Catherine McKenna, Canada’s Minister of Environment and Climate Change of Canada, announced that Canada aims to eliminate traditional coal power by 2030. The announcement comes on the heels of country’s plan to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions by 30 percent from 2005 levels by 2030. The country is also set to introduce a carbon levy starting in 2018.
Coal power in Canada accounts for 10 percent of greenhouse-gas emissions coming from Albert, Saskatchewan, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick. Of the four provinces, Alberta uses the most coal to generate electricity. Ottawa give these provinces the choice between eliminating coal entirely and replacing it with environmentally friendly resources, or using carbon capture and storage. Whichever option the provinces elect, they will be following Ontario, which already eliminated coal-powered electricity in 2014.
Though many are pleased with the country’s commitment to fight climate change, the announcement has been met with some opposition. The opposition argues Ottawa’s plan is an insincere commitment to work with the different provinces that rely on coal to various degrees to fight climate change. Still, by implementing this plan, Canada expects to reduce its carbon emissions by 5 megatons. The country also expects the amount of electricity that comes from non-carbon emitting sources to increase from 80 percent to 90 percent by 2030.