Canada: a global embarrassment at Copenhagen conference
I feel embarrassed by Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his poor showing for Canada at the world climate talks in Copenhagen. He didn’t even bother showing up to hear the speeches made by other world leaders expressing their concern about climate change. He clearly has no interest in threatening Alberta’s oil and gas industries or taking the Kyoto treaty seriously.
I’m glad that President Obama officially snubbed Harper at the conference. The U.S. President left him off his guest list for an emergency meeting with 19 other world leaders at the conference. This publicly acknowledges that Obama doesn’t view Harper as a serious decision-maker in the climate change debate. Now our prime minister won’t get to strategize with global players like Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd; British Prime Minister Gordon Brown; French President Nicolas Sarkozy; German Chancellor Angela Merkel; Chinese Vice Foreign Minister He Yafei; and Brazilian President Luiz Lula da Silva.
Go back to your sandbox, Harper. The big boys don’t want you in the game.
Thanks to Harper, Canada deserves the Fossil of the Year award, presented in a mock ceremony at the Copenhagen conference by the activist group Avaaz. Because of his lack of action, Canada also deserves the two consecutive “fossil” awards from the Climate Action Network, which “honor’ the countries deemed to have done the least to control their greenhouse gas emissions.
What can we do? Vote him out of office. Stay informed. Write to your MP. Support environmental and advocacy groups that work to stop initiatives like the proposed Enbridge pipeline through northern B.C. and serve as watchdogs for Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions. There are many climate-concerned organizations out there, from the David Suzuki Foundation and Climate Action Network to Pacific Wild and Forest Ethics.