Canada Introduces First Net-Zero Emissions Law
July 30, 2021 | By Logan Caswell
Canada is expected to be well-positioned to provide the world with the cleanest products and services.
The Government of Canada has announced a new commitment to reach net zero by 2050.
The newly introduced Net-Zero Emissions Accountability Act marks the first time a Canadian government has legislated emissions reductions accountability to address climate change, by setting legal requirements on the current government and future governments to plan, report, and deliver on the path to net-zero emissions.
Included in the Act is the following:
- Enshrines in legislation Canada’s commitment to set national targets for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in Canada with the objective of attaining net-zero emissions by 2050.
- Enshrines the 2030 greenhouse gas emissions target as being Canada’s Nationally Determined Contribution under the Paris Agreement, which will be 40-45% below 2005 levels, by 2030, as announced by Prime Minister Trudeau in April 2021. This new, more ambitious target will be formally submitted to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change shortly.
- Requires the Minister of Environment and Climate Change to set the subsequent 2035, 2040 and 2045 targets at least 10 years in advance.
- Requiring the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development to, at least once every five years starting no later than the end of 2024, examine and report on the Government of Canada’s implementation of measures aimed at mitigating climate change.
- Providing for a comprehensive review of the Act, five years after it comes into force.
- Enshrining the role of Indigenous Knowledge in the climate accountability process.
In coming months, the Minister of Environment and Climate Change will publish an emissions reduction plan for the 2030 target.
Canada is expected to be well-positioned to provide the world with the cleanest products and services that create good jobs for Canadians for decades to come.