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Nationwide carbon price in Canada starts transformation to clean economy



Justin Trudeau announced that Canada will implement a national carbon price by 2018.

OCT. 4, 2016 – Monday’s announcement from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau that Canada will establish a nationwide price on carbon is a tremendous leap forward in efforts to reduce the risks associated with climate change, Citizens’ Climate Lobby Canada said today.

The plan sets a floor price on carbon pollution of $10 a tonne in 2018, rising to $50 a tonne by 2022. Provinces and territories will have flexibility in deciding how they implement carbon pricing: they can put a direct price on carbon pollution or they can adopt a cap-and-trade system. The Government of Canada will provide a pricing system for provinces and territories that do not adopt one of the two systems by 2018. The federal carbon price will be revenue neutral and will be returned to the provinces to use as they see fit. The federal Government will work with the territorial leaders to address their specific challenges.

”Yesterday’s carbon pricing announcement for Canada was sooner and much better than expected,” said Cathy Orlando, National Director of Citizens’ Climate Lobby (CCL) in Canada. “More will be required to do our fair share to avert climate disaster, but this is a giant leap forward. It opens a huge door for fact-based discussions about carbon pricing and marks a true beginning for the economic transformation we need. Our work to price carbon is not finished in Canada, but it has been made a lot easier with this announcement.”

Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change said, “We are standing at the threshold of an incredible opportunity to build a strong and clean economy, one that will protect our environment and create opportunities for middle class families today and in the generations to come.”

Mark Reynolds, executive director for Citizens’ Climate Lobby in the U.S., praised the bold announcement coming out of Ottawa:

“Canada’s plan for a steadily-rising price on carbon is a major breakthrough in efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. It provides the inspiration for the U.S. and other nations to follow Canada’s lead with similar action. After the historic Paris climate agreement, where nations made commitments to reduce emissions, the lingering question was how those reductions would be achieved. Canada has answered that question and provided a great example for the rest of the world.”

Since 2010, CCL Canada has been creating the political will for a strong, revenue-neutral, national price on carbon. Volunteers have generated 1,330 letters to the editor, opinion pieces, editorials and articles. Since November 2011, the organization has lobbied ten times on Parliament Hill and will soon hold its 3rd national conference and lobbying days (Nov. 26-29).  In the lead up to the federal election in 2015, CCL Canada produced three public service announcements about carbon pricing that aired across Canada.

Two days after Justin Trudeau was elected Prime Minister in October 2015, a senator sent CCL Canada’s national director the following note, “You have done so much ground work that can now start to really pay off. I feel that the prospects for climate action are exceptional.”

Citizens who want to help create the political will for a livable world are invited to attend CCL Canada’s national conference in Ottawa to deepen relationships with MPs and empower them to create stronger climate policies.

Canadians, as well as citizens in other countries, are also invited to sign a petition at asking all Canadian Premiers and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for a strong and rising price on carbon pollution.

Contact: Cathy Orlando, 705-929-4043


Steve Valk is Communications Coordinator for Citizens' Climate Lobby. Steve joined the CCL staff in 2009 after a 30-year career with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Follow him on Twitter at @valklimate.