VANCOUVER/UNCEDED xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (MUSQUEAM), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (SQUAMISH) AND səlilwətaɬ (TSLEIL-WAUTUTH) TERRITORIES – The B.C. government has released its Roadmap to 2030 – an update to the “CleanBC” climate strategy – to chart the province’s path to reduced emissions.
Ecojustice climate program director, Alan Andrews, issued the following statement in response to the publication of the Roadmap:
“The deadly climate catastrophes of the past year should be a wake-up call for the B.C. government that we need clear and immediate action to tackle this crisis.
“While the Roadmap to 2030 includes some strong new policies – particularly in the transportation sector – too much of it reads like a plan to make a plan.
“We still don’t have a clear vision for how the oil and gas sector will reduce its emissions – we’ll have to wait until 2023 to see that plan. Oil and gas is responsible for a fifth of B.C.’s carbon pollution and projected growth in this sector – heavily subsidized by the provincial government – will make it impossible to reach B.C.’s climate targets.”
“The Roadmap claims that B.C. will achieve the 2030 target, but we are still waiting to see the analysis that supports this. B.C. has missed every climate target it has set to date and the latest data shows that provincial emissions continue to rise. Until we see more detail, we can’t take the government at its word.
“By law, the B.C. government’s annual climate accountability report must set out its plans to continue progress towards its climate targets. But there are no plans for B.C.’s 2025, 2040, or 2050 targets, major gaps in the plans to reach the sector-specific targets, and not enough signs of progress.”
“What is clear is that B.C.’s climate laws are not delivering on their promise of better transparency and accountability over climate action, and reforms are necessary. The B.C government has already committed to amending the Climate Change Accountability Act to introduce a net-zero target in 2022. Premier John Horgan should use this commitment as an opportunity to give that law a much-needed overhaul.”
- The Climate Change Accountability Act (the “Act”) establishes the following emissions reduction targets for the province as a whole: 40 per cent reduction by 2030; 60 per cent reduction by 2040; and 80 per cent reduction by 2050 (all compared to 2007 emissions levels). The Minister of Environment has also set a target for 2025 (16 per cent reduction) and targets for four sectors of the economy: Oil & Gas, Transportation, Industry, and Buildings & Communities.
- The Act requires that the B.C. include “plans to continue progress towards” BC’s emissions reduction targets as part of the Minister’s annual climate accountability report, also released on Oct 25, 2021.
- CleanBC was released in 2018 but lacked a full set of policies to reach the 2030 target. The Roadmap was intended to fill this policy gap.
- In 2019, the most recent data available, B.C.’s greenhouse gas emissions were 68.63 million tonnes (Mt) CO2 equivalent. This slightly higher than 2018 (68.48 Mt), 4.5 per cent higher than 2007 (65.67 Mt), and 22 per cent higher than 1990 (56.18 Mt).
Ecojustice uses the power of the law to defend nature, combat climate change, and fight for a healthy environment. Its strategic, public interest lawsuits and advocacy lead to precedent-setting court decisions and law and policy that deliver lasting solutions to Canada’s most urgent environmental problems. As Canada’s largest environmental law charity, Ecojustice operates offices in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, Ottawa, and Halifax.