Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The drip, drip, drip begins: Raitt thought clean energy funds diverted to oil producers

And now it begins. Stephen Maher has five hours of Raitt's musing about life, the universe, and everything. Out of this he will be able (one assumes) to mine a week or two worth of stories. Today, we learn that Raitt was concerned about how the environment ministry under Jim Prentice was channelling clean energy funds towards Alberta:
Money earmarked to support wind energy producers was diverted to research and development in the oil patch in backroom budget wrangling, the minister of natural resources said in a conversation with an aide in January.

Lisa Raitt told aide Jasmine MacDonnell that she suspects Environment Minister Jim Prentice took the money for wind power and redirected it to his Clean Energy Plan – a $1-billion fund for research and development in the oil sands.
Money quote:
“I would have no way of knowing that. I understand that's what happened. My suspicion is, what I told you, that Jim took the money for his clean energy plan. They said 'Ah, they don't need it.' There should never have been any choice. No one asked my opinion on it. If they had, I would have lobbied. Maybe that's why I'm invited to P and P (priority and planning, a cabinet committee). Oh, the prime minister's not going to like that.”