Ottawa, Ontario - September 9, 2002, by: Right Honourable Joe Clark

deal with
harm done

The Kyoto Protocol is a major commitment on the part of the Government of Canada to the world community and to the people of Canada. it is one way to deal with the harm done our environment by greenhouse gas emissions.




Last January, I wrote the Prime Minister a letter saying, among other things,
"If Canada is serious about meeting its targets, we must ensure that Canadians have the information they need to make an informed decision."



  1. He was good enough to respond with this commitment:

    "In closing, let me reiterate while the goal of the Government of Canada is to ratify the Kyoto Protocol, we will complete consultations with provinces, stakeholders and the public before taking a decision. I am pleased you share the Government's commitment to reducing greenhouse gases and addressing climate change."

  2. In Johannesburg in September the Prime Minister committed to ratifying the Protocol without honouring his word that there would be complete consultations. The impact of Mr. Chretien's unilateral decision is unknown. Whether Canada's word can be honoured is unknown. What is known is that several Provinces, whose concurrence is necessary for implementation, flatly reject Mr. Chretien's unilateral decision, and believe it will harm Canada. The following is proposed as a means of moving as swiftly as possible to rebuild consensus that must exist within a federation like Canada, and arrive at the information base necessary to decide which course best serves Canada's and Canadians interests.




The Progressive Conservative Party will press the government to have the Kyoto Protocol referred immediately to a Joint Committee of the House of Commons and the Senate. The terms of reference of that committee would require it explicitly to:

  1. Require the federal government to table detailed regional and sectoral impact studies, and a detailed implementation plan for meeting Kyoto targets, province-by-province and sector-by-sector.
  2. Invite every province that wishes to testify, to express support, spell out concerns, and/or propose alternatives.
  3. Invite the testimony of environmental groups, affected industries, organized labour, consumer advocates and other interested parties.
  4. Receive and consider a comprehensive and independent legal opinion, paid for by the government of Canada, on the constitutionality of ratifying the Kyoto Protocol in the absence of provincial agreement.
  5. Recommend specific adjustment programs, with projected budgets, that would help Canadian provinces, regions, individuals, businesses or industrial sectors that suffer significantly from implementation of the Kyoto Protocol.




This is a major decision. It will affect the air we breathe. It could affect the jobs and opportunities available to our children. It should affect the jobs and opportunities available to our children. It should not be imposed without debate by Jean Chretien. It would be decided in the Canadian way, by seeing the facts, and seeking agreement.




You and your readers have a long term interest. The impact of this decision will be felt long after Jean Chretien is gone. I hope your readers will help us fight for the facts, and the honest debate, which will lead to a sensible decision.

Joe Clark

  Letter sent to the Prime Minister January 30, 2002
  Letter sent by the Prime Minister February 26, 2002


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