Provinces take lead on climate protection
FREDERICTON — The declaration from premiers at the Quebec Summit on Climate Change puts momentum behind the effort to protect our climate and reduce carbon pollution, says the Executive Director of the Conservation Council of New Brunswick.
Yesterday the premiers released a declaration containing several commitments for greater cooperation and meaningful action to curb climate change. The 12-point declaration included commitments from premiers to transition to a lower-carbon economy, noting that could involve carbon pricing, and putting policies in place to reduce climate change-causing pollution, such as increasing energy efficiency and conservation and using clean and renewable energy.
“Tuesday’s announcement from our premiers is the type of leadership on climate that Canadians have been looking for,” said Lois Corbett, Executive Director of the Conservation Council. "Of course, now they have to take action at home to reduce pollution — actions that their citizens support and will create jobs."
In the declaration, the premiers said they recognize the cost of inaction is greater than the cost of acting on climate protection, and that the fight against climate change would create sustainable, long-term jobs, especially in areas such as renewable energy and energy efficiency.
The document comes just one day after Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne announced her province would enter into a cap and trade system with Quebec and California as a means to control carbon pollution, and following this weekend’s massive march in Quebec City where 25,000 people called on leaders to act now on climate protection.
“To me, this is our premiers saying to the Canadian people: message received. Our provinces are now empowered to act, and we expect that they will,” added Corbett, who attended the climate march and presented at an Act On Climate Forum in Quebec City over the weekend.
Corbett said the commitments contained in the declaration meant good things for New Brunswick, noting efforts to reduce carbon pollution - such as investments in energy conservation, renewable energy projects, putting a price on carbon and phasing out coal - will create good jobs for New Brunswickers and make our communities healthier places to live.
The climate summit was hosted in Quebec City and attended by eight provincial premiers, including New Brunswick Premier Brian Gallant. Gallant led a New Brunswick delegation which included Environment and Local Government Minister Brian Kenny and Fredericton South MLA David Coon.
Read the declaration from premiers.