Monday, May 07, 2018

On full pictures

I've previously pointed out the obvious bad faith behind the Saskatchewan Party's attempt (PDF) to monetize existing agricultural practices as a substitute for actually reducing greenhouse gas emissions - and particularly the one-sided nature of that plan:
How we grow our crops, harvest our forests and protect our vital water systems will be critically important to how we prepare, respond and adapt to a changing climate.
It’s important that Canada and its partner nations in the Paris Agreement develop accounting systems to credit past and future land use and management decisions that help sequester carbon.
Noticeably lacking is any discussion of the obvious converse: i.e. debiting land use practices which exacerbate climate change. And Carl Meyer's report on the impact of biofuels brings the issue into even sharper focus by pointing out how other jurisdictions are far ahead of Canada as a whole:
Canada is omitting a major source of pollution from its calculations of impacts of a key climate change policy, according to a federal document. The methodology is putting Canada at odds with policies adopted by both the United States and California.

The complex calculations tackle the carbon footprint of the worldwide expansion of biofuels crops. The biofuels industry uses agricultural products such as corn as well as other organic waste to convert into fuel that can be used in motorized vehicles. Canada's calculations appear to be omitting the impact of landscape changes required to grow the crops, such as deforestation, which can pump more carbon pollution into the atmosphere.
The Moe government's treatment of similar methodologies to account for emission-exacerbating choices should provide a definitive answer as to whether it's actually the slightest bit interested in combating climate change, or merely trying to con the people who are. And there's little reason for optimism so far.

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