Pan-Canadian framework is historic; yet insufficient to meet climate challenge

Pan-Canadian framework is historic; yet insufficient to meet climate challenge

Saturday December 10, 2016

The plan takes significant strides towards decreasing Canada’s carbon pollution.

Today, we congratulate the federal and provincial governments as they release a historic framework on climate change. The plan takes significant strides towards decreasing Canada’s carbon pollution. However, today’s announcement fails to meet the already weak Harper-era reduction targets set at the Paris climate conference last year.

“The climate announcement made today is historic, yet insufficient. While the federal government deserves great support for bringing together the provinces on such a comprehensive framework, we have a lot of work ahead of us to fulfil the promise we made to the world in Paris to keep warming under 1.5 degrees.” said Karen Mahon, National Director of Stand.earth.

Canada’s 2030 target, established by the previous Harper government, when taken together with the commitments of other countries, add to a temperature increase of approximately 3 degrees (estimates vary from 2.7 to 3.5). Today we see a strong plan to support a weak target far from the under 1.5°C global warming target ceiling adopted at last year’s UN climate conference in Paris, therefore there is much more to be done.

“The recent approval of pipelines and new LNG facilities will make it much harder for Canada to achieve meaningful emission reductions. It’s like we have one foot on the gas and one foot on the brake,” says Mahon.

Christy Clark holding Canada back

One of the most concerning things about today’s First Minister’s meeting was BC Premier Christy Clark threatening to hold back progress for the entire country. “Premier Clark proved once again today that she is a climate laggard not a climate leader,” said Mahon in Vancouver. “It’s un-Canadian of Premier Clark to insist that BC get special treatment over the other provinces. If every premier insisted on a made-in-their-own province plan we would not move forward as a country.”

Earlier this year, the BC Premier launched a climate action plan that didn’t result in reduced greenhouse gas emissions. Today we see that not only is Christy Clark intent on British Columbia losing its leadership role on climate change, she’s willing to hold the rest of the country hostage to do it.