Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Canada is on track to achieve its 2030 climate goal, adding: "We have already seen a bending of the curve of emissions."
His comments came during an interview at a national climate conference hosted by the Canadian Climate Institute and Net-Zero Advisory Body in Ottawa on Oct. 18.
Bloomberg News’ senior climate reporter Akshat Rathi asked Trudeau how greenhouse gas emissions from increased fossil fuel production — as forecasted in Canada’s climate plan — square with the country’s goal to cut emissions by 40 to 45 per cent by the end of the decade.
“If (oil) companies can … reduce their emissions, then there is room within that to increase production,” said Trudeau. “But the goal is any further oil plants or any further energy production is going to have to fit into our emissions reduction plan. That's what we laid out when we approved the latest project, Bay du Nord.”
Canada could technically reach its 2030 climate goal if oil companies slash emissions from the production process. However, more production — no matter how efficient — would lead to more fossil fuels at a time when the head of the United Nations and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change have called for no new fossil fuel projects.
The federal government recently unveiled draft guidelines for approving future oil and gas projects, including a rule that all projects must achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. Climate advocates panned the so-called “best-in-class” guidelines, pointing out that the industry is “worst-in-class” when it comes to the planet-warming pollution driving climate change.
Rathi pointed out the federal government has had the worst track record on reducing emissions in the G7 since the Paris Agreement was signed.
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“Unfortunately, over many decades, different parties … including my own party, put forward … targets around fighting climate change that didn't relate necessarily to concrete plans,” said Trudeau. The difference, now, he says, is there is a plan to reach those targets.
“It's not just politicians talking, it's actual investments, it's actual deliverables,” said Trudeau.
During a “progress report” panel, Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault gave some approximate timelines for key climate policies, but climate advocates said the panel, which included Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson, was short on progress.
Canadians can expect to see the federal government’s draft zero-emissions vehicle regulations “maybe before Christmas,” and the much-anticipated cap on oil and gas emissions will be announced in “a matter of months,” Guilbeault said at the conference.
“Before, it would take us about five or six years to develop regulations, and now the timeframe that we've imposed upon ourselves is about two years,” Guilbeault said. “We are on a fast track.”
Canada’s climate policy landscape has “absolutely” undergone a revolution in the last six years, Catherine Abreu told Canada’s National Observer after the event. Abreu is the executive director of Destination Zero, an organization focused on building community for a fossil-free future.
“But I think we still heard a lot of the narrative that we can continue to produce oil and gas and expand production while meeting our climate commitments,” Abreu said. “We're still kind of … missing the point, which is that we need to tackle production if we're actually going to reduce those emissions in that sector.”
Julia Levin, national climate program manager at Environmental Defence, said that while the regulatory process for the oil and gas emissions cap will take longer, the government should at least set a 2026 or 2030 target on emissions from the industry before the United Nations climate conference begins next month. A near-term target would send “clear signals” to industry, workers and communities, Levin said.
When asked to identify top priorities within the federal government’s climate plan, Wilkinson pointed to the energy grid, likening it to “the building of the railway in Canada.”
Along with phasing out coal from the country’s power generation, there’s the added complication that “every grid in every province and territory is different, and it's regulated differently,” said Wilkinson. Developing and investing in building up the generating capacity is also key, he noted.
Guilbeault and Wilkinson referenced the need to “future-proof” the carbon price, something discussed in the federal government’s emissions reductions plan to assure investors and companies they can bank on carbon pricing years from now.
Trudeau referenced the challenge of implementing carbon pricing in the face of conservative politicians' resistance to “this straightforward mechanism.”
“The new leader of the Conservative Party is doubling down on … saying that the price on pollution is the wrong way to go,” said Trudeau. “They don't have an alternative. But the fact is, in the last three elections, a majority of Canadians voted for parties that talked about putting a price and keeping a price on pollution. That ship has sailed.”
— With files from Cloe Logan
Natasha Bulowski / Local Journalism Initiative / Canada’s National Observer
This article has been corrected to clarify the zero-emissions vehicle regulations will be a draft.
I watched yesterdays
I watched yesterdays conference up to and including Trudeau's interview. Up until that point it was an interesting discussion, however I exited my virtual attendance after listening to Trudeau's lies. I couldn't stomach any more (with Wilkerson and Guilbeault on next). The interviewer asked all the right questions, however Trudeau either lied or deflected with his responses. Canada needs political leaders who not just say they understand climate change, but actually take the urgent steps needed to educate Canadians as to what is required, then do it - wind down the oil & gas and logging industries and move Canada to a Green economy.
I would love to see CNO get a
I would love to see CNO get a transcript of yesterday's sessions involving Trudeau, Wilkerson, and Guilbeault.
Analyze everything they said and "call them out" accordingly!
I watched it starting with
I watched it starting with Trudeau and I agree that Akshat Rathi asked all the right questions (he has a new podcast that should be good; I heard about it on a Bloomberg Green e-mail but haven't checked it out yet.) I enjoyed it because it felt far more informal and open than anything I've heard before in the media. In that context I was struck by Trudeau and Guilbeault's emphasis on just how obstructionist the conservatives have been when it comes to climate change, to the point of still denying it as a basic reality (recall how a majority of them actually voted for denialism at their national convention) and despite the pollution pricing/carbon tax idea being market-based, their usual mantra. And it was rightly pointed out, repeatedly, that there are SEVEN conservative premiers (a majority i.e.) to contend with on this file, and "contend with" is an understatement when we recall that the Conservative Party of Canada is, if not openly "convoy-adjacent," then probably covertly so. The current investigation into the Emergencies Act is a reminder of how irrational the right wing now is. It's like the Congressional Committee hearings on the Jan. 6th insurrection, a methodical but also baffling and truly counter-intuitive defence of basic law and order. I realize that here it's part of invoking the act but the similar, unprecedented circumstances that we ALL SAW in real time on our television screens begs the question, why on earth are we on the defensive here? Why are WE and having to cater to such wildly unacceptable lawless behaviour? The whole sacred "right to protest" thing also reminds us, what exactly were they protesting again? Covid itself? Public health? Democracy? These guys and their cheerleaders are just common thugs, yobs, yahoos, wannabe "influencers" looking for a fight. Just straight up bad boys without a leg to stand on.
Trudeau also reminded everyone that the federal government has taken the carbon tax to the Supreme Court, usually our ultimate arbiter, and even though they WON, the entrenched right-wing opposition remains. Smith is a newbie but still feels fully justified in stating that "they" will fight this Supreme Court ruling! That was the takeaway I got from these interviews, the intense frustration with conservatives that are simply NOT the usual opposition party in the House of Commons anymore but are more like the Mafia now, organized, devious and wholly unscrupulous.
You speak of Trudeau's glib "lies" but the political context of profound and destructive irrationality is both his reality and responsibility, and one that obviously requires some "handling" to say the least. He's doing that, is up to it fortunately for us, and the party clearly supports him. Guilbeault mentioned the NDP alliance as giving them time to "fast-track" their plans. He is totally earnest, he's Greenpeace for gods' sake and you could tell that the nasty political reality has been sobering for him.
You should go back and watch the interview, you'd feel better. I think it's Justin's "just watch me" moment actually.
Dumping on Trudeau as just another one of the thugs may be THE most successful part of the despicable conservative narrative. Even here on the uber-progressive National Observer it keeps coming up.
There is a strong
There is a strong philosophical distinction between Trudeau and the Cons. And I do think that is important. But there is not that much of a difference in terms of their impact on climate change.
I understand that the
I understand that the Conservatives will be a disaster for Canada, not just in the fight against climate change, but in managing the country through the myriad of issues that the 21st century is just starting to throw at us. I just don't see a path to reducing a significant amount of emissions by 2030 in Canada with a government who doesn't recognize that oil & gas extraction actually has to wind down (starting now), and with a government who doesn't acknowledge that our forests are a massive source of emissions. Trudeau is counting on pricing carbon, which doesn't apply to oil & gas or logging, and some sort of magical accounting system to fake his way to some results. That said, I believe that this Liberal government has done some good things to move us in the right direction. Things that should have been done 20+ years ago. Unfortunately, we have 7 years to turn this ship around and it's not going to happen with this government. Sad but true I'm afraid.
Sorry. Trudeau hasn't needed
Sorry. Trudeau hasn't needed the Conservatives to pass climate legislation. He's had a majority, or willing partners in the other parties. He's just unwilling to take the responsibility for doing it. Instead, he blames the citizenry for not "making him do it," and prefers to entertain CAPP lobbyists over getting the job done.
I'll stop dumping as soon as the honesty starts.
I wonder how far his kids get when they claim the devil made'em do it.
Because that's essentially his excuse: he can't do better because the Conservatives don't.
Gimme a break.
The Canadian government, on
The Canadian government, on climate, is perennially FoS.
No one calls them on it directly, in public. They're too darned polite in their questions. Trudeau relies on bafflegab and a patronizing manner to reflect away the questions that would bring light to his obfuscation.
Questioners need to drag him back to the actual questions, and insist on answers.
We are in between elections. He has no justification in any terms.
He's the PM, at the head of all the people we pay very good money to, to represent our interests. We complain about citizens who don't get that Canada and the US have different laws and institutions.
It's high time we stopped allowing our politicians to behave as though the "citizens" they properly represent are big foreign corporations. Last time I checked, corporations here are not citizens. Even those that are domiciled within Canada.
And we should collectively stop referring to corporations poor treatment of people by exhorting them to "be good corporate citizens." And not only that, stop allowing them charitable deductions for advertising opportunities, requiring their employees to "volunteer" their non-work time, and claiming deductions for collections they make from their employees and customers.
It provides them with the kind of false reputation that makes people put up with their other behaviouirs.
“It's not just politicians
“It's not just politicians talking, it's actual investments”…is that “actual investment “ the $17 Billion write-off your government is preparing for the Trans Mountain Pipeline Mr. Trudeau? That is taxpayers money Mr. Trudeau…shame on you.
Yeah, into the weeds, there
Yeah, into the weeds, there you go, how about recalling the political circumstances at the time, and the fact that even the term "climate change" has only recently become common parlance along with the worsening disasters accompanying it. At that time everyone was still "transitioning" and yeah, in hindsight that's not enough, none of it is enough but again, you cannot ignore the POLITICAL REALITY unless you're in favour of this country breaking up! Trudeau and his party are federalist. Carping continually on them is just succumbing to the right wing narrative of divide and conquer. The Liberals remain together despite it all and with the NDP agreement can legitimately represent what is supposed to be a progressive majority in this country if people could just pan out for the big picture once in awhile.
Hi Tris..."into the weeds"?
Hi Tris..."into the weeds"? I read the economic analysis commissioned by West Coast Environmental Law recently (free download at https://wcel.org/publication/trans-mountain-compromised-viability-cost-t...). The subsidies, unprincipled accounting and secrecy should make all Canadian taxpayers furious.
Your all caps "POLITICAL REALITY" comment suggests you believe the soft squishy social sciences, like political science, trumps the physical sciences, like physics and chemistry. This is a big mistake, one the Conservative Party makes in believing their beliefs and values trump the physical science basis of climate change.
Hi to you too Rodger; by
Hi to you too Rodger; by "political reality" I mean the unavoidable reality of winning power before you can even try to do ANYTHING, with the stark realization that despite the fact that cons will do less than nothing about the existential threat, will instead gleefully UNDO what has been done (their only skill set), legions of uninformed, misinformed people will inexplicably still vote for them.
No, sorry, that's not good
No, sorry, that's not good enough. There is a distinction between someone who gleefully kicks you in the teeth and says they'd love to do it a whole bunch more, and someone who regretfully kicks you in the teeth, then claims they didn't actually kick you in the teeth, or, well, not much and only because it was necessary.
But you still get kicked in the teeth. And a person kicking you in the teeth is not your ally.
And in the case of the Cons and Liberals, they kick you in the teeth for, in the end, the same reason: Oil companies are paying them to. When Trudeau bought the pipeline he had a majority government, he had no election any time soon, the pipeline wasn't all that popular especially in any place where he had a hope of scoring a riding, and he had plenty of solid reasons to not do it that weren't even about environmentalism. He could have totally owned the Cons on FREE MARKET terms--harvested the last ten years of quotes from Con leadership talking about how government shouldn't pick winners and shoved them down the Cons' throats. We know the real reason he did it is that the Liberal government gives oil companies ten times as much face time as, like, anyone else--environmentalists, scientists, renewable power companies all put together. And undoubtedly gets lots of, hm, campaign funding, in return.
A carbon tax is nice, there's nothing wrong with it. But at the size the Liberals are doing it, which is to say at a size that's politically not too painful, it has little impact. It's more a frill than a cornerstone policy, and the Liberals show no signs of doing anything else. They're not building renewables. They're not retrofitting buildings; maybe they've got a little-publicized subsidy program or two for people doing it themselves. They're not doing anything much about a just transition for fossil fuel workers. They're putting a bit of money into transit but not getting serious as far as I can tell. They're not doing much with regulation. You name it, they're not doing it. From a strictly functional point of view, very little makes the Liberal government progressive on climate change. Which would explain why we're doing the worst in the G7 and have missed every single target we've ever set, to the point where now Trudeau can't even talk about emission reductions at all and is reduced to talk like "bending the curve", which is to say claiming that although emissions are continuing to go up, it could be argued that without his policies they might be going up even faster.
Basically, what you can say about Trudeau is that he cares enough about climate change to lie to us about whether he plans to do anything about it, whereas the Conservatives lie to us about whether anything should be done about it. But I'd kind of prefer if he cared enough to actually do things.
I'd say he indulges too much
I'd say he indulges too much in the political gamesmanship which is annoying, but although that style seems reflexive for men generally I've noticed, even when the stakes aren't sky high, no one has invested in the ends justifying the means like the cons (I keep saying this but language is telling and that IS a new moniker.)
Social media and algorithms have literally been a "game changer" that the inherently unscrupulous right wing has fully capitalized on using Trump as the
kamikaze game show host, a caricature really. Now anything goes, even "deep faking." But such u
tter chaos has still required a response and we've seen the whole "going high when they go low" attempt which clearly hasn't worked, especially the part where you're "classy" and therefore modest about your accomplishments. It has much appeal, the sailing beyond the fray, and I've watched the Liberals skirt carefully around conservative intransigence, trying to ignore it, but now it's like the trucker convoy, blaring horns. So seeing that interview in question and hearing all of them talking about it was as encouraging as hearing about the agreement with the NDP.
I think the elephant in the room is the overweening irrationality of the cons who need to be reduced by whatever means to that 2 seats in parliament, and that starts by outing them at every turn. The entire oil industry are cons. On that front I heard Trudeau suggest that they should maybe employ more engineers than lobbyists when he was talking about carbon capture in relation to tax incentives so it's calling their bluff. It's all still a game.
Sorry, no. He didn't perform
Sorry, no. He didn't perform due diligence, and got cheated a dozen ways to Sunday, trying to undo Albertans' attitudes toward his father. It was never going to happen, but he was unwilling to take off the blinders that good-looking wealthy boys are born with, assuming they will naturally get their way because that's how it's always been.
Just one more case of his having done an inadequate job, costing us all in multiple ways.
Which doesn't mean any Conservative candidate was better prepared. Trudeau doesn't get a free pass just because he wasn't the worst businessman, or worst crook in the room.
Clearly we should be able to expect progressive climate policy, not only now, but in his first two kicks at the can. The problem is not in what we should be able to expect, but in what he's been willing to do.
The political reality isn't doing nothing that might jeopardize a full government pension for 8 years' work, but the number of votes in the house. He's shown quite well his ability to sideline anyone who doesn't follow his bidding, and to reward those who absorb blame for him. That shouldn't be part of the formula for success of elected representatives, whose job is to represent their constituents.
That's the reality. The rest of it is PR.
As far as the "big picture" goes, I can't think of a more important big picture to pan out to than the destruction that's continued to unfold since the fall of 2015. We're now over halfway from fall of 2015 to 2030, and there has been literally zero emissions progress, but rather the opposite. Because of *Liberal* policies.
Perhaps it bears reminder that the DumbJerks Convoy wasn't the first time he declared Emergency. He did that wrt the climate what was it, one day or two before he bought us TMX. I'll never forgive him for that, because it is unforgiveable, and he's done nothing since then to mend his ways.
His insistence on more of what CAPP wants has been without exception. His performance on climate has been without exception, non-existent.
It's not "Liberal bashing" or "Trudeau bashing," it's more accurately privileging truth over fairy tales and other lies.
Trudeau: "We have already
Trudeau: "We have already seen a bending of the curve of emissions."
Thanks to COVID, not Trudeau.
2020 (most recent data) was a blip.
Canada's O&G industry grossly under-reports its emissions of all types. The industry's GHG emission stats are fiction. I.e., Canada's actual emissions are higher than the government's tally.
The Liberals are also guilty of creative accounting in forestry:
O&G industry net-zero targets are a pipe dream.
Just because AB oilsands companies, governments, and the Big Banks pledge net-zero targets does not mean they have any intention of reaching them.
Canada's idea is to "green" (i.e., greenwash) its fossil fuels, not get off them.
"Canada leads G20 in financing fossil fuels, lags in renewables funding, report says" (CP, Oct 28, 2021)
The IPCC warns that the world must nearly halve GHG emissions by 2030 and eliminate them by 2050 to keep warming below the danger limit of 1.5 C.
IEA's Net-Zero by 2050 report says no new investment in fossil fuels after 2021 to limit global warming to 1.5 C.
Doubling down on fossil fuels makes it extremely unlikely that Canada will meet its emissions targets.
The Liberals reject the IEA's conclusions and every IPCC report likewise. So does the O&G industry.
What does Trudeau know that the IEA and IPCC do not?
"Federal watchdog warns Canada's 2030 emissions target may not be achievable" (CBC, Apr 26, 2022)
A plan to fail.
Can Trudeau look his kids in the eye and tell them he cares about their future?
Again, context please. It's
Again, context please. It's supposed to be conservatives who act like there's NONE.
No excuse for Liberal
No excuse for Liberal duplicity on climate.
No defence for Trudeau's (i.e., Corporate Canada's) climate policies.
Trudeau himself puts paid to these arguments:
"But the fact is, in the last three elections, a majority of Canadians voted for parties that talked about putting a price and keeping a price on pollution. That ship has sailed.”
In recent elections, a majority of Canadian voters have voted for parties other than Conservative. In 2015, Trudeau handily won a majority government with a strong mandate from voters on climate action.
Conservative opposition is not forcing Trudeau's hand in any respect.
Conservative opposition did not force Trudeau to double down on fossil fuels.
Petro-progressives like Trudeau, Notley, and Horgan claim to accept the climate change science, but still push pipelines, approve LNG projects, promote oilsands expansion, subsidize fossil fuels, and let Corporate Canada and the Big Banks dictate the climate agenda.
That's on them, not on conservatives.
Conservative opposition did not force Trudeau to buy the Trans Mtn pipeline.
Conservative premiers challenged federal climate legislation in court, but the federal carbon pricing system was not delayed or suspended.
Conservative opposition did not force the Liberals to approve provincial carbon pricing schemes that let major emitters (e.g., in the oilsands) off the hook.
Or promise to sell more fossil fuels to fund climate action.
Or shovel billions of tax dollars into the pockets of largely foreign-funded oil companies reporting record profits.
Trudeau is not doing anything against his will.
The Liberals' climate sins are long and many. Entirely their own responsibility.
As noted several times already, Corporate Canada's plan to fail on climate was set in motion long before Trudeau came to power. The Liberals are delivering on that agenda willingly and effectively .
"The Rise and Fall of Trudeau's 'Grand Bargain' on Climate"
"How Trudeau's Broken Promises Fuel the Growth of Canada's Right"
The conservative bogeyman does not explain or justify the Liberals' long history of failure.
These endless excuses and deflections for Liberal failure do not wash.
So Notley, Horgan, Trudeau
So Notley, Horgan, Trudeau and Guilbeault don't get climate change really like the rest of us; they're indistinguishable from cons, same as Joe Biden because his much-touted IRA still allows investment in oil despite the vast investments in getting off it. And despite even environmentalists praising his accomplishment to the skies AND with Republicans finally removing millions of women's right to control their own bodies, it's still up in the air which party might win midterms?! I know that's not here yet but that is the model.
Is it not possible that once you are actually IN government it is far more difficult to do what's needed than you could have imagined. Guilbeault commented on that.
Bloomberg had an article on how there are also green "tipping points" and listed some of them. That will be what ultimately wins the day in this exhausting twist-off with the brainwashed, the brain dead, the malicious juveniles and the libertarian fools.
Jonathan Wilkinson talked about a priority being the national grid, comparing it to building the railroad across the country because it will probably be that difficult thanks to the SEVEN premiers from the Convoy Party of Canada.
Guilbeault's not the PM.
Guilbeault's not the PM.
Guilbeault can't "do" anything Trudeau doesn't agree to.
Trudeau doesn't need any MPs approval, he can whip the vote.
The national grid will come as soon as Trudeau stops trying to ride two horses without bridles.
There weren't 7 Conservative premiers in 2015.
All the context is in facts,
All the context is in facts, without going back further than 2015. Within the lifetime, that is, of most if not all of the people who are given to commenting in this space.
Canada seems to be following
Canada seems to be following the Norwegian model, garnering praise for their domestic agenda of electrifying everything while concurrently increasing extraction and exporting of their hydrocarbon resources to other countries. It's a con game and I think we can see that mother nature doesn't care where the additional green house gases are coming from and is striking back with a vengeance.
Norway's Prime Minister got
Norway's Prime Minister got away with creating the concept of "sustainable development" way back in the 1980's. James Lovelock of Gaia fame, who died on his 103rd birthday this July, tried to bring world scientists to broaden their view - the implications of their work for our planet's biosphere - and could not overcome the deadening effect of their dependency on employment. But perhaps we get to see the origins of the astronomers' cosmos just before LIFE itself disappears?
Well, with the key difference
Well, with the key difference that Norway actually does have the domestic agenda. Canada doesn't.
Indeed. and they've been
Indeed. and they've been reducing extraction now for several years, as well.