Friday, January 18, 2013

Near The Bottom

The Conference Board of Canada -- not a left leaning think tank -- has released a report on Canada's environmental health. The news is not good:

The study ranks Canada 15th out of 17 developed nations on environmental performance, ahead of only The United States and last place Australia.

The bottom three are also the largest nations surveyed in terms of land mass and all depend on natural resources for a large part of their economic output.

And the Harper government's push to make Canada an "energy superpower" is doing nothing to improve our environmental well being:

On per capita greenhouse gas emissions, Canada ranks 15th. The study notes that despite pledges to reduce emissions, Canada has not seen much improvement on a per capita basis. The report lays the blame at the door of Canada's exports of oil and natural gas.

On energy intensity, a measure of the ratio between the amount of energy used and gross domestic produce, Canada ranks dead last. That said, Canada's large size and cold climate make it difficult to keep the intensity of energy use down. Even so, Canada has reduced the energy intensity 39 per cent since 1971. Over the same period, the U.S. managed a reduction of 54 per cent. 

It should come as no surprise, then, that:

Canada produces more garbage per person than any other nation in the study and the vast majority of it ends up in landfills or incinerators. Canada produces more than twice as much garbage per capita than Japan, the best country in the category.

Stephen Harper's ambition is to make Canada a world leader. He has achieved his goal. When it comes to garbage, we lead the world. Otherwise, in almost every other category, we're near the bottom.

This entry is cross posted at Eradicating Ecocide.


Tossing Pebbles in the Stream said...

The Harper government can perhaps easily dismiss the opinions of foreign countries and agencies and those foreign and domestic "eco 61terrorist" environmentalists but the Conference Board of Canada surely cannot be easily dismissed. The Harper government has been a disaster when it comes to the environment. We have lost a decade in the important effort to limited climate change and environmental degradation. Shame on them and shame on us for electing them.

Owen Gray said...

Your last sentence gets right to the point, Philip. Shame on us for electing them.