New Poll Finds Majority of Canadians Want Fair Global Warming Emissions Cuts, Transparency in Rule Making

    Premiers to discuss global warming starting Wednesday at Council Of The

    TORONTO, Aug. 3 /CNW/ - A majority of Canadians reject different
regulations for oil sands companies that would see them reduce global warming
emissions less than other industry sectors, according to a new poll released
in advance of the Council of the Federation meeting, which starts Wednesday in
    "Canada's Premiers and Ottawa must come to an agreement about how to
write the rules for global warming pollution cuts," said Matt Price, Program
Manager with Environmental Defence. "A majority of Canadians want those rules
to be fair in requiring equal cuts across economic sectors and provinces."
    The poll found that sixty per cent (60%) of Canadians wanted pollution
cuts to be the same, twenty-four per cent (24%) supported different rules for
oil sands companies, and sixteen per cent (16%) didn't know. Albertans were
evenly split on the issue, while Quebecers - at seventy-two per cent (72%) -
were the most likely to want parity.
    The federal government is now designing a new cap and trade system for
Canada, and is planning to release rules for different sectors between now and
the international climate negotiations in Copenhagen in December. Alberta and
Saskatchewan have been lobbying for different rules under the label of
"regional sensibility." A cap and trade system reduces emissions by putting
limits on pollution and allowing companies that beat their limits to sell - or
trade - the difference to other companies who exceed the limits. The limits
decline over time.
    Fifty-two per cent (52%) of those surveyed also favoured slowing down oil
sands development and investing instead in clean energy job creation, while
over twenty-nine per cent (29%) agreed with increasing oil sands production
for the jobs and revenues it creates across Canada. Nineteen per cent (19%)
didn't know. Sixty-two per cent (62%) of Albertans, though, favoured
increasing oil sands production.
    The poll also found that a large majority of Canadians -seventy-two per
cent (72%) - believed the design of government regulations like Canada's cap
and trade system should happen in public, with nine per cent (9%) supporting
development in private so that the federal government does not have to make as
many compromises with provinces and other interests. Nineteen per cent (19%)
didn't know.
    Finally, there was a roughly even split of Canadians on the issue of
whether provinces should accompany the federal government to international
climate negotiations. Forty-six per cent (46%) believed the provinces should
be allowed to attend alongside the federal government, while forty-one per
cent (41%) believed the federal government should go alone. Thirteen per
cent(13%) didn't know. Quebecers - at sixty-nine per cent (69%) - were most
likely to favour provincial participation. Both Alberta and Quebec have been
lobbying the federal government on this issue.
    The poll was conducted by Angus Reid Strategies between July 27 and 28,
2009, among 1,012 randomly selected Canadian adults. The margin of error for a
sample of this size is +/- 3.1%, 19 times out of 20. To download the poll
results, visit

For further information:

For further information: or to arrange interviews contact: Jennifer
Foulds, Environmental Defence, (416) 323-9521 ext. 232, (647) 280-9521 (cell)

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