By Published On: June 28, 2021

Canada’s new UN climate pledge must connect domestic climate policy with international obligations, 32 groups urge

Unceded Algonquin Anishinaabe Territories [OTTAWA], 28 June 2021:

With one month to go before Canada submits its new climate plan under the Paris Agreement – our Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) – and four months before COP26, Climate Action Network Canada has released a series of benchmarks for what this new plan should include. Thirty-two environmental, labour, and development organizations have signed on to the report, entitled A People’s Plan: Benchmarks for Evaluating Canada’s International Climate Commitments Ahead of 2021 Summit.

NDCs are at the heart of the Paris Agreement, and, taken together, determine whether the world will achieve the long-term goal of the Paris Agreement: keeping global warming to 1.5°C. Canada needs to submit its updated NDC by the end of July. The NDC should be a dynamic and robust climate plan that reflects a country’s highest possible ambition. Canada needs to present a much more complete NDC than the one communicated in 2016. Canada’s enhanced NDC must genuinely connect domestic climate policy with international obligations.

Canada’s new NDC will be judged, at home and on the international stage, by its ability to make the right connections between:

  • Equity: Canada’s global responsibility considering equity and science.
  • Upholding human rights and Indigenous Peoples’ rights.
  • Rapid decarbonization plans, policies, and laws: The announced targets and Canada’s willingness to exceed them for all sectors of the Canadian economy.
  • The transformation of Canada’s economy and shifting financial flows.
  • Resilience and interconnectedness with nature: its explicit commitment to build resilience, increase health co-benefits, save lives and protect, conserve, and restore nature.
  • Just transition: how Canada responds to the needs of people and communities as the NDC is being implemented.
  • Whole-of-country cooperation: Canada’s efforts to work with every community, city, region, province territory as it implements its NDC.

“Canada’s NDC is more than just a target; it’s about people and the planet,” said Eddy Pérez, International Climate Diplomacy Manager at Climate Action Network Canada. “Time is running out for tackling the climate crisis. Will the government step up and show the leadership we need before it’s too late? Canada has a track record of failing to follow through on climate promises. With a strong NDC, we can break that cycle.”


For media inquiries:

Vicky Coo, communications lead, Climate Action Network, 613-203-3272

Canada’s farthest-reaching network of organizations working on climate change and energy issues, Climate Action Network-Réseau Action Climat is a coalition of more than 130 organizations operating from coast to coast to coast. Our membership brings environmental groups together with trade unions, First Nations, social justice, development, health and youth organizations, faith groups and local, grassroots initiatives.

Photo credit: Ravi Patel on Unsplash