Bachand (Saint-Jean)
Bailey
Bellehumeur
Benoit
Bigras
Blaikie
Bourgeois
Breitkreuz
Brien
Cadman
Cardin
Casey
Casson
Chatters
Clark
Crête
Dalphond-Guiral
Davies
Desjarlais
Dubé
Duceppe
Duncan
Elley
Epp
Fitzpatrick
Forseth
Fournier
Gagnon (Québec)
Gagnon (Champlain)
Gallant
Gauthier
Girard-Bujold
Godin
Goldring
Gouk
Grey
Guay
Guimond
Harris
Hearn
Herron
Hinton
Jaffer
Johnston
Keddy (South Shore)
Kenney (Calgary Southeast)
Laframboise
Lalonde
Lanctôt
Lill
Loubier
Lunney (Nanaimo--Alberni)
MacKay (Pictou--Antigonish--Guysborough)
Marceau
Mark
Martin (Esquimalt--Juan de Fuca)
Martin (Winnipeg Centre)
McDonough
Meredith
Merrifield
Mills (Red Deer)
Nystrom
Pallister
Pankiw
Paquette
Penson
Perron
Picard (Drummond)
Plamondon
Reid (Lanark--Carleton)
Ritz
Robinson
Rocheleau
Sauvageau
Schmidt
Skelton
Solberg
Sorenson
Spencer
St-Hilaire
Stinson
Strahl
Toews
Vellacott
Venne
Wasylycia-Leis
Wayne
White (Langley--Abbotsford)
Williams
Yelich