Broad policy scope with no loopholes needed for climate impact
VANCOUVER | TRADITIONAL, UNCEDED TERRITORIES OF THE xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (MUSQUEAM), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (SQUAMISH) AND səlilwətaɬ (TSLEIL-WAUTUTH) FIRST NATIONS — A declaration issued today at COP26 by 21 countries, including Canada, could remove a major obstacle in the fight against climate change if effectively implemented, the David Suzuki Foundation said today. Countries signing the “Statement on international public support for the clean energy transition” pledge to end most public financing for foreign fossil fuel development by 2022.
“Given that Canada, through Export Development Canada, has been one of biggest providers for fossil fuel expansion abroad, this commitment signals a major shift away from expanding fossil fuels,” Sabaa Khan, Director General, Quebec and Atlantic Canada said. “It sets us on a course towards a clean energy transition.
“While we support Canada shifting its direction, the scope and details of the policy yet to come are key to climate success. We urge Canada to apply the policy broadly and with no exceptions or loopholes (such as continuing to allow technologies that absorb the carbon pollution they generate) and to recognize the full extent of EDC financing. Canada must also move forward with the phase-out of financing for domestic fossil fuels. To align its policy with climate science and Paris temperature goals, Canada’s commitment should cover the entire fossil fuel sector — abated and unabated projects, at home and abroad.
“Canada has been at the forefront of a global effort to phase out coal-fired electricity generation. Canada now needs to take the next step and join leading countries committing to the managed decline of oil and gas.
“It’s problematic that today’s statement foresees that continued financing of the fossil fuel sector ‘in limited and clearly defined circumstances could be consistent with a 1.5°C warming limit and the goals of the Paris Agreement.’ This contradicts the International Energy Agency’s conclusion that any new fossil fuel infrastructure is incompatible with the goals of the Paris Agreement (and limiting average global temperature rise to 1.5 C).”
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