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Vague, non-specific commitments in recent federal budgets put Canada's economy at a disadvantage to clean tech giants like China.
China has become a disruptive, ever-accelerating force driving a global migration of automakers toward zero and low-emission vehicles.
The risks of not enacting change significantly outweigh the risks of implementing new technologies. Holding back is already costing us money and causing further damage to the environment, and the longer we wait, the worse it will get. Canada has an opportunity to be a leader and to show the world that it is possible.
The district of Squamish in British Columbia is widely known as the Outdoor Recreation Capital of Canada. But this all-season destination for climbers, hikers, mountain bikers, kite surfers, and birdwatchers is also developing a reputation as a nucleus for clean innovation.
Clean technologies are increasingly being viewed as a future driver for the Canadian economy, creating well-paid jobs and export revenues. The recently released Global Cleantech 100, a rigorously researched list of the world's most promising clean technology ventures, reveals why: Of the 100 companies listed, 11 were Canadian.
Unfortunately, time is not on our side, and significantly reducing carbon emissions requires immediate action. I believe the time for cautious, incremental change has passed and that we must take bold steps to achieve our climate goals. Nowhere is bold action needed more than in the Canadian energy industry.
No matter what anyone says during this long federal election campaign, climate change is the biggest threat to Canadians' health, security and economy. The scientific evidence is incontrovertible, the research wide-ranging and overwhelming.
Although extraction, use and export of natural resources are economically important and will remain so for some time, we're starting to diversify. According to Ottawa-based consultants Analytica Advisors, clean technology, or clean-tech, is the country's fastest-growing industry. The firm's "2014 Canadian Clean Technology Report," found direct employment by clean-tech companies rose six per cent from 2011 to 2012, from 38,800 people to 41,000, with revenues increasing nine per cent to $11.3-billion.
The National Energy Board's Joint Review Panel (JRP) has now released its final report on the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline project. The project would see 525,000 barrels of the heavy oil diluted bitumen (dilbit) transported across British Columbia each day and loaded onto super tankers for shipment to international refineries. This puts British Columbia at significant economic and environmental risk.
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