Canada's Climate Change Election 2019
Climate change is emerging as a top-tier issue in the lead-up to Canada’s federal election October 21. With a sitting government likely to tout progress on climate solutions, at least one opposition party vowing to dismantle the country’s modest carbon pricing system, and no political party at any level fully attuned to a 1.5°C pathway, we’ll be following the issues and helping readers separate substance from spin.
CANADA’S CLIMATE ACTION GAP
Horgan, Trudeau Accused of ‘Greenwashing’ Methane with Support for B.C. LNG
The British Columbia and federal governments are being accused of greenwashing the climate-busting methane emissions behind the province’s widely-touted liquefied natural gas expansion, with B.C. Green leader Andrew Weaver—whose three-member legislative caucus is keeping Premier John Horgan’s New Democrats in power—comparing efforts to electrify LNG production to “putting lipstick on a pig”.
Canada, UK Boost Their Green Climate Fund Contributions, Still Fall Short of Fair Share
Canada and the United Kingdom both announced new contributions to the United Nations Green Climate Fund (GCF) during last weekend’s G7 meeting in France, but Canada’s announcement brought immediate concern the level of funding would short-change the countries most affected by the climate crisis.
Canada’s Climate Plan Falls Behind G7 as Global Business Coalition Urges Tougher Targets
Canada’s climate action plan is one of the least ambitious among the world’s leading industrial countries, and none of the seven countries are anywhere near the strategies they would need to hit a 1.5°C target for average global warming, according to a Climate Action Network-France report released on the eve of the annual G7 meeting.
New Federal Assessment Rules Exempt Cement Plants, Fracking, In-Situ Tar Sands/Oil Sands
New cement plants, fracking fields, and in-situ tar sands/oil sands projects should not be exempt from review under the federal government’s new Impact Assessment Act, Toronto-based Environmental Defence argues in a letter to the Trudeau government released this week.
CBC: Climate Action Costs Less, Delivers More Side Benefits Than Estimates Usually Assume
Reversing the climate crisis will cost less and deliver more positive impacts than most estimates usually assume, and that gap in analysis is shaping up as a barrier to climate action, CBC reported last week, as part of its In Your Backyard climate series.
Harrison: Building a Pipeline is Not a Climate Plan
The federal government’s decision to buy out, then re-approve the controversial Trans Mountain pipeline expansion means Prime Minister Justin Trudeau “has made a choice on our behalf, but Canadians should not kid ourselves that building a pipeline is a climate plan,” argues University of British Columbia political scientist and chemical engineer Kathryn Harrison, in a blistering retort to National Observer columnist Sandy Garossino’s recent post on Ottawa’s C$70-billion climate plan.
Garossino: Despite Pipeline Approval, $70-Billion Federal Plan is Canada’s Best Shot at Decarbonizing
While the Trudeau government disappointed its climate allies with its much-anticipated decision to re-approve the controversial Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, it has also crafted a more complicated record on energy and carbon by committing to C$70 billion in low-carbon investment over a 12-year span, reporter Sandy Garossino writes in a provocative post last week for National Observer.
Canada, UK, France, Ireland Declared Climate Emergency While Subsidizing Fossil Fuels
A new analysis this week identifies Canada as one of four countries that have declared climate emergencies after collectively spending US$27.5 billion per year on fossil fuel subsidies earlier this decade.
Time for Countries to ‘Step Up Their Game’ on Paris Commitments, 1.5°C Targets
With the urgency of the climate crisis demanding bold and immediate action, this year’s edition of the annual Climate Action Tracker (CAT) report calls out the large majority of governments that are falling short of their carbon reduction commitments under the 2015 Paris Agreement, putting them that much farther from policies consistent with a relatively stable climate at 1.5°C average global warming.
CAN-Rac: Canada’s Next Climate Plan Must Cut Carbon Faster, End Fossil Subsidies
Faster carbon reductions, an end to fossil subsidies, more support for international emission reductions, and a commitment to “leave no community, group, or worker behind” are the cornerstones of the comprehensive, accountable climate plan Canada will need after this year’s federal election, Climate Action Network-Canada (CAN-Rac) asserts in a policy paper released earlier this week.
Canada’s Climate Change Election: An Energy Mix Special Report Launches Today
Climate change and the transition off fossil fuels are emerging as top-tier issues in the federal election coming up this fall. And between now and October 21, The Energy Mix has got you covered.
Today, we’re proud to launch Canada’s Climate Change Election 2019, a special report where we will consolidate the news and opinion that will shape the next four years on the single biggest issue the country faces.
Canada Earns Praise for Global Coal Phaseout, Falls Behind on Renewables Deployment
Canada earned its share of international praise last month in a report that highlighted the country’s leadership in the global coal phaseout, shone a light on its slow uptake of renewable energy, and said nothing about the domestic pipeline battles that will likely dominate the news over the coming week.
Beer: Climate Intensity Has Arrived, and Politicians Ignore It At Their Peril
The age of “climate intensity” is upon us, and politicians who fail to take notice are at risk of being swept aside, The Energy Mix publisher Mitchell Beer argues in a post this week for Policy Options.
Canada Can Hit Paris Targets, ‘Zero Out Carbon’ by Mid-Century, Study Shows
Canada can get its energy system on track to meet its targets under the Paris Agreement and “zero out carbon pollution” by mid-century by adopting a menu of 10 technically feasible options to cut carbon emissions, the David Suzuki Foundation concludes in a report issued last week.
Bank of Canada Review Declares Climate Risk to Financial System, Wider Economy
The Bank of Canada cites climate change as a risk “to both the economy and the financial system” in its 2019 Financial System Review (FSR), the first in the annual series to examine the climate crisis as a threat to the country’s financial stability.
Hero or Villain? International Policy-Watchers Weigh Trudeau’s Climate Record
With many Canadians engaged in a pitched pre-election debate about whether Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is a climate hero or villain (average of all answers: yes), The Tyee’s Geoff Dembicki says he got some surprising answers when he put the question to a collection of global climate experts.
Forget Kenney: Climate Change is Already Canada’s National Unity Crisis, Columnist Concludes
With Alberta Premier Jason Kenney fulminating about western alienation as a national unity crisis—after working so hard to stoke that alienation on the campaign trail—Globe and Mail columnist Gary Mason says Kenney is too late. The unity crisis is already here, and its name is climate change, amped up by the extreme communications of the social media era.
Extinction Threat Calls for ‘Paris Moment for Nature’: McKenna
Environment and Climate Change Minister Catherine McKenna is calling for a “Paris Agreement moment for nature” after an alarming UN commission report found nature declining “at rates unprecedented in human history”, with up to a million species at risk of extinction within decades.
Canada On Track to Hit Paris Target 200 Years Late as NEB Endorses Carbon Tax
Carbon taxes are an efficient way to reduce energy use and related carbon pollution in homes and businesses, fostering greater innovation and adoption of clean energy technologies, Canada’s non-partisan National Energy Board (NEB) concludes in a report issued last week.
BREAKING: Emissions at Four Alberta Tar Sands/Oil Sands Mines 64% Higher Than Fossils Reported
Carbon pollution from four major tar sands/oil sands mines in northern Alberta is 64% higher than their owners reported using the United Nations’ standard emissions measurement framework, according to a study released this morning in the journal Nature Communications.
Canada Falls Short on Efforts to Cut Emissions, Phase Out Fossil Subsidies, Environment Commissioner Reports
Canada still isn’t on track to meet its greenhouse gas reduction targets or phase out fossil fuel subsidies, federal Environment Commissioner Julie Gelfand warned last week, in the last report she will issue before her five-year term expires.
‘Incremental’ Gains in Budget 2019 Fall Short of a Path to Climate Stabilization
Finance Minister Bill Morneau’s pre-election budget March 19 would have been “an historic milestone of massive proportions” had a government of any political stripe introduced it five, 10, or 20 years ago, but falls short of the climate challenges that every government today must confront, The Energy Mix publisher Mitchell Beer writes in a guest post for the Canadian Science Policy Centre.
EXCLUSIVE: Ottawa Leans Toward California on Fuel Economy Rules, Will Seek Feedback on Fossil Subsidies
The federal government is leaning toward supporting tougher fuel economy standards against Trump administration rollbacks, and is about to announce incremental progress on curbing fossil fuel subsidies, The Energy Mix learned Thursday evening, during a town hall hosted by Environment and Climate Minister Catherine McKenna.
Morneau’s Pre-Election Budget Boosts ZEVs and Energy Retrofits, Extends New Fossil Subsidy
Canadian Finance Minister Bill Morneau tabled a pre-election budget yesterday that included a 2040 deadline to phase out new internal combustion vehicle sales, major new funds for building energy retrofits, and a budget boost for municipal infrastructure, but introduced a new fossil fuel subsidy while doggedly claiming a fossil subsidy phaseout is still on the government’s agenda.
Surging Canadian, U.S. Fossil Production Puts Paris Targets at Risk
Growing production in Canada and the United States has added the equivalent of another Russia or Saudi Arabia to global oil and gas markets in the last decade, pointing to a “growing disconnect” between fossil production and the urgency of the climate crisis, International Energy Agency Executive Director Fatih Birol told an audience in Ottawa late last month.
Canada’s Forests Emit More Carbon Than They Absorb, But Ottawa Spins a Different Story
A mid-February analysis on CBC gets at one of the most persistent myths in Canadian carbon accounting—that the country’s forests absorb more carbon than they emit, or in some erroneous versions of the story, soak up so much carbon dioxide that there’s no need to worry about the rest of the country’s emissions.
Canada Drags on Promise to Phase Out Fossil Subsidies
Ottawa is being accused of dragging its feet on its 2016 promise to phase out “inefficient” fossil subsidies by 2025, two years after then-auditor general Michael Ferguson concluded the Trudeau government had failed to identify the non-tax subsidies it actually pays out to the oil and gas industry.
Climate-Health Plan Demands Federal Action on Century’s ‘Greatest Public Health Challenge’
Five national health organizations have issued an urgent call for federal politicians of all stripes to recognize climate change as “the greatest public health challenge of the 21st century”, and to conduct themselves accordingly.
Canada Falls Farther Behind Its Paris Emissions Target, with Fossils the Primary Driver
Carbon pollution from Canada’s fossil industry and some questionable assumptions about carbon credits are driving projected greenhouse gas emissions more than 100 million tonnes beyond the country’s 2030 target under the Paris Agreement, according to an analysis of the federal government’s latest emission calculations.
Canadian EV Strategy Stalls Out Amid Federal-Provincial Wrangling
Ottawa’s plans for an ambitious electric vehicle strategy appear to be stalling out, months after it was supposed to be released, due to difficulties reaching agreement with provincial and territorial governments on the scope of the strategy.
Rising Fossil Emissions, Continuing Subsidies Undercut Canada’s Climate Performance
Canada’s lavish support for the oil and gas industry is the “elephant in the room” that prevents it from being a true climate leader, Environmental Defence National Program Manager Dale Marshall said this week in Katowice, during the release of a report on Canadian fossil subsidies produced by Environmental Defence and Stand.earth.
BREAKING: Canada Commits to Faster, Deeper Carbon Cuts in 2020
Canada will adopt tougher greenhouse gas reduction targets when the Paris Agreement takes effect in 2020, Environment and Climate Change Minister Catherine McKenna said yesterday, just days before her departure for this year’s United Nations climate change conference in Katowice.
Quebec Youth Launch Class Action Lawsuit Against Canada’s ‘Inadequate’ Climate Plan
A group of five youth and young adults led by Montreal-based ENvironnement JEUnesse (ENJEU) has applied to the Superior Court of Québec for leave to launch a class action lawsuit against the Canadian government, challenging the country’s limited response to climate change on behalf of all Quebeckers aged 35 and under.
Canadian Export Support to Fossils Exceeded Cleantech 12-Fold from 2012 to 2017
Canada’s Export Development Corporation (EDC) provided more than 12 times as much financial support to fossil companies as it did to clean technology producers between 2012 and 2017, according to a new report released yesterday by Oil Change International and several Canadian environmental groups.
Canada Posts Highest Per Capita Emissions as G20 Falls Short on Climate Action
Governments in 19 of the world’s 20 biggest economies—including Canada—are still paying closer attention to fossil lobbyists than their own scientists’ advice, and are falling far short in their response to the climate crisis, according to new analysis released this week by the global Climate Transparency partnership.
Climate, Pipeline Protests Greet Trudeau’s Kick-Off Rally as Election 2019 Gets Under Way
Canada’s federal election campaign officially got under way Wednesday morning, with anti-pipeline protesters gathered outside Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s campaign launch and teen climate hawks from Sustainabiliteens chanting and singing in a bid to drown out his speech at the Italian Cultural Centre in East Vancouver.
Climate Denial, Online Abuse Dominate Twitter as Election Messaging Gears Up
With social media gearing up for what promises to be a punishing federal election campaign, there’s mounting evidence that climate denial and other extremist views are getting set to dominate the online conversation—with a large share of the traffic coming from questionable accounts with posting patterns that look a lot like the automated troll farms that hijacked discussion during the 2016 campaign in the United States.
May: Canadian Greens Would Not Back Any Other Party Based on Current Climate Plans
The federal Green Party wouldn’t support any of the other parties in a minority government situation based on their current climate action plans, Green leader Elizabeth May said last week, just seven weeks before the October 21 election.
Bernier Faces Twitter Storm for ‘Ignorant, Shameful’ Attacks on Thunberg
Federal party leader and former Harper cabinet minister Maxime Bernier provoked a fierce response earlier this week after trying to dismiss #FridaysForFuture founder and international climate leader Greta Thunberg as “mentally unstable”.
Jaccard: Scheer Climate Plan Would Put Canada 100 Megatonnes Farther Behind Its Paris Target
Equipped with neither a carbon price nor meaningful regulation, Conservative leader Andrew Scheer’s proposed climate plan would ultimately find Canada’s emissions 100 megatonnes higher by 2030 than they would be under the Liberal Party’s existing strategy, writes climate and sustainability expert Mark Jaccard.
Elections Canada’s ‘Overly Broad’ Ruling Suppresses Free Speech: CAN-Rac
Elections Canada must clarify the specific circumstances under which climate change communication would be considered election advertising once the federal election campaign gets under way next month, Climate Action Network-Canada writes, in an open letter to Chief Electoral Officer Stéphane Perrault released Thursday.
Leach: ‘Cloaked in Mystery, Choked with Irony,’ Scheer Climate Plan Walks Away from Paris Promise
When Conservative leader Andrew Scheer released his long-awaited climate plan last June, it was “so cloaked in mystery and choked with irony” that readers might not have noticed him walking back his previous commitment to a strategy that met Canada’s commitments under the 2015 Climate Agreement, respected Alberta economist Andrew Leach writes in an analysis for CBC News.
Climate Advocacy Won’t Violate Federal Rules During Fall Campaign, Elections Canada Clarifies
Elections Canada had to go out of its way this week to clarify that environmental groups can talk about climate change during the upcoming federal election, and that charities won’t be seen as engaging in partisan activity by doing so, after a weekend news report raised concerns about the restrictions the groups could face once the official campaign period begins in mid-September.
Vote Science Campaign Gears Up to Talk Policy with Federal Candidates [Sign-Up]
A coalition of Canadian science groups led by Evidence for Democracy (E4D), the student-run Toronto Science Policy Network, and Montreal’s Science & Policy Exchange will be pressing federal election candidates to support policy decisions that reflect scientific evidence, better explanations for those decisions, and new funding for scientific research.
Federal Commission’s Scheduling Fail Forces GreenPAC to Shift 100+ Local Environment Debates to October 3
GreenPAC is rescheduling more than 100 local riding debates on the environment to October 3, 2½ weeks before Canada’s federal election, after the Leaders’ Debates Commission summarily scheduled the party leaders’ English-language debate for the date GreenPAC had originally chosen.
Greens Unveil Job Transition Plan for Fossil Fuel Work Force
With the federal election campaign about to hit high gear, Green Party leader Elizabeth May was in Vancouver last week to unveil a plan to extend the federal government’s existing job transition plan for coal workers to oil and gas.
BREAKING: Greens Would Support Conservative Minority Government that Got Serious About Climate
Federal Green Party Leader Elizabeth May would work with any other party in a minority Parliament with a serious climate plan—and even thinks she could influence Andrew Scheer’s Conservatives to drop their crusade against carbon pricing “if it means the difference for them between governing or spending more time in opposition,” The Canadian Press is reporting today.
Campaign Roundup: Pre-Election Advertising, Carbon Tax Politics, Kenney Makes Trudeau Look Good, and the Prospect of a Coalition Government
With the federal election less than 100 days away, news reports last week focused on the financial action around the upcoming campaign, provinces’ mixed reaction to programs the Trudeau government wants to fund out of carbon tax revenue, the possibility of extreme fossil ideology uniting Canadians behind a more moderate alternative, and the prospects for a Liberal-Green-NDP coalition that would truly be those ideologues’ worst nightmare.
Scheer’s Climate Plan Costs More, Achieves Less Than Current Federal Policies: Clean Prosperity Study
Conservative leader Andrew Scheer’s recently-announced climate strategy would end up costing more than the current government’s policies and leave Canada farther from achieving its Harper-era carbon reduction targets for 2030, according to a report released last week by Clean Prosperity.
Scheer Vows to Scrap Federal Clean Fuel Standard
Canadian Conservative leader Andrew Scheer is vowing to scrap a key element of the Trudeau Liberals’ climate agenda, its yet-to-be-finalized clean fuel standard, if he forms a government after the federal election this fall.
Memories of Harper’s Decade Prompted Guilbeault to Run for Trudeau’s Liberals
The reaction was mixed when the former climate activist nicknamed the “green Jesus of Montreal” announced he would run for Justin Trudeau’s Liberals in the federal election this fall. But in an interview last week, Équiterre co-founder Steven Guilbeault was clear about why he had jumped into the electoral fray.
Scheer Climate Plan ‘Like Building a House Without a Hammer’, Mirrors Fossil Industry Campaign Demands
More than a year after he promised it, and after weeks of mounting hype, Conservative leader Andrew Scheer released his party’s climate plan Wednesday, a glossy, 60-page document with no fixed carbon reduction target that he cast as Canada’s best shot at meeting its 2030 goal under the Paris Agreement.
Guilbeault Set to Announce Candidacy for Liberal Nomination in Downtown Montreal
Équiterre co-founder Steven Guilbeault was due to make it official today, confirming long-standing reports that he would run for Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party in the federal election this fall.
Environment Groups Declare Fossils’ Election Platform a Recipe for ‘Climate Chaos’
National environmental groups declared the fossil industry’s election campaign demands a recipe for “climate chaos” last week, after the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) issued a call for the country’s next government to displace imported oil with Canadian supplies and ramp up fossil production and pipelines.
GreenPAC Unveils Plan for 100 Federal Election Debates October 7
GreenPAC marked World Environment Day Wednesday by announcing plans to host near-simultaneous election debates in 100 ridings on October 7, just two weeks before Canadians go to the polls in this year’s next federal election.
NDP Outlines ‘Canadian New Deal’ While Trudeau Promises to Support Cities’ Climate Action
Pre-election commitments on climate action were in the air last week, with New Democratic Party leader Jagmeet Singh releasing early snapshots if his party’s plan and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau making new promises to cities and small businesses.
Greens Want to End Oil Imports by 2030, Break Canada’s ‘Oil Habit’, but Keep Producing Plastics from Bitumen Past 2050
Canadian Green Party leader Elizabeth May appears to be borrowing a page from Conservative Andrew Scheer’s playbook, with a campaign promise to free the country from oil imports and rely on domestic crude while it still needs to.
Singh Discovers New Interest in Climate, Declares Against Oil and Gas Fracking in Wake of B.C. Byelection Loss
A week after the Green Party of Canada won a British Columbia byelection in a seat formerly held by the New Democrats, NDP leader Jagmeet Singh is discovering new interest in the climate crisis, declaring himself against oil and gas fracking, and expressing concern about liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports from B.C.
Hero or Villain? International Policy-Watchers Weigh Trudeau’s Climate Record
With many Canadians engaged in a pitched pre-election debate about whether Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is a climate hero or villain (average of all answers: yes), The Tyee’s Geoff Dembicki says he got some surprising answers when he put the question to a collection of global climate experts.
Conservatives, Fossils Plot ‘Growing Collaboration’ to Defeat Liberals in Federal Election
Federal Conservative leader Andrew Scheer is making no apologies after the Globe and Mail revealed that he addressed and his officials took part in a day-long meeting with fossil executives April 11 to coordinate strategy for the upcoming federal election.
Fenton: Canadian Green New Deal is NDP’s Best Shot at ‘Federal Relevance’
With a large share of Canadian voters anxious for more government action on climate change, an adapted version of the Green New Deal might be the New Democratic Party’s best hope of recovering voter support in time for this year’s federal election, 350.org organizer Cameron Fenton argues in a post for National Observer.
NDP Leader Singh Faces Demands for Tougher Climate Stance After Backing LNG Canada Megaproject
Fresh from his by-election win in the British Columbia riding of Burnaby South Monday evening, federal NDP leader Jagmeet Singh can expect to face pressure for more robust policy on climate change after supporting the $40-billion LNG Canada liquefied natural gas megaproject.
Scheer Walks Back Commitment to Canada’s Paris Agreement Target
Federal Opposition leader Andrew Scheer has shifted his position on implementation of the 2015 Paris Agreement, backing away from an earlier commitment to unveil an environment plan that includes steps to meet Canada’s targets under the global deal.
May Proposes All-Party ‘War Cabinet’ to Address Climate Crisis
Canadian Green Party leader Elizabeth May is calling on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to set up an all-party “war cabinet” to address the “ultimate existential threat” of climate change.
First Nations List Climate Action as First Priority for Next Federal Government
Just two days ahead of the official launch of Canada’s federal election, expected later this morning, the Assembly of First Nations released a policy paper identifying climate change as the top priority for the next federal government.
Canadian Climate Hawks Face Death Threats, Safety Fears as Federal Election Call Looms
On the eve of what promises to be a gruelling, six-week federal election campaign, the online venom the climate community has faced from assorted social media trolls is picking up momentum and translating into real-life threats, prompting some of Canada’s leading climate advocates to fear for their safety.
Canadians in Every Riding Support Climate Action, New Research Shows
Canada is gearing up for a big election this fall and climate policy will likely be at the centre of debate. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberals are trumpeting their carbon pricing policy, while Andrew Scheer’s Conservatives want to get rid of it. Meanwhile, Elizabeth May and her newly relevant Greens think Canada must do more to manage the climate crisis.
Environment and Climate Place High with Voters, But Carbon Tax Carries ‘Political Perils’
Canadian voters are concerned about climate change and see the environment as a top issue in the upcoming federal election campaign, but aren’t keen on climate action that they’ll have to pay for personally, according to new research released last week by the Public Policy Forum’s Digital Democracy Project.
‘Stunning’ Poll Results Show Canadian Public ‘Ahead of Our Politics’ on Climate Action
Two-thirds to 84% of Canadians would accept bold measures to address climate change, more than four-fifths see the climate crisis as a serious problem, 47% consider it extremely serious, and one in four “report thinking about climate change often and are getting really anxious about it,” according to a new Abacus Data poll commissioned by Seth Klein, an adjunct professor of urban studies at British Columbia’s Simon Fraser University.
Canada-Wide Survey Finds Broad Support for Single, National Policy on Climate
Even in the country that is the developed world’s most decentralized federation, and in spite of the tendency in some regions to trust provinces rather than the federal government to set energy policy, a comprehensive survey of Canadians’ attitudes to federalism has detected strong support in almost every province for a single, national climate policy.
Majority of Canadians Support Single-Use Plastic Ban
More than four in five Canadians support or somewhat support a ban on single-use plastics, and most would be willing to pay a little bit extra for more environmentally sustainable products, according to a new survey released this week by Nanos Research.
Environment Leads Latest List of Ballot Box Issues, Places First with 26% of Survey Respondents
Environment is maintaining its standing as a top ballot box issue leading into Canada’s federal election this fall, with 26% of respondents making it their first choice in a new interactive phone survey released over the weekend by Forum Research.
Pact for a Green New Deal Holds 150 Town Halls, Reaches 7,000 Canadians in Two Months
wo months after a diverse collection of Indigenous, civil society, environmental, and labour groups launched the Pact for a Green New Deal in Canada, organizers have issued a report summarizing key recommendations submitted to date by thousands of interested citizens.
Fossil Cartel Flags Global Student Mobilization as Industry’s ‘Greatest Threat’
The #FridaysforFuture movement has emerged as the global fossil industry’s “greatest threat”, with some staffers with the Vienna-based Organization of Petroleum Export Countries (OPEC) having to answer uncomfortable questions from their own children about the connection between oil and gas production and the climate crisis.
Women, Younger Voters, and Key Provinces Cite Climate as Top Ballot Box Issue
Climate change continues to place as a top ballot box concern in the months leading up to federal election in October, with nearly six in 10 Canadians saying the issue will influence their vote and women more than men, younger voters more than older ones, and voters in Quebec, the Atlantic, and British Columbia giving higher priority.
Ottawa’s Climate Response Violates the Rights of an Entire Generation, Class Action Argues
Lawyers representing Montreal-based ENvironnement JEUnesse went to court yesterday to make the case for the organization’s class action suit against the Trudeau government’s inadequate response to the climate crisis.
Climate Crisis Emerges as Key Ballot Box Issue as European Greens Post Record Gains
Climate action emerged as a key ballot box issue in European Union parliamentary elections that saw gains by far right parties undercut by a surge of green support, particularly from young and first-time voters.
‘We Are the Ones We’ve Been Waiting For’: Youth from 125 Countries Join May 24 School Strike
The day before more than one million young people in 125 countries around the world took to town and city streets yet again to demand climate action, #FridaysforFuture founder Greta Thunberg called upon all adults, and especially parents, to “step up alongside us” in a global climate strike September 20.
Albertans Anxious About Future of Solar, Energy Efficiency Rebates
Alberta Premier Jason Kenney’s plan to cancel his province’s carbon tax has produced anxiety about the future of the solar and energy efficiency rebates introduced by the previous Rachel Notley government.
Provinces Shouldn’t Opt Out of Federal Climate Effort, 64% of Canadians Say
By nearly a two-thirds majority, Canadians believe it’s unacceptable for provinces to opt out of national efforts to fight climate change, and oppose governments like Doug Ford’s Ontario Conservatives spending taxpayers’ dollars to propagandize against measures like the federal carbon tax, according to a new Nanos Research poll conducted for the Globe and Mail.
Trudeau: Green Victory in B.C. Shows Canadians ‘Preoccupied About Climate Change’
Green Party candidate Paul Manly’s decisive victory in Monday’s byelection in the B.C. riding of Nanaimo-Ladysmith shows that Canadians are “preoccupied about climate change,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said this week.
Climate Emerges as Ballot Box Question as Greens Win British Columbia Byelection
The Green Party’s win in the Nanaimo-Ladysmith byelection in British Columbia signals that climate change and other environmental issues will be at the top of Canadians’ minds during the federal election campaign this fall, victorious candidate Paul Manly said Monday night.
Canadian Coalitions’ Election Platforms Call for Faster Action on Climate
With national elections in Canada just 5½ months away, three different coalitions are out with non-partisan campaign platforms aimed at propelling all the federal parties toward faster, more ambitious action on climate change.
Kids Can Shift Parents’ Concern About Climate—Especially Their Conservative Dads
Children can be effective messengers to shift their parents’ level of concern about climate change because they aren’t seen as holding any entrenched political ideology, according to a paper published Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change.
Students Take Action on Climate Anxiety as #FridaysforFuture Logs 725 Strikes World-Wide
The latest in the series of #FridaysforFuture school strikes took place May 3, with youth in 725 locations expected to make what one social media videographer called “beautiful trouble” in communities around the world.
Péloffy: ‘Epic Clash of World Views’ Pits Public Mobilization Against Fossil Lobby
Quebec’s “climate spring” is a cascading grassroot trend that the province’s “powers that be” ignore at their peril, argues Karine Péloffy, legal counsel for the Centre québécois du droit de l’environnement (CQDE), in a recent post for iPolitics.
Climate and Environment Emerge as Top Public Concerns Before Canadian, Australian Elections
With federal elections coming up in Canada in October and in Australia in May, opinion polls are identifying climate change—and in Canada, waste reduction, nature conservation, and Indigenous management—as top-tier issues for voters in two of the world’s most stubborn fossil economies.
Friedman: ‘Green Real Deal’ Holds the Key to Beating Trump in 2020
While the Green New Deal’s baked-in principles are laudable, it will be “getting real” and building on the growing bipartisan consensus on the urgent need for green energy that will beat Donald Trump in the 2020 U.S. federal election—thereby re-enlisting the U.S. in the fight against climate change, writes New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman.
Nine Million Canadians Cite Climate as Vote-Determining Issue
Nearly eight million Canadians are “extremely” worried about climate change, and nine million see it as their top or top two vote-determining issue in this year’s federal election, but that concern might be outweighed by “affordability anxiety” about the state of the economy, according to two pieces of opinion research released this week by Ottawa-based Abacus Data.
Two Alberta Projects Aim for Wider Dialogue on Energy Futures
With the Alberta election campaign taking on the look and feel of a brutally divisive, month-long political brawl, a couple of recent news reports have focused on new strategies seeking common ground on the province’s shift to a post-carbon future.
1.4 Million Students in 128 Countries Make March 15 #schoolstrike a Global Phenomenon
More than 1.4 million students in more than 300 cities across 128 countries and all seven continents skipped classes to demand climate action at an estimated 2,229 events in more than 40 languages on Friday, March 15, as The Guardian reported that 16-year-old Youth Strike for Climate founder Greta Thunberg had been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.
Nearly Two-Thirds of Canadians Want EVs to Replace Internal Combustion
Nearly two-thirds of Canadians and three-quarters of British Columbians would like to see electric vehicles supplant internal combustion as the mainstream choice for car buyers, according to opinion research released last week by Clean Energy Canada and Abacus Data.
Make Climate the Ballot Question in Canada’s October Election, Analyst Urges
Climate change as a ballot question could make this year’s federal election in Canada “the most important of our lives,” writes Gideon Forman, climate policy analyst for the David Suzuki Foundation, in a post for the Ottawa Citizen.
Canadians Cite Climate as Top Global Issue, But Confusion Reigns on Impact of Human Activity
While a large proportion of Canadians identify climate change as the most important global issue, they’re still confused about whether it’s caused by human activity or natural cycles, according to the latest polling by Vancouver-based Insights West.
‘Silent Majority’ of Canadians Wants Faster Climate Action
A silent majority of Canadians wants faster government action on climate change, but that momentum has been stymied by poor communication and messaging, a University of Waterloo marketer told CBC last week.
Media Take Notice as Canadian School Strikes Gain Momentum
School strikes across Canada are beginning to gather momentum and media attention, with student leaders from Vancouver, Sudbury, and Fredericton receiving weekend radio coverage and CBC Toronto documenting an event where student Zoe Keary-Matzner, 12, issued a late slip to Premier Doug Ford and an absent slip to Environment Minister Rod Phillips.
Ground Election Coverage in Climate Science, Not the Horserace, Adams Urges Media
With Canada’s federal election less than nine months away, veteran journalist and public opinion researcher Paul Adams is out with some advice for reporters covering the campaign, while public engagement specialist Don Lenihan questions Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s plans to pitch the transition to a green economy.
Thunberg Addresses World Economic Forum: ‘Our House is On Fire’
16-year-old climate strike leader Greta Thunberg of Stockholm brought her message to 3,000 CEOs attending the World Economic Forum in Davos last week, after travelling 32 hours by train to get to the Swiss mountain resort.
Cameron: When Climate Leaders Are Childish, Children Must Be Leaders
In a world where climate leaders are childish, children like Sweden’s Greta Thunberg show up as leaders, acclaimed Canadian journalist and author Silver Donald Cameron argues in a post for The Green Interview.
Greta Thunberg Brings School Strike to COP 24, Inspires Action from Canada to Australia
The founder of Sweden’s Skolstrejk för klimatet (School Strike for the Climate), 15-year-old Greta Thunberg, is rapidly emerging as one of the most memorable faces and voices of this year’s United Nations climate conference, just months after launching a protest against her government’s lax response to the climate crisis.
One-Third of Canadians Still Question Human Role in Climate Change
One-third of Canadians still question whether climate change is caused by human activity, even though nearly two-thirds of United States Republicans now acknowledge that climate change is taking place, according to two recent polls released by the Angus Reid Institute in Canada and Monmouth University in the U.S.
Extinction Rebellion Goes Global with Call for Net Zero Emission by 2025
Just weeks after it began organizing and raising small donations in communities across England, Extinction Rebellion is spreading around the world, with activists from Ghana to the United States joining the call for drastic action to cut global greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2025.
200 MNAs and Past Candidates, Massive Petition Response Press Quebec Government for Climate Action
While newly-elected Premier François Legault muses about offering “the deal of the century” to neighbouring provinces and states interested in buying some of Quebec’s surplus electricity, his Coalition Avenir Québec government is facing extraordinary pressure to deliver on an ambitious plan to tackle climate change.
Carbon Pricing Opposition, Pipeline Support Could Undo Scheer’s Political Ambitions in Quebec
Federal Conservative leader Andrew Scheer’s intransigence on carbon pricing and support for the Energy East pipeline could be the death knell for his party’s hopes of picking up seats in Quebec in next year’s federal election, veteran columnist Chantal Hébert suggests this week in the Toronto Star.
50,000 March in Montreal to Demand Provincial Action on Climate
An estimated 50,000 people braved cold weather in Montreal Saturday to demand climate action by the new Quebec government of Premier François Legault, in what CBC describes as “part of a wider campaign with sister marches happening in cities throughout Quebec.”
Sudbury Student Declares #FridaysforFuture School Strike Against Climate Inaction
An elementary school student in Sudbury, Ontario has declared a school strike on the first Friday of every month to protest government inaction on climate change.
CONTENTION ON CARBON PRICING
Sticker Campaign Counters Ontario Carbon Tax Propaganda as Ford Government Launches Supreme Court Challenge
A new non-partisan volunteer group in Ontario is handing out free pro-carbon-tax stickers to counter the mandatory propaganda campaign mounted earlier this year by the province, just as the Ford government announced it would appeal a court ruling that the federal carbon tax is permitted under the Canadian Constitution.
Liberals Would Not Raise Carbon Tax During a Second Term, But Might Talk About It: McKenna
A re-elected Liberal government that took office this fall would not raise the federal carbon tax above its current 2022 threshold of C$50 per tonne, but might open consultations on a higher price toward the end of its second term in office, Environment and Climate Minister Catherine McKenna clarified Monday, after a series of conflicting news reports dating back to the weekend.
Ontario Government Lays Groundwork to Abandon Legal Fight Against Federal Carbon Tax
Less than two months after a landmark Ontario Court of Appeals ruling upheld the federal carbon tax, Premier Doug Ford may be preparing the ground to abandon his much-publicized court challenge against the program.
Anti-Carbon Tax Text Messages Don’t Conflict with Elections Canada Rules
Propaganda by automated text message appears to be the favoured modus operandi of a newly-minted lobby group pushing opposition to the federal carbon tax—possibly because Elections Canada guidelines do not currently require the third parties behind such communications to disclose their finances.
Ottawa Finalizes Carbon Price Plan for Large Industrial Emitters
The Trudeau government closed out the spring legislative season last week with the final version of a regulation that sets a carbon price for large emitters, includes a price break for steel and fertilizer companies, and creates incentives for emitters to invest in cleantech companies and support decarbonization projects overseas.
Ontario Court of Appeal Upholds Federal Carbon Tax
The Doug Ford government will be looking for a hearing before the Supreme Court of Canada after the Ontario Court of Appeal ruled 4-1 last Friday that the federal government had the constitutional authority to introduce its national carbon pricing plan.
Tories Propose Carbon Tax Repeal After House Passes Climate Emergency Motion
With the votes barely counted on the climate emergency motion adopted by Canada’s House of Commons Monday evening, Conservative MP Ed Fast was scheduled to put forward a measure calling on the Trudeau government to repeal its carbon tax and “replace it with a real environmental plan.”
McKenna Promises $50 Carbon Tax Cap After Parliamentary Budget Officer Suggests Higher Charge
A carbon pricing report by Parliamentary Budget Officer (PBO) Yves Giroux set off a small flurry of pre-election posturing last week, with the Conservative opposition claiming the release was a stalking horse for future tax increases and Environment Minister Catherine McKenna promising to limit the levy to C$50 per tonne after it hits that scheduled threshold in 2022.
Ontario Climate Plan Costs Taxpayers More Than Federal Carbon Tax
The Ford government’s new climate plan for Ontario will cost taxpayers half again as much as the federal carbon tax, according to a new analysis released yesterday by Canadians for Clean Prosperity.
Kenney Kills Carbon Tax, Offers ‘Hopes and Prayers’ as Wildfires Rage
With Alberta Premier Jason Kenney helpfully pointing out that carbon taxes don’t prevent forest fires, multiple communities were under evacuation orders and crews across Alberta, British Columbia, and northern Ontario spent the week fighting the flames as an early fire season hit full stride.
Pre-Election Messaging Rolls Out as Ottawa Confirms Federal Carbon Tax for Alberta
With Ottawa confirming last week that it will impose its backstop price on carbon after the Jason Kenney government moved to eliminate Alberta’s carbon levy, fossil-friendly pundits are working to frame climate and carbon as a winning issue for Conservatives in this fall’s federal election.
Saskatchewan’s Moe Vows Supreme Court Appeal After Judges Uphold Federal Carbon Tax
Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe is vowing a Supreme Court appeal after his province’s Court of Appeal ruled Friday that a federal carbon tax imposed on the province is constitutional and falls within Ottawa’s authority.
Ontario Plans Gas Pump ‘Propaganda’ Sticker on Carbon Tax, with Fines if Gas Stations Refuse
The Doug Ford government in Ontario is raising eyebrows with a provision buried deep in its recent budget bill that sets fines of up to C$10,000 per day for gas stations that refuse to display its new propaganda sticker attacking the federal carbon tax.
Meili: Saskatchewan Wants Climate Action, Not ‘All-or-Nothing Political Games’
Saskatchewan will be asking the wrong question on climate change until it looks beyond the carbon price debate and considers how to build a strong, diversified economy and shift to clean energy, provincial NDP leader Ryan Meili writes in an opinion piece for the Regina Leader-Post.
Orwellian Doublespeak Aside, Pricing Carbon was a Conservative Idea, Globe and Mail Notes
In a post that evokes the doublespeak of George Orwell’s dystopian novel 1984, the Globe and Mail editorial board calls out Ontario and federal Conservatives’ all-out battle against the Trudeau government’s carbon tax, noting that the climate measure championed by the Liberals was originally a conservative idea.
Scheer Sends Unsolicited Text Messages Opposing Federal Carbon Tax
Conservative leader Andrew Scheer is resorting to spamming thousands of Canadians in four provinces with unsolicited text messages in a bid to gin up opposition to the federal carbon tax as it takes effect this week—even though most of his audience will be farther ahead financially once household rebates kick in.
Coalition Uses Saskatchewan Carbon Case to Stress Governments’ Intergenerational Duty
Saskatchewan’s long-shot effort to defeat the federal government’s floor price on carbon has turned into a venue for one intervenor to argue for Canada’s obligation to protect future generations from the impacts of climate change.
10 Arguments for Carbon Pricing: ‘Don’t Throw Any Tool Out of the Toolbox’
After a multi-year fight for political acceptance, carbon pricing is suddenly under attack from all sides of the political spectrum. Lyn Adamson, co-chair of Toronto-based Climate Fast and member of Citizens’ Climate Lobby, has 10 reasons not to abandon a key tool in the climate action toolbox.
Don’t Make Carbon Tax a ‘Political Bargaining Chip’, Chamber of Commerce Urges
The Canadian Chamber of Commerce has endorsed revenue-neutral carbon pricing as a way for the business community to “play its part in the fight against climate change,” and is expressing concern about the policy being used as a “political bargaining chip,” CBC reports.
Jaccard: Carbon Taxes are ‘Good Policy, Bad Politics’ When Regulations Do Most of the Work
One of Canada’s leading climate economists and modelers is out with a Globe and Mail opinion piece that questions the decades-old narrative that positions carbon pricing as the cornerstone for effective climate policy.
B.C. to Argue for Shared Federal-Provincial Role in Ontario, Saskatchewan Carbon Lawsuits
British Columbia is intervening in two separate court cases launched by Saskatchewan and Ontario, both aiming to undercut federal authority to establish a floor price on carbon pollution.
Federal Carbon Pricing Backstop Could Add 100 Mt to Alberta’s Coal Emissions by 2029
The federal government’s carbon pricing backstop might actually slow down Alberta’s greenhouse gas reductions if it is eventually adopted in lieu of the province’s own climate plan, emergency physician Joe Vipond of the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment argues in an opinion piece for CBC.
Carbon Pricing Won’t Meet Canada’s Paris Commitments on Its Own, Conference Board Warns
While it makes good economic sense to tax pollution, and the federal government’s backstop price on carbon “will push consumers to reduce their purchases” of carbon-intensive goods, pricing alone won’t be enough to fulfill Canada’s obligations under the Paris Agreement, a senior Conference Board of Canada executive writes in the Globe and Mail.
Critic Says Trudeau Hit ‘Political Gold’ with Carbon Tax Rebate
One of the Justin Trudeau government’s harshest climate critics says the PM may have hit “political gold” with his announcement last week that households will receive carbon tax rebates in the four provinces—including battleground Ontario—that have not seen fit to put their own prices on carbon.
Canadians Support New Carbon Price Plan as Study Shows Common Ground in Alberta, B.C.
Majorities of Canadians in most provinces support the federal government’s new carbon pricing plan, and differences in public opinion between Alberta and British Columbia aren’t necessarily as entrenched as they might appear, according to two separate pieces of analysis released this week.
Federal Carbon Pricing Backstop Earns Praise from Conservative-Led Think Tank
The Trudeau government’s new carbon pricing strategy is earning praise from a national think tank led by a former policy director to then-prime minister Stephen Harper, although some noted conservatives seem to be having trouble getting the memo.
A Carbon Tax Rebate in Every Mailbox as Trudeau Unveils Federal Backstop
Households in Manitoba, New Brunswick, Ontario, and Saskatchewan will receive carbon tax rebate cheques under a plan unveiled yesterday by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau that will extend the federal floor price on carbon to provinces that don’t introduce their own carbon pricing schemes.
FOSSIL AND PIPELINE POLITICS
Fossils Could Lose $2.2 Trillion by 2030 if Countries Get Serious About Carbon Cuts
The world’s most colossal fossils have invested US$50 billion in less than two years in new oil and gas projects that undercut the fight against climate change, according to a new analysis by the UK-based Carbon Tracker think tank, the first ever to assess whether individual fossil projects would be financially sustainable in a low-carbon world.
Appeals Court to Hear First Nations’ Case on Trans Mountain Pipeline Re-Approval
Six British Columbia First Nations are getting ready for a “long road ahead”, in the words of Coldwater Indian Band Chief Lee Spahan, after the Federal Court of Appeals agreed this week to hear their legal challenge to the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.
Blockbuster News Investigation Reveals ‘Culture of Silence’ in Fossil Health and Safety Violations
National Observer and Global News are out with a blockbuster investigative report that alleges potentially deadly health and safety problems in the western Canadian oilpatch, driven by a pervasive “culture of silence” in which accident reports are falsified, would-be whistleblowers are at risk of being fired and ostracized, and not a single fossil in Alberta or Saskatchewan has ever been charged or penalized for filing deliberately misleading paperwork.
Alberta Loses 14,300 Jobs in July Despite Corporate Tax Cut, Profitable Fossils
Alberta Energy Minister Sonya Savage is declaring herself “disappointed” that her province lost 14,300 jobs last month, bringing the unemployment rate up to 7%, in spite of healthy second-quarter fossil profits driven up by a 1% corporate tax cut introduced by Savage’s boss, Premier Jason Kenney.
Pipeline Opponent Sees Fossil Subsidies Campaign as Latest Front Against Trans Mountain
A new campaign against the fossil fuel subsidies on which projects like the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion depend is just the latest front in a fight against the pipeline that is far from over, writes Robert Hackett, professor emeritus of communications at Simon Fraser University and co-director of NewsWatch Canada, in an opinion piece for National Observer.
Koch Brothers Abandon Alberta Tar Sands/Oil Sands
Wichita, Kansas-based conglomerate Koch Industries has sold off its substantial position in the Canadian tar sands/oil sands, selling thousands of hectares of land to Cavalier Energy Inc., a subsidiary of Calgary-based Paramount Resources Ltd., the Financial Post revealed Wednesday.
Environmental, Indigenous Groups Demand Insurers Withdraw Coverage for Trans Mountain Pipeline
In a series of letters issued late last month, a group of 32 environmental, Indigenous, and citizens’ organizations led by Stand.earth is demanding commitments from more than two dozen major insurance companies to stop underwriting tar sands/oil sands projects, beginning with the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.
Canada’s Approach to Trans Mountain Violates International Law, Washington State’s Lummi Nation Asserts
Canada is violating the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) and sidestepping international environmental law in its handling of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion and a proposed three-berth marine container terminal south of Vancouver, contends the Lummi Nation in northwest Washington state, in a letter this week to Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland.
Alberta Launches $2.5-Million ‘Show Trial’ Against Tar Sands/Oil Sands Opponents
Albertans will shell out C$2.5 million in hard-earned tax dollars over the next year for Jason Kenney’s provincial inquiry into the supposed “foreign-funded special interests” undermining the province’s tar sands/oil sands industry.
Morneau Delivers $275 Million in New Subsidies for LNG Canada Megaproject
Finance Minister Bill Morneau was in Kitimat, British Columbia Monday to announce the latest federal subsidy to the C$40-billion LNG Canada megaproject—a $220-million cash infusion to help project developers buy energy-efficient gas turbines, plus another $55 million to replace the city’s Haisla Bridge to accommodate an expected increase in traffic.
BREAKING: Canadian Senate Passes Impact Assessment Act, B.C. Tanker Ban, Arctic Drilling Moratorium
The Canadian Senate adopted Bills C-69 and C-48 last night, along with a lower-profile measure enshrining a moratorium on Arctic oil drilling, clearing the way for the country’s new Impact Assessment Act and a federal ban on large tanker traffic off British Columbia’s environmentally sensitive north coast to become law.
Morneau Acknowledges Alberta’s Anxiety, While Whittingham Endorses TMX Approval
Finance Minister Bill Morneau acknowledged Alberta’s anxieties over the post-carbon transition in a breakfast speech to the Economic Club of Canada in Calgary Wednesday, less than 24 hours after the Trudeau government confirmed its re-approval of the controversial Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.
Trans Mountain Pipeline Approval Triggers New Lawsuits, Leaves Fossils Unsatisfied
In a move condemned by critics as the height of cynicism, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and several senior cabinet ministers announced re-approval of the C$9.3-billion Trans Mountain pipeline expansion Tuesday afternoon, not 24 hours after their government pushed a climate emergency resolution through the House of Commons.
Ottawa Could Face Youth Charter Challenge After Approving Trans Mountain Expansion
With its decision yesterday to re-approve the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, the Trudeau government could find itself face to face with a constitutional challenge filed by a leading environmental lawyer—on the urging of his 13-year-old daughter, a school climate strike veteran in Esquimalt, British Columbia.
No Business Case for Trans Mountain, Ex-Cabinet Minister Warns, as Decision Day Nears
With the Trudeau government widely expected to announce re-approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion tomorrow, news reports have excitement building in Calgary, and a former Liberal cabinet minister warning there’s no business case for the project.
Pembina Applauds, Fossils Claim ‘Disrespect’ as House Passes Amended Impact Assessment Act
The Pembina Institute applauded a step forward and the fossil lobby accused a senior federal cabinet minister of being “disrespectful” as the amended Bill C-69, the proposed federal Impact Assessment Act, passed the House of Commons in a party-line vote Thursday evening with its essential features largely intact.
Investigative Report Links Foreign Funding to Pro-Fossil Propaganda Outlet
Urgent alert to Jason Kenney and Vivian Krause! Another “foreign-funded radical” has just been identified, and the unity of our country will hang in the balance until you can direct all your taxpayer-funded investigative might toward…Alberta-based Rebel Media and its self-styled “Rebel Commander”, not-quite-disbarred former lawyer Ezra Levant.
Liberals to Reject Most Senate Amendments to Impact Assessment Act
The federal government is poised to reject most of the amendments to the proposed new Impact Assessment Act, Bill C-69, put forward last month by unelected Conservative Senators following a relentless lobbying and public relations effort by the fossil industry.
‘Foreign-Funded Radicals’? Calgary-Based Enbridge Underwrites Pro-Line 3 Advocacy Group in Minnesota
A pro-pipeline group in Minnesota that presents itself as the voice of public support for the Line 3 pipeline is little more than a mouthpiece for North American pipeliner Enbridge Inc., the company that funds and directs its operations, according to an investigation by DeSmog Blog.
Canadian Senate Passes Tanker Ban Bill, Massively Amends Impact Assessment Act
With the clock ticking toward the end of the Parliamentary session in Ottawa, the Senate voted yesterday to pass the Trudeau government’s proposed ban on tanker traffic off British Columbia’s sensitive northern coast, while sending its proposed Impact Assessment Act back to the House of Commons with more than 180 amendments.
Abandoned Well Cleanup Could Take 2,800 Years, Alberta Regulator Tells Industry
It may take more than 2,800 years to clean up abandoned oil and gas wells across Alberta, National Observer and Star Calgary reveal in an exclusive report this week, after obtaining a September 2018 presentation to a private industry gathering by a senior official with the Alberta Energy Regulator (AER).
Coastal First Nations Demand Senate Passage of B.C. Tanker Ban
A coalition of nine First Nations from coastal British Columbia is demanding that unelected senators endorse the Trudeau government’s bill to ban tanker traffic on the province’s northern coast, after the Senate Energy Committee defeated the measure on a tie vote May 15.
New Federal-Provincial Rules Will Allow ‘Inevitable’ Release of Toxic Tar Sands/Oil Sands Tailings
The federal and Alberta governments are planning to allow tar sands/oil sands companies to release 1.3 trillion litres of liquid waste, currently held in 220 square kilometres of tailings ponds across the northeastern part of the province, into the Athabasca River, under new regulations intended to take effect in 2022, the Globe and Mail reports.
Jason Kenney: ‘Emissions Be Damned’
Premier-designate Jason Kenney torqued up his recent Alberta election win by triumphantly arriving at a Calgary Stampede site stage with the help of almost 400 horses corralled under the hood of his eight-cylinder Dodge Ram campaign truck. It was painted Party blue. His UCP crowd went wild, and began chanting “Build that pipe! Build that pipe!” An analysis by Paul McKay.
Conservatives, Fossils Plot ‘Growing Collaboration’ to Defeat Liberals in Federal Election
Federal Conservative leader Andrew Scheer is making no apologies after the Globe and Mail revealed that he addressed and his officials took part in a day-long meeting with fossil executives April 11 to coordinate strategy for the upcoming federal election.
News Analyst Hopes for ‘Less Bellicose’ Kenney as Climate Groups Prepare for the Worst [GoFundMe Campaign]
News commentary in the wake of the United Conservative Party’s decisive election win in Alberta last week is skewing in two equal and opposite directions, with some stories pointing toward a more moderate, somewhat middle ground for UCP leader Jason Kenney, while the climate groups he spent much of the campaign vilifying prepare for the worst.
‘Built on Quicksand, Clear as Mud’: Trans Mountain Costs Are Impossible to Track, IEEFA Warns
The financial arrangements behind Canadian taxpayers’ involuntary acquisition of the controversial Trans Mountain Pipeline are “built on quicksand and clear as mud”, the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis reports this week, in an assessment that urges the Trudeau government to be more transparent about what the project is costing now and how it’ll be paid for in the future.
Analysis: If Kenney Takes Alberta, Trudeau Finally Gets to Make a Decision
With Jason Kenney’s United Conservative Party (UCP) looking virtually certain to win the Alberta provincial election next week, news analysts are beginning to weigh in on the implications for Canadian pipeline politics and climate strategy.
Five Indigenous Groups Vie for Ownership of Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion
Five groups of Indigenous communities are vying for ownership shares of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, with CBC reporting that one of the groups has been in meetings with Finance Minister Bill Morneau and the Globe and Mail describing a separate effort to buy a 51% stake in the project in a debt deal with major Canadian banks.
Fossil Analysts Blame Global Transition, Not Federal Policies, for Canadian Industry’s Woes
A strange, new tone is emerging in the day-to-day news chatter about Canada’s oil and gas sector: after years of blaming regulatory rules and a lack of pipeline capacity for the industry’s financial woes, a couple of analysts close to the Alberta oilpatch are acknowledging some of the bigger issues at play.
SNC-Lavalin and Trans Mountain: Two Sides of a Counterfeit Coin
In an analysis for The Energy Mix, award-winning investigative journalist Paul McKay traces the parallels between the SNC-Lavalin scandal that has transfixed Canada’s capital and the Trudeau government’s decision to buy the Trans Mountain pipeline in spite of its avowed commitment to climate action. “As nature abhors a vacuum,” he writes, “democracy abhors a stacked legal deck.”
Pro-Pipeline Convoy Delivers Toxic Mixed Message as White Nationalists Take Centre Stage
Conservative leader Andrew Scheer welcomed pro-pipeline protesters to Parliament Hill and white nationalist Faith Goldy told Indigenous protesters to go back where they came from as the United We Roll protest descended on Ottawa Tuesday and Wednesday.
NEB Rules Against Climate Impact Review for Trans Mountain Pipeline
The National Energy Board (NEB) has turned down Stand.earth’s request that it undertake a review of the climate impacts of the controversial Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, as it did for the equally contentious Energy East pipeline in 2017.
Study Reveals Unreliable, Inconsistent Assessments of Tar Sands/Oil Sands Impacts
Inconsistent science has marred the credibility of dozens of past environmental impact studies of the Alberta tar sands/oil sands, according to a new assessment published in the journal Environmental Reviews.
Trans Mountain’s Fee Plan for Fossil Customers Represents $2-Billion Taxpayer Subsidy
Canadian taxpayers will be on the hook for another $2-billion fossil fuel subsidy if the National Energy Board accepts the latest request from the federal Crown corporation that now operates the existing Trans Mountain pipeline, economist Robyn Allan reports in a National Observer exposé.
Ottawa May Have Paid $1 Billion Too Much in Trans Mountain Buyout, Parliamentary Budget Officer Concludes
The federal government may have paid up to C$1 billion more than it should have when it bought the Trans Mountain pipeline last year, Parliamentary Budget Officer Yves Giroux concludes in a report released late last week.
Beer: If Fossils ‘Don’t Need Handouts’, Let’s Do Something About Fossil Fuel Subsidies
Federal Opposition leader Andrew Scheer’s mid-December claim on behalf of Canadian fossils that “we don’t need handouts” was a great invitation to rescind the billions of dollars in subsidies the industry happily takes from federal and provincial coffers, The Energy Mix publisher Mitchell Beer argues in a post this week for Policy Options.
Ottawa Set to Lose Money on Trans Mountain Purchase as Morneau Accused of Obscuring Costs
Canada’s purchase of the Trans Mountain pipeline from Houston-based Kinder Morgan Ltd. may be costing taxpayers more in interest charges than the high-touted revenue it receives from existing pipeline operations, according to an exposé last week by National Observer.
SNAPSHOT: Canada’s Contradiction: Low-Carbon Leader or Perpetual Petro-State?
2018 was the year Canada’s policy contradictions on climate and energy came home to roost, as the government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau tried to square its enthusiastic embrace of the Paris Agreement with its equally avid support for the country’s carbon-emitting fossil industry. With the federal election coming up in October 2019, and an equally momentous vote in Alberta scheduled for May, the story intensified through the year, and the fault lines became ever more obvious. Trudeau’s determined effort to chart a middle course between fossil dependency and climate responsibility earned him angry rebukes from both sides of the […]
Trudeau Defends Pipeline Decision, Lectures Project Opponent at AFN Chiefs’ Assembly
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau lectured a Trans Mountain pipeline opponent on respect and “process” yesterday, in an unscripted exchange during the Assembly of First Nations special chiefs’ assembly in Ottawa.
Reguly: Trudeau Wins ‘Hypocrisy Sweepstakes’ for Supporting Fossils After Signing Paris
Globe and Mail European Bureau Chief Eric Reguly is branding Prime Minister Justin Trudeau a winner in the climate hypocrisy sweepstakes, in a blistering opinion piece that puts the PM’s climate advocacy side by side with his government’s full-scale support for bitumen pipelines and liquefied natural gas megaprojects.
OPINION: Canadian Fossils ‘Lose Patience’ with Trudeau as World Oil Prices Drag Them Down
With world oil prices heading toward another crash, the swashbuckling free marketeers in Canada’s oilpatch are doing exactly what you would expect: amping up the pressure on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Alberta Premier Rachel Notley to somehow, magically solve a complex cluster of problems that is ultimately beyond Canadian governments’ control. By Mitchell Beer
Carbon Costs of Trans Mountain Could Hit $8.7 Billion Up Front, $4.1 Billion Per Year
The Trans Mountain pipeline expansion will trigger additional greenhouse gas emissions worth C$2.1 to $8.7 billion per year up front, and $675 million to $4.1 billion per year for as long as it operates, based on a social cost of carbon between $45 and $270 per tonne, environmental journalist Stephen Leahy calculated earlier this year in a post for Vice Motherboard.
Rising Seas, Catastrophic Storms to Deliver ‘Misery on a Global Scale’ by 2100 Unless Climate Action Accelerates
Rising sea levels and catastrophic storm surges could displace 280 million people from the world’s coastlines and produce “misery on a global scale” unless countries speed up their efforts to control the greenhouse gas emissions responsible for the climate crisis, according to a draft United Nations report obtained last week by Agence France-Presse.
Increase in Wildfires Could Turn Boreal Forest from Carbon Sink to Source
Wildfires across northern Canada are “mining” carbon from the soil and turning the boreal forest into a carbon source after millennia of acting as a carbon sink, in a process that could accelerate global climate change, according to a new paper in the journal Nature.
Increased Emissions May Drive Atmospheric Warming Farther, Faster Than Scientists Thought
Increased greenhouse gas emissions may drive up atmospheric temperatures by as much as 35% more than climate scientists previously believed, according to more than a half-dozen of the new climate models that will inform the next major assessment from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
Climate Change Makes Record-High Great Lakes Water Levels the ‘Evolving Normal’
Climate change is a “deciding factor” in this summer’s record high water levels on the Great Lakes, CTV News reported earlier this month, citing climate adaptation specialist Blair Feltmate of the University of Waterloo.
Pediatricians, Public Health Link Children’s Health Hazards to Climate Crisis
The Canadian Paediatric Society and the Ontario Public Health Association are both out with new warnings about the impacts of climate change on children’s health.
Local Naturalist Blames Climate Change, Human Activity for Steep Drop in Alberta Bird Populations
Alberta bird populations have declined dramatically over the last 50 years, and a Calgary naturalist and citizen scientist is blaming a combination of human activity and climate change.
UN Stresses Adaptation Funding as Frequency of Global Climate Disasters Hits One Per Week
The frequency of major climate disasters has reached one per week around the world, a top United Nations official warns, in a new report that calls for developing countries to prepare now for the “profound impact” they will continue to face.
Buildings, Coastlines, Northern Communities Face Worst Climate Impacts
Buildings, coastlines, and Northern communities in Canada face the most serious risks from climate change, according to a new report produced for the federal Treasury Board by the Council of Canadian Academies.
Climate Damages Could Hit $69 Trillion by 2100
The impacts of climate change could cost the global economy US$69 trillion through 2100 if average global warming is allowed to hit 2.0°C, according to a new study by consultants at Moody’s Analytics.
Montreal Boosts Heat Relief for At-Risk Populations While Toronto Cuts Back
Eastern Canada’s two biggest cities have unveiled contrasting approaches as the summer heat wave season looms: while Montreal is making a renewed effort to protect vulnerable populations, Toronto is raising concerns that it is cutting back access to life-saving cooling centres.
Physical, Psychological Stress of Annual Wildfires Has Westerners Moving East
Made physically and psychologically ill by choking smoke from wildfires that grow ever more commonplace as the climate crisis escalates, more and more western Canadians are grimly choosing the painful social and economic costs of relocating over the toxic toll of remaining.
Parks Canada Tries to Duck Climate Reality After Warming Threatens Alberta Historic Site
When a near century-old alpine hut high in the Rockies was precipitously threatened by thawing permafrost last August, Parks Canada struggled with just how much to publicly link the event to climate change—a poor decision, say those urging straight talk on the growing crisis.
Time for ‘We the North’ Fans to Understand ‘Hellish’ Climate Impacts in Canadian Arctic
To truly earn the “We the North” slogan, Canadians everywhere—basketball fans and otherwise—need to understand—and come together to help prevent—the downright “hellish” changes that a warming climate is bringing to the Arctic and all of its inhabitants.
Canada Still Lacks ‘Orderly, Effective’ Plan to Welcome Climate Refugees
Nine years after federal civil servants first urged Ottawa to “plan an orderly and effective response” to help resettle at least some of the tens of millions of people forecast to be displaced by climate impacts by 2050, Canada has no comprehensive plan to do so, and international law isn’t helping.
Reducing Climate Damage Claims Depends on Flood Zone Mapping, Public Awareness
Mapping flood zones, raising public awareness, and investing heavily in climate mitigation are necessary pre-conditions for making a proposed “high-risk” insurance pool (rather than the public purse) available to homeowners at risk of overland flooding.
Permafrost in Remote Canadian Arctic Thawing 70 Years Earlier Than Predicted
Permafrost in the remotest parts of the Canadian Arctic is thawing 70 years earlier than predicted, providing further evidence that the global climate crisis is accelerating and drawing the planet ever closer to dangerous feedback loops.
Resource Development, Climate Impacts, Federal Negligence Bring Wood Buffalo Park Close to Heritage in Danger List
A UN agency is on the verge of placing Wood Buffalo National Park, Canada’s largest, on the World Heritage in Danger List, and urging the country to take far more strenuous measures to protect the territory and its extraordinary biodiversity.
Senate Committee Urges Federal Support for Northern Climate Resilience
The climate resilience of Canada’s Northern communities—many of them Indigenous—is an urgent priority that calls for better financial and technical support from the Trudeau government, the Special Senate Committee on the Arctic concludes in a recent report.
‘Data is Power’ as Alaska Tlingit and Haida Draft Climate Adaptation Plan
With no climate plan currently in place in the state of Alaska, and federal efforts focused on the state’s rapidly melting northern regions, the Indigenous peoples of the southeast are forging ahead, determined to acquire more data on climate issues most pertinent to them like the rise of lethal phytoplankton which thrive in warmer coastal waters.
Alberta Wildfire Specialist Links Fort Mac Megafire, B.C.’s 2017 Fire Season to Climate Change
The 2,117 wildfires that hit British Columbia in 2017 and the massive megafire that consumed much of Fort McMurray, Alberta a year earlier were both connected to climate change, and a similar impact is already visible as this year’s fire season gets under way, University of Alberta wildland fire specialist Mike Flannigan told The Canadian Press earlier this week.
Inuit Call for Federal Partnership to Address ‘Life and Death’ Climate Impacts
With the Arctic warming at nearly twice the national average rate, Canada’s Inuit are urging the federal government to form a working partnership grounded in the recognition that climate change is a matter of life and death for them—even if it remains an abstraction for many living south of the (melting) ice.
Great Lakes Due for Extreme Highs, Lows as Climate Change Shifts Water Levels
With 2019 precipitation in the region running 150 to 200% or more above normal, water levels in the Great Lakes have risen by as much as 0.3 metres (one foot) from the same time last year, inundating shoreline communities and leaving experts certain of yet another marker of a destabilizing climate.
Unchecked Warming Could Drive Two Metres of Sea Level Rise by 2100, Experts Say
Coastal communities around the world should gear their climate resilience planning for a “catastrophic” two metres (6.5 feet) of sea level rise by 2100, more than double the likely outcome most recently projected by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), if nothing is done to reverse the greenhouse gas emissions driving the climate emergency, according to a survey of expert judgement published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Wildfire Expert Warns of ‘Nightmare Scenario’ as High Level, Alberta, Bushe River Dene Evacuate
About 4,000 people in and around High Level, Alberta are under an evacuation order as the 60,000-hectare Chuckegg Creek wildfire, one of six burning out of control across the province, approaches from the southwest.
The ‘What Were They Thinking’ Moment: How Was St-Marthe Built on a Lake Bed?
In the aftermath of last month’s catastrophic flooding in Sainte-Marthe-sur-le Lac, on the shore of Lake of Two Mountains outside Montreal, some local planners are having a ‘what were they thinking’ moment: How is it that much of the town, which more than doubled in population between 1995 and 2016, was built on a lake bed?
Epic Eastern Canadian Floods Drive Adaptation Discussion as GHG Reductions Lag
With record, devastating flooding in parts of Quebec, New Brunswick, and Ontario, thousands of people evacuated with their homes underwater, 2,000 Canadian Forces troops providing assistance, and everyone from students to inmates volunteering to fill sandbags or lend a hand, experts and commentators are calling for a more serious approach to climate change preparations and adaptation.
But it remains to be seen whether the latest round of climate-fuelled natural disasters will be enough to shift the national debate on greenhouse gas reductions.
Permafrost Loss Could Produce $70 Trillion in Long-Term Costs, and Abrupt Thawing May Make It Worse
Just a week after researchers placed the cost of Arctic ice and permafrost melt as high as US$70 trillion, albeit over a span of nearly three centuries, a commentary in the journal Nature concludes that sudden permafrost collapse could double the warming from greenhouse gases released from northern tundra.
Town Evacuates Ahead of Possible Dam Failure as West Quebec Floodwaters Surge
With the decommissioned Chute-Bell/Bell Falls hydro dam west of Montreal holding back “millennial” water levels and the downstream town of Grenville-sur-la-Rouge evacuated against a possible breach, authorities are watching and waiting as provincial utility Hydro-Québec predicts a 30% increase in water flow over several days.
Trudeau Warns of More Climate-Driven Floods, as Researcher Suggests Rethinking Quebec’s Relationship with Water
In the wake of massive spring flooding in Quebec, New Brunswick, and parts of Ontario, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is warning of more of the same in an era of climate disruption, while a researcher in Quebec says it’s time for the province to rethink its relationship with water.
Canada’s Arctic is Warmest in 10,000 Years as Region Faces ‘Unprecedented’ Change
Canada’s Arctic is the hottest it’s been in 10,000 years, and the Arctic as a whole is being transformed into an “unprecedented state”, according to two new studies in the journals Nature Communications and Environmental Research Letters.
Canada Rewrites Building Code to Avert $300 Billion in Climate-Driven Losses
Canada’s National Building Code is undergoing a major rewrite in a bid to avert C$300 billion in climate change-driven infrastructure failures over the next decade, according to high-level federal briefing notes reviewed by CBC News.
70% of Nova Scotia Dikes Need Redesign to Address Coastal Erosion, Rising Seas
With its oldest sections dating back to the Acadian settlements of the 1700s, the 241-kilometre dike system which today protects Nova Scotia’s maritime lowlands is in urgent need of a redesign, thanks to the combined threat of rising seas and foreshore erosion.
Rapid Warming Turning Banks Island to Mush, Triggers 60-Fold Increase in Landslides
Rapid regional warming is turning Banks Island in the Canadian High Arctic to mush, according to a new study in the journal Nature Communications, triggering a 60-fold increase in landslides over the last three decades and putting the Inuvialuit population on Sachs Harbour at risk.
Canada Warming at Twice the Global Average, Deep Emission Cuts and Adaptation ‘Imperative’, Ottawa Concludes
Climate change is warming Canada twice as fast as the global average, Northern Canada is heating up nearly three times as fast, and three of the last five years were the country’s warmest on record, Environment and Climate Change Canada revealed this week, in the first of a series of Canada’s Changing Climate Reports (CCCR) the department plans to roll out between 2019 and 2021.
Great Lakes Face Severe Impacts from Rapid Warming
Rapid warming in the Great Lakes is likely to bring more extreme storms, degraded water quality, increased erosion, and challenges for farmers, the Chicago-based Environmental Law & Policy Center warns in a report issued last week.
Western Canadian Glaciers Could Decline 80% in the Next 50 Years
Alberta, British Columbia, and Yukon could lose up to 80% of their mountain glaciers over the next half-century, as rapid warming brings a combination of less snow and accelerated melting, according to one of the two lead authors behind Canada’s first-ever State of the Mountains report.
Canadian Defence Chief Cites Natural Disasters as Major Security Threat
The increased frequency of major natural disasters is one of the biggest security threats Canada will face in 2019, Chief of Defence Staff Gen. Jonathan Vance told Global News in a year-end interview.
Climate Policies in Canada, Russia, China Would Drive Warming Above 5.0°C by 2100
Canada, Russia, and China are pursuing policies that would push average global warming about 5.0°C by 2100 if every country followed their lead, according to a new ranking of countries’ climate action programs, published Friday in the journal Nature Communications.
MAKING THE TRANSITION WORK
Fossils Face Crisis Attracting Millennial Work Force
The fossil industry is facing yet another severe challenge as the post-carbon energy transition unfolds: since 2014, there’s been a sharp drop in the number of university graduates willing to consider careers in oil and gas.
Climate-Driven Heat Stress Could Put 80 Million Jobs at Risk by 2030, UN Agency Warns
Heat stress caused by climate change could put the equivalent of 80 million jobs at risk by 2030, with poor countries facing the most serious impacts, according to an International Labour Organization (ILO) report released Monday.
Oil Prices Fall, Alberta Fossil Stocks Plummet After Short-Lived ‘Kenney Bump’
Less than two months after fossil analysts celebrated a “Kenney bump” with the arrival of a new government in Alberta, the industry is still beset by the same host of economic, political, and regulatory programs it has faced for years—notwithstanding the new premier’s loud promises to make his province’s oilpatch great again.
Clean Energy Jobs Growing 60% Faster than National Average, Study Shows
Clean energy employs nearly 300,000 Canadians from coast to coast, and the sector’s job count was growing 60% faster than the Canadian average in 2017, according to a 10-province survey conducted by Navius Research and released today by Clean Energy Canada.
Energy Efficiency Employs 436,000 Canadians, More Than Twice the Total in Oil and Gas
Canada’s energy efficiency sector accounted for more than twice as many jobs as oil and gas in 2018, with 436,000 permanent positions, and is on track to create about three times as many new positions as fossils are at risk of losing in 2019, according to data released this week by Calgary-based ECO Canada.
Analysis: Alberta Misses Out on Grown-Up Conversation About Fossil Transition
With Albertans voting tomorrow in the province’s 30th general election, most of the punditry and virtually every opinion poll reinforce the popular wisdom that rage at a failing fossil economy has made Jason Kenney’s United Conservative Party pretty much bulletproof and headed for a massive electoral win.
Canadian Utilities Need 20,500 New Workers by 2022 to Replace Departing Boomers
Canada’s utilities will need at least 20,500 new workers by 2022 to keep power plants and transmission systems in operation, the Electricity Human Resources Council warns in a report issued yesterday.
Dubitsky: ‘Smoke and Mirrors’ Budget Incentives Leave Canada Behind in EV Deployment
The electric vehicle incentives in Finance Minister Bill Morneau’s 2019 budget are a “smoke and mirrors disappointment” that help demonstrate why North America is falling behind China and the European Union in the race to bring EVs to market, retired public servant Will Dubitsky argues in an analysis for National Observer.
Transition Task Force Urges Financial, Training Support for Workers Caught in Coal Phaseout
A “pension bridging program” for workers who retire early, special provisions for employment insurance and wage top-ups, and funding for private health coverage, education, skills-building, and relocation for new employment are among the recommendations from the task force the Canadian government commissioned last year to map out a just transition for workers in the country’s coal industry.
Gap in Low-Carbon Construction Skills Costs Ontario $24.3 Billion Per Year: CaGBC
A gap in low-carbon construction skills—from construction trades to designers, architects, and engineers—is costing Ontario C$24.3 billion in annual economic activity and another $3.7 billion per year in lost tax revenue, while impairing the province’s ability to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the Canadian Green Building Council (CaGBC) concluded last month.
Green New Deal Envisions Net-Zero Emissions in 10 Years Through WWII-Scale Effort
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) and Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA) released an outline of the Democrats’ Green New Deal yesterday, in the form of a 14-page Congressional resolution that would bring U.S. greenhouse gas emissions to net zero in 10 years by “dramatically expanding and upgrading renewable power sources”.
Federal Government Earmarks $25 Million for Geothermal, $10 Million for Deep Water Cooling
The federal government unveiled two new renewable energy grants last week, earmarking C$25.6 million to help develop a geothermal power plant in Estevan, Saskatchewan and $10 million for Toronto-based Enwave, North America’s biggest district energy provider.
Canada Sets Coal Phaseout Rules with Relaxed Emissions Target for Coal-to-Gas Conversions
Canada has published a set of regulations that largely eliminate coal-fired power generation by 2030 and have received praise from the Pembina Institute as “a historic step in protecting public health and sending a signal for clean energy investments”.
Brooks: Canada Must Plan for Oil and Gas Exit Rather Than ‘Urging Companies Onward’
Canada urgently needs an exit strategy from oil and gas, rather than allowing the industry and its massive environmental liabilities to continue growing, Environmental Defence Programs Director Keith Brooks argues in a Globe and Mail opinion piece.
GM Plant Closure Shows Industry Transition Catching Canada, Ontario Flat-Footed
The more than 2,500 workers at General Motors’ 65-year-old auto assembly plant in Oshawa, Ontario were among the casualties earlier this week when the company announced it was cutting 15% of its salaried work force and closing five plants across Canada and the United States, plus two more overseas to be named later. But the broader coverage pointed to a growing industry transformation that seems to have caught both Canada and Ontario flat-footed.
EXCLUSIVE: Federal Climate Panel to Seek Practical Steps to Meet, Possibly Exceed Canada’s 2030 Target
Proven, practical measures to reach or even push beyond Canada’s 2030 greenhouse gas reduction targets will be the focus for the federal government’s new climate change advisory panel, co-chair Steven Guilbeault told The Energy Mix in an exclusive interview Sunday.
Alberta Needs a Plan B Before Fossil Economy Collapses, Globe and Mail Columnist Warns
Alberta’s lack of a Plan B to prepare for the looming collapse of the fossil fuel economy received a stern response last week from Globe and Mail national affairs columnist Gary Mason.
Morneau Extends Tax Credits to Wind, Solar and Efficiency, Keeps Fossil Subsidies Alive and Well
Canadian Finance Minister Bill Morneau included tax incentives for wind, solar, and energy efficiency equipment and a favourable tax regime for fossil producers in his fall fiscal update released earlier this week.
Asleep at the Switch: Canada’s Pathway to 1.5°C Means Phasing Out Natural Gas
There’s a massive gap in Canadian climate strategy that is big enough and serious enough to undercut every other effort to turn the country from a climate laggard to a climate leader: Without a fast, determined effort to phase out natural gas, Canada will not meet its obligations under the Paris Agreement, much less deliver on the increased ambition at the heart of the global accord.
Canadian Coal Transition Task Force Urges Longer Time Span for Retraining Funds
The task force looking into a just transition for workers affected by Canada’s 2030 coal phaseout is asking the federal government to expand its five-year, C$35-million to cover job training and other services, National Observer reports.
BRIGHT IDEAS, SHINING EXAMPLES
Alberta Solar Developer Catches International Eye with 600-MW Project, Canada’s Biggest Ever
Southern Alberta is drawing international attention after the province approved Canada’s biggest-ever solar-electric installation, the 600-megawatt, privately-financed Travers Solar project in Vulcan County.
Federal Rebate Needed to Prevent Canada from ‘Missing the Bus’ on Electrified Transit
If Canada wants transit agencies to buy more electric buses, it should introduce the kind of simple, predictable, easily accessible funding that is jump-starting adoption of electric vehicles, Fernando Melo of Clean Energy Canada and Robert Parsons of the University of Manitoba argue in a post for Policy Options.
Falling Short on Climate Target, Edmonton Plans Suite of New Carbon Reduction Programs
Faced with a shortfall between his city’s carbon reduction target and its climate programming, Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson is vowing to do better.
Alberta Efficiency Programs Cut GHGs by 5.7 Megatonnes, Save $692 Million Over Two Years
Energy Efficiency Alberta is earning praise at the national level, even as it faces an uncertain future in its home province, after reporting C$692 million in energy savings, $850 million in economic impact, and 5.7 million tonnes of potential greenhouse gas emission reductions over its first two years of operation.
Vrooman: EV Infrastructure, Better Buildings Data Would Unlock Progress Toward Decarbonization
In an exclusive interview with The Energy Mix, Tamara Vrooman, President and CEO of Vancity Credit Union, talked about the next steps the federal government could take down the road toward decarbonization, after getting at the short-term wins that she and Steven Guilbeault of Montreal looked into as co-chairs of the federal Advisory Council on Climate Action.
New Canadian Association Builds Energy Efficiency’s Profile, Beginning with the Industry Itself
With a national think tank positioning energy efficiency as a kind of “all-of-the-above” strategy to deliver lower home energy bills, boost business productivity, and cut pollution, the industry’s newly-minted trade association is embarking on an initial campaign to help energy efficiency companies and professionals see their own place in the sector.
‘Anti-Climate-Deficit Bill’ Would Filter All Federal Policies Through Climate Crisis Lens
The duty to safeguard Canadians against profound fiscal and physical harm now demands that all major policies and actions be viewed through the lens of the climate crisis, investigative reporter Justin Ling writes in a Globe and Mail op ed.
Alberta Towns, Utility Embrace Solar as ‘the Business of the Future’
Undaunted by a premier avowedly hostile to renewable energy, communities across Alberta are embracing solar electricity as good business, with the small southern town of Raymond determined to be the first in Canada to power itself entirely by the sun.
Canada Joins California on Tailpipe Emissions Standard, Clean Vehicle Development
Canada is aligning its automobile tailpipe emissions standard with California and will work with the most populous U.S. state to promote cleaner-running vehicles, under a new agreement that puts the country onside against the Trump administration’s attempt to roll back fuel efficiency targets introduced by President Barack Obama in 2012.
Bui: Time for a Federal Leaders’ Debate on Climate Crisis [Sign-On]
After seeing the climate crisis crash into the two places she calls home, Vietnam and Ottawa, Our Time Ottawa organizer Vi Bui is pushing for Canada’s Green New Deal and calling for a leaders’ debate on climate during the federal election this fall.
BREAKING: Ottawa to Ban Single-Use Plastics as Soon as 2021
The Trudeau government is planning to ban single-use plastics as early as 2021, as part of a wider plastic pollution strategy set to be released today in coordinated announcements by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Environment and Climate Change Minister Catherine McKenna, CBC revealed in an exclusive report late Sunday afternoon.
Canada Becomes First Country to Sign ‘Zero Pledge’ for Medium, Heavy Transport Vehicles
Canada became the first country to sign on to the Drive to Zero Pledge, an international effort to boost the number of zero- and low-emission vehicles in medium- and heavy-duty transportation, from box trucks to school buses to 18-wheelers, during the Clean Energy Ministerial in Vancouver earlier this week.
Vrooman, Guilbeault Urge ZEV Mandate, Support for Deep Energy Retrofits
A federal zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) mandate and stronger support for deep energy retrofits are the main recommendations of the federal Advisory Council on Climate Action, released during the Clean Energy Ministerial in Vancouver earlier this week.
Canada Touts Cleantech Venture with Gates as Clean Energy Ministerial Gets Under Way
Ottawa will invest up to C$30 million in a public-private venture with mega-entrepreneurs Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Jeff Bezos, and others to help launch new, low-carbon energy technologies, Natural Resources Minister Amarjeet Sohi announced Monday, at the opening of the annual Clean Energy Ministerial in Vancouver.
‘Timid’ Transit Operators Have Canada Missing Out on Electric Bus Conversions
With electric buses on track to replace 270,000 barrels per day of diesel fuel this year, Canada is at risk of “missing the bus” due to transit operators’ timid response to a quickly-growing trend, Clean Energy Canada warned last month, in a release republished by Below2C.
Canada Takes Aim at Range Anxiety with Expanded EV Charging Network
Alert to the allure of the long-distance road trip—and corresponding anxieties around electric vehicle range—Canadian governments, utilities, and automakers are working to support potential EV buyers by installing more public fast-charger stations along busy big-city connectors and more lightly-travelled routes in northern Ontario and on the Prairies.
15 Groups Receive Federal Dollars to Form Pan-Canadian Expert Collaboration
A new Pan-Canadian Expert Collaboration on climate change will receive up to C$20 million over five years to “generate, communicate, and mobilize trusted information, policy advice, and best practices for Canadians, governments, and stakeholders,” Environment and Climate Change Canada announced this week.
EV Adoption Won’t Drive Full Decarbonization Without Better Policies, Consultants Warn
Simply electrifying personal vehicles won’t be enough to complete the transition to livable, low-carbon cities without efforts to help users drive less, walk more, and use parking lots as the “gas stations of the future”, four different consultants argue in posts published over the last three weeks.
Federal Budget Creates New Revolving Fund for Municipal Climate Action
The Atmospheric Fund (TAF) and its local partners are taking a victory lap after the federal budget included C$183 million for Low Carbon Cities Canada (LC3), a permanent revolving fund that will support local climate action plans in cities across the country.
Canada’s $180-Billion in Infrastructure Investment Must Emphasize Low-Carbon Opportunities
The C$180 billion Canada is set to invest in infrastructure over the next decade represents a massive opportunity to cut greenhouse gas emissions, two senior policy advisors from Clean Energy Canada argue in a post last week for Policy Options.
Métis Receive 50% Stake as Alberta Announces Three New Subsidy-Free Solar Farms
Alberta will double its solar capacity and save C$3.9 million per year after commissioning 94 megawatts of new generation under a 20-year contract with Canadian Solar Solutions and Conklin Metis Local 193, which has a 50% equity stake in the project.
Developers Announce New Solar Farms in Fort Chipewyan and Calgary
Alberta has two new solar farms in its immediate future, following an announcement by First Nations and Métis in Fort Chipewyan and a planning decision this week by the City of Calgary.
Edmonton Company’s New Technology Turns Windows Into Transparent Solar Panels
A company in Edmonton is working on technology to turn windows into transparent solar panels, with a boost from Alberta carbon tax revenues.
Alberta Procures 760 MW of Wind in Five New Projects, Three with First Nations
Alberta is procuring 760 megawatts of wind-generated electricity, enough to power 300,000 homes, and creating an estimated 1,000 jobs by investing C$1.2 billion in five new green energy partnerships, three of them involving First Nations.
May Proposes All-Party ‘War Cabinet’ to Address Climate Crisis
Canadian Green Party leader Elizabeth May is calling on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to set up an all-party “war cabinet” to address the “ultimate existential threat” of climate change.
Morneau Attends Efficiency Canada Launch, Calls Efficiency the ‘Ultimate Win-Win’
The Canadian government is amending federal regulations to make it easier for households and businesses to adopt energy-efficient products and strategies, Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced, during the launch event for Efficiency Canada in Ottawa November 1.
Mobilize Energy Efficiency Financing, Push Skills Development, Efficiency Canada Urges MPs
Canada must mobilize private financing for energy-efficient buildings, transform markets to automatically adopt efficiency, and ramp up development of the energy efficiency work force, Efficiency Canada Executive Director Corey Diamond told the Commons Natural Resources Committee in a presentation last week.