By the numbers: How far is Canada from meeting climate targets?
Smoke pours from the stacks at the Portlands Energy Centre in Toronto on Thursday, Jan. 15, 2009. (Frank Gunn / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Published Saturday, October 19, 2019 1:09PM MDT
Last Updated Sunday, October 20, 2019 9:53PM MDT
Climate change has become a major issue during the 2019 federal election campaign, dominating a significant part of debates and drawing thousands of voters to the streets as part of climate strikes.
Canada has already failed twice to meet previous targets to reduce emissions, such as those in the 1992 Rio target and 2005 Kyoto target.
Under The Paris Agreement, it’s aiming to reach 30 per cent of 2005 levels—or 513 million tonnes—by 2030.
CTV News Edmonton took a dive through the numbers to see how Canada is stacking up in the fight against climate change.
HOW FAR ARE WE FROM REACHING THE PARIS TARGET?
In 2017, the most recent data available, Canada’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions were down two per cent from 2005 levels but still sat at 716 megatonnes.
Achieving the Paris targets by 2030 would mean Canada would have to nix the equivalent of the annual emissions from Alberta’s oil and gas sector (126 megatonnes in 2016), and then some.
According to a recent Environment and Climate Change Canada report, even in a best-case scenario, Canada is on the path to meet just 63 per cent of its 2030 target under the Paris agreement.
HOW MUCH GREENHOUSE GAS ARE WE EMITTING?
Canada produced 1.6 per cent of the world's GHG emissions in 2014 and three per cent of the world's energy.
Of all Canadian provinces, Alberta emits the most greenhouse gases. Alberta’s emissions went up 51 per cent between 1990 and 2016.
WHERE IN THE WORLD EMITS THE MOST GHGs?
Canada emits the ninth-most GHGs in the world, though its share of emissions has decreased from 1.8 per cent in 2005 to 1.6 per cent in 2014. But while that declines, elsewhere in the world, emissions from countries like China, India, Brazil and Indonesia have been on the rise.
ENERGY AND THE ECONOMY
Canada employs some 819,600 people in the energy industry in both direct and indirect jobs. Of those, 143,019 jobs are in Alberta. Mining, oil and gas makes up about 27 per cent of Alberta's gross domestic product.
*Source: Natural Resources Canada
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