Stand.earth report assesses platforms for Canada’s major political parties, reveals none meet level of ambition called for by UN IPCC report to avert worst impacts of climate change
UNCEDED COAST SALISH TERRITORY (VANCOUVER, BC) — International environmental organization Stand.earth’s new report “A climate election guide for a world on fire” released Wednesday, October 9, assesses the climate plans for Canada’s major political parties. The report delivers a tough message to candidates that none of the parties’ platforms do enough to stop the expansion of the oil and gas industry.
Without adequate supply-side policies to stop new expansion projects, Canada will not be able to meet the level of ambition called for by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change landmark report Global Warming of 1.5ºC, which lays out the steps we must take to avert the worst impacts of climate change by keeping the world to 1.5°C of warming.
Read the report: https://www.stand.earth/publication/climate-election-guide
“After analyzing the climate plans for Canada’s major political parties, one thing is patently clear: elected officials, especially those who hope to lead the country, lack the necessary sense of urgency about climate change,” said Sven Biggs, Climate & Energy Campaigner at Stand.earth. “Our politicians lack the courage to be honest with Canadians about the nature of the problem and the hard choices that have to be made to solve it. They are part of a new form of climate denialism, where they say say they understand and accept the scientific warnings about climate change, but they are in denial about what this means for public policy, and the measures necessary to reverse the effects of climate change before it’s too late.”
The report assesses the strengths and weaknesses of the climate plans for the Conservative Party, the Green Party, the New Democratic Party, and the Liberal Party, revealing:
- The Conservative Party’s plan is merely a throwback to an era in which climate-insincere politicians try to trick climate-concerned citizens into believing they are taking action on greenhouse gas emissions.
- The Green Party’s plan is a house-on-fire climate emergency action plan that honors Canada’s commitments in the Paris Agreement and keeps global warming to near 2°C, but is a little short on details and they do not explicitly communicate that much of Canada’s fossil fuel reserves will need to stay in the ground.
- The New Democratic Party’s plan includes an aggressive emissions-reduction target that makes it clear they take the issue of climate change seriously, but it doesn’t provide enough details about carbon pricing and doesn’t include any supply-side policies to stop oil and gas expansion.
- The Liberal Party’s climate track record is an improvement over the government that came before them, but it simply won’t get the job done. The introduction of a “net zero” target by 2050 is ambitious, but the combination of their track record and a complete lack of details on how they will meet this new target does little to inspire confidence.
The report also outlines what candidates can do to become true climate leaders by implementing policies that stop the expansion of the oil and gas industry:
- No new fossil fuel projects: Stop approving, investing in, and building new fossil fuel projects — including no new or expanded pipelines, LNG terminals, coal mines, or tar sands mines.
- Create an exit plan: Create an exit plan that breaks our economic reliance on the oil and gas sector, while supporting workers and communities impacted by the shift to a sustainable economy.
- No tax breaks and subsidies: Stop giving tax breaks and subsidies to fossil fuel companies and invest that $3.3 billion of taxpayer money in renewable energy sources and other clean technologies.
- Keep it in the ground: Acknowledge the world cannot afford to burn all of our fossil fuel reserves, particularly the oil from the tar sands, and acknowledge what’s left must remain in the ground.
“Every day we make it harder in Canada to fight climate change because we are expanding oil and gas production. If your house is on fire, you don’t add more fuel,” said Tzeporah Berman, International Program Director at Stand.earth. “At this moment in history, we need leaders who will put in place an exit plan to stop the expansion of the oil and gas industry, implement a just transition by scaling up cleaner and safer jobs, and diversify our economy.”