Media releases

New ministers’ climate leadership key to building the economy Canada needs

Photo by: William John Gauthier

VICTORIA — Merran Smith, executive director at Clean Energy Canada, made the following statement in response to the appointment of the federal cabinet.

“The recent federal election made it clear: Canadians want a government that will show real and effective climate leadership.

“In the lead up to the election, the Liberal Party put forward a strong climate plan that places Canada on track to meet its Paris Agreement commitments. But the window to make the plan a reality is short. We believe the gender-balanced team announced today is the right leadership to meet the challenge while growing the economy and creating jobs.

“In particular, we welcome Minister Wilkinson’s appointment as the minister of natural resources. His background in climate action and the cleantech industry will be key to ensuring a strong future for Canada’s natural resources. After all, Canada has many of the resources required for the energy transition, like clean hydrogen and the metals and minerals needed to make clean technology such as EVs. We also welcome Minister Guilbeault’s strong history of climate leadership into the role of environment and climate change minister.

“In reality, every minister must be a climate minister, taking a collaborative approach to building a sustainable economy. That means bringing all levels of government together with industry, utilities, and Indigenous partners to map out a pathway to net zero that leaves no one behind.

“After all, climate action is more than just cutting pollution, it’s about building a strong economic future for Canadians.

“Congratulations to all ministers appointed to this cabinet, and we look forward to working with you to deliver climate action that benefits all Canadians.”


  • Countries representing more than 70% of global GDP have adopted or are considering commitments to reach net zero emissions.
  • A recent report from the Canadian Institute for Climate Choices found that over 70% of Canada’s goods exports and over 60% of foreign direct investment in sectors are vulnerable to market disruption from climate change and the energy transition. The analysis found that “targeted government action” can improve Canada’s chances of success by mobilizing private investment and smoothing workforce transition.

During the last election, the Liberal Party made the following promises: 

  • A requirement that at least 50% of all new passenger vehicle sales be zero-emission in 2030, on par with the U.S.’s new target and en route to 100% zero-emission vehicle sales by 2035
  • Reaching a net-zero electricity grid by 2035 by implementing a Clean Electricity Standard.
  • Capping oil and gas sector emissions at current levels and introducing five-year targets starting in 2025 to reduce emissions in line with a net-zero 2050.
  • Requiring oil and gas companies to reduce methane emissions by at least 75% below 2012 levels by 2030.
  • Eliminating fossil fuel subsidies by 2023 and developing a plan to phase out public financing for the fossil fuel sector, including from Crown corporations.


Release | Another election, another clear climate mandate

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