Prime Minister Justin Trudeau unveiled an updated national climate plan Friday that includes a $170-per-tonne carbon price in 2030, C$15 billion in new climate spending, a more modest Clean Fuel Standard, and a slight increase in the country’s 2030 carbon reduction goal—just barely enough to keep the government’s promise to boost its ambition beyond the 30% target originally adopted by the Stephen Harper government in 2015.
The plan commits to an eight-megatonne reduction in the 2030 target, from 511 to 503 Mt, enough to bring the percentage up from 30% to fractionally more than 31%. Ottawa projects a carbon reduction of 32 to 40% by 2030 if provincial governments get onboard with their own climate action plans.
“By making a long-term commitment to regular and transparent increases in Canada’s carbon price, Canada is sending a clear signal to investors in the electricity sector, and across the economy, that the time to invest in low- and no-carbon solutions is now—and that the rate of investment needs to be accelerated,” said Robert Hornung, President and CEO of the Canadian Renewable Energy Association. “We support the federal government’s commitment to ensuring that Canada’s electricity system produces net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, and we believe a clean electricity performance standard can be an important tool in enabling this transition.”