May 13, 2020
CANADA – COVID-19 has disrupted our way of life, and immediate relief has been the priority of governments. But what will recovery look like? And how do we ensure recovery measures aren’t just shovel-ready but shovel-worthy?
A new public letter asking Canadian governments to pursue a “resilient recovery” has attracted the signatures of companies and industry associations across Canada. As of Tuesday, over 200 signatories representing over 2,000 Canadian companies had joined the campaign asking federal and provincial governments to commit to a three-part recovery and resilience plan that would:
- invest stimulus into Canada’s fast-growing clean energy and cleantech sectors and the local production and export of world-leading low- and zero-carbon commodities;
- act quickly to support clean energy and cleantech solutions and businesses by expanding existing initiatives and programs; and
- signal clearly that Canada will continue and expand on its climate and environmental policies.
The letter also emphasizes regional equity and “training and retraining for Canadians whose past jobs may not return, in programs that can and should start now while unemployed workers are sitting at home.”
Ultimately, the signatories say, government stimulus and recovery efforts can do more than just create jobs: they’re an opportunity to encourage economic diversification and innovation, cut both carbon pollution and illness-causing air pollution, and make Canada a more resilient country.
Visit resilientrecovery.ca for more.
- Current signatories of the letter include Clean Energy Canada, the Canadian Wind Energy Association, the Canadian Solar Industries Association, MaRS, Innergex Renewable Energy, Ballard, Canada Cleantech, Efficiency Canada, Advanced Biofuels Canada, Electric Mobility Canada, Waterpower Canada, Energy Storage Canada, the Toronto Atmospheric Fund, the Vancouver Economic Commission, ChargePoint, Corvus Energy, Lion Electric, Carbon Engineering, Stantec, Enercon, ecobee and many more. To see the full list of signatories, go to www.resilientrecovery.ca.
- The clean energy sector employs 298,000 Canadians in a wide range of jobs: insulating homes, developing clean technologies, manufacturing electric vehicles and deploying charging infrastructure, building and maintaining wind, solar and hydro projects, producing renewable fuels and more.
- Climate action also supports competitiveness and new opportunities in other sectors of the economy. These include jobs in low-carbon concrete, steel and aluminum, the auto sector, sustainably produced mass timber, agriculture, and mining the metals and minerals used in many clean technologies.
- A recent study from U.S. and U.K. economists found that clean stimulus would “create more jobs, deliver higher short-term returns per dollar spend and lead to increased long-term cost savings, by comparison with traditional fiscal stimulus.”
- After the 2008 financial crisis, President Obama’s recovery spending in clean energy supported 900,000 job-years between 2009 and 2015.
“A number of countries around the world, the EU, the International Energy Agency, the International Monetary Fund: what do they all have in common? Each is calling for clean stimulus, for a recovery that supports—not hinders—our crucial climate efforts. The idea of a resilient recovery is now mainstream, it’s good business, and it’s how Canada stays competitive.”
—Merran Smith, Executive Director, Clean Energy Canada
“There are an estimated 1,300 pure play clean technology companies across Canada, most of them small- and medium-sized businesses with massive potential for global growth. Throughout the stimulus and recovery process, Canada has a chance to support these Canadian innovators, create thousands of new, highly skilled jobs, and showcase home-grown technologies that can be exported around the world, all while helping meet our own climate targets. Let’s not let the opportunity slip through the cracks.”
—Jon Dogterom, Senior Vice-President, Venture Services, MaRS
“Canada is home to innovative, renewable energy companies like Innergex, whose mission is to build a better world with renewable energy. As we come through the COVID-19 crisis, Canada has the opportunity to rebuild the country to ensure we are positioned to address the climate crisis. At Innergex, we are ready to collaborate with governments and communities across the country to build economy-stimulating projects and provide family-supporting jobs through reliable and affordable renewable energy and infrastructure solutions for a resilient economic recovery.”
—Michel Letellier, President and CEO, Innergex Renewable Energy
“Supporting clean energy companies will not only create jobs in the short term but it will also help Canada to meet its emission reduction targets. We need to accelerate investments in the development, production and deployment of technology for zero-emission vehicles in order to be carbon neutral by 2050.”
—Randy MacEwen, President and CEO, Ballard Power Systems
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