Germany is still hurtling into the renewables cul-de-sac
This week’s talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel were a triumph for Stephen Harper. Ms. Merkel gave firm support to the Prime Minister’s European trade pact ambitions and did not complain at his continued refusal to throw Canadian taxpayers’ dollars into the eurozone money pit.
Some sections of the media, however, desperate to rain on the parade, noted that Chancellor Merkel had used the word “problems” when responding to a question on the Alberta oil sands. This, they claimed, suggested a “gap” between the governments when it comes to the environment and energy. Other media sources — also attempting to flog the environmental horse — suggested that Ms. Merkel’s visit to a Dalhousie University in connection with an ocean research project highlighted Mr. Harper’s alleged problems with “science.” After all, Ms. Merkel is a former “quantum chemistry researcher.”
Some pondered the significance of Mr. Harper’s gift to Ms. Merkel of a paddle. Could it be because — quite apart from the eurozone crisis — she is up climate creek? In fact, when it comes to grasping environment policy, Mr. Harper’s economics qualifications and ideological principles have led him to a much more realistic view.