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June 15th, 2011

New Democrats reintroduce climate change accountability act

OTTAWA – Today the New Democrats reintroduced their Climate Change Accountability Act in the House of Commons. The bill was tabled in the House of Commons by New Democrat Environment Critic Megan Leslie (Halifax).

“Canada is increasingly facing international criticism because we do not have a real plan address the growing threat of climate change,” said Leslie. “This bill establishes a strong plan with firm targets that will hold this government accountable for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and help improve our tarnished international reputation.”

The Climate Change Accountability Act legislates long-term targets to reduce Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions and mandates regular reviews and reports on the federal government’s progress.

It will establish:

  • A long-term target to reduce Canadian greenhouse gas emissions to 80% below 1990 levels by 2050;
  • A medium-term target to bring emissions 25% below 1990 levels by 2020; and
  • An interim target plans every five years, which must be brought before Parliament.

These targets are consistent with the Kyoto process.

The Climate Change Accountability Act was first introduced by New Democrat Leader Jack Layton in October 2006, and again by Bruce Hyer (Thunder Bay-Superior North) in February 2009. The bill twice passed in the House of Commons with the support of opposition members, and both times the legislative process was stopped by unelected senators. The most recent version of the bill was defeated in the fall of 2010 by the senate before it was even studied.