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UPDATE: UK PM Cameron should stop defending Harper’s tar sands policies

The UK Tar Sands Network has issued a media release stating, “British Prime Minister David Cameron will visit Ottawa (on September 22) to address a joint session of Canadian Parliament, just days before hundreds of protesters descend on the capital to oppose the tar sands. As one of Harper’s ‘ideological allies’, Cameron has repeatedly demonstrated his government’s willingness to undermine European Union climate policy on behalf of the Harper government and its friends in the Alberta tar sands.”

“On the occasion of Cameron’s state visit, the UK Tar Sands Network is demanding the British Government stop defending Canada’s criminal record on climate change.”

The media release highlights, “‘The UK is one of the few countries trying to stop the EU’s Fuel Quality Directive from specifically listing tar sands as more carbon-intensive than other fuels. A raft of information uncovered by Friends of the Earth Europe and others have shown this position is being influenced by obscene lobbying from the Alberta and federal governments,’ says Gemma Long of the network. Just this week, Canada put more pressure on the EU by threatening to challenge the Fuel Quality Directive at the WTO if it includes a specific value for tar sands crude. This follows reports earlier this year that Canada had threatened to pull out of free trade negotiations with the EU altogether, for the same reason. The Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement that Canada and the EU are negotiating will contain investment protections designed to increase the role of British companies such as BP in tar sands extraction.”

The Council of Canadians has been working with the UK Tar Sands Network to defeat the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA). To read about our collaboration this past January during the sixth round of negotiations in Brussels, please go to To read more about a UK Tar Sands Network event in July – during the eighth round of talks – that featured Council of Canadians Board member Dr. John O’Connor and trade campaigner Stuart Trew, please go to

For more on the UK Tar Sands Network, please go to and