Media Releases

Throne Speech acknowledges clear mandate on climate

Photo by: Thomas Guignard

OTTAWA — Merran Smith, executive director at Clean Energy Canada, made the following statement following today’s Speech from the Throne:

“The federal government rightly acknowledged it has a clear mandate from Canadians to demonstrate greater leadership on climate change.

“Today’s speech identified several ways they plan to do so: getting more electric cars on the road, helping Canadians ensure their homes and buildings waste less energy, and supporting cleantech companies in our fast-growing clean energy sector. It’s the right signal, and we look forward to seeing the right policy solutions.

“Two-thirds of Canadians say they want the federal government to either continue or increase its climate efforts. They voted for different parties, but they agree on that. It’s what they expect this parliament will prioritize—and it’s where they expect parties to cooperate.

“Of course, how we build unity around climate change is still in question. Minority parliament is a tightrope walk, and common ground is critical. What does a fair transition look like? How does a government support Canadians through it? 

“The global transition to clean energy is happening with or without us, but we can manage the economic and regional challenges if we’re thoughtful about how it unfolds. Canadians want a sustainable economy—an economy that will stay competitive. Let’s start there.”  

KEY FACTS

  • 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%). (Pollara Strategic Insights)
  • 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. (Pollara Strategic Insights)
  • 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. 
  • Nearly three-quarters (73%) say “success in developing and using clean energy technologies can create as many new jobs as those which would be lost in oil and gas” while 27% say “the global shift towards clean energy is going to end up doing serious damage to the Canadian economy no matter what we do.” A majority in every region, including Alberta (59%) believes there need not be an economic downside. (Abacus Data)
  • 78% of Canadians say they support large-scale job programs in clean energy. (Pollara Strategic Insights)

RESOURCES

Exit poll | Climate Change in the 2019 Canadian Federal Election

Report | Missing the Bigger Picture

Report | The Fast Lane