This morning, in the last vote of the spring legislative session, Alberta Liberal Leader David Swann voted against the Climate Leadership Implementation Act (Bill 20).
“It is with a heavy heart that I must say I do not support this bill,” Swann said. “I have been advocating for climate change for decades. In fact, it was criticizing the Alberta government for their lack of action on climate change that cost me my job as a Public Health Officer in 2002. However, there are too many weak points in the way this bill is written to guarantee that it will fulfill the purpose for which it is intended.”
In his statement to the Legislature, Swann mentioned the lack of a cost benefit analysis for Alberta industry, the uncertain incentive/rebate program and a lack of independent oversight as reasons for not supporting Bill 20.
“Perhaps the most distressing absence in the Climate Leadership Implementation Act are performance targets,” Swann continued. “The government has essentially given itself no goals and no measures to which they can be held accountable. Even our proposed amendment requiring the Auditor General to review the program after two years was voted down by the NDP.”
“I believe the minister and the government has the best of intentions but ministers change, governments change and circumstances change. We have already seen the government have to row back its commitment to a debt ceiling. It is not enough to say ‘just trust us’,” Swann concluded.