Full Report

Recommendations for Budget 2020

Canada and the world face a climate emergency and a biodiversity crisis. Canadians are already experiencing floods, fires, ecological disruption and a rapidly warming Arctic, and scientists project these and other impacts will intensify if climate change remains unchecked.

Our Recommendations for Budget 2020 will help Canada make rapid progress. We draw upon the expertise of Canada’s environmental movement, as well as global knowledge and experience, to provide detailed, costed, strategic budget recommendations addressing critical environmental challenges. Implementing these recommendations would furnish economic, health, and environmental benefits for Canadians.

Climate Emergency – Scaled Up Fiscal Action

Carbon Pricing – Improving its effectiveness

Environment and Climate Change Finance Canada Natural Resources Canada

ECCC needs adequate resources to perform the 2020 mid-term review of the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change, and make any necessary adjustments. The Green Budget Coalition also recommends investments in research and expert analysis to support expanding the scope of the federal carbon pricing system beyond combustion and industrial emissions.

Recommended Investments:

$5 million for mid-term review to address competitiveness

$1.5 million for increasing scope of carbon pricing system

Climate Emergency – Scaled Up Fiscal Action

Fossil Fuel Subsidies and Non-tax Support

Environment and Climate Change Finance Canada Global Affairs Canada Natural Resources Canada

In 2009, as part of the G20, the federal government first committed to phasing out inefficient fossil fuel subsidies, recognizing that these subsidies undermine efforts to address climate change, encourage wasteful consumption, and impede adoption of clean energy. Exactly ten years later, little progress has been made. Among the G7, Canada remains the largest provider of subsidies to oil and gas production per unit of GDP.

Costs: Very Low. Annual savings of several hundred million dollars.

Climate Emergency – Scaled Up Fiscal Action

Buildings and Energy Efficiency

Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation Employment and Social Development Canada Environment and Climate Change Finance Canada Infrastructure and Communities Canada Natural Resources Canada

Canada’s buildings sector contributed about 17% of national GHG emissions in 2017. The government’s climate action plan contains a series of measures to tackle these emissions, and requires all new construction to be Net Zero Energy or Net Zero Energy Ready. However, while new construction is important, the most significant emissions reductions can be achieved by retrofitting existing buildings.

The Green Budget Coalition recommends that the Government of Canada build on its progress in this area by accelerating progress on retrofits, supporting job creation, and training this much-needed workforce.

Recommended Investment: $200 million over three years for training for Canada’s low-carbon building workforce.

Climate Emergency – Scaled Up Fiscal Action

Transportation — Accelerating the de-carbonization of heavy-duty vehicles

Infrastructure and Communities Canada Natural Resources Canada Transport Canada

Freight trucks accounted for 34% of total Canadian transportation GHG emissions in 2017.

1. Establish financial incentives for fuel saving devices on heavy-duty trucks: $200 million over five years (2020-2024).

2. Establish new financial incentives to support Canadian transit agencies in purchasing zero-emissions buses: $85 million in 2020.

To make the most efficient use of current and future government resources, the Green Budget Coalition also recommends that Transport Canada:

• Assess the Canadian trailer and retrofit market to determine any cost premiums that may apply to domestic fleets should Canadian and U.S. rules with respect to trailers diverge. $1.5 million

Climate Emergency – Scaled Up Fiscal Action

Community Energy

Environment and Climate Change Finance Canada Innovation, Science and Economic Development Natural Resources Canada

The Green Budget Coalition recommends the federal government invest in and support communities as they take part in this transition. Community renewable energy leads to secure, local jobs and new skill-building opportunities for our workforce, economic and energy diversification, increased energy price certainty, and increased local resiliency.

Recommended Investment: $178 million over five years

Climate Emergency – Scaled Up Fiscal Action

International Climate Financing

Environment and Climate Change Finance Canada Global Affairs Canada

Canada and other industrialized countries committed in the Paris Agreement to mobilizing USD 100 billion per year to help developing countries adapt to climate change and undertake low-carbon development. To better support climate mitigation and adaptation in developing countries, the GBC recommends that Canada increase its contribution to an amount in line with our share of anthropogenic greenhouse gases, and direct at least half of this for nature-based solutions.

Recommended Investment (with suggested new revenue sources): Annual funding of at least $2.9 billion from 2020-21 to 2025-2026

Climate Emergency – Scaled Up Fiscal Action

Nature-Based Solutions in Canada

Environment and Climate Change Natural Resources Canada

Canada’s ecosystems generate GHG emissions when lost or degraded and, conversely, sequester carbon when they recover or are restored. To make progress on both the climate and biodiversity issues, the GBC recommends that Canada start a Nature-Based Climate Solutions Fund, to support actions that reduce land sector emissions, sequester carbon or furnish climate adaptation benefits, while also benefiting biodiversity conservation.

Recommended Investment: $1 billion over four years (2020-2024)

Climate Emergency – Scaled Up Fiscal Action

Marine Shipping – Reducing Climate Impacts and Spill Risks

Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada Environment and Climate Change Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard Natural Resources Canada Transport Canada

Canada’s climate plan does not currently address the shipping industry.

Climate Emergency – Scaled Up Fiscal Action

Clean Fuel Standard – Increasing benefits

Environment and Climate Change Natural Resources Canada

ECCC has developed a proposal for a Clean Fuel Standard (CFS), a performance-based regulatory approach to progressively improve the carbon intensity of fuels across the Canadian economy. Representing 14% of total emissions to be reduced by 2030, the CFS is the most significant measure in the Pan-Canadian Framework for Clean Growth and Climate Change (PCF).

Recommended Investment:

$15 million over five years to promote innovation and to ensure indirect land use changes are appropriately integrated in the policy design

Zero Emission Vehicles

Budget 2019 provided $300 million for a three-year purchase incentive program (iZEV), and other complementary measures. However, based on the iZEV program’s initial months, it could run out of funding in 2020, and require additional funding to fulfill its mandate.

Recommended Investment: $150 million top-up to Transport Canada’s iZEV incentive program, in 2020-21, along with regulated sales targets.

Climate Emergency – Scaled Up Fiscal Action

Urban Transit

Infrastructure and Communities Canada Transport Canada

The GBC recommends providing long-term sustained funding beyond the 12-year Investing in Canada plan, to enable the necessary planning work required by governments and agencies to improve transit systems, and also recommends that the federal government help fund the operational costs of public transit to improve service delivery.

Climate Emergency – Scaled Up Fiscal Action

Strategic Assessment of Climate Change

Environment and Climate Change

The Green Budget Coalition recommends that ECCC establish and support a balanced and independent expert advisory panel to develop a SACC that aligns Canada’s decision-making on energy and industrial projects with deep decarbonization by mid-century and ensures emissions are allocated in a rational, transparent, and fair manner.

Recommended Investment: $3 million over three years

Climate Emergency – Scaled Up Fiscal Action

Ensuring Budget 2020 Reflects True Costs of Climate Change

Environment and Climate Change

In addition to estimating current and future budgetary needs associated with climate change, Canada must enable transparent decision-making regarding keeping these costs manageable, including through investments in GHG mitigation, climate adaptation, and cost-recovery from corporations and individuals that benefit financially from fossil fuel production and use.

Recommended Investment: $2 million over two years (2020-22).

Climate Emergency – Scaled Up Fiscal Action

Sustainable Finance Report

Environment and Climate Change Finance Canada Innovation, Science and Economic Development Natural Resources Canada

The GBC recommends that the federal government, especially Finance Canada, give the Panel’s report the most serious consideration, while not establishing additional subsidies for fossil fuels.

Climate Emergency – Scaled Up Fiscal Action

Just Transition for Canadian Energy Workers and Communities

Environment and Climate Change Finance Canada Innovation, Science and Economic Development Natural Resources Canada

The GBC encourages the federal government to:

• Provide further details on the $35 million over five years announced for the Canada Coal Transition Initiative in 2018;

• Implement the Task Force’s full suite of recommendations; and

• Identify opportunities in Budget 2020 and beyond to scale up just transition funding for all energy workers and the communities that rely on these industries.

Nature Conservation – A Truly Canadian Solution to Wildlife Loss and Climate Change

Protecting Public Lands

Environment and Climate Change Parks Canada

For public lands, the Green Budget Coalition recommends that the federal government:

1. Continue investment in conservation and protected areas to achieve 17% protection of land and freshwater by 2020;

2. Commit to protecting 30% of land and freshwater by 2030 and investing in achieving this target in this mandate; and

3. Make the investments necessary for ongoing management and stewardship of nature.

Nature Conservation – A Truly Canadian Solution to Wildlife Loss and Climate Change

Protecting Private Lands

Environment and Climate Change

The GBC recommends a matching funds top-up investment in 2020-2021 to support North American Waterfowl Management Plan joint venture habitat securement priorities.

Recommended Investment: $10 million in 2020-2021, matched by external funds from other NAWMP and Joint Venture partners.

The GBC recommends new federal investments to ensure that existing privately protected lands are properly managed and that their conservation values are safeguarded for the long-term.

Recommended Investment: $40 million over four years

Nature Conservation – A Truly Canadian Solution to Wildlife Loss and Climate Change

Federal Wetland Restoration Funding

Environment and Climate Change

The Green Budget Coalition recommends that the federal government establish a Wetland Restoration Program under the Canada Nature Fund to restore lost and degraded wetlands and associated uplands. This program would be administered by ECCC and implemented in collaboration with other levels of government and non-government partners.

Recommended Investment: $50 million per year over five years, matched by $50 million per year in non-federal government sources of funding.

Nature Conservation – A Truly Canadian Solution to Wildlife Loss and Climate Change

Restoring Canada’s Grasslands

Agriculture and Agri-food Environment and Climate Change

The Green Budget Coalition is recommending a focused federal effort to restore and conserve Canada’s grasslands so as to stabilize declining bird populations, conserve grassland mammals, reptiles and amphibians, many of which are at risk, and support sustainable management of grasslands by ranching communities.

Recommended Investment: $20 million per year for five years (2020-2025), matched by $20 million per year in non-federal government sources of funding.

Nature Conservation – A Truly Canadian Solution to Wildlife Loss and Climate Change

Conserving the Biodiversity and Health of our Oceans

Environment and Climate Change Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard Parks Canada

1. Marine spatial planning, including co-governance, marine protected area (MPA) networks, National Marine Conservation Areas and conservation economy development:

  • $193 million in 2020-2021
  • $726 million over 2021-2025
  • Ongoing funding of $72 million per year thereafter

2. Enhancing fisheries stock assessment, integrating ecosystem considerations in fisheries management, increasing fisheries monitoring and data collection capacity, and ensuring fisheries data transparency — $175 million over five years

3. Enhancing capacity to meet Species at Risk Act requirements to recover abundance of aquatic endangered and threatened species — $125 million over five years

4. Aquaculture research, environmental protection standards, innovative technology research, monitoring, enforcement, and incentives for alternative production methods — $125 million over five years

Nature Conservation – A Truly Canadian Solution to Wildlife Loss and Climate Change

Conserving Canada’s Birds Across their Year-Round Range

Environment and Climate Change Global Affairs Canada

The 2019 State of Canada’s Birds reports that many bird species continue to decline at alarming rates primarily due to habitat loss in Canada and Latin America.

Nature Conservation – A Truly Canadian Solution to Wildlife Loss and Climate Change

Building a World-Class Freshwater Monitoring Framework

Environment and Climate Change

The Green Budget Coalition recommends:

  • Providing dedicated, long-term monitoring funding;
  • Advancing the standardization of data collection and reporting across jurisdictions to improve data integration and comparison; and
  • Extending coverage of water monitoring catchments to better understand historically underrepresented, and in some cases high-risk, areas (e.g., Saskatchewan, Nunavut, Northern Ontario, Northern Quebec).

Recommended Investment: $100 million over five years

Nature Conservation – A Truly Canadian Solution to Wildlife Loss and Climate Change

National Wildlife Collision Reporting System

Environment and Climate Change Transport Canada

The federal government has shown leadership with wildlife crossings in Banff National Park. Work on this issue is being done in Alberta, British Columbia, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Ontario and Quebec. However, there is no standardization for collecting, sharing or analyzing wildlife-vehicle collision data.

Recommended Investment: $4.5 million over three years to work with the provinces, territories and other stakeholders to develop and implement a national wildlife collision data reporting system.

Sustainable Agriculture

Sustainable Agriculture

Agriculture and Agri-food Environment and Climate Change Health Canada

Recommended Investment: $596 million over the next five years (2020-2025) to improve the sustainability, resilience and competitiveness of the agricultural sector via the following programs:

  1. Agri-Environmental Programs: $471 million over five years
  2. R&D in Regenerative Agriculture: $80 million over five years
  3. Support an important scientific asset by building a facility for the National Insect Collection: $45 million over three years

Tackling Toxics and Pesticides

Renewal of the Chemicals Management Plan

Environment and Climate Change Health Canada

Since 2006, the Chemicals Management Plan (CMP) has been the signature CEPA program aimed at identifying and reducing risks to human health and the environment from toxic substances.

It is crucial that Budget 2020 confirm ongoing investment in chemicals management to support appropriate preparations and continuity.

Recommended Investment: $100 million annually, starting in 2021

Tackling Toxics and Pesticides

Enforcement of pollution-prevention laws

Environment and Climate Change

Commissioner for Environment and Sustainable Development (CESD), found that most toxic substance regulations received few inspections and enforcement measures. In response to this audit, ECCC is nearing completion of a risk framework to identify enforcement priorities, including for substances managed under the CMP.

Recommended Investment: $50 million in 2020 and then $100 million annually

Tackling Toxics and Pesticides

Closing the resource gap at Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency

Health Canada Pesticide Management Regulatory Agency

The GBC recommends the following areas of focus:

  • Adequate funding to update pesticide risk assessments.
  • Upgrade label requirements.
  • Fund compliance and enforcement.

Recommended Investment: $50M in 2020, and then $100M annually

Tackling Toxics and Pesticides

Coordinated collection of necessary data to support pesticide exposure assessments

Agriculture and Agri-food Environment and Climate Change

Recommended Investment:

$10 million over five years for initial pilot of pesticide use and annual data collection

$16.5 million over five years for systematic monitoring of pesticides in water

Complementary Recommendations

Plastics – Banning single-use plastics & enabling circular economy strategies

Environment and Climate Change Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard Innovation, Science and Economic Development Statistics Canada

To support effective implementation of a federal ban on non-essential single-use plastics by 2021, the Green Budget Coalition recommends Budget 2020 invest $60 million over five years in public education and targeted compliance promotion (ECCC), establish a $500 million matching fund to support zero-waste business investment (ISED), and provide $8.3 million over four years to extend and expand programs to prevent and recover abandoned fishing gear (DFO). We further recommend providing $5 million for ECCC and Statistics Canada to map the current level of circularity in the Canadian economy and assess future scenarios.

Complementary Recommendations

Environmental Science & Data: Supporting Evidence-Based Decision-Making

Agriculture and Agri-food Canadian Space Agency Environment and Climate Change Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard Innovation, Science and Economic Development Natural Resources Canada Parks Canada Statistics Canada

The Green Budget Coalition recommends the following strategic investments:

Advisory Panel on Integrating Environmental Data and Science

  • Recommended Investment: $3 million over three years

Coordinated and Updated National Geospatial Ecosystem Data

  • $2 million over three years to undertake an audit and inventory of existing geospatial datasets; and
  • $125 million over four years to update foundational geographic and landscape feature data

A National Census of the Environment

  • $16 million over four years (2020-2024) to advance the development of a robust and full accounting of Canada’s environmental assets
  • an additional $5 million per year ongoing

Complementary Recommendations

Collaborating on Regional-Scale Environmental Governance

Environment and Climate Change Impact Assessment Agency of Canada

Further funding in Budget 2020 is required to continue the regional assessment and strategic assessment programs, in partnership with provincial and Indigenous authorities, to protect biodiversity, nature and the climate across Canada.

Recommended Investment: $155 million over five years

Complementary Recommendations

First Nations Water and Wastewater Funding

Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada Indigenous Services Canada Infrastructure and Communities Canada

The Green Budget Coalition supports the adoption of a new federal Operations and Maintenance funding policy for First Nations water infrastructure, based on an industry-standard Asset Management Plan approach.

Recommended Investment: $361 million annually, ongoing, for First Nations’ water infrastructure operations and maintenance.