Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Federal Departments Struggling to Meet Internal 2020 Emissions Targets

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Federal Departments Struggling to Meet Internal 2020 Emissions Targets

Article excerpt

Feds struggle to meet internal GHG targets


OTTAWA - Never mind those international targets, the federal government appears to be having trouble meeting even its own internal operational goals for cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

An internal PowerPoint presentation prepared by Public Works and Government Services Canada asks each federal department to ante up its emissions reductions number for the coming 2014-15 fiscal year.

And it prods departments to "please consider increasing your commitment to help bridge the current five per cent gap."

"They're clearly going to miss their targets," said John McKay, the Liberal environment critic.

"I can't say I'm overly surprised by that given that they're not serious about national targets, so why would they be serious about government targets."

As part of a "greening government operations" exercise, the Conservatives have committed to reducing GHG emissions from federal buildings and transportation fleets by 17 per cent below 2005 levels by the year 2020.

That's the same target the Harper government agreed to for Canada as a whole as part of the Copenhagen accord in 2009.

A fall report from Environment Canada shows the country is slipping further away from meeting its Copenhagen emissions goal, although the government likes to claim Canada is halfway to the target.

Similarly, when Public Works says there's a five per cent gap in operational emissions cuts, it doesn't mean the government's work is 95 per cent complete.

A 2012 report by Environment Canada on the federal sustainable development strategy makes clear "the government is on track to achieve a 12 per cent decrease in emission levels relative to the base year by fiscal year 2020-2021. A projected gap of about five per cent highlights the need for additional efforts in order to achieve the 17 per cent federal target."

In other words, the government is currently on pace to miss its self-imposed internal 17-per-cent target by five percentage points -- or almost 30 per cent. And it would seem no headway has been made on that front since 2012.

Public Works says the current reductions are "more significant .. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed


An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.