VANCOUVER — Merran Smith, executive director of Clean Energy Canada, made the following statement on the swearing-in of the new prime minister and federal cabinet ministers:
“We congratulate Canada’s new prime minister and federal cabinet ministers, and we applaud the federal government’s commitment to take a new approach on climate change and clean energy.
“We welcome Catherine McKenna in her new role as Minister of Environment and Climate Change. The Minister’s international and legal experience will prove invaluable in the upcoming climate change negotiations in Paris.
“We welcome this government’s efforts to restore Canada’s stature as a constructive voice in the upcoming global climate talks, and to collaborate with the provinces and territories to reduce carbon pollution here at home. Including climate change in Minister McKenna’s title signals how high a priority climate action is to our new federal government.
“Canada has vast, untapped clean energy potential and developing these resources is both a key climate solution and important economic opportunity. As the economic opportunities and environmental benefits related to clean energy span regions and sectors, realizing this potential requires an integrated, whole-government approach.
“The ministers of environment and climate change, natural resources, trade, finance, infrastructure, transport and innovation will all have key roles to play in delivering on the Liberals’ campaign promises and capitalizing on Canada’s potential to expand clean energy generation, invest in cleantech innovation, grow Canada’s share of the global clean energy market, and do our part to fight climate change.
“Establishing a Cabinet committee on Environment, Climate Change and Energy sends a clear signal that the new federal government understands that environmental protection and economic prosperity must go hand-in-hand, and is committed to taking an integrated approach to managing our natural resources, fighting climate change, and growing our clean energy sector.
“We look forward to supporting our new federal ministers as they work together to put climate solutions into action.”
The Liberals have committed to:
- Invest $100 million more per year in the growth and development of cleantech companies.
- Work with the private sector to unlock venture capital.
- Shift subsidies from fossil fuels to ‘new and clean technology’.
- Support energy efficiency and electric vehicles.
- Create a $2 billion fund to support projects that would cut carbon emissions.
- Work with the provinces to put a price on carbon pollution and ensure more renewable, clean electricity is being produced.
For a detailed policy prescription to renew Canada’s approach to climate and clean energy innovation see our commentary series: “A Clean Energy Agenda for Canada”