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Muzzling Opinion at the Environment Committee

The Environment Committee has been studying “Fossil Fuel Subsidies” for several weeks. I start with the observation that the title alone – “Subsidies” – is actually misnomer, and the committee members have a very wide range of opinion on the definition and the substance of this topic.

It is the normal process of any Committee to do a paragraph-by-paragraph review, with amendments, of any draft report. In this case, the NDP moved – and the Liberals and BQ indicate they will support – that the committee accept the draft report without review or amendment.

Draft reports are written by bureaucrats who summarize what was said. It is Members of Parliament who must produce a final report, with recommendations (and if necessary, a dissenting report). We are accountable, not the bureaucrats, for what any report says.

The motion was put forward by an NDP Member who has not attended any previous committee meeting nor listened to any of the witness testimony.

Eliminating the review is unacceptable, and an obvious attempt to silence the voices who disagree with their mission to quash fossil fuel use, despite ample evidence that fossil fuels will be required for decades to come not only as fuel, but as the foundational building block of literally hundreds of products we use every day.

My Conservative colleagues and I objected strongly to this abuse of process and attempt to silence dissenting opinion. This clip is a glimpse into the regular Liberal-NDP attempts to muzzle the work of committees.

Related Material

Consult the notice of meeting and official transcript of the meeting.