Environment: the QCA monitored by the opposition on an issue imposed

Environnement: la CAQ surveillée par l'opposition sur un enjeu imposé

The scene takes place in a shopping center of Longueuil during the last weekend of the election campaign in Quebec, less than 24 hours of voting.

The chief caquiste François Legault crossed the two instigators of the “let’s Talk environment”, a movement now on the social networks, which encouraged the parties to address priority environmental issues and the fight against climate change. Is it a coincidence?

They blame the Coalition avenir Québec (CAQ) the weakness of its program in environment and its intention to extend highways.

Mr. Legault made in regards to him claiming that he also wants to extend the electrical Network in metropolitan (REM) and invest $ 100 million to decontaminate land in the east of Montreal.

The two activists leave “not reassured, not satisfied”.

The image of this skirmish, the challenge of the climate emergency has been imposed on the staff caquiste, who could not choose on his own initiative to make one of its major themes.

Just a few days after the election of the new government caquiste majority, a large scientific report of the expert Group on climate change (IPCC) for decision makers around the world predicted dire consequences if the warming of the temperatures was not limited to 1.5 degrees compared with pre-industrial levels.

The liberal Party, the Parti québécois and Québec solidaire have quickly detected the flaw in the armor of the QAF, its “Achilles heel”, his “dead angle”, expressions that have been repeated since.

In a rare unanimous vote, they have demanded the States-general on the climate emergency, in vain, but continued their fire together.

The appointment of MarieChantal Chassé, a novice in politics, as the minister of the Environment has not contributed either to give the signal that the CAQ bang bar in the new cabinet caquiste.

The new minister was seen by the opposition as the “weak link” to attack in the Room during the short parliamentary session which followed the inaugural address.

Difficult beginnings

A sequence of positions and decisions were able to darken the balance sheet of the first team caquiste in respect of the protection of the environment.

Think of the third link, the project of a new link motorway between the north shore and the south shore promoted by the CAQ in Quebec city. Is added to the plant project of urea plant in Bécancour, as well as a pipeline project that would leave Ontario to go to the Saguenay, and finally the authorization of the passage of a snowmobile trail in the national Park of Mont-Tremblant.

The prime minister has still not ran out of line of defense or a lifeline.

For example, he quickly grabbed a report which noted a constant increase of greenhouse gas emissions in Québec in recent years, while the official target is to reduce emissions by 20% by 2020, compared to 1990 levels.

It has been a beautiful game to criticize the previous liberal government, but has however refused to confirm that it maintained the 2020 target.

Similarly, the mess found in a report on the management, during the reign of the liberal, the green Fund — the special envelope the government intended to finance measures to combat climate change — has allowed him to be free.

The three opposition parties have, however, attempted to keep the initiative. They demanded that the prime minister participates in the COP24, the great annual summit of the United Nations on climate change, at the beginning of December.

Its predecessors such as Jean Charest and Philippe Couillard have already taken part and Québec has a recognized role of leader among federated States. François Legault, however, refused to go there, “a missed appointment” according to the opposition.

The liberal Party is returned to the charge by asking for a large “mobilization” of the business community and the government Legault to nominate Quebec to host the UN summit on the climate of 2020, the COP26.

François Legault has refused, saying that he is rather a man of action. Then 2019 will be a test : his government will be placed under surveillance concerted opposition parties to achieve results in the fight against climate change and the energy transition.

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