May 31, 2004

Canada, Ontario sign climate change co-operation MOU

A five-year agreement between Canada and Ontario to work together on climate change sets out seven priority areas in which the two governments will explore co-operation. The Memorandum of Understanding for Co-operation on Addressing Climate Change was signed May 21 by Ontario Ministers of Environment and of Energy, Leona Dombrowsky and Dwight Duncan, respectively, and the federal Ministers of Environment and of Natural Resources, David Anderson and John Efford.

The priority areas for pursuing co-operation include: electricity supply and renewables; energy efficiency, conservation and fuels; environmental management; innovation and technology; land resources and agriculture; impacts and adaptation; and public awareness and education. Within each area, the agreement outlines the general nature of activities to be undertaken. It also recognizes that infrastructure investments will play an important role in addressing climate change; the parties have agreed that these will be taken into consideration in developing co-operative activities.

Under the agreement, the two governments have committed themselves to, among other things, co-ordinating opportunities for integrating climate change with other strategic initiatives, such as in the areas of energy and environment, and ensuring consistency among their respective actions and initiatives to avoid duplication and maximize synergies. Canada and Ontario will co-ordinate their efforts on policies and measures relating to activities such as greenhouse gas emission reduction and prevention; technology development, demonstration and deployment; information transfer; enhancement of carbon sinks (including measurement and monitoring); improvement of scientific knowledge concerning climate change; and establishment of effective and efficient monitoring, reporting and review mechanisms for emissions reduction and carbon sinks enhancement.

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