OTTAWA (March 22, 2017) – In response Canada’s 2017 Budget,
Climate Action Network – Réseau action climat (CAN-Rac) Canada issued the following statements from its Executive Director, Catherine Abreu, and from CAN-Rac members:
“Today’s budget provides the financial backing we need to begin the serious work of implementing Canada’s climate framework and generating good, long-term jobs for Canadians. It also highlights several areas that need more work, particularly in building clean technology markets and ending fossil fuel subsidies.
While greater investment will be required in the future, budget 2017 lays out funding to cut climate pollution and build resilience in every sector of the Canadian economy. Important investments are made that will facilitate the implementation of progressive policies in: industrial and building energy efficiency; public transit and electric vehicles; clean electricity and smart grids. Northern Indigenous communities will put investments totalling almost $700 million to good use as they work to improve their energy security and protect the health of their citizens.
This budget also commits to reforming Canada’s labour market development tools so that more Canadians are trained and put to work in modern industries. This is not the full picture, but it is a hopeful start to a critical piece of the effort that will unfold over years to come.
Substantial investments in innovation have become one of the hallmarks of this government. Yet innovation dollars can only go so far as long as Canadian clean technology markets remain immature. More work is needed to create domestic demand and export opportunities for the products Canadian companies are innovating.
Budget 2017 takes small steps to address the billions of dollars Canada spends subsidizing the fossil fuel industry. Phasing out subsidies entirely is necessary to consistent Canadian action on climate change.
I look forward to funding that ensures oversight and accountability for the Pan-Canadian Framework on Climate Change and Clean Growth in future budgets.”
Catherine Abreu, Executive Director, CAN-Rac Canada
“Canada’s national carbon pricing policy announced in October 2016 marked a true beginning for the economic transformation we need. The writing is on the wall: the trend to clean energy is now irreversible. As it stands Canada is struggling to catch up in recapturing its share of clean energy business globally and is facing a possible $10 barrel of oil in just ten years’ time. Canada’s carbon price will need to continue to ramp up after hitting $50 in 2022 to meet Canada’s current inadequate 2030 emissions target, a target that will have to increase for Canada to do its fair share. President Donald Trump is an economic wild card and Canada must stay the course with regard to the climate and energy file. As more and more of the world prices carbon pollution, we conclude: border tax adjustments for carbon pollution are inevitable and we expect to see them in future budgets.”
Cathy Orlando, National Director, Citizens’ Climate Lobby Canada
“Today’s budget puts in place necessary resources to implement the new climate plan. However, the Government of Canada has a long standing commitment to the G20 and in the Minister of Finance mandate letter to phase-out federal production subsidies to the fossil fuel industries in Canada. Today’s budget is a timid step in that direction. Given the massive federal investments in clean technologies and the new carbon pricing mechanism, it is imperative to have coherent fiscal policies when it comes to the fiscal treatment of our energy. We expected the federal government to put in place a clear plan and timeline to phase out all remaining preferential tax treatment it offers to the oil and gas sector in this budget. The changes announced today do not, in our opinion, fulfill this commitment .
Annie Bérubé, Director of Government Relations, Équiterre
“We applaud the $2 billion towards the Adaptation Fund for Canadian programs to adapt to climate change in Canada. But it seems our government is still leaving behind those around the world who are most affected by climate change. It’s disappointing to see no increase in development assistance, when Canada is way behind its peers in the OECD countries. How is Canada back on the international scene?”
Faris Ahmed, Policy Director, USC Canada
“Throughout this Lenten period, Canadian Christians are taking action to reduce their personal GHG emissions and also calling on the federal government to increase Canada’s emissions reduction target so that it is line with the goals of the Paris Agreement. With this in mind, Citizens for Public Justice, is pleased to see that Budget 2017 fully addresses the commitments made as part of Canada’s climate framework, and will continue to urge our government to strive to do more to address the global climate crisis.”
Karri Munn-Venn, Citizens for Public Justice
“Canada’s 2017 budget promises to fund initiatives that are aligned with the PanCanadian Framework on climate change. The new Smart Cities Challenge Fund, historic investments in transport and the Adaptation Fund for domestic purposes are steps in the right direction. What’s missing from the budget, however, is a clear plan to phase out fossil fuel subsidies.”
Audrey Dépault, National Manager, The Climate Reality Project Canada
Catherine Abreu, Executive Director, CAN-Rac Canada
+1 902 412 8953 firstname.lastname@example.org
CAN-Rac Canada is a coalition of 100 organizations from the country that cares about how a changing climate affects people, plants and wildlife. We work to advance solutions to managing our carbon pollution through sustainable and equitable development.