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Results: 1 - 30 of 81
View Gabriel Ste-Marie Profile
BQ (QC)
View Gabriel Ste-Marie Profile
2019-06-04 13:39 [p.28490]
Mr. Speaker, it is time to take a look at the Liberals' record. There are two and a half weeks left in this Parliament. The budget implementation bill that is before us today is the government's last. Anything not contained in that bill will have to wait until after the election. Budget 2019 is consistent with this government's approach of saying one thing and doing the opposite.
First, let us talk about this so-called green government. Since the last election, bitumen extraction in Alberta has skyrocketed. We are talking about an increase of 25%. That is no small thing. Extraction grew even faster than under Stephen Harper. In fact, production has grown so much that it has exceeded transport capacity.
Today, the Liberals and the Conservatives would have us believe that there is a pipeline problem, but that is not the case. There is an overproduction problem, which is not the same thing. To limit overproduction, the government is proposing to support new investments in the oil sands with accelerated capital cost allowance. A total of $2.7 billion in taxpayers' money will be wasted on this tax expenditure.
In one year alone, the government announced $19 billion in new oil investments. The oil industry certainly got the message. If you look at production estimates, it is clear that the industry wants to maintain the level of growth it has seen the past four years. This will result in more overproduction and cause prices to continue their downturn. This is meant to make us believe that more pipelines are inevitable and that we have no choice but to export and pollute more.
The direct consequence of this government's policies is that energy east will be forced back on us. The Liberal government is working to keep us in the 20th century, bogged down in the tar sands.
Mr. Alain Rayes: Where do you get your gas?
Mr. Gabriel Ste-Marie: Mr. Speaker, at my daughter's school there is a big banner saying “zero tolerance for bullying”. The previous Conservative member who spoke accused the Liberals of bullying, and now the member for Victoriaville is hurling epithets and questions at me. There should be zero tolerance for bullying here too. We have a right to speak without being interrupted.
To get back to what I was saying, that is not what we need in Quebec. We have already started to go green. GHG emissions per capita are two and a half times lower in Quebec than in the rest of Canada. A policy for the 21st century is to make polluting expensive and avoiding pollution profitable.
I can already hear the Liberals saying that they created the carbon tax, so let us talk about it. The government imposes a tax, then gives the money back to those who paid it. It is a circle that does not result in any real transfer of wealth from polluters to the good guys. It does not make it profitable to go green. It will not result in a true green shift. It does not entitle anyone to make green speeches. It is merely an image, just like the government has been since it was elected: an image, no more, no less, but definitely no more.
Let us move on. In the lead-up to the budget, the Bloc québécois reached out to Quebeckers, and what we consistently heard was that their main priorities are health and education. There is nothing about that in the budget. Health transfers have been capped at 3% for two years, and yet, health costs in Quebec have risen by 5.2%. You do not need a Nobel prize in mathematics to see that there is a problem. The healthcare system is stretched to its limit, and wait times are getting longer. Something has to give, and everyone knows it.
Everything I have just said about the healthcare system also applies to education. Teachers are as burnt out as nurses. It is the same problem, except that, in this case, transfers were capped at 3% 15 years ago. Health and education are Quebeckers’ two main priorities. There is nothing about that in Bill C-97. The government decided to gradually move away from Quebecker’s priorities. That is abundantly clear in Bill C-97.
Now, let us look at the measures the government has taken to stimulate the economy. Its primary measure involves infrastructure. In and of itself, that is a good thing, but the methods used are another story. By multiplying specific programs, each one with very strict criteria, Ottawa has ruined everything. Federal requirements have caused a tug of war with Quebec and will paralyze the entire process. The result is striking: the money is starting to trickle down just before the election. We had to wait a long time. In the first two years of its term, the government spent $100 per Quebecker and $700 for each Canadian outside Quebec.
We know the federal government is building precious little infrastructure. It owns barely 2% of all public infrastructure, while the provinces and municipalities own 98%. Through federal transfers, the government is financing infrastructure that does not belong to it, that is not within its jurisdiction and that it does not have the means to prioritize intelligently. The government had good intentions, but the whole undertaking has been a monumental failure on the ground.
The money is not flowing. The federal criteria are too rigid and do not meet communities' needs. During the last election campaign, the Liberals promised to transfer blocks of infrastructure funding. They promised to mind their own business and do their job. That is yet another broken promise, and Quebec is paying the price.
As I said, my leader and I have been travelling around a lot listening to Quebeckers. People do not realize how future-focused Quebec is. Quebeckers are creative and innovative. Yesterday's tinkerers are now developing video games, designing new aircraft and working on artificial intelligence. Year after year, Quebec accounts for between 40% and 45% of Canada's tech exports, even though its share of Canada's economy is only half that much.
In metropolitan areas across Quebec, there are at least 5,000 technology startups. I think of it as Silicon Valley North. What is in Bill C-97 for technology? Is it an aerospace policy? No. Is it patient capital to let our technology start-ups develop here in Canada rather than being bought out by U.S. web giants? It is not that either.
However, there is some venture capital to help out the rest of Canada. That is how it is in all areas. When Quebec succeeds, Ottawa is not there. Take supply management, for example. Our regional agriculture lends itself well to local distribution. That is the future. Instead of helping, the government is hurting agriculture. It has signed three trade agreements with three breaches, and not a single penny has been paid to farmers.
We scoured Bill C-97 for the compensation, but it is not there. Our producers were taken for a ride. They will get nothing before the election. That is also the case for Davie. Does Bill C-97 announce a review of its horrible naval strategy? The answer is obviously no.
The same goes for the fight against tax havens. These loopholes allow banks and multi-millionaires to get out of paying taxes. The government needs to act fast, but instead, it has legalized three new tax havens. In my private member's bill, I proposed a working solution to close the loopholes, but, of course, all the Liberals but one voted it down. Like the sheriff of Nottingham, they would rather defend fat cats than low-income workers. The Conservatives also voted against my bill, but at least they were being true to type. Unlike the Liberals, they do not try to dress up as Robin Hood.
View Gabriel Ste-Marie Profile
BQ (QC)
View Gabriel Ste-Marie Profile
2019-06-04 13:48 [p.28491]
Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague from Salaberry—Suroît for her question. Her comments were very astute.
As I said in my speech, under this government's watch, oil sands extraction has increased by 25%. That says it all. This government says it cares about the environment and that it is polluting less, yet extraction has increased by 25% in four years.
Next, I talked about their notorious carbon tax. They are rewarding those who pollute. This is not a wealth transfer or incentive for those who pollute less, nor is it a penalty for polluters. It is an empty gesture that is meant to sound environmentally responsible, but when we really look at the actions taken, it is not the same thing. That is why Canada's reputation around the world on environmental matters has plummeted to zero. This is simply not good enough, considering the urgency. Urgent action is needed. We cannot afford to let the situation deteriorate any further. All reports from the IPCC and scientists are telling us that we need to act now, that strong action is needed right away.
These measures could also help Quebec's economy. We have everything we need to transition to a green economy, a forward-looking, 21st century economy. The only thing missing is the will on the other side of the House, which clearly is not there. We hear nothing but empty rhetoric.
View Gabriel Ste-Marie Profile
BQ (QC)
View Gabriel Ste-Marie Profile
2019-06-04 13:51 [p.28491]
Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague from Winnipeg North for his words of praise for Quebec's carbon pricing system, which is working quite well, though much still remains to be done.
With respect to the national carbon tax, I would say that its criteria are lacking. Major polluters are currently exempt, and only consumers, meaning Canadians, are paying it and receiving a cheque in return.
If we really want to leverage this measure to bring about a change in behaviour, we have to start by going after the main emitters, rewarding those who do good things for the environment and punishing those who increase pollution.
Yes, it is a good idea, and it sounds good, but as for the real, concrete impact, the Bloc Québécois and I believe it is not enough.
View Luc Thériault Profile
BQ (QC)
View Luc Thériault Profile
2019-06-03 15:18 [p.28416]
Mr. Speaker, we agree to apply the result from the previous vote and we are voting in favour of the motion.
View Luc Thériault Profile
BQ (QC)
View Luc Thériault Profile
2019-06-03 15:22 [p.28418]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the result from the previous vote and is voting in favour of the motion.
View Monique Pauzé Profile
BQ (QC)
View Monique Pauzé Profile
2019-02-26 18:27 [p.25830]
Mr. Speaker, we agree to apply the vote and will vote in favour of the motion.
View Monique Pauzé Profile
BQ (QC)
View Monique Pauzé Profile
2019-02-26 18:30 [p.25832]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote and will vote in favour of the motion.
View Gabriel Ste-Marie Profile
BQ (QC)
View Gabriel Ste-Marie Profile
2018-12-07 10:24 [p.24556]
Madam Speaker, I also believe that if you seek it, you will find unanimous consent of the House.
If we start working before you come back with your ruling, that means we will have to rely on the English version.
To the Bloc Québécois, that would be completely unacceptable. It would mean that the House is relegating French to second place, which would be an intolerable outrage.
You are the guarantor of our rights. Personally, as a Bloc Québécois member and a Quebecker, I will never agree to let the English version take precedence, even temporarily.
View Mario Beaulieu Profile
BQ (QC)
View Mario Beaulieu Profile
2018-12-05 15:38 [p.24456]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote and will vote no.
View Simon Marcil Profile
BQ (QC)
View Simon Marcil Profile
2018-11-27 18:30 [p.24062]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote and will be voting against the motion.
View Simon Marcil Profile
BQ (QC)
View Simon Marcil Profile
2018-11-27 18:31 [p.24063]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote and will be voting against the motion.
View Simon Marcil Profile
BQ (QC)
View Simon Marcil Profile
2018-11-27 18:33 [p.24064]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote and will be voting against the motion.
View Simon Marcil Profile
BQ (QC)
View Simon Marcil Profile
2018-11-27 18:34 [p.24065]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote and will be voting no.
View Simon Marcil Profile
BQ (QC)
View Simon Marcil Profile
2018-11-27 18:36 [p.24067]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply and will be voting against the motion.
View Simon Marcil Profile
BQ (QC)
View Simon Marcil Profile
2018-10-29 19:13 [p.22969]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote and will be voting yes.
View Simon Marcil Profile
BQ (QC)
View Simon Marcil Profile
2018-10-29 19:24 [p.22971]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote and will be voting yes.
View Simon Marcil Profile
BQ (QC)
View Simon Marcil Profile
2018-10-29 19:34 [p.22974]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote and will vote no.
View Simon Marcil Profile
BQ (QC)
View Simon Marcil Profile
2018-10-29 19:53 [p.22978]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote and will be voting in favour of the motion.
View Marilène Gill Profile
BQ (QC)
View Marilène Gill Profile
2018-06-20 15:45 [p.21347]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote, we will vote yes, and we also wish everyone a good summer.
View Simon Marcil Profile
BQ (QC)
View Simon Marcil Profile
2018-06-11 15:23 [p.20609]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote and will vote yes.
View Simon Marcil Profile
BQ (QC)
View Simon Marcil Profile
2018-06-11 15:35 [p.20612]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote and will vote yes.
View Simon Marcil Profile
BQ (QC)
View Simon Marcil Profile
2018-06-11 15:37 [p.20613]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote and will vote yes.
View Simon Marcil Profile
BQ (QC)
View Simon Marcil Profile
2018-06-11 15:38 [p.20614]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote and will vote no.
View Simon Marcil Profile
BQ (QC)
View Simon Marcil Profile
2018-06-11 15:50 [p.20617]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote and will be voting no.
View Xavier Barsalou-Duval Profile
BQ (QC)
Madam Speaker, I thank you for giving me the opportunity to speak to Bill C-69. I also thank my colleague for sharing her time with me and allowing me to have a few minutes to speak about this important bill today.
This is an important bill that will have a significant impact on Quebec. This is not just a bill about the environment; it is also a bill that creates a problem as to how it will be enforced by provincial jurisdictions. I am particularly concerned about the Quebec government's jurisdiction, and that is the main point I want to make in my speech today.
Nothing at the core of Bill C-69 says that the agency has the power to enter into agreements with the provinces to delegate environmental assessments to the provinces. In Quebec, we already have the Bureau d'audiences publiques en environnement, or BAPE, which has considerable expertise and has never been contradicted. There have never been any scandals surrounding its independence or its reports, unlike various federal institutions, such as the NEB, where there have been many problems recently,especially regarding the independence of the board members. Doubt surrounding the independence of the board members can cast doubt on the findings, if there is not a proper process is in place.
Unlike the federal process, so far the process in Quebec has virtually always been respected and considered valid and credible. I think it is important to rely on credible institutions whenever possible, especially in Quebec.
It is obvious to me that Bill C-69 should let the agency delegate its environmental assessment authority to institutions under provincial jurisdiction. These institutions are often much more knowledgeable about their territory. We know that, in Quebec, BAPE conducts such assessments. Its employees have acquired a certain expertise over the years.
This bill will create a new institution with new people and with practices that have yet to be established. A new culture and new expertise will have to be developed, even though that already exists within the Quebec government. It is important to build on a solid foundation, and to rely on the people already in place and their knowledge of the area, because they are closer to the people of Quebec.
There is a major element in C-69 that is problematic. It allows the federal government to disregard provincial jurisdictions and to make decisions about what it wants, how it wants it, and when it wants it. Provincial legislation and municipal bylaws are not important. They are not taken into consideration.
This creates some big problems. Take, for example, how technology has evolved in our ridings. That may not be directly related to the environment, but there is an interesting parallel. Cell towers are being put up in our ridings, for Internet and all kinds of data transmissions that fall under federal jurisdiction. In many municipalities, these towers are being put up anywhere, in the middle of public parks, and sometimes in front of houses. This destroys the landscape, sometimes in heritage areas, even. The federal government does not work with the communities at all. Take the much-discussed issue of mailboxes, for example. Members will recall when Montreal mayor Denis Coderre infamously destroyed a mailbox. I am not condoning his actions, but I think it was an important symbolic gesture showing the federal government's failure to listen to the provinces and municipalities. When the federal government itself does not need to comply with our laws and regulations, it is even easier to completely ignore them.
Obviously, respect for the Government of Quebec's areas of jurisdiction, including on environmental matters, should be incorporated into Bill C-69. The Government of Quebec already has jurisdiction over the environment and that must be enforced. The Government of Quebec has to be able to enforce its own laws, its own rules, and be master within its own jurisdiction. If the federal government interferes all the time, it indirectly prevents Quebec from doing its job.
Bill C-69 has a lot of room for improvement in that regard. This is such a fundamental issue that the government should act in good faith, allow these changes, and abide by them. I hope all other members of the House will support us on this. Many individuals and environmental groups in Quebec share this vision.
We have seen instances of the provinces' rights not being respected, and we are about to see it again with the government imposing the Kinder Morgan pipeline on British Columbia in violation of the province's jurisdiction and the rights of the people who live along the pipeline route. When the government does not listen to the people, they see that as an injustice. A government that inflicts such an injustice loses legitimacy in their eyes, and that makes people cynical.
A government that wants to avoid cynicism must respect our institutions. There is not just one institution that matters. The government has to listen to other legitimate governments' institutions, which are just as important. To forestall intergovernmental strife, the feds must at the very least respect those institutions, but that is something the federal government does not often do.
That is one of the reasons why we in the Bloc Québécois believe that Quebec should be a country. This habit is so ingrained in this government that it can barely even function because of its arrogance and attitude of superiority. Ottawa knows best. It is always Ottawa that decides what happens and, at the end of the day, our laws and our interests are trampled on. This has to change. By amending Bill C-69, Ottawa could reach out to the provinces and try to come up with an agreement that is a little better, despite the circumstances. In short, Ottawa must respect Quebec's laws and the Bureau d'audiences publiques sur l'environnement, which is pretty important.
In addition, the bill provides no guarantee that any public hearings will be held on major projects. Public hearings are important, because they give members of the public a chance to have their say on a project. When the public does not have a chance to do so, it is much harder to adapt the project and determine what the public really wants. It is much harder to sell a project when you do not seek public opinion, even if that opinion is positive. Public consultations are fundamental to any major project and, once again, they are not even mentioned in this bill.
There are no parameters for appointing the commissioners. That is a major problem because it is the Minister of the Environment who has the power to appoint the commissioners of the future agency. We end up with the same problem that we had with the National Energy Board where the government appoints agency employees who are accountable to the person who appointed them and who sometimes have special interests.
The current bill still does not address the possibility of appointing people from industry. Obviously appointing a pipeline promoter to assess a pipeline will not work because he clearly wants the pipeline built. That is his job. Similarly, if we ask a real estate agent whether the housing market is overheated, he will always say it is not, because he wants to sell houses and get a better commission. I think this leaves room for conflicts of interest and conflicts of vision.
It is therefore important to regulate the process for appointing commissioners and appointing independent commissioners rather than having commissioners appointed by the minister who are accountable to her. We know this creates major problems with regard to perception and independence, which results in a process that does not work.
For all those reasons, we will oppose Bill C-69. It is also important to consult first nations since they too have a right of oversight and should have their say.
View Xavier Barsalou-Duval Profile
BQ (QC)
Mr. Speaker, my intention in bringing up cell towers was to give an example of a case where the federal government is disregarding both provincial laws and municipal bylaws. Urban planning is a municipal responsibility, and cities should be able to decide where towers should be installed. There is an important question in all this with regard to urban development and landscape integration. However, that goes beyond Bill C-69. In my opinion, the important thing is for the bill to respect areas of provincial jurisdiction and comply with municipal bylaws. The example of cell towers illustrates the federal government's tendency to disregard municipal bylaws and provincial laws. If we want good collaboration and well-run projects in the future, it is essential that the federal government get in the habit of complying with these provincial laws, since they are perfectly valid, having been passed by elected officials like us. These laws were passed for the benefit of the people. Furthermore, provincial elected representatives are often closer to their constituents than their federal counterparts, since Ottawa is quite far away for many people.
View Xavier Barsalou-Duval Profile
BQ (QC)
Mr. Speaker, I thank my colleague for bringing up that issue, which I did not have a chance to address in my speech.
That is a very important point. The consultation process is not even mandatory in every situation and the government is not even required to consult the public, far from it. If there is a consultation process, we know that the people running it were appointed to do so by the minister. In fact, the minister is responsible for appointing commissioners, so there is already something wrong there. Once the consultation process is complete, the commissioners' report may not support the project, but the minister could still go ahead with it anyway. That is not good either. The process is already flawed from the outset. Basically, the process is useless because the minister can do as she pleases regardless.
What is the point of the process if the minister can do as she pleases without taking the discussions into account? That is a major problem with this bill. It is also one of the reasons why we are opposed to it.
View Xavier Barsalou-Duval Profile
BQ (QC)
Mr. Speaker, I have not yet had the opportunity to review my colleague's amendment.
From what she said, it seems to be a very good amendment. However, since I have not had the opportunity to read it, I cannot personally comment on it. I look forward to reading it. If it is an amendment that we deem to be beneficial to Quebec's interests, then we will obviously vote in favour of it.
View Marilène Gill Profile
BQ (QC)
View Marilène Gill Profile
2018-06-04 18:53 [p.20164]
Mr. Speaker, the Bloc Québécois agrees to apply the vote and will vote yes.
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