Ignatieff promises clean energy committment ahead of Canadian elections

CANADA: With Canada's minority federal Parliament perpetually on the verge of sending Canadians back to the election polls, opposition leader Michael Ignatieff is pledging to make renewable energy a central focus of the next campaign.

Canadian opposition leader Michael Ignatieff
Canadian opposition leader Michael Ignatieff

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"At the heart of our next platform will be the most significant national investment in clean energy jobs this country has ever seen. This starts with a relentless commitment to renewable power," Ignatieff says.

A Liberal government, he adds, would work with business and other levels of government "to design effective fiscal and tax incentives that encourage new renewable power projects."

Ignatieff criticises the ruling Conservatives for failing to provide new funding for its ecoEnergy for Renewable Power (ERP) programme, saying it "sends the wrong message" to investors.  ERP provides a C$0.01/kWh production incentive for the first 10 years of a project’s life, but its budget is expected to run out this fall, more than a year ahead of schedule.

CanWEA president Robert Hornung welcomes Ignatieff’s promise. "To compete and win investment and jobs in the rapidly growing global green energy sector, we need active government engagement and strong leadership," he says.

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