After nine days of debate, Bill 2 – The Greenhouse Gas Industrial Reporting and Control Act, finally passed committee stage and the Bill will receive Royal Assent shortly. As I mentioned earlier, Bill 2 will lock us into a path of increasing greenhouse gas emissions, while foregoing the development of a truly diversified and sustainable 21st century economy.
During second reading I spoke passionately against the bill, arguing that it represents a betrayal of future generations. I highlighted the fact that the bill replaced British Columbia’s continent leading greenhouse gas reduction policies with a made-in-Alberta, Harper government approach to reducing greenhouse gas emissions intensity.
During the days of debate I moved a hoist amendment that called for the bill to be delayed by 6 months to give MLAs and the public more time to scrutinize it. The amendment was defeated.
During committee stage I asked numerous questions to explore the consequences of implementing Bill 2. I probed the government’s rationale for dismantling its previous climate policies. And I proposed several amendments to the Bill to improve its clarity but all were defeated.
In one final attempt to provide clarity to British Columbians about what the bill was really doing, I moved an amendment to change the title from:
Greenhouse gas industrial reporting and control act
Greenhouse gas increase and industrial reporting act
As you will see from Hansard (reproduced below), the rationale for introducing this amendment was to make it clear what the bill will actually do. The title of the bill suggests that there is going to be a control on industrial emissions. This is not the case. The control is only going to be on industrial emissions intensity. That is, instead of reducing carbon pollution, the bill just allows industrial emitters to pollute more efficiently. I was hoping to make the bill transparent in that it was providing for an increase in greenhouse gas emissions.
A. Weaver: At this stage I’d like to move an amendment:
[TITLE, by deleting the text shown as struck out and adding the text shown as underlined:
BILL 2 – 2014
GREENHOUSE GAS INCREASE AND INDUSTRIAL REPORTING AND CONTROL ACT]
We had in this debate, at third reading, a number of amendments put forward to try to improve the legislation. They’ve all been defeated. We’ve just had the most recent amendment put forward by the member for Vancouver–West End — a nice amendment that was designed specifically to make this the cleanest LNG in the world.
In framing a title, it’s very, very critical that the title actually reflect the legislation that it is actually representing. What we have here is a title that says Greenhouse Gas Industrial Reporting and Control Act. The reality is there is no control in the greenhouse gas emissions associated with this act, so the amendment that I put forward is to change the title to the greenhouse gas increase and industrial reporting act, as I submitted and put on notice a couple of days ago.