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Canada joins U.S. in announcing measures to fight climate change

VANCOUVER - New fuel-efficiency standards for cars and light-duty trucks will be good for the environment and the economy, according to the David Suzuki Foundation. Canadian Environment Minister Jim Prentice and the U.S. government both announced today plans to strengthen the standards.

The regulations are expected to be enacted after a 60-day public consultation period.

"These long-awaited measures, close to California fuel-efficiency standards, will mean better air quality, more efficient use of nonrenewable fossil-fuel resources and a significant reduction in global warming emissions from cars and light-duty trucks," said David Suzuki Foundation climate change specialist Ian Bruce. "This is significant, as close to 12 percent of Canada's overall greenhouse gas emissions come from cars and light trucks."

The standards are estimated to reduce heat-trapping emissions from the new fleet of cars and trucks sold in Canada by 25 percent over the next six years. Canadians will be able to enjoy cleaner air and save money at the pump as a greater range of green vehicles becomes available under the new rules.

"These regulations will spur innovation and development of cutting-edge technologies in Canada's car-manufacturing sector while expanding our potential market share into countries that have stronger fuel-efficiency requirements for vehicles," Mr. Bruce said.

Today's announcement by Canadian and U.S. governments was the result of sustained leadership and pressure by a multitude of states and provinces including California, B.C. and Quebec to act on climate change.

The David Suzuki Foundation encourages the government to implement a climate change action plan including a cap on industrial emissions to transform Canadian industrial facilities into leaders in energy-efficiency. This federal government has promised regulations to reduce emissions from large industrial polluters, responsible for half of Canada's total emissions, three times in the past four years but has yet to enact the rules.


For more information, contact:
Ian Bruce, Climate Change Specialist, (604) 306-5095

April 1, 2010