Interventions in Committee
 
 
 
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View Ted Hsu Profile
Lib. (ON)
Thank you.
I'd like to start by continuing the questioning from Ms. Moore regarding labelling of homes. As you say in your notes, the International Agency for Research on Cancer classifies radon in group 1, which means we know it's carcinogenic.
This is a question for everybody. Do you think houses should be labelled once they've been tested and that before and after remediation perhaps one could have a different label?
View Ted Hsu Profile
Lib. (ON)
Well, on labelling, if you've done a test, presumably the results of the test are there.
View Ted Hsu Profile
Lib. (ON)
I just wanted to throw it out there.
Mr. Rankin had another question, which I want to ask in a different way. I'm wondering if anybody has thought about it from an economic point of view. If you had an extra dollar to spend, where would you help people the most? Would it be in spending it on reducing smoking or on reducing exposure to radon? Has anybody tried to figure out which one of those two will have a bigger effect on lung cancer? It's an economics question, so maybe it's too hard to calculate or something.
View Ted Hsu Profile
Lib. (ON)
Maybe I'll try another question. You mentioned that Health Canada has studied the effects of energy retrofits on radon. My question is about whether there's a synergy. We want to encourage energy retrofits for other reasons, and I'm wondering in terms of these two issues, energy efficiency and exposure to radon, whether there's some synergy in promoting both at the same time.
View Ted Hsu Profile
Lib. (ON)
Thank you.
My first question is just to satisfy my curiosity a little bit. I'm trying to interpret one of the graphs that Ms. Henderson produced. It's the one where at the top of the page there are different numbers corresponding to becquerels. There's a jump in the graph for women for higher radon areas, from between 400 and 300. Is that just statistics?
View Ted Hsu Profile
Lib. (ON)
Okay.
The y axis of these graphs doesn't cross at zero. Presumably there's a whole bunch of lung cancer from smoking, and then on top of that you're seeing the effects—
View Ted Hsu Profile
Lib. (ON)
Okay.
Is this the only study that has picked out the difference between male and female trends in high radon regions over time?
View Ted Hsu Profile
Lib. (ON)
Okay.
I'm just curious, have all federal government buildings been tested? Does anybody know the answer to that?
View Ted Hsu Profile
Lib. (ON)
You've proposed that we simply build out new residences and replace old residences as our priority strategy. May I assume that once you either build a new home to the correct specifications or remediate an old home, essentially for the life of that residence you don't have to...?
Your head is shaking, Ms. Nicol. When do you have to test again?
View Ted Hsu Profile
Lib. (ON)
Has any research been done following remediation for perhaps older homes? How valid is the measurement—
View Ted Hsu Profile
Lib. (ON)
How many years does it last?
View Ted Hsu Profile
Lib. (ON)
On behalf of Ms. Fry, I would just thank you, Chair, the other members, and the analysts, the clerk, and all the others who work at this meeting, for your service.
View John McKay Profile
Lib. (ON)
Thank you, Chair.
To the witnesses, I particularly appreciate your being here, but I will direct my first questions to Ms. Strom.
Suncor is a really serious player in energy generation. You're a $50-billion corporation, which makes your revenues greater than those of the Province of Alberta. So it's really quite interesting that your CEO, Steve Williams, seems to have stepped out and started a really good conversation in conjunction with Ecofiscal on climate change and pricing carbon.
Currently in Alberta you're at about $15 a tonne for your intensity-based regime. What does that shave off the bottom line for Suncor?
View John McKay Profile
Lib. (ON)
I buy all of that. I'd be interested in knowing, and possibly the committee would as well, what that means to a corporation like Suncor in percentage terms or absolute dollars on an annualized basis.
There's a secondary question that comes out of that. We're all interested in a cleaner environment, and energy companies are no different from the rest of us. We all think we have to breathe. In terms of the intensity-based regime, does that come out of your research budget, such that you end up doing research? You set out here a whole bunch of things—good things, I would say—that Suncor is doing for the environment. It's not clear to me how those funds get allocated among issues directly pertaining to energy generation, particularly out of the oil sands, and what gets allocated to projects that are of larger environmental impact, such as looking after water and animals and all that sort of stuff.
Do you have any idea how that breaks out?
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