Under the title, “The country is on fire. Pierre Poilievre doesn’t seem to care”, Gary Mason opened an article in The Globe and Mail on May 23 with the observation that forest fires were already raging in many parts of the country. Readers of Canada’s National Observer did not need to be told.

The federal government understood the connection between fossil fuels and global warming in 1988, when it hosted the Toronto International Conference on the Changing Atmosphere.

At the time, Prime Minister Brian Mulroney was the first national leader to sign the United Nations Framework Convention in 1992. That turned out to be the easy part.

Corporate Knights recently reported that during his 20-year career as a member of Parliament, Conservative leader, Pierre Poilievre, has voted, according to House of Commons voting records, against the environment nearly 400 times.

That includes voting “nay” to bills crafted to hold mining companies accountable for environmental damage, move Canada closer towards achieving its climate targets, and create high-quality jobs in low-carbon industries nationwide.

Poilievre’s anti-environment record includes voting “yea” for legislation designed to weaken environmental safeguards on new industrial projects and accelerate expansion of the oil and gas industry, Canada’s dominant and growing source of greenhouse gas emissions.

During his two decades in Parliament, Poilievre voted in favour of the environment and climate action just 13 times. This suggests that for a Poilievre-led government, the odds are 40-to-1 against effective policy and programs to reduce Canada’s very large contribution to global warming and other environmental issues.

Canada ranks behind only Saudi Arabia and the other Gulf States in its per capita emissions, way above European countries. This country has lost its international credibility on this file. It could get worse with Poilievre as prime minister.

On May 28, a high temperature of 52.9 C was reported in New Dehli. Humans and other species cannot survive such temperatures that exceed body temperature by a wide margin. India will not be the only country hit, not by a long shot.

The wellbeing of Canadians — and all humans, not to mention other species — depends on policies and programs that actually work. This should be a central issue in the next election.

Our federal government seems to have gotten over its single-minded fixation on carbon taxes, which do not work in retail markets at the prices charged. Some of its more recent policies represent tiny steps in the right direction. But the Liberal government ignores the key role fossil fuels play in contributing to climate change.

This is a difficult issue for any government because a significant decision in favour of the natural environment and human health entails economic costs for the national and western economies.

Poilievre’s anti-environment record includes voting “yea” for legislation designed to weaken environmental safeguards, write Richard van der Jagt, John Hollins and Geoff Strong #cdnpoli

That said, the cost of environmental change on human health is enormous, caused by increased particulate emissions, resulting in increased lung cancers, increased infectious diseases, asthma, immune dysregulation, mental health issues, increased severe weather events, and decreased ability to grow healthy food and millions of increased deaths globally.

Canada ‘s bill for health care in 2023 was approximately $344 billion. A portion was related to these changes.

The Conservatives are quite naturally hiding their intentions at this stage of the electoral cycle. The recent report by Corporate Knights offers a clear idea of what to expect if a Conservative government were elected.

The recent win by the conservatives in the St Paul’s riding makes all of this that much more worrisome for all Canadians in future elections and for our health. It also could affect our goals to maintain biodiversity. Ultimately, as the climate worsens, the economy suffers with implications for jobs and affordability. Already, many homes are uninsurable or insurable only at great expense.

We cannot afford to court disaster by voting in a Conservative government. Meanwhile, the Liberals need to work harder to convince the public that they are the only real option by creating funding for community microgrids powered by solar, sewage, heat pumps, and wind, and by funding a vast network of charging stations for EV’s, making them a more attractive option. These options will eventually translate into positive effects on the environment.

Our health and our economy depends on it.

Richard van der Jagt, Adjunct Professor of Medicine, University of Ottawa, is a member of the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment.
John Hollins, a biophysicist, chaired the energy workshop at the Toronto International Conference on the Changing Atmosphere.
Geoff Strong, an atmospheric scientist, is a past chair of the Canadian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society.

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With oil & gas in the back pockets of Pierre "snake oil salesman" Poilievre & the CPC, you can bet that environmental concerns will be a passing thought only. I suspect we will see the dismantling of many protections by PP.

What is an even bigger joke, is the younger generation out protesting about climate change and demanding the Liberals do more. Yet, this same group will vote for Pierre, thinking he is on their side. Just shows how brainwashed this generation is listening to the total trash they watch or read on social media, plus the non-stop disinformation spewed by Pierre.

Absolutely true and well articulated.

You hit the nail squarely on the head, especially the gullibility of younger voters thinking Poilievre cares about them. As a lifelong politician, who has a documented record of voting against all progressive social programs, it is clear that Poilievre has no more in common with the average person than Donald Trump.

Ask an obvious question like your title and get a "NO!"
Maybe re-title the piece to state the obvious?
Still, it needs to be said, over and over.
There should be an audience for same somewhere out there in the void.
Maybe breaking it to his uninformed supporters gently will be an easier pill to swallow.

FAR MORE has to be politicized ultimately to reach more people; we're THAT down to the wire. So saying over and over and over again that the conservatives do NOT think climate change is real WHEREVER you possibly can, even in the context of, say, the weather report. At least you are finally able to say out loud that fossil fuels are behind what's happening ("attribution" science is also getting better apparently), so go one step further and use the "truth sandwich," i.e. where the truth as important political context both prefaces your usual remarks AND concludes them. Because it's not only the most salient and never more vital truth, it's also THE most important difference between the right and the left.
Currently the Convoy Party of Canada is betting the farm that they can bulldoze right PAST the truth with THEIR version of Trump's infamous 'big lie" because NEVER in all of human history has it been easier to access and therefore manipulate MASSIVE numbers of people emotionally, thereby "tribalizing" them. Even without the current devastating crisis of affordability (so consuming that it eclipses the more foundational climate crisis) people are sitting ducks, ever eager to be part of something bigger than themselves, but ESPECIALLY if it offers some solutions. And the bolder the better because then there's the added excitement of being in on a "revolution" of sorts, not to mention being on the "winning" side of an upcoming race/election where they get to VOTE! (Unfortunately they see this as yet another form of their personal, individual expression rather than a responsibility as citizens of a democracy, even when democracies are teetering all over the world; where oh where have the history teachers gone to offer the vital big picture?)
So they join the parade without a thought. Literally. Poilievre has particularly tapped into emotion, surprising when he has such a nasal, flat, and largely expressionless voice reminiscent of most professional hockey players (something he apparently aspired to be.) But the "low-drama narrative" is society's model for "authoritative," even when it's showing itself to be a precursor to "authoritarian." So in the shamelessly calculating, cynical way that is showing itself to be exclusive to the current right wing, PP has smirked his way into the lead by dedicated vilification and rage-stoking, focusing primarily on the upcoming election regardless of how far off it actually is.
Since the model for this phenomenon of mass societal manipulation/control has always been religion, it would REALLY help if SOMEONE somewhere could start blowing the whistle on that, arguably the greatest scam of all time, but when someone like Trump can stand there with a straight face and promote the bible, increasingly we have to concede that people are simply too dumb for democracy, that the exalted clarion cry of FREEDOM underpinning it has been replaced by FREEDUMB.
So flags and national anthems just don't inspire the same swelling feeling of country that they used to; they're kind of ominous now, more suited to the tribal fervour of playoff games where faces are painted.

Answer! You have got to be kidding! These radical right Conservatives feel the earth is theirs to exploit and destroy.
Just look at Smith in Alberta and Ford in Ontario as examples. GREEN SPACE. . In come my donors! Oil reclamation. Oh we have 5 million saved to tackle a 200billion problem! Let all Canadians pay