Below is an open letter that appeared as an ad in the National Post and The Hill Times. The letter recognizes that our “major trading partners have already moved aggressively and swiftly” toward a sustainable economy and strongly recommends we do the same. I was so impressed that these signatories—leading members of the business sector including some powerhouse associations—were promoting this position that I decided to present the letter here. I was also encouraged that these captains of capitalism were joined by prominent labour unions as well as environmental and Indigenous organizations. Hope springs eternal.

As the world rapidly moves towards a net zero economy, Canada has a generational opportunity to position itself for success in the 21st-century sustainable economy. Canada has the tools and assets to lead: A highly educated and highly skilled workforce, innovative companies, an abundance of natural resources, and extensive infrastructure.

Canada’s major trading partners have already moved aggressively and swiftly, notably with America’s Inflation Reduction Act and the EU’s equally ambitious Green Deal Industrial Plan.

Canada must meet these global initiatives head-on, with a response that sets the country up for economic success across existing and new industrial sectors alike, while ensuring our country can export clean energy, green materials, and technology that will contribute to global decarbonization.

We encourage the federal government to take bold steps in Budget 2023 to support the Canadian businesses that are innovating and shifting to compete in a low carbon world.
This must include:

• Supporting clean and affordable electricity production and infrastructure—in partnership with Indigenous Nations—to grow new industries and help existing industries decarbonize.

• Providing an appropriate fiscal response to the IRA, including tax credits, contracts for difference, and ‘Buy Clean’ actions to decarbonize and scale up industries where we have competitive advantages.

• Accelerating regulatory processes to get projects built more quickly so Canada does not fall behind.

• Supporting skills training for workers so they can find good-paying jobs in the low-carbon economy.

 • Supporting the development of new industries, including critical minerals, clean hydrogen, clean fuels, and clean technologies.

The world’s major economies are building cleaner futures, and they are looking for trade partners with like-minded visions. Canada must be unequivocal that it shares this commitment—while taking the steps to prove it—before we lose our existing advantages and miss the boat on the biggest shift in global trade relations in a generation.

Accelerate: Canada’s ZEV Supply Chain Alliance
Alberta Industrial Heartland Association
Aluminium Association of Canada
Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation Green Energy
Canada’s Building Trades Unions
Canadian Chamber of Commerce
Canadian Climate Institute
Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters
Canadian Steel Producers Association
Cement Association of Canada
Chemistry Industry Association of Canada
City of Greater Sudbury
Clean Energy Canada
Clean Prosperity
Efficiency Canada
Electric Mobility Canada
Forest Products Association of Canada
Indigenous Clean Energy
International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers
Ivey Foundation
Mining Association of Canada
Pembina Institute
The Transition Accelerator
Trottier Family Foundation

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