But one resolution does offer some important new material to define the NDP's direction, even if it looks fairly familiar based on the party's current policy:
2-51-13This resolution can be seen largely as a specific application of existing party policy, including the following:
Resolution on Energy and Pipelines
Submitted by Toronto-Danforth
BE IT RESOLVED THAT the following
clause be added to Section 2.4 of the policy book:
i. Opposing the shipment of unrefined oil-sands bitumen through pipelines (new or old) over long distances, and only supporting the shipment of refined bitumen in the context of (1) the refining taking place close to the source of extraction, (2) the end product being intended for consumption within Canada, and (3) a broader strategy that includes a move towards renewable energy sources and a just transition for the workers employed in oil-sands related industries.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT subsequent clauses in Section 2.4 be reordered as necessary.
2.4 EnergyHowever, the new resolution provides significantly more clarity as to the standards applied by the NDP in limiting our reliance on the wholesale export of unrefined bitumen - along with needed recognition that the our policy dealing with the oil sands should be directly linked to a long-term shift toward more sustainable resources.
New Democrats believe in:
h Discouraging bulk exports of our unprocessed natural resources and fossil fuels and providing incentives for value-added, responsible upgrading, refining and petrochemical manufacturing in Canada to maximize the economic benefits and jobs for Canadians.
Because the above resolution doesn't focus quite as narrowly on hot-button issues as related resolutions (particularly those dealing with individual pipelines), I won't be surprised if it ends up getting lost in the shuffle. But I'll hope to see some effort put into an overarching set of principles as well - and even if there's ample room for debate about the specific of the Toronto-Danforth resolution, it offers an important starting point on that front.