Posted: Wednesday, 6 June 2012
OTTAWA -- The Green Economy Network [GEN]* -- a new alliance of national labour unions, environment organizations, social justice and youth groups -- denounced today the Federal Government’s omnibus legislation, Bill C-38, for driving a wedge between the economy and the environment and proposed instead a counter plan for creating jobs and growth over the next 10 years.
"The choices the government is asking us to make in Bill C-38 between the environment and jobs, are not real choices," says Hassan Yussuff, Secretary Treasurer of the Canadian Labour Congress. “Gutting environmental protection is a false solution which will not generate sustainable employment in this country.”
As a counter strategy, the Green Economy Network released a document called Making the Shift to a Green Economy that outlines a three prong plan of action for creating ‘climate jobs’ over the next 10 years. The plan involves [i] retrofitting the country’s building stock for greater energy efficiency; [ii] increasing public investments in renewable energy development; and [iii] expanding public transit and developing high speed rail.
“If this three-prong plan of action were to be implemented over the next 10 years,” says Tony Clarke, chair of the Green Economy Network, “it is estimated that we would create over 400,000 new ‘climate jobs’ in Canada and reduce our total carbon emissions by more than 100 million tons a year by 2022.”
“By implementing an economic strategy based on a cleaner, safer energy future,” says Hannah McKinnon, campaigns director for the Climate Action Network in Canada, “we will not only stabilize our economy and build truly good jobs, but we will also make substantial reductions in carbon emissions which Canada must do to get back on track in doing its fair share to fight dangerous climate change.”
*The Green Economy Network is composed of the following civil society organizations: Canadian Labour Congress, Canadian Auto Workers, Canadian Federation of Students, Canadian Union of Public Employees, Canadian Union of Postal Workers, Canadian Youth Climate Coalition, Columbia Institute, Communication Energy & Paperworkers Union, Climate Action Network, Council of Canadians, David Suzuki Foundation, Greenpeace, Green Communities Canada, International Assoc. of Machinists, KAIROS --- Canadian Ecumenical Justice, National Union of Public Government Employees, Polaris Institute, Public Service Alliance of Canada, Service Employees International Union, Sierra Club of Canada, Toronto & York District Labour Council, and the United Steel Workers. Associate member: Pembina Institute
Contact: Andrea Peart: Cell and text: 613-614-9527