Environment Minister Peter Kent is about to finalize new rules for coal power that are supposed to clean up Canada’s coal power industry. But the regulations are riddled with loopholes, and worse - the coal industry is trying to cheat, and avoid the new rules completely by building a massive coal power plant just before they take effect.
Maxim Power’s new coal plant would pump out three million tonnes of pollution per year - which is like adding 600,000 cars to Canada’s roads. It is the only new coal power plant being proposed in Canada, and it’s far more dirty and dangerous than the new rules will allow.
Together, we have already sent thousands of messages to Environment Minister Kent, asking him to close the Maxim Power loophole. After receiving over 4,000 messages Kent publicly promised that Maxim Power would not be allowed to dodge the rules. On Wednesday, Minister Kent will close the comment period for the new regulations. Now, we need a big push to make sure he keeps his promise.
Please take a minute right now to send a message to Environment Canada Director Caroline Blais and Environment Minister Kent, calling on them to fix the loopholes in the new regulations and make Maxim Power play by the rules.
As he finalizes the regulations Minister Kent needs to make a choice: is he going to listen to the thousands of Canadians who have spoken out, and keep his own government’s promise to put real limits on coal pollution? Or, will he leave the regulations riddled with loopholes and hand Maxim Power a free pass to pollute our air and our climate for decades?
Please act now - even if you sent a message to Minister Kent previously. This new action directly targets the comment process for the new regulations, and will make sure your voice is heard.
In June 2010 the federal government promised Canadians they would phase out conventional coal in Canada. Then-Environment Minister Jim Prentice made a clear commitment: “We will guard against any rush to build non-compliant coal plants on the interim.” Yet the coal industry is now doing just that - rushing to break ground to avoid taking responsibility for its pollution.
The coal industry knows there’s no way this plant can meet Canada’s new environmental standards. That’s why they’re trying to sneak in under the wire and lock-in this polluting mega project before the new rules take effect.
Earlier this summer thousands of Canadians, from all across the country, sent emails, made phone calls, and wrote letters to your local papers demanding Kent close the “Maxim Power loophole” and prevent Maxim from dodging Canada’s new environmental standards. The response was phenomenal.
For weeks, Kent refused to comment on Maxim’s sneaky regulation dodging, but in an interview with the Canadian Press last month, he completely changed his position:
“It was never the intention to create a loophole for short-cutters to get in and get a half-century licence to emit greenhouse gases or to put other toxins into the air which have serious impacts on Canadians living downwind.” — Federal Environment Minister Peter Kent1
...that’s a monumental shift from the documents Maxim Power’s lawyers submitted to the Alberta regulator showing they met with Kent and he’d assured them they could avoid the rules if they got their dirty, dangerous coal plant up fired up fast enough.
We have seen first hand how our people power can shift Minister Kent in the right direction, but the Maxim Power loophole won’t be closed unless he fixes the regulations before they’re finalized. The comment period for the new rules is about to close, and it’s vitally important that we let him know that we’re still here and we will be watching closely to make sure he follows through.
Send your quick message to Environment Canada Director Blais and Minister Kent now as part of the public consultation on the new regulations.