xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) & səl̓ilwətaʔɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Territories/VANCOUVER – BC’s new Climate “Roadmap,” unveiled today by the BC government, does not plot a course to achieving BC’s 2025 climate target while delaying plans to decrease oil and gas industry emissions to 2023. The Roadmap includes some good elements, but fails to recognize the urgency of climate change even after a devastating summer of wildfires and heat waves.
“Eighty percent of climate change is caused by fossil fuel pollution, but BC has once again pushed off any plan to decrease emissions from the province’s oil and gas industry to 2023,” said Andrew Gage, Staff Lawyer. “The BC government had no climate plan for oil and gas in 2018 when the Premier pledged that subsidies for LNG Canada would not compromise the province’s climate targets, nor when Clean BC was unveiled. They promised to have a plan in place by 2020, and then by the end of 2021. Now the Roadmap kicks the plan for oil and gas even further down the road, promising to work out a plan with industry by 2023.”
“After a deadly heat dome and raging wildfires this summer, British Columbians are looking to the provincial government to produce a serious climate plan. Yet BC has failed to come up with a plan to achieve its 2025 target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 16%, and its plan for the 2030 target has huge holes in it. We can’t wait until 2023 to start dealing with greenhouse gas pollution from the fossil fuel industry.” said Gage.
The International Energy Agency has warned that to keep average global warming below 1.5 °C and avoid the most catastrophic impacts from climate change countries should halt the development of new oil and gas fields from this year.
"The BC government’s continued commitment to oil and gas development is undermining the Province’s ability to be a true climate leader and to meet its climate targets, keeping British Columbians safe from worsening impacts of climate change," said Gage.
West Coast was positive about some aspects of the Roadmap, such as increased ambition in electrification of transportation and new standards for buildings. However, several of the most ambitious measures, such as increases in the carbon tax, are Canadian government requirements, rather than examples of BC’s “climate leadership.”
West Coast is one of more than 240 signatories to the Confront the Climate Emergency Declaration, which sets out the key measures that should have been included in the Roadmap.
For more information, please contact:
Andrew Gage | Staff Lawyer, West Coast Environmental Law