World can’t wait until 2020 on Climate Action, says new IEA report
Last week the International Energy Agency (IEA) released a disturbing report warming that “the world is not on track to limit the long-term rise in the average global temperature to two degrees Celcius,” and that, based on a business as usual scenario, we can look forward to a long-term average temperature somewhere between 3.6°C and 5.3°C. Such a rise in global temperature would bring catastrophic changes that would not only be extremely costly, but also deeply threatening to human society. The report is significant since the IEA is generally very favourable of continued use of fossil fuels and is paid by governments such as Canada to provide advice on energy policy and strategy – time for Primer Minister Harper to heed the advice he’s paying for (with our money).
In 2009, Harper acknowledged that “deep cuts in emissions were required” if grave effects from climate change were to be avoided, but we already know that Canada is expected to fall far short of it’s 2020 target to bring greenhouse gas emissions to a level 17% below 2005 levels.
Under current planning, the world is committed to achieving a new climate change regime by 2015, to be implemented starting in 2020, with the 2°C temperature constraint a key element. But if there is to be a realistic prospect of holding to that limit, the IEA proposes urgent and strong action on energy efficiency, halting the construction of least-efficient coal plants, minimizing methane emissions from oil and gas production, and reducing subsidies for fossil fuels. In other words, the report cautions the governments of the world against putting of real climate actions until a global deal is signed.
While the Environment Canada website boasts that “the Government of Canada supports an aggressive approach to climate change that achieves real environmental and economic benefits for all Canadians,” in the reality the opposite is true. The Harper government is the government of the oil industry and its strategy for Canada is heavily tied to rapid and reckless expansion of oil sands extraction and export. But the NDP and Liberals also lack leadership on climate change, as neither effectively challenges Harper’s outdated energy strategy and accepts that tar sands expansion in a climate-constrained world is a circle that simply cannot be squared. Read more…
Organizers gear up for PowerShift 2013, but they need YOUR help!
Last year, PowerShift 2012 brought together nearly 1500 youth from all across Canada for a one-of-a kind gathering, focused on building the movement to transition Canada to a just and sustainable future.
This October, organizers are planning PowerShift BC, the first of a series of reagional PowerShifts. Focusing on local issues and regional movement building, this series of gatherings will educate, train, and mobilize our generation to take a stand, but they need your help! With your help, the PowerShift vision can become a reality. Your support will mean one more young person getting advice, one more university taking action, one more workplace where youth are organizing, and one more community full of young leaders.
To make a donation please visit the PowerShfit BC Crowd Sourcing Page. Any donation, from $5 to $500, will help get us that much closer to building a just and sustainable future for Canada.