OTTAWA (June 1st, 2017) – In response the Trump administration’s decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement, Climate Action Network – Réseau action climat (CAN-Rac) Canada issued the following statements from its Executive Director, Catherine Abreu, and from CAN-Rac members:
“The Trump administration has made yet another unpopular decision that will hurt the United States, but it will not derail the global agenda that is driving economic transformation and decarbonization worldwide. Last weekend’s G7 Leaders’ Summit was the latest confirmation that the world will keep moving forward on climate action without Trump.
Canada now has a choice: will we step into the leadership vacuum created by U.S. retreat from climate leadership or will we bow to detractors who, emboldened by Trump’s rhetoric, claim climate action puts Canada at a disadvantage?
With initiatives like the Pan-Canadian Framework on Climate Change and Clean Growth and the forthcoming Canada-China-EU ministerial on climate change, the federal government has quickly established a track record of collaborating and working across differences to launch coherent climate strategies. Now is the moment to take that to the next level, and emerge on the world stage as a bold climate leader.
Trump may be ready to abandon the benefits associated with climate action, including improved air quality and human health, job creation in emerging industries, and international influence. Yet it is clear that American states, communities, and businesses are not willing to make the same sacrifice. Canadian governments and citizens will continue to work with these entities and allies in Mexico to maintain North American momentum on climate action.”
Catherine Abreu, Executive Director, CAN-Rac Canada
« L’annonce du retrait des États-Unis de l’Accord de Paris confirme que les villes et les états américains devront se serrer les coudes et redoubler d’efforts pour réduire les émissions de gaz à effet de serre. Je suis déçue par cette annonce, mais encouragée par la détermination des villes comme Madison au Wisconsin et Abita Springs en Louisiane qui se sont récemment jointes à quelques douzaines d’autres villes américaines en s’engageant à faire une transition vers 100% énergie renouvelable. La transition est déjà amorcée et l’administration Trump ne parviendra pas à l’arrêter si les citoyens continuent à se mobiliser et à exiger de meilleures politiques publiques. »
Audrey Dépault, The Climate Reality Project Canada
“If Trump wants to walk away from the table, then Canada should eat his lunch. Climate solutions are already coming to the centre of the 21st century economy and anyone who drags their feet will miss out on the jobs that come with clean air, clean water and a stable climate. We urge the Trudeau government to live up to Canada’s climate obligations and show greater leadership in bringing such a sustainable economy to fruition. ”
Keith Stewart, Senior Energy Strategist, Greenpeace Canada
“The potential US withdrawal from the Paris Agreement shines a spotlight on the long-standing need for Canada to develop its own, independent climate policy. In order to safeguard the well-being of future generations and vulnerable populations in the Arctic and Global South, Canada must move forward with bold resolve and ambitious action to reduce emissions and address climate change. People of faith across Canada have repeatedly called for strong climate action and remain committed to working for climate justice.”
Karri Munn-Venn, Senior Policy Analyst, Citizens for Public Justice
“Trump does not seem to understand or care that tens of thousands of people are dying each year from climate related impacts already; most of them are children and the elderly from some of the poorest countries in the world., But we take heart from the momentum that is building for transition away from fossil fuels; in Canada, at a sub-national level in the US, and in jurisdictions such as India and China. Leadership has never been more important. The world can’t wait!”
Kim Perrotta MHSc, Executive Director, Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment
“The US administration had every intention to be obstructive and weaken the Paris Agreement in future negotiations. By taking themselves out of the negotiations, the US now ensures that the ambition raising mechanisms of the Paris Agreement will remain intact. The Paris Agreement sets a clear direction of travel: climate pledges that get more and more ambitious over time, to eventually meet the scale of the challenge, without any backtracking by anybody. Only the climate leaders remain engaged now to rapidly implement the Paris Agreement and raise its ambition over time.”
Annie Bérubé, Director of Government Relations, Équiterre
“Even though the U.S. administration is out, the world continues to move ahead. The Paris Agreement is still strong, and countries and states will continue to propel renewables despite this decision. This is an incredible opportunity for Canada to seize a global leadership position in clean energy growth. With World Environment Day on June 5, the U.S.’s decision means that climate action is important now more than ever. This is our chance to show the world that Canadians are innovative and forward-thinking by prioritizing renewable energy and upholding our international commitments to act on climate change for the sake of people now and into the future.”
Ian Bruce, Director of Science and Policy, David Suzuki Foundation
“After organizing for years under the Harper administration, young people in the climate movement in Canada are no stranger to the varied detrimental impacts of having a climate laggard at the table of international negotiations. We hope Trump’s departure from the Paris agreement will allow the rest of the global community to increase their ambition on climate action without interference. We also know that today’s decision does not necessarily reflect the views of those first and worst affected by the climate crisis in the US. We look forward to continuing to work with communities at the forefront of the climate crisis in the US and beyond to act boldly for climate justice.”
Kiki Wood, National Director, Canadian Youth Climate Coalition
CONTACT: Catherine Abreu, Executive Director, CAN-Rac Canada | +1 902 412 8953 firstname.lastname@example.org
CAN-Rac Canada is a coalition of more than 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.
Photo: © Angie Rattay / Greenpeace