Friday, 14 December, 2018

Numbers for the B.C. government's climate change plan

B.C. climate plan proposes changes that will impact every part of the economy 'Great Step Forward' Says Horgan of BC's New Climate Plan
Sandy Nunez | 07 December, 2018, 23:43

"We want to make shifts: shifts in our homes, shifts in our vehicles, shifts in our industry to move away from burning fossil fuels and towards a cleaner, greener approach using British Columbia's abundant electricity and other abundant opportunities that are now emerging and will emerge into the future", the premier said.

"This isn't a choice between the economy and the environment", Heyman said.

The Province is helping to speed up the switch to cleaner fuels at the gas pump, with further reductions to the carbon intensity of transportation fuels: 4 megatonnes of carbon pollution reduced by 2030. That increased electrification will require 8% more electricity by 2030. Some of this can be accomplished by increasing the amount of renewable fuel that is blended with liquid fuels.

In October, the government said the climate plan will be created to meet legislated targets of cutting Carbon dioxide emissions by 40 per cent by 2030, 60 per cent by 2040 and 80 per cent by 2050.

Weaver's party has an agreement that supports the province's minority NDP government and he shared the stage with Horgan in making the announcement.

The clean growth plan includes "ringfencing" of carbon taxes for industry. The province said the remaining 25 per cent will be worked out over the next 18 to 24 months.

When asked about recent protests in France over rising fuel taxes, Horgan said B.C.'s economy and unemployment rates are the best in the country and the plan shouldn't mean any downsizing. "We need to begin changing how we live, work and commute to put BC on a cleaner, more sustainable path".

Mr. Horgan promised the plan will be affordable for families, and climate action tax credits for low-income families will be expanded over time. "This is about sending a message to the global community that B.C.is going to rise to this challenge".

It's part of the province's efforts to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 40 per cent by 2030, 60 per cent by 2040 and 80 per cent by 2050.

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This graph illustrates the predicted reductions in greenhouses gases in B.C. under the CleanBC plan. The material given to the media includes supporting quotes from federal and American politicians, Indigenous leaders including Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, and many representatives from business, labour and environmental groups.

Premier John Horgan said the enticements would be part of the framework for approving future projects but McCartney said the already-approved LNG export facilities - LNG Canada and Woodfibre in Squamish - would take up nearly all of B.C.'s allowable carbon footprint under the current targets. "British Columbia is changing".

But the minister said the CleanBC plan is not about scaring people into action - quite the opposite. "The recent United Nations report makes clear that we can not expand fossil fuels and ensure a safe climate".

Clean Energy Canada executive director Merran Smith expressed satisfaction with today's news.

The upcoming budget will be a "litmus test" that will show if the money is there to meet the goals of the plan, Woynillowicz said.

Auditor general Carol Bellringer released a report on Wednesday that said Hydro's generating facilities are running at near capacity and some of them are more than 85 years old.

"We already are reaching agreements with people in the oil and gas sector as well as throughout industry to take measures to reduce emissions and electrify", Heyman said.

The plan has also been applauded by the Pembina Institute and the Sierra Club.