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Wynne urges Harper to act on climate at Quebec premier's summit
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However, Dale Marshall, program manager of Environmental Defence, criticized the premiers for not coming up with any concrete measures at the end of the day.
Dale Marshall, program manager of Environmental Defence at Quebec Summit on Climate Change. Photo by Krystle Alarcon.
"What I would like to see really is a statement from all the provinces saying, 'We will move forward with carbon pricing because it is really a necessary policy,'" Marshall said.
A statement from the premiers at the end of the summit said leaders will commit to "make a transition to a lower-carbon economy through appropriate initiatives, which may include carbon pricing, carbon capture and storage and other technological innovations."
Asked why the premiers did not have more tangible demands that could be sent to the federal government, Couillard defended the outcome, saying provinces and territories have different circumstances in dealing with climate change.
"Carbon pricing is mentioned and [...] we all consider it, it's part of the toolbox, it's a very important option, and we all heard about the many ways of reducing carbon," he said. "That's a very important message."
Video interview: Dale Marshall, program manager of Environmental Defence at Quebec Summit on Climate Change.
Absence of key premiers
Four premiers were absent from the meeting.
Premiers Christy Clark of BC, Jim Prentice of Alberta, Stephen McNeil of Nova Scotia and Wade MacLauchlan of PEI did not attend the summit. They sent representatives in their absence.
Clark and Prentice's absence was criticized by some. According to the Calgary Herald, Prentice was criticized by both the NDP and environmentalists for a "lack of leadership" on climate policies.
Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard addresses questions from reporters. Photo by Krystle Alarcon
Asked of the premiers' thoughts on the absence of Clark and Prentice, Couillard said Clark did join a closed-door portion of the summit via telephone.
He also defended Prentice for not being present.
"Had he not an election to deal with right now, he'd be here," Couillard said.