Environmental policy of the Harper government

Environmental policy of the Harper government

Since 2006, the Canadian Conservative Party government led by Primer Minister Stephen Harper adopted several environmental policies in order to fight rising greenhouse emissions, pollution problems and climate change. One prominent policy of the government since its access to power was its position over the Kyoto Accord in which the federal government ratified the Protocol in the late 1990s. The Conservative government had criticized the Accord for having negative impacts on the environment while not providing concrete results as far as greenhouse emission reductions and proposed a new policy which met with criticism from various environmental organizations and the opposition parties.

Criticism of Kyoto Accord

Harper and the Conservative government criticized the Kyoto Accord on measures to fight against global warming, saying that the economy would be crippled if Canada was forced to meet the Accord's timetable to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In 2002, Harper wrote a letter to members of the former Canadian Alliance party, mentioning that the Accord is a "socialist conspiracy" and questioned sciences that are proving global warming and in a meeting with other Commonwealth countries in Uganda commented that Kyoto was a mistake that should not be repeated. [ cite news|author = CBC News|title = Harper dubs Kyoto accord a mistake at end of Commonwealth summit | publisher = CBC | url = http://www.cbc.ca/cp/national/071125/n112508A.html| date = 2007-11-25] [ cite news | author = Drapeau, Sylvain | title = Kyoto, un «complot socialiste»? | publisher = LCN/TVA | url = http://lcn.canoe.com/lcn/infos/national/archives/2007/01/20070131-080256.html | date = 2007-01-31 ] Harper considered the objectives implemented by Canada to meet its goals were not realistic and later criticized further the accord which did not set any targets for the world's biggest polluters. He proposed a "Made in Canada" plan that would concentrate its efforts on reducing smog pollution from vehicles. [ cite news | author = LCN | title = Rona Ambrose s'attaquera aux gaz d'échappement | url = http://lcn.canoe.com/infos/national/archives/2006/10/20061002-213247.html | publisher = TVA/LCN | date = 2006-10-02] [cite news | author = CBC News | title = Indepth Kyoto | publisher = CBC | url = http://www.cbc.ca/news/background/kyoto/keyresources.html | date = 2006-05-03 ] [ cite news | author = CBC News | title = Reality Check : Goodbye Kyoto? | publisher = CBC | url = http://www.cbc.ca/canadavotes/realitycheck/goodbye_kyoto.html | date = 2006-01-18 ] . In a CTV report in October, however, the Conservatives had mentioned that it would be an approach rather than a plan. [ cite news | author = CTV News| title = Tories downgrade 'Made-in-Canada' Green plan | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20061005/environment_approach_061005?s_name=&no_ads= | date = October 5 2006 ] . While repeatedly mentioning that the goals will not be achieved before the timeline, John Baird mentioned on March 17, 2007 that the government had no plans to abandon the Kyoto Accord [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Tories have no plans to quit Kyoto: Baird | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20070316/g8_Baird_070317/20070317?hub=Canada | date = 2007-03-17 ] Recently, the Conservatives' position has been backed by five independent economists, including Toronto-Dominion Bank chief economist Don Drummond. Drummond, who has been consulted by political parties of all stripes, said that the "economic cost [of implementing Kyoto] would be at least as deep as the recession in the early 1980s", agreeing with the results of a study compiled by the environment department. [ cite news|author = Chase, Steven|title = Ottawa rolls out 'validators' to bolster anti-Kyoto stand| publisher = The Globe and Mail | url = http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20070419.wclimate19/BNStory/National/home|date = 2007-04-19 ] [ cite news|author = CBC News|title = Kyoto bill a 'risky, reckless scheme': Baird|publisher = CBC|url = http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2007/04/19/baird-kyoto.html|date = 2007-04-19]

Opposition members led by Liberal MP Pablo Rodriguez tabled bill C-288 that would force the government to respect the measures of the Kyoto Accord and forced it to present its measures within 60 days. The bill passed third reading on February 14, 2007, 161-113. The Conservatives had appealed the Speaker of the House, Peter Milliken to make the bill invalid citing it was forcing them to spend money against its will, which was denied. [ cite news | author = Malo, Yves & Rheaume, Normand | title = Une loi pour obliger Harper à respecter Kyoto | publisher = LCN/TVA | url = http://lcn.canoe.com/infos/national/collineparlementaire/archives/2007/02/20070214-183719.html | date = 2007-02-14 ] [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Opposition Kyoto bill passes third reading | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20070214/kyoto_3rd_070214?s_name=&no_ads= | date = 2007-02-14 ] . While criticizing the Opposition bill as an empty law without any action plans and not giving authority to spend, Harper announced that he would respect the law, despite earlier threats by the government not to respect it. [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Tories to respect Kyoto bill, with reservations | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20070215/kyoto_harper_070215/20070215?hub=Canada | date = 2007-02-15 ] Toronto-Dominion Bank chief economist Don Drummond dismissed bill C-288 as unworkable. [ cite news | author = Chase, Steven | title = Ottawa rolls out 'validators' to bolster anti-Kyoto stand | publisher = The Globe and Mail | url = http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20070419.wclimate19/BNStory/National/home | date = 2007-04-19 ] . On April 19, 2007, Baird told the Canadian Senate environmental committee that respecting the Kyoto Accord would have a negative impact on the economic citing that Canada would return to a recession similar to the early 1980s while gas and natural gas prices would skyrocket despite a United Nations report that said that the impact would be minimal. [cite news | author = CTV News | title = Baird accused of scare tactics on Kyoto | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20070419/kyoto_senate_070419/20070419/ | date = 2007-04-19 ] [ cite news|author = The Canadian Press|title = UN report contradicts Baird claim that Kyoto equals economic devastation | publisher =Breitbart.com|url = http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=cp_f1fvg62pl58&show_article=1&cat=0| date = 2007-05-05 ]

In the 2007 Throne speech, the government officially abandoned the Kyoto objectives in favor of their policies and accords with Asian and Pacific countries in which Harper joined the US-led the Asia-Pacific Partnership on Clean Development and Climate on September 24, 2007, the United States, China, Japan, India, South Korea and Australia, several among them being among the biggest polluters. The APP's plans goals are lower then the Kyoto Protocol and consists on the introduction of newer and cleaner technology including solar, coal and nuclear power. [ cite news|author = CBC News|title = Kyoto alternative : What is this new Asia-Pacific Partnership all about?|publisher = CBC|url = http://www.cbc.ca/news/background/kyoto/asia-pacific-partnership.html|date = 2007-09-27]

Clean Air Act

On October 10, 2006 in Vancouver, Harper announced some measures such as tax credits to environmentally friendly measures, a repackaged air quality health index and a program to retrofit diesel school buses. Harper mentioned that these measures would "move industry from voluntary compliance to strict enforcement; replace the current ad hoc, patchwork system with clear, consistent, and comprehensive national standards, and institute a holistic approach that doesn't treat the related issues of pollutants and greenhouse gas emissions in isolation." Prior to the announcement, activist groups listed a series of recommendations including regulations on big industries and compliance with the Kyoto Protocol. [cite news | author = CTV News | title = Harper rolls out first part of environment plan | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20061009/tories_green_plan_061009/20061010?hub=Canada | date = 2006-10-10]

Details of the Clean Air Act were revealed on October 19, 2006 by Harper along with Environment Minister Rona Ambrose and Transport Minister Lawrence Cannon. Its main plan was to reduce greenhouse emissions at about 45-65% of the 2003 levels. The goal was set for the year 2050 while a decrease of greenhouse emissions would be noticed in 2020. There were also regulations set for vehicle fuel consumption for 2011, while new measures would be set for industries starting in 2010. Finally, oil companies will have to reduce gas emissions for each barrel produced. However, companies can increase their production until 2020. [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Conservative government tables Clean Air Act | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20061018/environment_act_061019/20061019?hub=TopStories | date = 2006-10-19 ] . The plan was heavily criticized by opposition parties and several environmental groups.

The Conservatives made a detailed and revised plan on April 25, 2007, after leaks of a speech which was supposed to be made by John Baird on April 26 were discovered after some Liberal MPs received a fax of the speech. The new plan seeks to stop the increase of greenhouse gas emissions before 2012 and reduce the amount as much as 20% by 2020. Targets would be imposed to industries before 2015, while appliances would need to be more energy efficient. There were also rewards for companies that reduced the amount of emissions since 2006. [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Leaked speech reveals Tory environment blueprint | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20070424/libs_leak_070424/20070425?hub=Canada | date = 2007-03-25 ] On the next day, Baird announced additional measures including one that would force industries to reduce greenhouse emissions by 18 percent by 2010 while auto industries would have a mandatory fuel-efficient standard by 2011. Later in 2007, Baird revealed other plans and deadlines that industries must met. The plan mentionned that over 700 big-polluter companies, including oil and gas, pulp and paper, electricity and iron and steel companies, will have to reduce green-house emissions by six percent from 2008 to 2010 and will have to report data on their emissions on every May 31. [ cite news|author = CTV News| title = Baird unveils industry emissions cuts timetable | publihser = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20071212/baird_bali_071212/20071212/ | date = 2007-12-12 ]

However, critics including the World Wildlife Fund said that the greenhouse emissions in 2020 will still be higher then the 1990 levels, while Canada will not meet Kyoto targets before 2025, 13 years after its objectives. [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Conservatives abandon Kyoto for own climate plan | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20070425/tories_climate_070426/20070426?hub=TopStories | date = 2007-04-26 ] High-profile figures including David Suzuki and Former US Vice-President Al Gore also criticized the plan as been insufficient. [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Al Gore slams Tories' new environmental plan | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20070428/environment_plan_070428/20070428?hub=TopStories | date = 2007-04-28 ]

Clean energy technology funding

On December 20, 2006, Ambrose and Agriculture Minister Chuck Strahl announced $345 million of funding and other measures to promote the use of biodiesel and ethanol in policies related to the Clean Air Act. Among that, diesel fuel, regular fuel and heating oil would require a small amount of cleaner energy by 2012. Measures also affected farmers in diversifying their agriculture and farming equipment. [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Ambrose, Strahl announce new biofuel regulations | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20061220/biofuel_regulations_061220/20061220/ | date = 2006-12-20 ]

On January 17, 2006, Natural Resources Minister Gary Lunn and new Environment Minister John Baird announced an additional $230 million for the development of clean energy technology [ cite news | author = CTV news | title = Tories announce new funding for clean energy | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20070116/dion_priorities_070117/20070117?hub=Canada | date = 2006-01-17 ]

Two days later, Harper, Baird and Dunn presented a new program initiative called ecoEnergy Renewable Initiative which would concentrate on the increase of cleaner energy sources such as wind, biomass, small hydro and ocean energies. The cost of the program was about $1.5 billion. Some money was also planned for incentives for companies and industries that would used more cleaner energy sources. [cite news | author = CTV news | title = PM announces $1.5B plan for alternative energies | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20070119/energy_tories_070119/20070119?hub=Canada | date = 2007-01-19 ]

On January 21, 2007, the Government announced another related funding announcement by pledging $300 million by helping homeowners across the country by become more energy-efficient including cash reward for those implementing measures to improve the efficiency. Critics of the measures such as Friends of Earth Canada and Liberal environment critic David McGuinty, mentioned though that the Conservatives had used some of the programs and strategies planned by opposition parties including a remake of the EnerGuide Program launched by the Liberals. [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Tories pledge $300M to boost energy efficiency | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20070121/energy_efficiency_070121/20070121?hub=Canada | date = 2007-01-21 ]

Response to climate change report

Harper later proposed a discussion with NDP leader Jack Layton in the light of growing concerns made by the United Kingdom government of Tony Blair as well as a report by Sir Nicholas Stern, a former chief economist World Bank who predicted a 20% drop of the global economy. Layton tabled a private member's bill which contained plans to respect Kyoto's targets. After their meeting, they agreed on a formal review of the Clean Air Act. [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Harper willing to talk climate change with Layton | publisher = CTV | url =http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20061030/qp_climatechange_061030?s_name=&no_ads= | date = 2006-10-30 ] [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Global warming will devastate economy: report | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20061030/global_warming_061030?s_name=&no_ads= | date = 2006-10-30 ] [ cite news | author = Associated Press /Canadian Press | title = Climate chaos coming : UK | publisher = Metro Ottawa | date = 2006-10-31 | page = page 1 ] [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Layton urges Harper to revamp green plan | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20061031/layton_greenplan_061031/20061031?hub=TopStories | date = 2006-10-31 ] [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Harper, Layton agree to review of Clean Air Act | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20061031/layton_greenplan_061101/20061101?hub=Canada | date = 2006-11-01 ]

Meetings on global warming

Harper canceled a planned meeting on environment with European Union members in Helsinki, Finland, a meeting in which he was expecting to condemn the Kyoto Accord. Critics cited that Harper canceled its meeting to avoid the criticism from EU officials. Harper's director of communications cited that his legislation agenda forced him to withdraw from the meeting. [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Critics slam Harper's EU summit cancellation | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20061104/harper_summit_061104/20061104?hub=Canada | date = 2006-11-04 ] Furthermore, Ambrose attended a two-week November 2006 UN summit meeting in Nairobi, Kenya on the issue of the Kyoto Accord and it targets. Opposition members have claimed that her presence was an embarrassment for Canada. [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Opposition parties urge Tories to rethink Kyoto | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20061109/kyoto_opposition_061109/20061109/ | date = 2006-11-09] .

In late 2007, Harper attended the Commonwealth Summit Meeting in Uganda. While, Harper qualified the Kyoto as a mistake, he rejected claims that Canada was a holdout on climate change action. A deal was reached between the 53 members of the organization but blocked a proposal to exclude developing countries to comply to emission reductions. Harper will also attend the global conference on climate changes in Bali, Indonesia in December 2007. He commented that the deal in Uganda will set the stage for the meeting in Indonesia. [ cite news|author = CTV News|title = PM forces amendment to climate change deal | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20071125/harper_summit_071125/20071125/|date = 2007-11-25] John Baird who was also at the meeting mentionned that any agreements would have to include reduction targets in which the biggest polluters such as the United States, China and India must comply. A last-ditch agreement, after difficult discussions, was made late in the Summit which consisted of a two-year plan which would lead to a new treaty replacing the Kyoto Protocol as well as additional negotiations until 2009 that would force countries to set basic parameters of greenhouse reduction goals. Baird, while citing that the last-minute talks where a positive step for a future agreement but was disappointing about some off the agreement was watered down and that "the deal was almost completely stripped of any reference to numbers and targets that could have been the starting point for the discussion". [ cite news| author = CBC News| title = UN climate change conference hails Australia Kyoto signing | publisher = CBC | url = http://www.cbc.ca/world/story/2007/12/03/un-climate.html | date = 2007-12-03] [cite news|author = CTV News|title = Baird regrets 'watered down' climate deal|publisher = CTV|url =http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20071215/baird_bali_071215/20071215/|date = 2007-12-15 ] Climate changes was also a topic at the G8 meeting in Japan in July 2008 where the organization had agreed to fix an objective on reducing greenhouse emissions by 50 cent by 2050 although it was not clear whether the goal was based on either 1990 or current (2008) levels. [ cite news|author=CTV News|title = G8 climate stance an 'important advance': PM|publisher= CTV.ca|url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20080708/climate_harper_080709/20080709/|date = July 9, 2008]


At the Nairobi summit, the Climate Action Network had given a "fossil of the day" award to the country along with Australia for contributing less to the battle of climate change. The country was also ranked 51st out of 56 countries of those who were part of a climate treaty in 1992 or contributed a least 1% of greenhouse emissions according to Germanwatch, a Bonn, Germany development group which ranked countries based on their contribution of fighting greenhouse emissions. The deputy leader of the Green Party David Chernushenko had included Canada in an "axis of environmental evil" along with the United States and Australia. [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Ambrose vows to play positive role in UN talks | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20061113/ambrose_conference_061114/20061114?hub=TopStories | date = 2006-11-14 ] [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Canada pressured at UN climate change talks | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20061113/ambrose_conference_061113?s_name=&no_ads= | date = 2006-11-13 ]

Due to the mounted controversy surrounding the Clean Air Act, there were reports according to the Canadian Press that Ambrose would be relieved of her duties as Environment Minister and replaced by Indian Affairs Minister Jim Prentice in a future cabinet shuffle. [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Prentice to be moved into Environment: CP | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20061219/tories_cabinet_061219/20061219/ | date = 2006-12-19 ] However, on January 4, 2006, Ambrose was be replaced by the President of the Treasury Board John Baird [ cite news | author = Radio-Canada | title = Jeu de chaises à Ottawa | publisher = SRC | url = http://www.radio-canada.ca/nouvelles/Politique/2007/01/03/002-ottawa-remaniement.shtml | date = 2007-01-04 ] [ cite news | author = Robert Benzie, Allan Woods, Susan Delacourt, | title = "'Mr. Fix-It' gets green file" | publisher = Toronto Star | url = http://www.thestar.com/News/article/167786 | date = 2007-01-04]

Funding for provinces

The previous government pledged funding to several provinces including Ontario and Quebec. However, the Conservatives cited that with the new Clean Air Act, the Liberal agreements have been annulled. Ontario lost $538 million and Quebec $328 million. Quebec's Environment Minister Claude Béchard vowed to influenced the Tory government and forced them to send the $328 million funding for the province. [ cite news | author = CTV | title = Gov't appears set to redirect climate change cash | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20060526/green_funding_redirected_060526/20060526/ | date = 2006-05-26 ] However, the government announced $1.5 billion for supporting provincial projects including the $328 million Quebec requested. [ cite news | author = Malo, Yves | title = Québec reçoit 350 M$ | publisher = LCN/TVA | url = http://lcn.canoe.com/infos/national/archives/2007/02/20070212-112859.html | date = 2007-02-12 ]

Other measures

In the 2006 budget, the government introduced a 15.25% tax-credit on monthly passes for transit users. [cite news | author = CBC News | title = Tories shift climate change funding to transit | publisher = CBC | url = http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2006/05/02/environment-budget060502.html | date = 2006-05-02 ] Harper also announced a $300 million grant to the Greater Vancouver Transportation Authority which will be used in part for preparations for the 2010 Olympic Winter Games. [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Harper rolls out first part of environment plan | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20061009/tories_green_plan_061009/20061010?hub=Canada | date = 2006-10-10]

The government also secured $200 million of funding for Ottawa's O-Train expansion project after Treasury Board President John Baird reviewed the project to make sure there were no cost overruns. The money was secured after Ottawa's new council voted on the project. [ cite news | author = Puddicombe, Derek | title = Feds may brake trains | Publisher = Ottawa Sun | url = http://www.ottawasun.com/News/OttawaAndRegion/2006/10/03/1941910-sun.html | date = 2006-10-03 ] [cite news | author = Denley, Randall | title = Council's job 1: Fix light rail | publisher = Ottawa Citizen | url = http://www.canada.com/ottawacitizen/columnists/story.html?id=456f5df2-73e7-4a0a-a16e-7563c338e078 | date = 2006-11-15 ] However, in November, Nepean-Carleton MP Pierre Poilievre announced that, despite opposition from most of Ottawa City Council, $35 million of the transit funding was to be diverted for a new Rideau River bridge crossings between the two Ottawa growing suburban communities, Barrhaven and Riverside South. Poilievre had stated that if the city of Ottawa would present a transit plan, a request to the government for new money for public transit projects will be granted. Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty stated that no provincial money will be given to the bridge project if no rapid transit corridor is included. [ cite news|author = Adam, Mohammed | title = Councillors feel 'used' by bridge funding offer| publisher - Ottawa Citizen | url = http://www.canada.com/ottawacitizen/news/story.html?id=23e9163e-2f14-4c3f-940c-f6da595dcb4c&k=57379 | date = 2007-11-27 ]

On March 1, 2007, while launching the International Polar Year that a worldwide program that will focus on intense researches on the Arctic regions, including climate change effects, the government announced a $150 million/4 year funding for over 40 projects related to the IPY program. [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Canadian taking lead in International Polar Year | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20070301/polar_year_070301/20070301?hub=SciTech | date = 2007-03-02 ]

On March 6, 2007, the government announced over $1.5 billion in funding in Ontario for improving the city of Toronto's transit system including the extension of a subway line to Vaughan. $586 million of the funding went for a new power grid from Ontario to Manitoba that would provide cleaner hydro energy. [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Ottawa spends $1.5B on Ontario transit, power | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20070306/transit_strategy_070306/20070306/ | date = 2007-03-06 ]

As part of the 2007 budget on March 19, 2007, Flaherty announced a rebate of up to $2,000 for people who purchase fuel-efficient vehicles. He also announced a new levy to penalize consumers who purchase vehicles with a high-fuel consumption rate: $1,000 for every litre consumed per 100 kilometres would be imposed (up to a total of $4,000) if the vehicle consumes over 13 litres of fuel per 100 kilometers in the city. [ cite news | author = CTV News | title = Budget promises billions in new spending | publisher = CTV | url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20070319/federal_budget_070319/20070319?s_name=budget2007&no_ads= | date = 2007-03-19 ] However, in the 2008 budget, the clean-car rebate will be scrapped in 2009.

As part of the 2008 budget on February 26, 2008, $500 million was announced for public transit, $250 million for research in developing more fuel-efficient vehicles and $300 million for the development a more advanced nuclear reactor and to improve safety at the Chalk River, Ontario Nuclear facility which shut down during the fall of 2007 after there were safety concerns. [ cite news|author = CTV News|title = Budget scraps the 'clean-car' rebate|publisher = CTV|url = http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20080226/budget_environment_080226?s_name=&no_ads=| date = 2008-02-26]

ee also

* Domestic policy of the Harper government


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