Under Canada’s civil law, the ‘Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms’ is designed to protect individuals from unconstitutional acts by the government. Under criminal law, the International Criminal Court prosecutes Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity.
There, the legal test for criminal liability is whether one knew or should have known that an action or lack of action resulted in criminal behaviour. The cases taken by Canada’s youth before our courts are relying on civil law. The kids protesting in the streets are protesting Crimes Against Humanity.
Since the United Nations Paris conference in late 2015, climate change indicators have risen sharply. The IPCC reports have issued scientific predictions warning political leaders of the catastrophic results of overshooting a 1.5 Celsius climate target. An unprecedented emergency response is imperative if we are to avoid global ecocide and eventual collapse.
We are in an unparalleled climate emergency. It is criminal to fail to act immediately to reduce greenhouse gas emissions including methane and nitrous oxide. It is criminal to promote the expansion of the tar sands ecocide and to build pipelines to export tar sands bitumen. It is criminal neglect to fail to set hard targets for compliance.
Solutions to climate change are well known and available. The Parliament of Canada should immediately act to:
•Stop the tar sands ecocide expansion and stop building pipelines to export tar sands dilbit
•Remove all direct and indirect subsidies to fossil fuels, extractive industries, and cement production.
•Introduce strict regulations to minimize greenhouse gasses
•Establish a carbon tax regime with firm targets and timelines to keep emissions at or below 1.5 degrees Celsius
•Redirect tax revenues to support renewable energy: offshore and onshore wind, solar, geothermal, hydro, and ocean power.
•Invest in R&D for renewable development and climate mitigation
•Develop robust, smart power transmission corridors to electrify everything in the new green economy. For example, building a transmission corridor between Ontario and Quebec would allow cheap, renewable energy from Quebec’s wind and hydro power surplus to flow to Ontario, saving billions, and allow the closure of Pickering Nuclear and cancelation of the Darlington expansion. Climate criminals are thwarting action.
Act to protect future generations.
Yours very truly,
Picton Member of the County Sustainability Group