Newfoundland seeks to lead on climate change

Earlier this week the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, facing an election on November 11th of this year, released two reports: Moving Forward: Energy Efficiency Action Plan 2011 and Charting Our Course: Climate Change Action Plan 2011.  Releasing the reports, Ross Wiseman, Minister of Environment and Conservation, said “The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador believes that our province can be a leader in how to respond to climate change”. Shawn Skinner, Minister of Natural Resources is quoted as saying  “Energy efficiency offers a tremendous opportunity to support economic development and environmental progress in Newfoundland and Labrador. Energy efficiency can lower household fuel bills, strengthen business competitiveness, enhance energy security, reduce air pollutants harmful to human health, and contribute to efforts to tackle climate change.”

While somewhat weak on specifics, the climate change action plan does set some useful goals:
1: Enhance Newfoundland and Labrador’s resilience to the impacts of climate change.
2: Reduce greenhouse gas emission levels in Newfoundland and Labrador.
3: Demonstrate Provincial Government leadership on climate change.
4: Advance action on climate change through collaboration with other governments.

The Energy Efficiency Action Plan similarly sets a series of three goals:
1: Support a major shift in the uptake of energy efficiency.
2: Demonstrate Provincial Government leadership on energy efficiency.
3: Advance action on energy efficiency through collaboration with
other jurisdictions.

GallonDaily commends the Newfoundland and Labrador Government for publishing these two plans and recommends them to others seeking to begin the processes of energy efficiency and climate change action. It has been a long time since the Newfoundland and Labrador government published its Climate Change Action Plan 2005 and it is not clear how much of that plan has actually been implemented. Nevertheless the 2011 plans do provide a framework that should lead to further action in the future.

Both plans are available at

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