Since the 2015 federal election, the Government of Canada has put renewed focus on the climate change file. As a result of initiatives such as the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change, as well as legislative reviews and ongoing international commitments, the federal government is positioned to deliver progress on a range of climate-related items.
We’re taking a close look at some of the areas of federal work on climate change. Follow the links below to learn more about progress on these issues – what’s been done so far, and what needs to be done next for Canada to do its fair share on climate change.
Raising ambition with the Paris Agreement
Acknowledging that current efforts are not ambitious enough to halt extremely dangerous climate change, the federal government has committed to raising the ambition of its short term efforts. Ecology Ottawa has created this section of our webpage to inform you of the scale of ambition required for Canada to do its fair share in fighting climate change.
Reducing emissions from transportation
A substantial portion – 24% – of the greenhouse gas pollution emitted in Canada comes from the way people and goods move around. The federal government is rolling out two programs aimed at drastically cutting transportation emissions – a zero-emissions vehicle strategy and a clean fuel standard. While we’re at an early phase in terms of program design, we still have an opportunity to assess the scale of the challenge and best practices from other jurisdictions.
Phasing out coal
Did you know we still burn coal for electricity in Canada? Across the country, coal-fired power accounts for 11 percent of our electricity, but 70 percent of the energy sector’s greenhouse gas emissions! In 2016, Canada committed to phase out traditional coal-fired electricity by 2030, with a goal of 90 percent non-emitting electricity by that time. These efforts are part of the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change. The coal phase out plan is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by five mega-tonnes a year, equivalent to taking 1.3 million cars off the road.
Sustainable food in Canada
After years of hard work by civil society groups to have the federal government address the long term sustainability the food we eat and produce in Canada, our government is finally responding. Ecology Ottawa is calling on its supporters to get informed on the issue and ensure that the response of the government is commensurate with the what the science demands us to do. The federal government is currently developing a National Food Policy and a new iteration of the Canada Food Guide, both of which are unique opportunities to address the sustainability of our food. With the growing body of evidence showing that much of the food we put on our plates is a leading contributor to climate change, will the Trudeau government cease this moment and make sure these major initiatives begin the necessary shift toward zero-carbon diets and agricultural practices?