Ottawa | Traditional, unceded territory of the Algonquin Anishinaabeg People – Environmental Defence experts on climate change, clean transportation and climate finance react to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) AR6 Synthesis Report, released today.
Julia Levin, Associate Director, National Climate:
“The world’s scientists have once again rung the alarm bells on the frightening future that awaits if we fail to tackle the climate crisis this decade. The science is clear: fossil fuels are causing the climate emergency. A rapid and equitable phaseout of fossil fuels must be the centerpiece of any science-based strategy. The good news is that we can rapidly transition towards 100 per cent renewable energy if governments stop caving to oil and and gas companies. Decades of obstruction by the fossil fuel industry have led us to the brink of catastrophe. And now those same actors are trying to delay climate action by advancing dangerous distractions like carbon capture.”
Aliénor Rougeot, Climate and Energy Program Manager:
“Today’s report shows we have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to build a cleaner, healthier, and more prosperous future. Let’s seize it. The transition away from fossil fuels is no longer a matter of if, but when. Governments need to show us their plans for how we will make this transition fair, orderly, and beneficial for workers and communities in every part of the country. The upcoming federal budget is Canada’s next chance to do so. The time for bold action and investments in real solutions is now.”
Julie Segal, Senior Manager Climate Finance:
“Our global economy and financial system are still designed for climate failure, yet blowing past 1.5C is untenable. Greenhouse gas emissions this past decade were higher than ever. An economy that keeps our planet alive is not a cost, but an investment opportunity into cleaner energy and safer buildings. Dollars must be redirected into three- to six-times more clean investment now. In this coming federal budget, Canada has to demonstrate that it knows climate justice is intrinsic to climate action, by stepping up with dollars to support the countries most vulnerable to climate change, while shifting every private and public dollar at home to a sustainable economy.”
Nate Wallace, Clean Transportation Program Manager:
“The IPCC could not be more clear – we have a limited window to prevent the catastrophic impacts of a heating climate and it requires deep reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, now. Next week’s federal budget is one of the few opportunities we have left to turn the ship before it crashes. That means Canada cannot allow huge pandemic-related budget holes in public transit agencies’ operating budgets turn into a vicious cycle of service cuts and fare hikes that would drive riders into their polluting cars, and take a generation or more to recover from. Instead of hitting pause on funding new transit projects until 2026, Canada should be accelerating public transit expansion plans now with federal funds in the upcoming budget.”
ABOUT ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENCE (environmentaldefence.ca): Environmental Defence is a leading Canadian environmental advocacy organization that works with government, industry and individuals to defend clean water, a safe climate and healthy communities.
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