Joint public declaration on the Council of the Canada-Chile Commission for Environmental Cooperation
October 14, 2022 – Santiago, Chile
The Council of the Canada-Chile Commission for Environmental Cooperation met in person during its Twentieth Annual Session on Wednesday, October 12, 2022, in Santiago de Chile.
The Twentieth Session was chaired by the Canadian Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Steven Guilbeault, and the Chilean Minister of the Environment, Maisa Rojas, and included the participation of the Canadian Ambassador to Chile, Michael Gort, the Chilean Ambassador to Canada, Raúl Fernández, the members of the Joint Public Advisory Committee (JPAC), representatives of the Ministry of the Environment of Chile (MMA), Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC), the Embassy of Canada to Chile and the Embassy of Chile to Canada, and of the Chilean Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Energy, Finance, Prosecutor's Office, and the Undersecretary of Tourism.
During the Private Session, Canada and Chile exchanged viewpoints regarding the environmental policies and priorities of each country, took stock of past cooperation, and approved the 2022-2023 Work Program. Subsequently, they held the Public Session on the theme “Carbon Pricing: One of the Most Efficient and Cost-Effective Policy Tools to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Drive Clean Innovation”, which was attended by representatives of academia, the private sector, civil society, and the public sector, serving as a forum for dialogue and discussion with civil society. This topic was chosen following Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and President Gabriel Boric’s joint announcement on carbon pricing from June 2022, in which they recognize the urgent need to take swift and ambitious action on climate change this decade to address this global threat affecting the economy, the environment, and people’s livelihoods. Both leaders emphasized that progress must be made in the adoption and expansion of carbon pricing systems across the Americas and around the world.
Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, Canada and Chile have continued to successfully implement their joint Work Program over the past year. Both countries have been able to adapt by cooperating and meeting virtually. The last Council Session was held in April 2021. To date, virtual activities have been carried out on climate change, gender, ecotourism, electrification of transportation, climate financing, and organic waste management, among others. It should also be noted that government representatives from various countries, including Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Mexico, Panama, and Peru, and important organizations such as the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the Organization of American States (OAS), and the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) were strategic partners during this period in the implementation of some elements of the Work Program.
In June 2022, the “Americas for the Protection of the Ocean” coalition was launched. The coalition, which was signed by Canada, Mexico, the United States, Panama, Costa Rica, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Chile, seeks to promote the creation of a space for collaboration, cooperation, and coordination at a political level on Marine Protected Areas and Other Effective Area-Based Conservation Measures in the Pacific. The coalition will have as its first tasks the design of a work plan by Canada and Chile to be presented in October 2022 and to organise a face-to-face meeting in Chile in 2023. In addition, as announced in July 2022, Canada will continue collaboration with the Pacific Alliance and provide an additional $4.5 million over four years to support the Pacific Alliance countries to build domestic capacity to harmonize and improve the effectiveness of Measurement, Reporting and Verification (MRV) systems.
This year, Chile and Canada celebrate the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Agreement on Environmental Cooperation, signed in 1997 in parallel to the Canada-Chile Free Trade Agreement. This Agreement offers a model of environmental cooperation, based on the principle that trade liberalization should not be made at the expense of the protection of the environment. Chile and Canada, in the Twentieth Council Session, reiterated their commitment to the Agreement on Environmental Cooperation and agreed to a targeted and comprehensive Work Program for the year ahead, on areas including carbon pricing, shellfish sanitation, Marine Protected Areas, biodiversity conservation, and environmental impact assessment.
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