Energy ministers' meeting - Fox in the hen house
OTTAWA - Canada’s energy and mines ministers are meeting in Kananaskis, July 16-19th, to discuss a national energy plan. The agenda includes presentations from industry and even some environmentalists, but the outcome is pretty clear when you consider who is paying for the meeting. It’s sponsored by big oil including some of the main players in Alberta’s unfolding Tar Sands mega-disaster.
“This is clearly a corrupting influence. It smells bad and certainly sends the wrong message to Canadians,” said John Bennett, Executive Director, Sierra Club Canada.
Over the past decade the federal and provincial/territorial governments have made repeated commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Yet, reports of the conference indicate the ministers have confused a national energy plan with a plan to export as much dirty energy as they can produce from the tar sands and mega-dam projects.
“We can either take the path that leads to a clean, renewable energy future and new economy, or we can be willfully blind, pretend climate change isn’t happening, and go along with big oil’s vision of a Tar Sands-driven, pipeline-filled, carbon-intense and polluted North America,” said Mr. Bennett.
The ministers’ conference has three Olympic-sounding ‘levels’ of sponsorship, but the ministers won’t win any medals says Mr. Bennett: “This is a shady deal and Canadians deserve better. We need to get the fox out of the hen house.”
Sponsors of the 2011 Energy and Mines Ministers’ Conference
- Canadian Association of Petroleum Produces
- Oil Sands Development Group
- TransCanada Pipelines
- Cenovus Energy
- Canadian Electricity Association
- Canadian Petroleum Products Institute
- Canadian Pipeline Association
Industry sponsorship of ministerial conference throws gasoline on a simmering fire Calgary Herald, July 20, 2011
List of corporate sponsors raises eyebrows at energy summit Postmedia News, July 13, 2011
Private funding for energy ministers meeting a 'corrupting influence' Calgary Herald, July 13, 2011
Corporate sponsorship for energy meeting slammed CBC News, July 13, 2011
No easy task for ministers to set national energy strategy in Kananaskis Canadian Press, July 15, 2011
Big Oil sponsors energy meeting News 660, July 13, 2011