To the Editor,
We are currently witnessing what may be the most auspicious opportunity for real action on climate change since scientists began raising the alarm three decades ago. Ironically, this development is occurring on the heels of the coronavirus pandemic, which has set the stage for a sea change in perception of how governments can respond to the economic needs of their citizens.
With the growing recognition of the threat we face from climate change and the groundwork being made for a just recovery from COVID-19 restrictions, a political motivation to formulate Canada’s version of a Green New Deal is emerging.
The Liberal government has already appointed a three-person committee which includes Environment Minister Jonathan Wilkinson, former Environment Minister Catherine McKenna and Quebec MP Steven Guilbeault, to manage the development of “an economic recovery plan that aims to accelerate the green shift.”
And recently we learned that Mark Carney, former governor of the Banks of Canada and England, who is currently serving as the United Nations’ special envoy on climate action and climate finance, has been advising Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on the COVID-19 recovery.
These initiatives by a minority government with support from the NDP are signs ofthe stars aligning in Ottawa, and now is the time for each of us to take heart and look for ways in our everyday lives to advance the conversation on climate change. This will ensure that the momentum for transformative action will be sustained.