Low Carbon Economy Leadership Fund

Backgrounder

The Low Carbon Economy Fund: an important part of the made-in-Canada climate plan

To follow through on international commitments, such as the Paris Agreement, and drive Canadian climate action and clean economic development, Canada’s federal, provincial, and territorial leaders adopted a made-in-Canada climate plan, on December 9, 2016. The Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change—reaffirmed the importance of collaboration between the Government of Canada and provinces and territories, as well as with Indigenous Peoples, to address climate change.

The Government of Canada’s Low Carbon Economy Fund is an important part of the plan. The fund will support the plan’s implementation by leveraging investments in projects that will generate clean growth and reduce carbon pollution toward meeting or exceeding Canada’s commitments under the Paris Agreement.

The Low Carbon Economy Fund will provide funding over the next five years to make buildings more energy efficient, help industries innovate to reduce emissions, and help the forestry and agriculture sectors increase stored carbon in forests and soils. These and other investments will create jobs for Canadians for years to come. The fund will deliver clean, sustained growth; support innovation; and reduce energy bills—helping Canadians save money and contribute to fighting climate change.

The Low Carbon Economy Fund is split into two parts:

  1. The Low Carbon Economy Leadership Fund, which was launched on June 15, 2017, will provide $1.4 billion to provinces and territories that have adopted the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change to help them deliver on leadership commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, including those they outlined in the plan.
  2. The remainder of the Low Carbon Economy Fund will be available for the Low Carbon Economy Challenge and for the implementation of the plan. The Low Carbon Economy Challenge will support ambitious projects that can be submitted by all provinces and territories, as well as municipalities, Indigenous governments and organizations, businesses, and not-for-profit organizations. Funded projects will leverage Canadian ingenuity across the country to reduce emissions and generate clean growth, in support of the plan.

Further details on the Low Carbon Economy Challenge will be announced in the coming months.

The Low Carbon Economy Leadership Fund

The $1.4 billion available to provinces and territories, under the Low Carbon Economy Leadership Fund, highlights their key role in implementing the plan and addressing climate change by reducing emissions, driving innovation, helping people and businesses save money, and creating jobs and healthier communities.

Building on the priorities they identified in the plan, provinces and territories have proposed ideas for actions to further reduce carbon pollution. The federal government is working closely with them to review the proposed actions and agree on which ones to fund. Formal agreements will be finalized so that provinces and territories can start their projects as early as this winter.

The first round of funding agreements is being announced on December 15, 2017, with six provinces whose project proposals have been approved to date: Alberta, British Columbia, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Ontario and Quebec. Funding for projects in other provinces and territories will be announced as project proposals are finalized and approved. Only provinces and territories who sign on to the Pan-Canadian Framework for Clean Growth and Climate Change are eligible for funding under the Low Carbon Economy Leadership Fund.      

Each province and territory has focused on the best ways to reduce emissions given their unique climates and circumstances. The Low Carbon Economy Leadership Fund will see wide-ranging investments: support for forests, energy-saving renovations at homes, commercial buildings,  and universities and colleges, and assistance for small businesses and homeowners to save money on their energy bills.

Provincial actions under the Low Carbon Economy Leadership Fund

British Columbia will access up to $162 million through the Low Carbon Economy Leadership Fund to invest in projects such as the reforestation of public forests, which absorb carbon from the atmosphere and store it, and the improvement of energy efficiency of buildings.

Almost $150 million will be used to support Alberta’s climate objectives. Alberta’s projects will focus on helping Albertans, including farmers and ranchers, use less energy and save money. Alberta will work with Indigenous communities to install renewable-energy solutions. The province will also invest in restoring forests affected by wildfires.

In Ontario, almost $420 million will be invested to support Ontario’s Climate Change Action Plan and help Ontarians contribute to fighting climate change. Together, Canada and Ontario will support projects such as renovating buildings, retrofitting houses, or helping farmers reduce emissions from their operations.

In Quebec, over $260 million will help expand actions under the province’s 2013-2020 Climate Change Action Plan. These new investments will allow more farmers and foresters to adopt best practices, more businesses to retrofit their buildings, and more industries to improve efficiency in innovative ways.

New Brunswick will invest its approximately $51-million allocation, in partnership with NB Power, to help New Brunswickers improve the energy efficiency of their homes and businesses. Whether in support of small-business owners, low-income homeowners, or even larger manufacturing facilities, these investments will help manage energy costs throughout New Brunswick.

In Nova Scotia, the Low Carbon Economy Leadership Fund will invest approximately $56 million to expand an existing home retrofit partnership with Efficiency Nova Scotia. Today, only those homes heated with electricity are eligible for retrofit funding. The new funding will open up Efficiency Nova Scotia’s retrofit program so that any Nova Scotian home could be eligible, allowing Nova Scotians reduce their heating bills, regardless of how they heat their homes. This will help reduce emissions and will improve comfort in households across the province, and it will contribute to Nova Scotia’s transition from coal to clean.

More details on how the Low Carbon Economy Leadership Fund will help provinces and territories take climate action will be shared over the coming months.


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