Roundup: Paris Accord disappointment

The inevitable happened yesterday, where Donald Trump announced that he would pull the United States out of the Paris Accords – a process that could take up to four years – with the intention of immediately trying to renegotiate re-entry on more favourable terms. Why that makes no sense is because the Accords were flexible enough that each country was supposed to set their own targets, so there was no actual need for him to pull out other than to look tough, but what can you do with a chaos generator like that? Justin Trudeau was one of the leaders who immediately contacted Trump to express his disappointment, while Catherine McKenna said that Canada was moving ahead regardless, and would be hosting a ministerial summit with China and the EU in September regarding next steps with emissions reductions.

We are no doubt going to hear some grousing from the Conservatives over the next few days about this, with renewed caterwauling about scrapping the federal carbon tax (which is actual a national carbon price, and any tax would only apply to a province that doesn’t have a price of their own that meets the target – namely Saskatchewan at this point), and concern trolling about how this makes us uncompetitive. The problem, of course, is that industry is all moving in the direction of favouring carbon pricing because it allows for stability and predictability, and it’s also a market-based mechanism to drive innovation – something that sector-by-sector regulations don’t do. And indeed, the business community in the States, including some major oil companies, are reacting negatively to Trump’s decision, and the heads of several companies are resigning from Trump’s business council in protest. And it shouldn’t be understated that the potential for a clean tech is real with price incentives that carbon pricing provides.

Meanwhile, French president Emmanuel Macron issued a statement in English, aimed to the Americans, inviting those scientists to France to continue their climate work there instead, which is a bold move.

Good reads:

  • Justin Trudeau has stated that he’s not interested in reopening the constitution, regardless of what Philippe Couillard is proposing.
  • The Senate has passed major amendments to the Indian Act bill that is supposed to remove only sex-based inequities, but the government is not in favour of them.
  • The courts have approved a settlement deal in the class action against the RCMP for sexual harassment.
  • The government has suspended talks with Boeing for the Super Hornet procurement over the trade dispute with Bombardier.
  • The PBO estimates that the cost of the new warships is now 2.4 times the original estimate. Procurement inflation is a real thing.
  • Andrew Scheer was one of seven MPs who didn’t get their conflict of interest compliance paperwork in on time.
  • A Conservative backbencher has tabled a motion to tray and force the government to name those short-listed for the Languages Commissioner job.
  • A new site for the Afghanistan war memorial has been chosen close to the War Museum, but it still needs to get some more approvals before it’s official.
  • While Health Canada says controversial malaria drug Mefloquine doesn’t cause permanent harm, the Canadian Forces won’t use it as a first-line treatment anymore.
  • Here’s a look at the testimony at the MMIW Inquiry in Whitehorse, and the fraught relationship with the RCMP at the Inquiry.
  • Non-Indigenous MP Marc Miller delivered a statement in Mohawk in the Commons yesterday.
  • Crunching numbers from the Conservative leadership, it looks like 66 votes in eight ridings were crucial to put Scheer over the top, given the points weighting.
  • Meanwhile, there are discrepancies with the voter lists from the contest that pollsters can’t make sense of, despite the argument of “human error.”
  • Here is Chuck Strahl’s take on the final week of Andrew Scheer’s campaign.
  • Stephen Saideman managed to get a copy of the government’s “lessons learned” report on Afghanistan. (Spoiler: He was underwhelmed).
  • Michael Petrou makes the case for Canada to re-engage in Afghanistan.
  • Supriya Dwivedi makes the point that people aren’t attacking Andrew Scheer’s religion, but rather his voting record on socially conservative issues.
  • Stephen Gordon reads this week’s GDP data and says that the economy may be finally rebounding from the oil price crash.

Odds and ends:

Rumour has it that the Chief Justice has penned a novel that she plans to publish upon her retirement, which is mandatory in September 2018.

The Canada 150 Parliament Hill line-up has been announced.

Tristin Hopper compiles some of the potential scenarios of what might happen in BC, on how Christy Clark could engineer a stay in power or hasten an NDP demise.