Is Harper Killing the Canadian Electric Car?
There are two electric car manufacturers in Canada - and the government is killing them both. The one in BC has already shut down operations and is moving elsewhere, and the one in Quebec says they may soon go, too. Is this the Avro Arrow all over again? Canada comes up with world-leading technology, and our government caves to American corporate pressure to kill off what could be an entry for Canada into the new green economy of the future?
The story of the car manufacturers is carried on CBC, here:
They are shutting down because the government won't let them sell in Canada - even though they can sell in the United States, which has the same standards. And they're selling in other countries, and the cars have won awards, and the cars cost thousands less than fossil fuel burning cars. The government is preventing Canadians from being able to buy Canadian designed and manufactured cars - that are less expensive and much better for the environment.
No wonder Mr. Harper says we can't meet Kyoto - he's doing what he can to sabotage our chances, and to keep us forever subservient to foreign corporations.
This is a signature issue that the Green Party should be for, and we should be very loud and clear about it. So much of the time, we are painted as lacking economic solutions, as being a protest party, yet here is an issue that will show Canadians what we stand for, not just what we're against. It will also force Mr. Harper to show his true colours, namely that he is hypocritical and flat-out wrong about economy and environment.
UPDATE January 8, 2008: Shortly after this story hit CBC and the blogosphere, the Conservative government magically approved the Zenn for sale in Canada. It is now up to provincial governments to approve the car locally. So far, only BC has laws for these types of vehicles, so they are 'street legal' in BC.
UPDATE: February 10, 2008: Well, well, it appears the government is changing the rules to ensure that the Zenn cannot be driven in Canada, after all. See here: http://www.greenparty.ca/en/node/3879. In short, the rules are being rewritten to keep these cars off the streets. So much for Mr. Harper's "Made in Canada" solution to the climate crisis (or much of anything).
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