VICTORIA — Merran Smith, executive director at Clean Energy Canada, made the following statement in response to the first day of the 2019 UN Climate Change Conference (COP 25):
“Coming out of an election that was seen globally as a win for climate action, Canada joins this year’s UN climate conference in a spotlight.
“The world will want to hear not just what Canada is doing to combat climate change but also what’s next—given a clear mandate from Canadians to do more. As our new Parliament kicks off Thursday, December is an opportunity to show leadership both abroad and at home.
“Two-thirds of Canadians want to either continue or increase our climate efforts, according to a recent exit poll conducted by Pollara for Clean Energy Canada. The governing Liberals, meanwhile, have said they will not only meet our Paris targets—but exceed them.
“It was at COP that those targets were set. The Paris Agreement is four years old now, but already the crisis has intensified: the last five years have each ranked among the five hottest ever recorded. Climate change isn’t just real—it’s here. And while meaningful progress has been made in Canada, we still have a gap to finish filling and the decades beyond 2030 to plan for.
“A secure future is a choice. A sustainable economy is a choice. We believe Canadians made that choice in October, and our elected officials must now build on what they started four years ago.”
- Two-thirds (67%) of Canadian voters want the new Liberal government to either “enact the climate change policies they campaigned on” (37%) or to “enact stronger climate change policies than they campaigned on—to do more at a faster pace on this issue” (30%).
- The desire for stronger action is popular across party lines. Even one-third (33%) of Liberal voters want stronger climate policies than what was in the party’s platform, and majorities of Bloc (51%), Green (64%) or NDP (49%) voters share this sentiment.
- 78% of Canadians say they support large-scale job programs in clean energy.
- Canada’s clean energy sector employed 298,000 Canadians as of 2017 and is set to employ well over half-a-million in a decade.
Report | Missing the Bigger Picture
Report | The Fast Lane