On October 5, Canada joined the landmark Paris Agreement, which will officially enter into force on November 4, 2016 with the support of more than 70 countries around the world.
This achievement comes after years of work by The Climate Reality Project to raise awareness of climate change across Canada and build strong support for practical clean energy solutions leading up to the success of the Paris Agreement and in the months that followed. Former US Vice President Al Gore and Climate Reality held a Climate Reality Leadership Corps training in Toronto in July 2015 to provide local leaders with the skills and tools to mobilize their communities and rally wide-ranging support for action on climate. Climate Reality also established a branch office in Canada that has been working to further climate action in the country. Audrey Dépault, branch manager for The Climate Reality Project Canada, issued a statement on Canada’s ratification of the Paris Agreement:
“The Climate Reality Project applauds the more than 70 nations that have joined the Paris Agreement for recognizing the need to work together across the globe in order to collectively and urgently address the climate crisis. As The Climate Reality Project Canada’s branch manager, I especially congratulate Canada for taking this significant step forward and for announcing its plan to move ahead with a federal price on carbon.
“This week’s announcements must not make us complacent, however. Canada has just embarked on a long journey to reduce its national greenhouse gas emissions. While Canadian provinces and cities continue to forge ahead in local and regional climate action, we still have critical work ahead of us at the national level. Our leaders must ensure that Canada’s proposed Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change will be in line with the country’s nationally determined contribution, allowing Canada to go above and beyond to strengthen the country’s ambition and overperform on its emissions reduction target.
“We urge the Canadian government to apply its price on carbon to all sources of carbon pollution that can be accurately measured, accelerate the phase-out of coal-fired power, and develop a long-term plan for a zero-emissions, renewable electricity supply. Moving forward, Canada’s policy decisions must be consistent with its greenhouse gas target, as further fossil fuel infrastructure development will compromise the country’s ability to reach its Paris Agreement commitments. I join the chorus of voices that have already recommended the introduction of a federal zero emissions vehicle (ZEV) legislation, and further investments in public transit and active transportation infrastructure that will constitute a major reduction in emissions.
“Though the work to cut emissions and ultimately solve the climate crisis is just beginning, I look forward to celebrating many more policy milestones achieved by our federal and provincial governments, alongside the rest of the world.”