Minister Guilbeault made the following statement after the just completed COP 27 Climate talks “During a global energy crisis, we are more committed than ever to support the global transition to cleaner, renewable forms of energy, by transitioning away from our dependency on fossil fuels”.
How do we reconcile that with the Prime Minister’s recent statement at the Canadian Climate Institute conference? He said, “If companies can reduce their emissions, then there is room within that to increase production”. His rationale is that Canada should grow its production to replace that of other countries who have a worse record on human rights.
This is the same tack taken by the CEO of the Bank of Nova Scotia who recently wrote ”if the world still needs oil and gas in the years ahead…. the world must look to responsible producers for our energy needs as we undertake the necessary transition to a net-zero economy. The world must look to Canada”
Sounds good on the surface, doesn’t it? But it’s bad logic. What they are saying is, in a world where oil and gas production needs to decline, Canada should continue to grow because of our moral and ethical underpinnings.
Think about this. Do you really think that Saudi Arabia and Russia, two of the top three producers, will reduce their production at the expense of Canada’s “cleaner” oil? Or even the USA, top producer and the home of big oil?
The ethical argument just doesn’t hold.
From an economic standpoint, the argument is just as bad. Continue to invest and rely on a dying industry, one that must decline if we are to have a chance of a livable planet. This will be a bad investment when Saudi Arabia and Russia’s production costs are a fraction of Canada’s. So as demand declines, as it must, who will be the loser?
The economic argument just doesn’t hold.