Question Period, 20 November 2015
Full transcript available here.

Greenhouse gas emission target

Dr. Bevan-Baker: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker.

The Paris Climate Change Conference is coming up shortly where governments from around the world will hopefully agree on the measures needed to keep average global temperature rise below the 2 degrees Celsius mark, I’m told variously by scientists, which we need to do to avoid catastrophic consequences.

A question to the Premier: When you accompany the Canadian delegation in Paris, are you prepared to agree to a binding greenhouse gas emission target and to accept the will of the international community on this matter?

Speaker: The hon. Premier.

Premier MacLauchlan: Mr. Speaker, on Monday, November 23rd, I will take part in a First Ministers’ conference in Ottawa, the first in seven years.

There will be two subjects on the agenda; one being the reception of refugee families from Syria, the other, which I believe has been assigned a larger amount of time, including to hear from scientists on this subject, in preparation for the Paris conference.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Speaker: The hon. Leader of the Third Party, first supplementary.

Dr. Bevan-Baker: Given that Prince Edward Island is uniquely vulnerable to climate change, particularly when it comes to sea level rise, in these negotiations with the premiers and our prime minister, will the Premier of Prince Edward Island be advocating for a specific emission target? If so, what will that target be?

Speaker: The hon. Premier.

Premier MacLauchlan: Mr. Speaker, I can confirm for the House that at the end of August of this year there were meetings of the New England Governors and the eastern Canadian premiers at which we, together, undertook to aim to have reductions between 35 and 45% in our greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 relative to 2005 baseline.

That’s an ambitious undertaking and one that we did not agree to lightly and it will be a benchmark against which we’d be prepared to consider what’s being said around the table next Monday.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Speaker: The hon. Leader of the Third Party, your second supplementary question.

Provincial investment in fossil fuel companies

Dr. Bevan-Baker: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

As their values plummet, there’s a growing global movement for governments and institutions to divest from fossil fuels because of the very situation we’re talking about.

Could the Premier inform the House how much the Government of Prince Edward Island and its various funds and Crown corporations currently has invested in fossil fuel companies?

Speaker: The hon. Premier.

Premier MacLauchlan: Mr. Speaker, that’s something on which I’d have to do some homework and bring a response back to the House, but I’d be happy to do that, Mr. Speaker.


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