The Government of Canada has announced that it intends to establish a national floor price on carbon pollution of $10 per tonne in 2018, rising $10 per year to $50 per tonne by 2022. Provinces will have the option of placing a direct price on carbon pollution or adopting a cap and trade system. Provincial carbon pricing systems must be stringent enough to meet or exceed a benchmark established by the federal government. The federal government will implement a carbon price in any province or territory that does not have a carbon price or cap and trade system in place by 2018. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the policy in a speech delivered in the House of Commons this morning and the House of Commons is currently debating the ratification of the Paris Agreement.
Last week, Catherine McKenna, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change reaffirmed Canada’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30% below 2005 levels by 2030. The Prime Minister’s announcement opened a parliamentary debate on Canada’s ratification of the Paris Agreement. Canada is expected to ratify the Paris Agreement in the next weeks and at the latest before the start of the November 7, 2016 United Nations climate change negotiations in Morocco.
Canada’s federal and provincial environment ministers are meeting today in Montreal today to discuss and attempt to achieve consensus on carbon pricing. The Prime Minister and provincial premiers are expected to meet later this month to discuss the recommendations of working groups charged with identifying policy options in clean technology, innovation and jobs; carbon pricing mechanisms; specific mitigation opportunities; and adaptation and climate resilience.