2023 Progress Report on the 2030 Emissions Reduction Plan: Executive summary

Last year, the Government of Canada released the 2030 Emissions Reduction Plan: Canada’s Next Steps for Clean Air and a Strong Economy. The 2023 Progress Report on the Emissions Reduction Plan is the first progress report since and shows Canadians our progress on the path laid out in the Emissions Reduction Plan.

The 2030 Emissions Reduction Plan presented an ambitious and achievable roadmap, outlining a sector‑by‑sector path for Canada to reach 40% below 2005 national emissions levels by 2030, accompanied by scenario modelling that indicates priority areas for further action. It also set an interim objective of 20% below 2005 levels by 2026.

The Progress Report indicates that we are on a solid path toward our 2030 target. In fact, Canada is on pace to surpass our previous target of 30% below 2005 levels and is currently tracking to exceed our 2026 interim objective. With additional actions, and engagement from provinces, territories, municipalities, Indigenous communities, the financial sector, and the business sector, Canada can and will meet our emissions reduction target.

Assessing progress

The primary means through which Canada will assess achievement of its target is through emissions in the target year. This 2023 Progress Report includes several measures to assess progress toward Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction target, including:

This Progress Report is presented in two parts: Part I provides an overview of the progress made toward Canada’s 2030 target and implementation of the 2030 Emissions Reduction Plan. Part II provides a comprehensive accounting of federal actions and more in-depth consideration of the work across Canada.

Canada’s projected emissions trajectory

See long description below
Long description for figure

This graphic is a line graph, displaying Canada’s historical emissions and projected emissions trajectory, beginning in 2005 and ending in 2035. The three data lines are: 2015 projections from the Second Biennial Report, 2023 projections, and 2023 projections with nature-based climate solutions (NBCS) and agriculture measures. Additionally, the graph indicates Canada’s 2026 interim objective (20% below 2005 levels), as well as the former (30% below 2005 levels) and current (40-45% below 2005 levels) 2030 emissions targets.

Canada’s projected emissions trajectory
Year 2015 Projections (Second Biennial Report) (Mt CO2 eq) 2023 Projections
(Mt CO2 eq)
2023 Projections with NBCS and Ag measures (Mt CO2 eq)
2005 749 732 -
2006 740 722 -
2007 761 751 -
2008 741 733 -
2009 699 675 -
2010 707 712 -
2011 709 727 -
2012 715 719 -
2013 726 718 -
2014 727 692 -
2015 736 725 -
2016 748 695 -
2017 755 693 -
2018 761 707 -
2019 764 697 -
2020 768 629 -
2021 770 637 -
2022 774 679 -
2023 783 626 -
2024 789 610 -
2025 793 597 -
2026 798 573 -
2027 801 551 -
2028 807 526 -
2029 812 505 -
2030 815 480 467
2031 - 470 457
2032 - 461 448
2033 - 455 442
2034 - 448 435
2035 - 436 423

In the Emissions Reduction Plan Progress Report, which references the projections published in the 2023 Emissions Projections Report, Canada is expected to:

When the Emissions Reduction Plan was released, potential measures with enough information to model were included. As we continue to finalize regulations and programs, staying the course on implementation is critical to ensuring we meet the 36% reductions below 2005 levels already identified. The changes in projections from the 2030 Emissions Reduction Plan to the Fifth Biennial Report to the Emissions Reduction Plan Progress Report are a result of changes to the data and methodology of the model, such as changes in forecasts for supply and demand for natural gas, population and gross domestic product estimates, forecasts for industrial emissions intensities, and land use, land-use change, and forestry calculations.

This Progress Report lists a suite of additional actions that have already been identified but are not developed enough to be fully modelled. In the upcoming months these will be further refined to develop policies and programs that will close the gap by 2030.

Furthermore, of the 149 measures, 78% are actively being implemented. For regulations this means, at a minimum, draft regulations have been released. For funding programs, it means they are running and accepting proposals to support decarbonization. Only 9% are being explored or are under development.

As a result of the division of powers between the national and subnational governments, provinces and territories are responsible for many of the regulations and policies needed to meet net zero. This report illustrates the commitments made by each.

Whole-of-society approach

Five provinces and one territory (British Columbia, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and the Yukon) have legislated climate targets. Four provinces and one territory (Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Newfoundland and Labrador, and the Northwest Territories) have non-legislated climate targets. Saskatchewan is the only province without a climate target. Nunavut has no climate target, but the extremely small population, paired with the cold temperatures, provide additional challenges for this region.

Municipal governments have a role in managing buildings, transportation, water, waste, and land use, and therefore play an important role.

First Nations, Inuit, and Métis in Canada are at the forefront of efforts to address climate change and adapt to the impacts of our changing climate. Canada has committed to advancing an Indigenous Climate Leadership Agenda together with First Nations, Inuit, and Métis partners in recognition that Indigenous Peoples have long called for a renewed nation-to-nation, Inuit–Crown and Government-to-Government relationship, based on the recognition of rights, respect, cooperation, and partnership.

Many Indigenous leaders are taking action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, serving as guardians and stewards of ecosystems, managing water and air pollution, and improving how the natural environment is respected and protected. Indigenous leadership and knowledge are critical to achieving the foundational changes required to address climate change and support a healthy environment.

The private sector, including industry, banks, and institutional investors, can make decisions with far-reaching impacts. Sectors with a high potential to effect changes include transportation, buildings, and electricity. Their actions, such as supporting the adoption of zero-emission vehicles, heat pumps, and using the most efficient building codes, will help prepare Canadians for a low-carbon future and support the expansion of renewable energy to decarbonize Canada’s electrical grid.

Climate action is taking place nationwide.

Additional actions

The Government of Canada is pursuing a number of opportunities to help ensure that Canada remains firmly on track to meet our 2030 target and be net zero by 2050, including:

About this report

In 2021, Canada passed the Canadian Net-Zero Emissions Accountability Act which requires setting emissions targets every five years and regular reporting on progress. The 2023 Progress Report on the 2030 Emissions Reduction Plan (ERP) is split into two parts.

Part I includes:

Chapter 1: highlights the context that informs and influences the Government of Canada’s actions to address climate change and outlines how implementation of the 2030 ERP is assessed.

Chapter 2: summarizes the progress toward meeting Canada’s interim 2026 emissions objective and 2030 emissions target, provides an overview of measures implemented and in development, identifies opportunities for additional climate action to increase the probability of achieving the 2030 target, and describes the enabling measures that are helping to steer the economy to net zero.

Chapter 3: addresses the importance of collective action, recognizing that action is needed across all of society and by all orders of government, highlighting work with Indigenous partners to advance an Indigenous Climate Leadership Agenda, the advice of the Net‑Zero Advisory Body, and efforts underway with the international community.

Chapter 4: highlights next steps and upcoming milestones such as 2035 target setting and the 2025 Progress Report under the Canadian Net-Zero Emissions Accountability Act.

Part II includes:

Chapter 5: provides an overview of Canada’s emissions reporting, including an overview of international reporting commitments, summaries of the most recent national inventory report and emissions projections report, and an overview of the approach to continuous improvement for Canada’s emissions inventory and projections.

Chapter 6: provides comprehensive updates on the implementation status of 2030 ERP measures—federal measures and strategies as well as cooperative agreements and measures with provinces and territories.

Chapter 7: provides an overview of the work of provinces and territories, recognizing their important role in taking action on climate change.

Key definitions, acronyms, and references are provided in the annexes.

Together this comprises Canada’s 2023 Progress Report on the 2030 Emissions Reduction Plan, which fulfills the Government of Canada’s reporting requirements under Section 14 of the Canadian Net-Zero Emissions Accountability Act to prepare a progress report by no later than the end of 2023.

Unless explicitly stated otherwise, all emissions estimates given in Mt represent emissions of GHGs in megatonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (Mt CO2 eq).

Page details

Date modified: