The (Right) News Rundown
- One of the core planks of Rachel Notley’s environmental plan is to cap emissions from the oil sands at 100 megatons. This target is estimated to be reached sometime between 2025 and 2030.
- This friday a report was released by the Oil Sands Advisory Group (OSAG) recommended an annual forecast of greenhouse gas emissions for the next year and next decade. These reports would look at the 10 year forecast and would examine if the 100 megaton limit was in danger of being exceeded in the next 5 years. It also recommends that the Minister of Energy or Environment be given more power.
- The ministry would then enact stricter actions if the barrier was in danger of being reached. The ministry would also get more powers, specifically, "the Minister of Energy or Environment would also have the authority to suspend project approval of facilities that have not yet started construction.”
- Also with the release of this report, Minister of Environment Shannon Phillips announced that Tzeporah Berman would be leaving the OSAG. Berman is an environmental activist who took radical positions such as blocking all pipelines, “keeping the majority of the oil in the ground”, has called the oil sands “the most destructive blemish on the planet”, and has equated Fort McMurray with Mordor.
- The energy industry is still recovering from the fall in oil prices and has been various other planks of NDP policy such as increases in corporate taxes, a potential royalty review, and now more uncertainty when it comes to new project starts. Oil companies work a decade in advance of when their projects will come online. Investment is likely to be slow to return if there’s a possibility that a government ministry could possibly single handedly terminate a project.
- Wildrose Leader Brian Jean says that this possibility would “further chill investment in the oil and gas sector and are a clear cap on economic growth”.
- When the Alberta economy is strong, Albertans prosper. When Alberta prospers, Canada prospers.
- McLachlin announced on June 12, 2017 that she will be retiring from the bench effective December 15, 2017, nine months before reaching the mandatory retirement age of 75.
- Questions about who Trudeau will appoint to the Supreme Court, and who he will appoint as Chief Justice.
- Questions of whether Trudeau will let the Supreme Court stay independent and
- Appointments of non-partisan people to non-partisan portfolios ie Madeleine Meilleur
- Not filling positions of watchdogs
- Trudeau talking points in question period ie "we checked all the boxes, we did our homework, national security is number one priority etc"
The Firing Line
- “A stalled appointment process, a botched attempt at installing a member of the Liberal family in a post that requires total independence from the government, a unilateral bid to change the rules of the House of Commons.”
- The author goes on to highlight each of the previously mentioned points. Trudeau hasn’t filled a single parliamentary watchdog vacancy. Trudeau justifies delays in appointments due to “the quest for a merit-based system.” The information commissioner found that government transparency has actually decreased since Trudeau came to power. Trudeau promised to be respectful to parliament and the opposition parties but has been very unilateral.
- Liberals say that Trudeau’s heart is in the right place and the “big leap forward” on a gender parity cabinet with diversity will showcase the differences in the next election and make this wait for appointments no big deal.
- This article is entirely true. Much of the last election campaign was focused on “Real Change” and modernizing the institution of Parliament. This is what made Trudeau so appealing to a good chunk of the voter base including young people. What Trudeau and the Liberals need to realize is that the young voter base is not a guarantee. One only needs to look to the disastrous US mid-term elections of 2010 and 2014 where the Obama democrats lost house seats and the senate because Obama wasn’t delivering on promises kept to his key voters.
- Much of the mainstream media last election was focused on the fresh messaging the Liberals were bringing to the table and gave Trudeau considerable time to sell this idea to the population. Today the media should be focused on reporting accurately on how our government is doing. This means reporting on transparency, promises kept, and highlighting the slow pace at which this government is passing legislation. It was back in May on episode 16 where we mentioned that the government had only passed 17 bills since coming to power. This week CBC has an analysis that states that this government has only passed half the amount of bills as the former Harper government did by this time in their mandate.
Word of the Week
Change - the act or instance of making or becoming different: the change from a nomadic to an agricultural society | environmental change.
How to Find Us
Episode Title: Real Change?
Teaser: The Oil Sands Advisory Group in Alberta unveils measures that limit growth, Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin is retiring, questions of national security with a high tech company sale to China, and is Trudeau enacting his platform of real change?
Recorded Date: June 17, 2017
Release Date: June 18, 2017
Edit Notes: None