Liberal MPs, June, 2009 (re Liberal Policy on the Tar Sands)

JustEarth is distressed by Canada’s failure to take the necessary tough measures to do our part in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. We are appalled by the Opposition leader’s enthusiastic endorsement of the tar sands, in the name of national unity no less.

Where is unity with First Nations’ peoples? With future Albertans ( who apparently have no rights)? Why is his vision so limited? (The cynic might note that the Chretien Liberals tried the same tactic to win support in Alberta by subsidizing the tar sands.)

We are also concerned to learn that Mr Ignatieff stated, at a meeting with the Mennonite Central Committee, that we will have to learn to live with the tar sands for the next 100 years. We wonder what live with means for the people whose misfortune it is to live near them, i.e. First Nations people especially, who are harmed by the pollution and water loss that is part of the project. What about the rights of people 100 years from now?

We ask you as a Liberal MP, do you agree with this devastation? Or are you willing to support a re-think of the tar sands subsidies? Are you aware that former Premier Lougheed has recommended a moratorium and that concerned unions have recommended no new projects?

Canadian voters, we think, might wonder what the difference is between the Harper Conservatives and Liberals under Ignatieff. We are encouraging members of all parties to support effective measures to reduce emissions, commensurate with the best science.

There is no possibility that carbon capture and sequestration can deal adequately with this problem. At best, if optimistic projections turn out to be right, carbon capture and sequestration will make modest reductions only, and these not timely. How can anyone claim to have an adequate climate crisis strategy while still supporting the tar sands?