Blue Green Canada and allies in the legal and policy development professions have put together the following brief for the federal government.
Author: Matt Hulse (Ecojustice) Contributors: Laura Cameron (IISD), Vanessa Corkal (IISD), Émile Boisseau-Bouvier (Équiterre), Julia Croome (Ecojustice)
Reviewers: Aliénor Rougeot (Environmental Defence), Caroline Brouillette (Climate Action Network Canada), Christine Jones (Blue Green Canada), Jamie Kirkpatrick (Blue Green Canada), Ken Bondy (Unifor), Melissa Gorrie (Ecojustice), Patrick Rondeau (Fédération des travailleurs et travailleuses du Québec), Sari Sairanen (Unifor)
A legal framework is central to planning and implementing an orderly, just, and equitable transition to a low-carbon economy in Canada. Jurisdictions around the world that are leading the just transition—including New Zealand, Scotland, Spain, and the European Union—all have legislation grounding their just transition efforts. This brief canvases best practices from these jurisdictions and builds off the IISD report Making Good Green Jobs the Law: How Canada Can Build on International Best Practice to Advance Just Transition for All to make recommendations for federal just transition legislation here in Canada.
Canada must quickly and dramatically reduce emissions and transition our economy out of the volatile and challenging social and environmental impacts of high-carbon industries. An economy that meets the challenges of climate change – one that is low-carbon, regenerative and circular – is possible if we plan and take action to achieve it. This requires a “just transition” centred on those most affected by the shift away from high-emitting industries, including workers, communities and those disproportionately negatively affected by industrial development. These people must be included in decision-making, have support in accessing decent work, share evenly in the benefits of climate action, and be shielded equally from any adverse impacts of robust climate action as the economy transforms. The low-carbon economy – and the process of getting there – must work for everyone.