A new report questions the long-term environmental sustainability of many elements of Saskatchewan's economic growth strategy. Building an Environmentally Sustainable Future for Saskatchewan: Saskatchewan's Role in Global Climate Change and the Path to Sustainability by Peter Prebble, David Henry, Murray Hidlebaugh and William Wardell identifies the environmentally damaging and short-sighted growth policies currently pursued by the Saskatchewan government, and points to thirty policy changes that could be enacted to reverse Saskatchewan's disappointing environmental record and ensure a more sustainable environmental future for the province.
To avoid the worst dangers of climate change requires the stabilization of atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide and methane within the next half century. Given the exceptionally long lifetime of carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide once released into the atmosphere, stabilization can only be achieved if the anthropogenic emission sources of these two greenhouse gases are virtually eliminated. This basic scientific fact needs to guide Saskatchewan public policy. Over the next 50 years Saskatchewan's task, and the task of every other jurisdiction in the world, should be to phase out both the production and consumption of fossil fuels, and to build an environmentally sustainable energy future. That is the best way to secure well-being for today's young people and future generations.