Monday, July 26, 2010

On outcasts

The Star Phoenix editorial board laments the fact that Canada has become an international pariah on a number of health and environmental issues, with a particular focus on asbestos exports:
For Canadians still squirming over Canada's dubious honour of being named "Fossil of the Year" at the Copenhagen climate change talks in 2009, the finger-pointing over its refusal, mostly for political reasons, to wind down its Quebec-based asbestos industry is yet another international embarrassment.

This isn't the image that most Canadians hold of their country, which they rightly point out has led initiatives such as the ban against landmines and pioneered peacekeeping. But that was then and this, sadly, is now.

Even though it's the current Conservative government that's under attack for continuing to support the Chrysotile Institute, Canada's asbestos industry lobby group, the reality is that it's merely following the practice of federal Liberal and Progressive Conservative administrations that have dared not let damning evidence interfere with allowing the industry to continue.

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