Clean Economy Alliance supports Ontario linking its cap-and-trade market with Quebec and California

For Immediate Release: September 22, 2017

Clean Economy Alliance supports Ontario linking its cap-and-trade market with Quebec and California

Toronto, Ont. – The Clean Economy Alliance welcomes today’s announcement of Ontario’s planned cap-and-trade market linkage with California and Quebec under the Western Climate Initiative. The multi-sector coalition of over 100 prominent Ontario businesses and organizations recognizes that linkage is a key step forward in ensuring the ongoing stability and growth of Ontario’s cap-and-trade program, and ultimately in Ontario’s strategy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

“Now is a critical time for cap-and-trade in Ontario,” says Adam Auer, Vice-President of Environment & Sustainability at the Cement Association of Canada. “It’s important for the market to be stable, to grow, and to achieve optimal buy-in from Ontario businesses to continue to thrive. Linking to a broader market will provide access to a larger pool of allowances and ensure carbon is priced at the lowest cost possible, while helping to protect the competitiveness of Emissions Intensive Trade Exposed sectors (EITEs) like cement. Linkage will also bring more predictable rules, harmonized prices, and a strong, unified platform from which Ontario can reduce emissions and build a cleaner economy.”

“Linking with Quebec and California is a smart move,” says Keith Brooks, Programs Director at Environmental Defence. “Ontario has forged a strong partnership with Quebec and California, and linking its carbon market to theirs is the logical evolution of this partnership. Ontario is a leader on climate action, but it can’t go it alone. Moving in concert and collaboration with other jurisdictions will make Ontario’s carbon market stronger, while building a critical mass around climate action and, importantly, greenhouse gas emissions reduction.”

“Pollution doesn’t limit itself to strict borders. Cap-and-trade markets meant to cut this pollution shouldn’t either,” says Vanessa Foran, President and CEO of the Asthma Society of Canada. “Climate change poses serious health risks for Canadians, particularly those living with asthma, allergies and other chronic respiratory conditions. With Ontario’s 2020 emissions reduction targets fast approaching, we need strong partners in our efforts to ensure better air quality, and in turn, better overall quality of life. California and Quebec have already taken strong leadership in reducing emissions and it’s time to work together to prioritize the health of our communities.”

“With three sold out auctions and over $1.5 billion raised for climate action, Ontario’s carbon market is off to a very solid start,” says Sarah Petrevan, Senior Policy Advisor for Clean Energy Canada. “This linkage with Quebec and California will build on and further solidify what is already proving to be a robust carbon market.”

About The CLEAN ECONOMY ALLIANCE (CEA): The CEA is a group of over 100 organizations representing a broad cross-section of Ontarians that united in 2015 to urge Ontario to show leadership in addressing the crucial issue of climate change. The CEA includes prominent Ontario businesses, industry associations, labour unions, farmers’ groups, health advocates, and environmental organizations. The Alliance supports the Ontario government’s commitments to develop and implement a climate change strategy and cap-and-trade program. Its members recognize that reducing greenhouse gas emissions will bring many benefits, including cleaner air, improved public health, and more jobs and business opportunities in the clean economy. For a full list of Clean Economy Alliance members, please visit www.cleaneconomyalliance.ca.

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For more information or to arrange interviews, please contact: Allen Braude, Environmental Defence, 416-323-9521 ext 247; 416-356-2587 (cell); abraude@environmentaldefence.ca