With the Durban climate-change talks upon us, federal Environment Minister Peter Kent is recycling tired, old Stephen Harper myths about holding out for a "global plan" that includes all major greenhouse-gas emitters, such as India and China.
Never mind that Kyoto did exactly that. Building on a framework signed by the Brian Mulroney Conservative government and further negotiated in good faith by the Chrétien and Martin Liberal governments, with Kyoto, Canada was able to take a leadership role in a truly global undertaking.
Following the formula that worked so well for ozone initiatives, the developed nations, responsible for most of the existing problem, were to lead the way by taking the brunt of the initial load, with developing nations to take on more of it in phase two once we'd shown our bona fides.
India and China did indeed commit to this. Yet because for a few years these developing economies, clawing themselves out of deep poverty, weren't expected to take on a full burden of cleaning up after the world's wealthy, long-time polluters such as us, the Harper Tory government, to Canada's shame, reneged.
It's one thing to sincerely believe Kyoto was a mistake and set about, however erroneously, to honestly undo it; it's quite another to do so without the courage or the integrity to own up to it, always blaming someone else in belligerent denial.
I wonder how Mr. Kent, or Prime Minister Harper, for that matter, can expect to be taken seriously in any negotiation, standing brick-in-hand among the bitter shards of Kyoto.
Ron McKinnon,Port Coquitlam
Editor's note: Mr. McKinnon is president of the Port Moody-Westwood-Port Coquitlam Federal Liberal Association.