Joint Statement on Climate Change Shows Leadership
Ontario, California, Quebec and British Columbia Working Together to Achieve Greenhouse Gas Reduction Targets
Ontario, together with California, Quebec and British Columbia, issued a joint statement today, demonstrating leadership and collective action on climate change. The four regions are in Lima, Peru, this week for the annual United Nations conference on climate change.
The Joint Statement on Climate Change, announced by respective environment and climate change ministers:
- Identifies climate change as a serious environmental and economic threat.
- Recognizes the immediacy and importance of taking action now to stop irreparable damage along with the opportunity to create a new, low-carbon economy, generate jobs and improve productivity.
- Resolves to work together towards mid-term greenhouse gas reduction goals.
The statement builds on the leadership and collaboration shown by Ontario and Quebec through the climate change Memorandum of Understanding signed by both provinces in November 2014. The agreement commits both provinces to collaborate on a range of measures, including exploring market-based approaches to reducing carbon emissions and fostering a strong, green economy in central Canada.
Leading and collaborating to address the realities of climate change is part of the government's economic plan for Ontario. The four part plan is building Ontario up by investing in people's talents and skills, building new public infrastructure like roads and transit, creating a dynamic, supportive environment where business thrives, and building a secure savings plan so everyone can afford to retire.
- Ontario’s action to end coal-fired power is the single-largest greenhouse gas reduction initiative in North America, equivalent to taking seven-million cars off the road.
- The province has also made significant investments in public transit, innovation and research.
- California is ramping up its renewable energy sector to generate one-third of total power across the state.
- Quebec linked a cap and trade system for greenhouse gas emission allowance with a similar system in California on January 1, 2014
- British Columbia’s broad-based revenue neutral carbon tax has reduced fossil fuel use by 16 per cent.
“The time to take swift, collective action on climate change is now. Ontario is proud to be among many jurisdictions in North America that recognize the urgent need to stop the irreparable damage caused by climate change. This statement affirms our resolve to lead by example, encourage other regions to do their part and leave our future generations with the legacy of a healthy, prosperous planet.”
“California has been a leader in developing effective policies to cut carbon pollution and combat climate change. Our experience demonstrates that committing to a clean energy future is also a powerful means to drive economic growth. But no one state or province can do this alone. This statement is another sign of how California is working with other states and regions in North America and around the world to make real progress in reducing greenhouse gases and to build momentum toward an international agreement in Paris next year.”
“The consequences of climate change are very real. Urgent action is required, and the time has now come to make decisions based on the kind of world we want to leave our children. Québec, just like its partners, fully shoulders this responsibility and is taking important steps that will not only contribute to worldwide GHG emission reduction efforts, but will also re-launch Québec’s economy.”
“It is important for jurisdictions like British Columbia to demonstrate the many ways we can contribute to global climate action, with targets and policies like the revenue neutral BC carbon tax at home and by creating solutions like clean LNG, as an example to countries building their plans for Paris in 2015.”