The new federal greenhouse gas emissions target shows the country’s commitment to creating a better climate for future generations, said PEI Environment Minister Steven Myers.
On Monday, the federal government officially submitted to the UN its new plan to reduce Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions by 40 to 45% from 2005 levels by 2030. In April, the Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced his government’s plan in this regard.
Myers said it was time for the federal government to establish a new plan to increase the target for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
“We have to start moving our feet. I mean, I’ve heard the federal government talk a lot about it since 2015, and I feel like this decision is more of an action. So now that we specifically show how we’re doing. do it, I have a feeling there will be action.
PEI ‘Leader in climate action’
The new national emissions reduction target will encourage other provinces to catch up with PEI’s targets, Myers said.
“Our targets in Prince Edward Island are always bolder than the national targets, so we are happy to see that other provinces will start to follow the steps we have already taken here in PEI. Prince Edward Island, ”he said.
“I think we’re also going to help the rest of the country here, because we plan to be leaders. And what I’ve said to federal ministers every time I’ve met them is because we are leaders, we are a great test case of how the rest of the country can react. ”
Myers said the province’s goal for 2030 is a transition to using clean energy in most homes and on roads.
“So instead of heating the house with oil, we’re hoping people will switch to something cleaner, especially, you know, electricity, if that’s possible. And we’re looking at switching fuel. for vehicles. And that’s why we started our EV credits, so you’ll see a lot more EVs on the road in the years to come.
The government of Prince Edward Island will announce its official emissions reduction plan later this month or in early August.
The opposition does not agree
Opposition environmental critic Hannah Bell doesn’t think PEI’s commitment to reducing emissions has ever been a good one.
“The PEI plan. has never been effective, and we have known that for a few years. So that means we’re going to have to have a plan in place that is fair and effective and that probably looks quite different from what we have right now. We are waiting for the minister to tell us what it will look like, ”she said.
“Prince Edward Island is one of many provinces that the federal government is telling now that they are going to have to step up their efforts and get something more effective.
Bell said good emissions targets have been set in Prince Edward Island, but the government has not come up with a workable plan to meet them. She wants to see more action taken.
“The stickers on cars about net zero are not the same as actually seeing plans implemented,” she said.
“It’s up to the government here to put something in place, make it clear, make it right, and then explain it to Islanders so they understand their role in achieving these climate goals.”
There aren’t many ways to tell where Prince Edward Island is currently in meeting its emissions targets, Bell said.
“Actually, we don’t have a lot of hard data. It’s one of the things that’s been incredibly frustrating, not just for the opposition but for the islanders,” she said.
“When you have a target, you also want to know where we are now, and what do we do now that has an effect.”
Bell said the government’s new plan to cut emissions 40-45% from 2005 levels by 2030 will hold Prince Edward Island and other provinces accountable for their own commitments. climate action.