Carleton PC candidate says she doesn't believe climate change is man-made

Ontario PC candidate Goldie Ghamari told a crowd at an Ottawa debate she doesn't believe carbon pricing is effective to reduce climate change and she doesn't believe it's man-made.

Goldie Ghamari was asked if humans cause climate change at a debate in south Ottawa

Goldie Ghamari, the Ontario PC candidate for Carleton, was asked about her party's climate policies at a debate in the south Ottawa community of Greely. ( Mathieu Theriault/CBC)

The Ontario PC candidate for Carleton said she doesn't believe climate change is man-made at an all-candidates forum in the south Ottawa community of Greely Wednesday night.

Goldie Ghamari had repeated her party's pledge to eliminate the cap-and-trade system and fight the federally imposed carbon tax during the forum.

Then she was asked an audience-submitted question about whether human activity causes climate change.

"I believe climate change is real. I don't believe climate change is man-made and I certainly don't believe that the people of Carleton are at fault for climate change," she said.

Almost all climate scientists agree that human activity is the driving force in climate change.

In the closing portion of the debate, candidates were able to ask each other direct questions.

Liberal candidate Theresa Qadri pressed Ghamari over statements she made at a Sunday debate in Stittsville about whether cars emit pollution.

Ghamari said her point was that Canada's carbon emissions are two per cent of global emissions, of which cars are a small part.

"The reality is that 70 per cent of global carbon emissions come from multinational corporations," Ghamari said.

"So the reality is that if you are not driving your car because of increased carbon prices, that's not going to make a difference." 

Ghamari supported former PC leader Patrick Brown, who was going to impose a carbon tax.

During an intermission in the debate, Ghamari told CBC that the PCs would be consulting on a new climate policy, but the party is committed to ending carbon taxation.

Goldie Ghamari, Ontario PC candidate for Carleton, says climate change is not man-made. 0:47

'We've come so far:' Liberal candidate

Qadri said the carbon tax will be imposed by the federal government and that it would be a mistake to get rid of Ontario's cap-and-trade system.

"We've come so far with clean air, less asthma. Why do we want to go backwards, why don't we want to move forward with the environment?" she said.

Theresa Qadri, the Ontario Liberal candidate for Carleton, says her party's cap-and-trade system and other policies have been a step forward for the environment. (Matthew Kupfer/CBC)

Green candidate Gordon Kubanek said he and his party believe in man-made climate change and that there are things the province should do to prevent it.

NDP candidate Courtney Potter acknowledged humans contribute to climate change.

Jay Tysick, a former candidate for the PC nomination in the riding who is now running for his own party, said Ontario should impose tariffs on other countries who don't have manufacturing processes that are as clean as the province's.

Libertarian Party candidate Jean-Serge Brisson said he wants the gas tax replaced with road user fees. 

The debate also covered a broad range of other issues including hydro prices, long-term care for aging baby boomers, the sex education curriculum, tolls on highways and services in rural communities.

The Carleton provincial candidates who appeared at the Greely debate from left to right: Liberal candidate Theresa Qadri, Libertarian candidate Jean-Serge Brisson, PC candidate Goldie Ghamari, Green candidate Gordon Gordon Kubanek, NDP candidate Courtney Potter and Ontario party candidate Jay Tysick. (Matthew Kupfer/CBC)

with files from CBC's Joanne Chianello