Canadian government has lost its moral compass on climate change

Questions arise over the Harper government's true intentions at the Kyoto Protocol negotiations in Durban since the Canadian government is set to withdraw from the process next year.

Ottawa (28 Nov. 2011) - On the first day of the United Nations (UN) climate change negotiations in Durban South Africa, as countries work towards an ambitious, equitable and binding international agreement on climate change, the National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) has signed on to an open statement demanding that Canada not impede the progress being made at the meeting.

The statement, signed by over 25 civil society organizations in Canada, urges the government to restore Canada's reputation as a responsible international team player.

However, Climate Action Network-Canada representative, Hannah MacKinnon states, “The Canadian government is here negotiating in outrageously bad faith. This is an unacceptable breach of trust at global climate talks where the vast majority of the world recognizes the urgent need for meaningful action on climate change and a second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol.”

The Canadian government is planning to formally withdraw from the Kyoto Protocol next month. As the majority of countries have arrived in Durban in good faith to negotiate a second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol, and a fair ambitious and binding deal to address global climate change, this is a serious breach of trust by Canadian officials.

The statement endorsed by a diverse group of Canadian civil society organizations accuses the Canadian government of losing its moral compass on climate change, outlining key examples of Canadian government inaction and attempts to undermine climate change policy.

“It is time Canada's government started representing the desire of the majority of Canadians to participate in a binding international plan to reduce emissions, starting in Canada," said John Bennett, Executive Director of the Sierra Club Canada.

More information:

Civil Society Open Statement to Harper - download pdf


The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 340,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. NUPGE


Issues and Campaigns