By: Dana Wagner on
Justin Trudeau, Liberal Party leader and MP for Papineau, in a speech on June 30, 2015
Harper is not a climate change denier. The prime minister has made multiple statements over his time in office calling climate change real and urgent.FactsCan Score: False
Justin Trudeau announced the Liberal Party’s platform on the environment last week. In a speech outlining his plan, Trudeau criticized the Conservatives for inaction. He said “in the last decade … [Stephen] Harper took us backwards. By denying climate change, he denied Canadians opportunity.”
Calling the prime minister a climate change denier is a factual claim. And it’s not true.
In a June 2007 speech in Berlin, Harper called climate change “perhaps the biggest threat to confront the future of humanity today.” He continued, “it is urgent that we start work now … to develop a new universal consensus on how to prevent global warming.”
Asked in December 2014 if he would still call climate change the “biggest threat,” Harper answered, “I think it’s a significant threat.”
Here’s Harper at some other dates in between:
“The reality of climate change is upon us.” – Stephen Harper, speech, May 2008
“All countries must commit to taking concrete action to address climate change.” – Stephen Harper, statement, December 2009
“Urgent and concrete action is needed to address climate change.” – Stephen Harper in a joint statement, G7 Summit Declaration, June 2014
Trudeau’s office pointed out that in 2002, Harper signed a letter that called the Kyoto Protocol “a socialist scheme to suck money out of wealth-producing nations.” The letter also described the science behind climate change as “tentative and contradictory.” This shows Harper was a skeptic (13 years ago), but not a denier.
Harper does not deny climate change, and Trudeau’s office produced no evidence that the prime minister publicly denied the science in the last 10 years. The claim is false.