December 11, 2009

Premier Greg Selinger and Conservation Minister Bill Blaikie will
join world leaders, policy makers, industry leaders, scientists
and environmentalists from around the world at the United Nations
Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen.

“Manitoba is a leader in clean-energy technology, energy
efficiency, boreal protection and the fight against climate
change,” said Selinger. “The Copenhagen conference will provide a
forum to share best practices and reinforce the important role
that sub-national governments are playing to address global

The premier said Manitoba is making great strides in protecting
the province’s natural resources most vulnerable to climate
change: boreal forests, lakes, rivers and polar bears.

Selinger noted the province continues to invest in energy
efficiency and all forms of renewable energy production. These
investments reduce Manitoba’s greenhouse-gas emissions and also
contribute to lower emissions outside the province when Manitoba
exports its clean hydro power to replace fossil-fuel energy in
other jurisdictions.

Manitoba has been active in the battle against climate change,
participating in the Western Climate Initiative, Midwest
Greenhouse Gas Accord, Climate Registry and the Western Governors

Selinger said the Copenhagen conference is not only an
opportunity for world leaders to develop a global climate-change
agreement but also for provincial and state governments, such as
Manitoba, to develop partnerships that reduce carbon emissions
locally and regionally.

“Manitoba has been at the forefront of improving public
understanding and developing public policy on climate change,”
said David Runnals, president of the International Institute for
Sustainable Development (IISD).

“Copenhagen can be a turning point in the global fight on carbon
emissions,” said Charles Loewen, board member of the IISD and CEO
of Loewen Windows. “It’s important for Manitoba to participate in
Copenhagen to be a strong voice for combating climate change and
advancing Manitoba’s clean-energy interests.”

While in Copenhagen, Selinger and Blaikie will meet with federal
Environment Minister Jim Prentice, other participating premiers
and ministers, as well as a number of other leaders from the
United States and around the world.

The Manitoba team will consist of Selinger, Blaikie and three
experts.  The carbon footprint of the trip to Copenhagen will be
offset with the purchase of 53 trees to be planted.

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