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Policy Briefing: Environment
Military personnel stack sandbags in Ottawa’s Constance Bay neighbourhood on Apr. 30. Climate change is already costing Canadians billions of dollars in disaster relief and insurance coverage, for increasing incidents such as the floods that recently hit Ottawa and surrounding areas, writes Simon Dyer. The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

A made-in-Canada climate plan can’t rely on outsourcing the solution

Any outsourcing of our emissions reductions, including selling our natural gas abroad, needs to be subject to a rigorous, yet-to-be-built international accounting system to ensure real emissions reductions are achieved.
The NDP’s climate platform includes establishing a Climate Accountability Office, investing $3-billion in a Canadian Climate Bank, and increasing the number of zero-emission vehicles on the roads.
We’ve seen firsthand how remote northern communities are rolling up their sleeves and working together to share knowledge, practices and resources.
A lot of work will be required to make the transition off of fossil fuels. This should be embraced as a collective, nation-building project.
The truth is that, despite all of the hype over the prime minister’s Pan-Canadian Framework on Climate Change, each year Canada is falling further and further behind its emission-reduction targets.
By fighting climate change and investing in Canadian innovation and clean power, we’re making Canada’s economy cleaner and more competitive.
Climate action is the defining issue of our times. We must also take urgent action to fight climate change.
In the lead-up to the election, prospective legislators should be clear on whether they want to keep and strengthen current standards, or follow U.S. President Donald Trump in rolling them back.
Despite the Liberals’ 2015 commitment to phase out fossil fuel subsidies, the oil and gas industry continues to receive them, says Environmental Defence’s Julia Levin.
Some provinces and municipalities have already banned plastic bags, but adding certain single-use plastics to a federal list makes it easier to co-ordinate across the country, advocates say.
We have seen the federal government struggle to get Canadians onboard with other environmental legislation. Clearly, the best of intentions don’t necessarily translate to success in implementation.
In a wide-ranging interview, the environment minister also says she hopes Japan will respond to outreach efforts and sign on to the Ocean Plastics Charter at this month’s G20 summit.
Without adequately addressing subsidies, the federal government undermines benefits from its own commendable carbon pricing policies.
I cannot think of any other issue aside from tackling global warming where Canadian politicians would proudly proclaim their own country as irrelevant.
Somewhere along the line, we focused our attention away from reducing material use and reusing as much as possible, to recycling as the solution to our waste problem.

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