A group of national organizations has penned an open letter to the federal government, calling for “swift and uncompromising implementation” of the Pan-Canadian Framework on Climate Change and Clean Growth.
Signatories include The United Church of Canada, the National Farmers Union, the Canadian Public Health Association, the Canadian Labour Congress, Canadian Business for Social Responsibility, the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment, and Climate Action Network Canada (CAN-Rac).
“There is no room for backing down,” said CAN-Rac Executive Director Catherine Abreu. “With the world looking to Canada for climate leadership, we have to walk our talk at home and abroad by continuing to increase international climate finance,” work to “close the gap to our current climate commitments, and go beyond them to get closer to our fair share of the global effort.”
“Climate change is the single greatest challenge of our time and Canada’s labour movement is ready to take it on head-on,” said Canadian Labour Congress President Hassan Yussuff. “If we are to realize the good jobs potential of climate action, we must make sure the benefits are shared. We must commit to a just transition for workers and their communities as integral to our work to meet our climate commitments.”
“As this summer has shown us, climate change poses a significant threat to the health, safety, and well-being of Canadians,” added Kim Perrotta, Executive Director of the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment. “The good news is that many of the actions needed to address climate change, such as the closure of coal plants and investments in public transit and active modes of transportation, will produce immediate health benefits for Canadians, while also mitigating climate change.”
Climate change “already causes 400,000 deaths annually, while another 4.5 million deaths annually are linked to air pollution, hazardous occupations, and cancer associated with our carbon-intensive energy system,” noted Ian Culbert, Executive Director of the Canadian Public Health Association.
National Farmers Union President Jan Slomp said farm producers “are among those most directly affected by climate instability”. That means “Canada needs to help farmers adapt to the reality of climate change impacts with measures that increase resiliency of farms while reducing farm and food system-wide emissions, providing fair livelihoods to farmers and a future for the next generation of farmers, and securing Canada’s ability to sustainably provide food for our residents and international customers.”