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Response to the federal government's reaction to IPCC Fifth Assessment Report:

Emissions in Canada are down slightly, largely because of Ontario's phase out of coal-fired power and actions by B.C., Quebec and other provinces and cities.

Other provincial actions — fuel-efficiency standards led by California, B.C., Quebec and other states — forced the hands of the U.S. and Canadian governments to enact California-level fuel efficiency standards. It wasn't because of the federal government. Quite the opposite.

The federal government coal regulations only require new coal plants to cut back emissions close to levels of a natural gas power plant — and even this not for more than a decade — way too late for an effective response to climate change.

Ontario's move to eliminate coal resulted in the single-largest reduction in CO2 emissions in North America; B.C.'s introduction of a carbon tax; and Quebec's support for cleaner technologies are Canada's examples of real government leadership on climate change. The federal government is trying to take credit for true leadership shown by other levels of government.

The good news is the IPCC report shows it is still possible to avoid the worst impacts of climate change if we act now. Our future will not be determined by chance. It will be determined by choice: Either we ignore reality of the science or we make the changes to reduce carbon emissions.

Ian Bruce
Science and Policy Manager
David Suzuki Foundation

For IPCC media release and report:


David Suzuki Foundation media release and backgrounder is available here:


For more information, contact:

Ian Hanington: (778) 871-1782; ihanington@davidsuzuki.org

Manon Dubois (Quebec): (514) 679-0821; mdubois@davidsuzuki.org

September 27, 2013