Media Releases

Throne speech charts a cleaner, more competitive course for Canada

VICTORIA — Merran Smith, executive director at Clean Energy Canada, made the following statement in response to the federal government’s Speech from the Throne:

“Today’s throne speech reflects a reality Canada must face and act on: if we want our economy to be competitive, we need to make it so.

“A clean recovery is not about getting out ahead—but rather keeping up. Already, a number of countries have developed recovery plans with billions dedicated to building cleaner, more competitive economies. The EU is investing nearly a third of its historic stimulus package toward exactly this end.

“Done right, swift government action can create good, lasting jobs. Federal and provincial investments to bring electric vehicle manufacturing to Ontario this week may have saved thousands of local jobs, as Ford Motor Co. yesterday announced its intention to invest $2 billion in its Oakville plant, where it would begin manufacturing five EV models. The plant had been at risk of closing.

“We look forward to seeing the details of how else this government will support rapidly growing industries within the clean energy sector and the broader, cleaner economy. This includes key areas such as clean hydrogen production and innovation, zero-emission vehicles, and positioning our mining sector to provide the minerals and materials needed to manufacture EVs and other clean technologies.

“Recovery efforts can achieve multiple objectives: lasting jobs, economic resilience, increased fairness for more Canadians, reduced pollution, and the health benefits that come with cleaner air. They can also ensure that new opportunities are created coast to coast, on fields and in factories and in home offices. This is everyone’s recovery, and everyone plays a key part in it.

“The federal government said today that climate must be a cornerstone of this recovery and that we would see an immediate plan to beat Canada’s 2030 climate targets. We strongly agree with the former and very much look forward to seeing the latter.

“A resilient recovery is an important milestone on the road to beating climate change, and it’s paved by Canadians in rewarding, lasting careers.”

KEY FACTS

  • Compared to funding for fossil fuels, clean stimulus creates nearly three times as many jobs for every dollar invested by governments, according to McKinsey.
  • The EU has dedicated 30% of its historic stimulus package for the clean economy, or more than half a trillion euros for green purposes over seven years. 
  • Germany and France have each set aside 30% or more of their national stimulus plans for green projects. South Korea and the U.K. have similarly been pouring billions into a clean recovery. 
  • The U.S. under Joe Biden would spend US$2 trillion over four years creating an ambitious clean economy.

RESOURCES

Report | Final Report from the Task Force for a Resilient Recovery (Merran Smith sits on the task force)

Op-ed | “Ottawa wants more electric vehicle manufacturing in Canada. What will it take?” (Toronto Star)

Media Brief | What is a ‘zero-emission vehicle standard’ and why does Canada need one?