“Environmental protection and economic growth must go hand in hand,” Trudeau said.

“Environmental protection and economic growth must go hand in hand,” Trudeau said.

 “Now is the time to invest in our economy,” the prime minister told the United States Chamber of Commerce.  Canadian investment will go into public transit, green infrastructure, social housing and improved ports, among other things he said.

Now, the deficit tabled at budget time was close to $30 billion and that’s a whole heap of STIMULUS for economic growth. The Liberals repeatedly indicated during the election campaign that infrastructure would be the key driver of their deficit spending PLAN.

According to the 2016 Budget some $4 billion in new money has been allocated. Roughly $1.2 billion has been divvied up for indigenous, cultural and post secondary infrastructure purposes while another $1.2 billion winds up in Federal Infrastructure properties.

Public Transit and Municipal Infrastructure gets a $1.6 billion share, the new chapter in inter Canadian Relationships, keeping premiers and mayors happy.

Of course, that is a complex matter to decipher. Further complicating the equation is the Question of how much of the anticipated economic growth will find its way into the Environmental protection account, “Theoretically Speaking.”

The closest answer to those questions can be interpreted from additional comments made at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, that the Trudeau Government’s approach was more about investment than free spending or than a “spend to grow” philosophy.

“With historically low interest rates, the time to invest is now,” Trudeau said. He said thinking green isn’t just ethical, it’s also smart economics. He also said NEW GROWTH MUST BE CLEAN GROWTH and ENVIRONMENTALLY RESPONSIBLE, perhaps having more to do with how TO SPEND RATHER THAN ON WHAT.

As it happened, Canada’s Gross Domestic Product grew by 0.6% in January the largest increase since 2013. Good Lord, the increase was led by increases in the mining, quarrying and the oil and gas extraction businesses-even in Canada’s struggling energy regions for the fourth consecutive month of growth.

Manufacturing was also accelerating and grew 1.9 per cent in January, up from a rate of 1.1 per cent in December. The decline in the value of the loonie helps manufacturing exporters spread across industries and sectors.

In fact, according to BMO Chief economist the economy did better than most economists had predicted and was chugging along nicely on all cylinders and sectors

According to assertions made at the U.S Chamber of Commerce “This is North America. We don’t fear the future. We invent it. We don’t worry about the new economy. We create it.” OK, then where has a $26.0 billion balance of the Stimulus been allocated? This is 2016. Was the deficit really necessary in the first place and for what purpose?

Perhaps the Finance Minister’s visit to the United Kingdom endorses that point and puts the stimulus plan in perspective when he said: The Liberal government’s stimulus plans will not be affected by faster-than-expected growth in January. He added:

CANADA needs to go billions into deficit in order to boost the country’s longer-term prospects. “You’ll see us remain focused on thinking about how we can help the children and grandchildren of parents today.”

“We’re a country with the lowest debt-to-GDP, our interest rates are very favourable”

Well now, before focussing on how to help my great grandchildren, some progressive environmental activists need something productive to do. It seems we have a huge swath of impatient students with huge educational debt loads looking for work. The Prime Minister is the Minister of YOUTH.

When they are not placarding in Paris or Vancouver Conventions among others it seems they are bent on shutting down whole swaths of industry, playing moral and social licensors all in the name that the former prime Minister didn’t “Get it Done”

The Minister of Climate Change is cognisant of the FEARS of the potential job losses entailed and or the prospect of throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

Canada lost between 5,700 and 10,000 jobs and the jobless rate has climbed to 7.2 per cent. What’s more, wages are falling, down 0.7 per cent from December to January according to Statistics Canada

Meanwhile, “new” unemployment insurance algorithms are being implemented, by the Minister of EmploymentWorkforce Development and Labour, a Geoscientist, to accommodate disparate effects and DIVISIONS across the country.

The Minister of Small Business and Tourism was hard pressed to account for the broken election promise on tax relief for Small and Medium Enterprises, the engine of the economy. Some suspect tinkering on the tax code is taking place, much in the vein of the repeal and rebrand agenda on former government initiatives.

The Finance Minister while in the U.K offered his assurances and said: “We recognize that Canadians want us to be prudent, so we’re going to be prudent all the way,” adding that if growth materialized as expected, the government would return to balanced budgets in “about five years.”

The previous Government apart from balancing the budget and leaving a surplus, though vigorously kept under wraps and parliamentary procedure by the new government and in fact left a growing economy.

The other fact is that the impact of the 2016 Economic STIMULUS PLAN FORECASTS will not be projected until the April 13th, 2016, Bank of Canada Monetary POLICY report is released.

Frankly put, we need to find ways to better coordinate the efforts of provinces, municipalities and the federal government and we need to operate in private sector industry time frames rather than political-public sector processes and disparate election campaigns.

As for Environmental Protection, my grandfather told me about that many years ago. He was a lumberjack and ice delivery man in Canada. He like many pioneers, small businessmen and entrepreneurs believed education was a privilege, not a licence and that cleanliness was next to Godliness.

Kevin Murray was Assistant Cost Accountant at Goodlass Wall Lead industries in 1964. They are a global chemical processing and manufacturing company familiar with many major hazardous materials and environmental transitions. Its products are in every household and part of many global value and production chains. Plant emissions meant loss of good jobs, product and profitability.


Kevin Murray-Mourne is a former Trade Commissioner for Space, Aerospace, Defence and Security with the Department of External Affairs and International Trade Canada. He is a Veteran of Her Majesty’s Armed forces. He attended the Canadian Centre for Management Development, the Canadian Foreign Affairs Institute and is a Graduate of the American Management Associations Management Program.

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