TORONTO | December 12, 2011
Canada's booming oil sands sector, the country's fastest growing source of greenhouse gas emissions, is a reason Steven Harper's Canada has invoked its legal right to withdraw from the Kyoto Protocol, an accord signed in Kyoto, Japan in 1997 which deals with global warming and climate change. As the third largest holder of oil reserves, Canada currently holds more than 170 billion barrels of oil and produces 1.5 million barrels daily from the oil sands which is expected to increase to 3.7 million in 2025. Only Saudi Arabia and Venezuela have more reserves and Harper's Canada is reluctant to hurt the industry.
Canada is the first nation to renounce the Kyoto Protocol stating that it is not the way forward for climate change or the world. The accord, signed by Canada's previous Liberal government has never been embraced by Prime Minister's conservative government and evironment minister Kent's announcement comes one day after climate talks in Durban, South Africa. Negotiators from approximately 200 countries agreed on a deal in Durban that could complete a new climate treaty by 2015. This new treaty is designed to replace the Kyoto Protocol that will end by 2013 for which environment minister Kent says represents a path forward.