Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment

The Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment (CCME) consists of the 14 federal, provincial, and territorial ministers with the environment in their portfolios. This intergovernmental forum meets at least once a year to discuss collective action on national and international environmental issues.

2023 Meeting of the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment

On July 27, Ontario's Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks, the Honourable David Piccini, hosted the 2023 Canadian Council of Ministers (COM) meeting, in Huntsville, Ontario. Ministers convened to continue their conversations on advancing a circular economy, shared innovative solutions to lessen the impacts of climate change and strengthen the resiliency of Canadian communities.

Ministers discussed the impacts of climate change that all provinces and territories are experiencing, such as wildfires, droughts, floods, permafrost thaw and sea-ice loss.  Ministers emphasized the importance of collaboration and complementary efforts to building resiliency to help increase Canadians capacity to prepare for, respond to, and recover from the impacts of climate change. Environment and Climate Change Canada's Deputy Minister highlighted national initiatives, such as Canada's recently released National Adaptation Strategy, which will help pave the way to further collaborative opportunities. Ministers noted the importance of climate adaptation across jurisdictions, given the impacts of climate change are now lived realities for a majority of Canadians.

Prior to the COM meeting, Ministers met on July 26 with industry and environmental organizations representatives as well as with Indigenous leaders from National Indigenous Organizations and from Ontario First Nations and Métis Communities.  The conversation with industry and environmental organizations focused on plastic reduction efforts and on driving the circular economy through initiatives such as Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR). Discussions with Indigenous leaders focused on ways to enhance collaboration on environmental priorities, in particular on water and on efforts to address the impacts of climate change. Indigenous leaders highlighted the importance of water, and the role of meaningful consultation in collaboratively developing environmental and water-related legislation. Canada's Deputy Minister highlighted the efforts towards modernizing the Canada Water Act, which provides an opportunity for collaboration with Indigenous partners. The Ministers look forward to continuing to their engagement with Indigenous leaders at next year's meeting.

At the end of the meeting, the Minister of Ontario transferred the CCME presidency to the Minister of Environment and Climate Change of Newfoundland and Labrador, who will host the 2024 meeting.

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