Conservative MP James Rajotte was on the CBC, and basically argued that the rest of Canada is out to get Alberta. The Liberals are picking on the tar sands, over-stating those emissions, while conveniently ignoring other sources. Rajotte kept referring to Ontario's coal fired generation, which is unquestionably a major problem. Rajotte also went to great pains to explain all the advances in technology that made the tar sands exploration increasingly environmentally friendly. Carbon capture was the central technology that rendered the alarmist rhetoric about 3 or 4 fold increases in production mute.
Rajotte's spin that new technologies will mitigate the rise in emissions is the preferred defense of the oil and gas sector. Let's take Mr. Rajotte, Ralph Klein and others at their word. If the rhetoric is realistic, why not tie any development to meeting these assurances? If these people are truthful, then they should have no problem endorsing a scenario where no development is allowed unless a company can quantify how these new technologies will reach the goal. In other words, to the likes of Mr. Rajotte, put up or shut up. If new development will be environmentally friendly, then why is the government fast-tracking the process and bypassing environmental reviews? Surely, if the reasoning is truly honest, the industry should welcome the scrutiny.
I'm getting tired of the "out to get Alberta" bull that we keep hearing. The fact of the matter, Alberta contributes more GHG than Ontario, despite a fourth of the population. The fact of the matter, the vast majority of recent rises in emissions are directly tied to the oil and gas sector in Alberta. This is truth, not some tribal vendetta that finds easy scapegoats. In addition, pointing to the problems in Alberta, doesn't absolve Ontario's failures. Every sector, every region needs scrutiny, but you can't ignore the elephant in the room.
With regard to Ontario, the provincial government needs to take some drastic measures on the consumption side. I would fully favor a system that allocates electrical need based on living quarters. Varying rates, based on usage thresholds, that act as a deterrent to excess. Such a system would heighten awareness, force people to look at electricity as a limited commodity and instill some responsibility. The government should also create a different billing system, and possible limitations on home sizes, to discourage building homes that are patently obscene. The government needs to legislate limits, and anything that falls beyond should be penalized on a rising scale, with the revenue used on renewable energy sources.