Election Results Continue the Momentum for Nature and People
Canadians prioritize environment, sustainable economic development and tackling the climate crisis.
Nature United congratulates the Liberal party for its success in the federal election and all parties for making environment and climate change priorities during their campaigns. Across the country, voters were united in supporting commitments from all parties to expand the protection of lands and waters across Canada, improve the management of natural resources, in particular by recognizing Indigenous Peoples’ leadership, and invest more in climate change mitigation and adaptation.
Now all parties must unite to deliver on their collective ambition to safeguard a Canada where nature is the foundation of healthy communities, economies and future opportunities.
Among the most exciting commitments was the Liberal’s $3-billion commitment to natural climate solutions. Natural climate solutions are conservation, restoration and management actions of forests, agricultural lands, grasslands and wetlands that result in reduced greenhouse-gas emissions. This commitment builds on investments in the protection of lands and water through the $1.3 billion Nature Fund commitment made by the Liberal government in 2018, which has advanced $500 million in conservation partnerships and $800 million to support the creation and management of new protected areas, as well as climate policies including the comprehensive carbon pricing program.
Research led by Nature United’s global affiliate has shown that natural climate solutions can deliver up to a third of the emission reductions needed by 2030 to keep global temperatures below 2°C. Nature United is now working with 16 academic institutions across Canada to develop a national assessment of the natural climate solutions potential in Canada, including where they will work geographically and how much they will cost. Conservative leader Andrew Scheer also identified this need to “study the contribution Canada makes to global emissions and identify where we are now as well as opportunities for making better land-use decisions for the future.”
The Liberals, NDP, Greens, and Bloc Québécois also committed to meeting and/or exceeding current global emission-reduction targets, contributing to global climate action. Political parties and all Canadians now must work together to set even more ambitious targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions globally and at home and invest in solutions that ensure Canada delivers on them.
There was also widespread support for expanding protections of lands and waters in Canada to at least 25% by 2025, on the way to 30% by 2030. We applaud the federal government for achieving 12% protection of lands and more than 10% of oceans towards this target—an effort that has supported investments in Indigenous knowledge and stewardship, including Guardian programs and Indigenous Protected Areas.
Nature United looks forward to working with the Liberal government and all parties on:
- Significant investments in natural climate solutions while continuing to transition to deep-decarbonization
- Recognizing the rights of Indigenous Peoples and advancing Indigenous-led conservation, in particular through Indigenous Protected Areas and Guardians programs
- Canada’s global leadership during the 2020 Year for Nature when countries will submit updated commitments under the UNFCCC Paris Agreement and parties will negotiate new targets for the UN Convention on Biodiversity. Canada must step up to the plate as a global leader, while delivering results at home.
Nature United was founded as an Canadian charity in 2014, building on decades of conservation in Canada. Headquartered in Toronto, the organization has field staff located across the country. Nature United supports Indigenous leadership, sustainable economic development, and science and large-scale conservation, primarily in the Great Bear Rainforest, Clayoquot Sound, the Northwest Territories, and northern Manitoba.
We are the Canadian affiliate of The Nature Conservancy (nature.org), the world’s largest conservation organization, with more than 3,600 staff worldwide, 400 scientists and 1 million supporters. TNC tackles leading conservation threats at the greatest scale to help people and nature thrive, and is working to make a lasting difference around the world in 72 countries.