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After decades of failing to meet emissions reduction targets, the federal government has released a climate plan that’s being praised for its detail and transparency. Linda Solomon Wood, editor-in-chief of Canada’s National Observer, sat down with Catherine Abreu, founder of Destination Zero and member of Canada's Net Zero Advisory Board, to learn more about what is in the plan and what it might achieve.
The most promising details, said Abreu, are those comparing the value of different climate actions and showing which ones need to be prioritized.
“We also need to make sure it's adding up. It was great to see the modelling and, again, have more transparency there. But the measures that have been described in the plan don't actually add up to what we see in the model,” Abreu said. “So, we know what reductions we need from each sector, which is very helpful, but we don't know whether the measures are going to actually achieve those reductions.”
Abreu adds that while her organization advocates for the use of readily available technologies, the new emissions reduction plan relies heavily on more controversial technologies such as carbon capture and storage.
“…There are technologies that will allow the oil and gas sector to cut methane emissions, almost for free, and these technologies are so cheap, so easily deployed, but still, we're not seeing that happen all across the sector. So that's one important example. If we switch to another sector, like electricity, what it looks like is investing in energy conservation and energy efficiency, making our energy systems more streamlined, while also investing in renewable energy and storage to get those diverse, resilient energy systems that we've talked about before.”
View the complete interview with Catherine Abreu above.