Montréal, April 6, 2022 -Équiterre strongly denounces the federal government's decision to approve the Bay du Nord oil project off the coast of Newfoundland and Labrador. This irresponsible and incoherent decision locks Canada's energy future into dependence on fossil fuels and should be put in the same category as the TransMountain pipeline purchase in 2018.
Two days after the conclusive findings of the IPCC report and one week after the tabling of its emission reduction plan, the federal government is once again showing incredible inconsistency in its strategy to combat the climate crisis.
"So called 'green' or 'clean' oil is a figment of the imagination: it simply does not exist. Oil is oil: it will have impacts however way it is produced and wherever it is burned" says Émile Boisseau-Bouvier, Équiterre’s Climate Policy Analyst.
The government's decision is in direct contradiction with what scientists have repeatedly recommended to avoid the worst effects of the climate crisis.
"Government officials keep telling us that they don’t have the power to limit fossil fuel production. But they had a great opportunity to do so with this project, and they made a conscious decision to do the opposite. It would’ve been an excellent opportunity to diversify the province's economy and to plan a just transition for workers and communities to stop their dependence on fossil fuels," adds Émile Boisseau-Bouvier.
A decision that will affect all others
"The Prime Minister has written some nice green mandate letters, but in the end, these kinds of decisions will outweigh the virtuous climate big orientations. He, his environment minister and the entire cabinet will bear the responsibility for this failure. We don't want to be promised the transition anymore, we want action," says Marc-André Viau, Director of Government Relations for Équiterre.
"You'd think they'd have learned from the TransMountain saga. You'd think that at least the IPCC reports and the latest scientific data would have an impact on decisions. By saying one thing but doing the opposite, we feed cynicism and we end up not believing in the promises", concludes Marc-André Viau.