Joint Statement by Transport Canada and the U.S. Department of Transportation on the Nexus between Transportation and Climate Change


February 25, 2021      Ottawa             Transport Canada

Today, Canada’s Minister of Transport, the Honourable Omar Alghabra and United States Transportation’s Secretary, the Honourable Pete Buttigieg, issued the following statement:

“Recognizing the transport sector constitutes one of the largest sources of greenhouse gas emissions for both nations, and in light of the integrated nature of our transportation sectors, we are committed to reinvigorate our bilateral cooperation to fight climate change and limit the environmental impacts from our transportation networks—on land, air and sea.

In support of the Roadmap for a Renewed U.S.-Canada Partnership announced by President Biden and Prime Minister Trudeau and our bilateral Memorandum of Cooperation on “Transport Matters of Mutual Interest,” signed in 2016, we will work together to accelerate policy actions that help our transport sectors grapple effectively with the climate challenge. A healthy environment and economy support the goals of both countries to ‘build back better’ from the COVID-19 pandemic, and leverage actions at the state, provincial, territorial and local levels.

“On roads, together with other federal departments and agencies, we aim toward a zero-emission vehicle future through ambitious vehicle standards to improve fuel efficiency and reduce greenhouse gases from light-duty and heavy-duty vehicles. We intend to work together to help accelerate the achievement of 100% zero-emission vehicle sales for light-duty vehicles and increase the supply of and demand for zero-emission medium- and heavy-duty vehicles. We plan to explore best practices on how to help incentivize the installation of electric charging stations, and refuelling stations for clean fuels, including through the ongoing coordination of electric and alternative fuel corridors and the alignment of technical codes, standards and regulations, to enable the seamless transportation of people and goods.  We also plan to work collaboratively on new innovative solutions to decrease emissions and to advance the use of cleaner fuels in rail transportation.

“On aviation, we are committed to work together on a shared vision toward reducing the sector’s emissions in a manner consistent with the goal of net zero emissions for our economies by 2050, and on robust standards that integrate climate protection and safety. We intend to advance the development and deployment of high integrity sustainable aviation fuels and other clean technologies that meet rigorous international standards, building on existing partnerships, such as through ASCENT– the Aviation Sustainability Center-- and pursue policies to increase the supply and demand of sustainable aviation fuels. 

“We are committed to partnering in key international forums, including the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO). In ICAO, we will engage in processes to advance a new long-term aspirational goal in line with our vision for decarbonizing the aviation sector, and continue to participate in the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA). At the IMO, to reduce emissions from ships, we plan to work ​towards achieving the ​ambition reflected in the Initial IMO Strategy ​on reduction of GHG emissions to halve emissions from ships by 2050 ​compared to 2008 levels.

“We will continue to support the development of green transport infrastructure along the border, including in our management of the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway for maritime navigation. We will work to advance cleaner, sustainable and renewable fuels for shipping. We are dedicated to working with the IMO to effectively implement the ban on the use and carriage of heavy fuel oil (HFO) as fuel in the Arctic. We also look forward to exploring how we might address and support the transportation infrastructure needs of Arctic and Northern communities, such as safety, climate change, and fostering socio-economic opportunities.

“This new focus on climate will reinforce our already vast cooperation portfolio across all modes of transportation to ensure safe, secure, and efficient transportation networks of today, while preparing for the innovations of tomorrow, and recovering our economies in a way that promotes employment, sustainability and equity.”


Allison St-Jean
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Omar Alghabra
Minister of Transport, Ottawa

Media Relations
Transport Canada, Ottawa

Media Relations
United States Department of Transportation

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