Federal Climate Action Advocacy

STATEMENT ON THE FEDERAL BUDGET - FROM CLIMATEFAST
APRIL 19, 2021

Today’s federal budget states “Climate change is real...Our human impact on the environment will have lasting consequences if we fail to come together to take bold and ambitious climate action.” Sadly this budget does not recognize that we are in a climate emergency. There is no vaccine for the climate emergency which threatens to swamp the COVID crisis in its impacts.

While it is positive to see support for child care and other social supports what kind of world will these children be growing up into?  We must take seriously the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change ultimatum that we must cut emissions 50% by 2030. Limiting  Global Warming to 1.5C requires rapid, far-reaching, and unprecedented changes in all aspects of society.  We are not seeing that in this budget. Canada is the only one of the G7 countries along with the European Union that has increased their GHG emissions since 1990, and by 21%!

Canada is a climate laggard and our children will pay the price. 

Measures outlined in the government’s own policy reports -  A Healthy Environment and a Healthy Economy and the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change (both released in 2020) -  were designed to enable Canada to exceed its 2030 Paris Agreement commitment of a 30% reduction of greenhouse gas emissions below the 2005 level, a drop from 730 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (Mt CO2 eq.) in 2005 to 511 Mt by 2030.

Federal funds dedicated to fighting climate change in this current budget are fundamentally inadequate to meet the magnitude of the climate emergency. This is a lost opportunity to rebuild from COVID for a green recovery with all the economic co- benefits including job creation. We expect this Government, with its promises of green recovery to invest much more in the transition we need.  The amounts being proposed are an order of magnitude too small.  Budgeted amounts for retrofits, for example, represent less than 10% of the investment needed to achieve our GHG reduction goals by 2030. That would bring it in line with the proposed expenditures for a green recovery under the Biden administration, a total of $1.9T.  Canada is approx. a tenth of the population of the USA, so that would be $190B. 

We need a massive improvement in this plan. Climate is a side-show in this budget.  It needs to be central to avoid the worst of climate catastrophe. We must not abandon our children and grandchildren with inadequate action.

Lyn Adamson,
Co-Chair, ClimateFast


CANADIAN CLIMATE ACCOUNTABILITY ACT – we need one!  

Canada has missed every single emissions reduction target it has ever set.  The adoption of a Climate Accountability Act could change that.  The CAA proposal developed by Ecojustice and other organizations would get us on a pathway to a low-carbon future by legislating targets, establishing an independent advisory body, and mandating five-year carbon budgets, impact reports, and climate plans. 

We need to advocate for a CAA and we need to advocate for increased climate ambition – a target of 60% below by 2030. 

 

Sign the petition on C-12:  https://www.forourkids.ca/bill_c_12_petition


CLIMATEFAST'S SUBMISSION ON THE BUDGET

Download ClimateFast's submission on the budget

We used several reference docs to put our submission together including:


OTHER INFO ON STRENGTHENING FEDERAL CLIMATE ACTION 


ARTICLES ON THE WEIGHT OF AID TOWARD FOSSIL FUELS IN COVID RESPONSE

For more info on Canada’s record: Canada’s COVID economic recovery plan -- the IISD(link is external) (International Institute for Sustainable Development) is actively monitoring the role of Federal and Provincial energy subsidies green and brown, compared to G20 members, latest update: https://www.energypolicytracker.org/(link is external) and https://www.energypolicytracker.org/country/Canada(link is external)

This article is a reminder of just how urgent the situation is and how poor Canada’s record is: https://www.nationalobserver.com/2020/07/16/opinion/global-fossil-burning-breaks-record-2019-canadians-top-1