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Scientists Offer Opinions Regarding Canadian Climate Policies

First Posted: Nov 29, 2016 04:19 AM EST
Senate Members Meet With Canadian PM Justin Trudeau
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives for a meeting with members of the U.S. Senate.
(Photo : Alex Wong/Getty Images)

In an unprecedented move among international treaties, the Paris Agreement was among the fastest that came into force. However, instead of a standard process, each country is left into its own accord in tackling the issue. With this, each country must adopt its own ways to lower the carbon footprint.

The Guardian reported that Canada has recently taken important steps to reaching its goal. In September, the government announced that it is investing $120 billion in infrastructure that highlights support for those that reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This plan is an indication of the hope that Canada can transition to a low carbon development. However, the real impact still depends on how these infrastructure projects could contribute to low-carbon and infrastructure outcomes.

By October, the government announced a Pan-Canadian pricing on carbon pollution that will take effect by 2018. The price on carbon pollution will start at a minimum of $10 per ton in 2018 and rise by $10 a year, eventually reaching $50 per ton by 2022.

Still, despite the progress, the government's decision to approve the Pacific Northwest Liquefied Natural Gas project is somewhat backward, making scientists doubt whether or not the Federal Government is actually serious in addressing climate change with meaningful policies. Still, there is room for discussion. According to the Canadian Manufacturing, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is going to have a sit down with the provincial and territorial premiers whose goals are to put Canada on a proper policy track toward its international 2030 emission reduction targets.

Sustainable Canada Dialogues, a network of scholars across the country produced a progress report on the climate actions over the past year. But while they applaud the announcements, they are still pushing for Canada to adopt actions that could decrease greenhouse gas emissions and encourage companies to invest in low-carbon technologies. At this point, Canada still needs to cut over 200 million tons of GHGs annually to achieve its Paris Agreement promise.

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