Stephen Harper, November, 2009

We are appalled by the remarks of the minister of the environment, Jim Prentice, justifying Canada's inaction on climate change for the next number of years. He (and you) seem to be unaware of the urgency of swift action. Mounting scientific evidence indicates that polar ice is melting faster than predicted, and global warming proceeding faster. This is no time to relax.

The excuse that our circumstances are “unique” is specious. Every country could say that. The atmosphere cares nothing for excuses but counts parts per million of carbon. A growing population is not inevitable, indeed Canada’s would not be growing were it not for massive efforts at immigration. Increased numbers make increased customers for companies, but that is to miss the real problem -- that we must make real reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. With our per capita emissions being amongst the highest in the world, we are in no position to argue for higher numbers.

It seems that the minister needs a briefing by climate experts, who are anything but complacent about action. Note that the prince of Wales stated, in March 2009, that we have 100 months to act, before “irreversible damage” is caused. The secretary general of the United Nations takes the matter much more seriously, also. By what scientific authority does the Conservative government think that we can wait until 2020 to begin reductions?