"There are a whole bunch of documents that Canada should have submitted to the process, what options Canada is prepared to take in the next phase. Those documents haven't been submitted to the United Nations, so other delegations are wondering what Canada's position is, and if we are going to take a leadership position."
Listening to John Baird, Canada is actively involved, leading the charge to move the international community forward. If this rhetoric were actually true, why then has Canada failed to submit proposals, ideas and scenarios to the United Nations? People can argue about the merits of Kyoto's initial phase, but these negotiations represent a new process, a new agenda, so the past Conservative criticism of Kyoto have no foundation in this instance. In other words, why is Canada embarrassing itself, by not even participating in the post-Kyoto talks? Why are other nations left to wonder where Canada stands?
What is even more shocking, the Tories have decided that they are now the climate changes experts, removing the real experts and industry from the process:
"This is a conference that used to involve Canadian environmentalists as part of the official delegation, I understand that has changed, is that correct?"
"That's right. In the past the official Canadian delegation would bring along stakeholders from industry and environmental groups. As of this meeting, they are no long doing that. So, it really does restrict the amount of information and points of view that the Canadian delegation has access to. The environmental groups obviously have a lot to contribute in terms of their expertise and their take on how to tackle climate change, how to work with other delegations to actually move forward on international delegations. Canada really isn't taking a leadership role, and now we have been excluded from the official delegation."
This move is akin to removing lawyers from constitutional talks. These people are the experts, this is their discipline, the issues are complex and their guidance is required, to make sound judgements. To deny these groups a place in the official Canadian delegation makes Canada look amateurish and silly. These groups will still walk the corridors and speak with people, but the government has effectively removed their clout to influence the process.
When you combine our failure to submit proposals and our alarming removal of scientists from the delegation, you have to conclude that our presence is nothing more than a public relations exercise, to allay fears at home, rather than Canada involving itself in serious talks. I suspect other nations will see through the veneer , and once again, the Conservative government will embarrass Canada, within a body that once had nothing but respect and admiration. "Canada is back" alright Mr. Harper, to the back of the line apparently.