Carbon Sequestration

Res #: 39-03A
Number: 39
Year: 2003
Midterm: No
Expired: Yes
Responses Received: No
Departments: Office of the Premier of Saskatchewan

Resolution No. 39-03A

WHEREAS, with the recent ratification of the Kyoto protocol and recognizing that Saskatchewan is a huge natural carbon sink by forest and farming practices (ie: no till/minimum till); and

WHEREAS, carbon has an estimated value of up to $10 per tonne and an acre of land can sequester up to 3 to 4 tonnes of carbon;

 THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that SARM lobby both the Provincial and Federal Governments for these dollars to be paid to the landowner/tenant.

Response from the Honourable Eric Cline, Q.C., Minister of Industry and Resources:

Please be assured that this matter is very important to the Government of Saskatchewan, as evidenced in Premier Calvert's address to the SARM Convention and also in the recent Throne Speech. In his recent address to the SARM Convention, Premier Calvert stated that he rejected the current Federal Government position that carbon sinks would be credited to the nation, rather than to individual producers and landowners.

Premier Calvert went on to say that Saskatchewan would negotiate this issue with the Federal Government and that the Province would strongly oppose the current federal approach. In the recent Throne Speech, the government expressed its disappointment that the Government of Canada had refused to recognize and credit farmers for agricultural sinks. The commitment was made that "Saskatchewan will insist that this unilateral federal action be a point of negotiation with the Federal Government".

I acknowledge the efforts made by Saskatchewan's farmers and forest managers that have resulted in the creation of carbon sinks and the wide range of economic and environmental benefits arising from the sequestering of carbon in soils and forests. I also contend that it is everyone's interest to maximize these biological sinks as a means of helping Canada to meet its commitments under the Kyoto Protocol. If we are to realize this tremendous potential, we must ensure that benefits accrue to those whose actions will create and expand carbon stores in forests and agricultural soils.

I certainly support the spirit of the resolution advanced at the SARM Convention and will work for appropriate changes to the current federal position. Thank you for bringing the SARM Convention resolution to my attention.