Legislation soft on greenhouse emissions In what appears to be abandoning the Kyoto accord, Canada introduced new legislation on Thursday. The Clean Air Act sets no short-term targets for cutting emissions, but seeks to reduce 45-65% of emissions by 2050. The act makes no reference to the Kyoto accord, or Canada’s commitments to it. 

In what appears to be abandoning the Kyoto accord, Canada introduced new legislation on Thursday. The Clean Air Act sets no short-term targets for cutting emissions, but seeks to reduce 45-65% of emissions by 2050. The act makes no reference to the Kyoto accord, or Canada’s commitments to it. In a news conference in Ottawa, Environment Minister Rona Ambrose defended the Clean Air Act saying, “we will be the first federal government to introduce mandatory regulations on all industry sectors across Canada to reduce air pollution and greenhouse gases.” 

Ambrose called for 3 years of consultation for Canada’s large industrial emitters – those responsible for nearly half of Canada’s greenhouse emissions. She made no mention of the previous government having already granted 3 years of consultation. 

Environmental Defense’s Aaron Freeman said that this legislation pushes back chances of firm regulation another 3 years. 

Under the Kyoto accord, Canada pledged to reduce gas emissions by 6% from 1990 levels by 2012. At present, the emissions are 30% above 1990’s levels. 

John Bennett of the Sierra Club of Canada said, “no matter what the government says about not pulling out of Kyoto, we officially pulled out of Kyoto today. We have decided to abandon our international commitment.”

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