December 4, 2019 - "I appreciate the work of the Auditor General and her office
in providing this year's report.
Ontario leads Canada in greenhouse gas reductions and our government is committed
to continuing to do our part to help Canada meet its target under the Paris Agreement.
The Auditor's review of our greenhouse gas reduction efforts looked at our Made-in-Ontario
Environment Plan at a point in time. The plan has evolved and continues to evolve,
and we will review and consider the Auditor's recommendations as part of this work.
Our ambitious plan – the first comprehensive, integrated environment plan in Ontario
- is our government's proposed roadmap to preserving and protecting our land, air,
and water, addressing litter and reducing waste, and supporting the people of Ontario
as we work towards reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Through this plan, we also affirmed our focus on protecting species at risk and
their habitat, conserving and managing our parks and greenspaces, and tackling climate
change, now and for future generations. We have put forward smart solutions that
support both a healthy environment and a healthy economy, and over the past year,
we've made significant progress on key commitments in the plan.
As conservatives, we are held to higher standard on climate change and environmental
policies which is why we have put forward measurements on how our initiatives will
help us meet our target.
There is no one single environmental approach or solution that fully addresses the
needs of all provinces, regions or communities. That is why our environment plan
will continue to evolve as a living document to address the environmental priorities
of Ontarians as new information, ideas and innovations emerge.
We are launching Ontario's first-ever broad, multi-sector provincial climate change
impact assessment that will access the best science and information to better understand
where and how climate change will impact Ontario. We have also established a new
advisory panel on climate change and outlined how they will provide expert advice
on the implementation of the province's climate change actions – especially how
Ontarians can prepare for the costs and impacts of climate change.
Through continued collaboration with all levels of government, government agencies
and the private sector, we will see further development of our plan to include the
most effective and affordable ways to protect our environment and reduce greenhouse
Since taking office we have enabled a number of major, transformative projects to
reduce carbon emissions from Ontario's power system, including the Wataynikaneyap
Power Transmission Project to connect sixteen diesel-powered First Nation communities
to our clean electricity grid, and we committed to the continued operation life
of the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station, which will provide a significant amount
of zero-emission baseload generation to benefit all of Ontario.
We have also brought forward initiatives that will make it easier for people to
use public transit and get more cars off the road, now and in the future, such as
expanding and electrifying GO Transit, creating the Ontario Line, and extending
the Scarborough Subway.
Our government will continue to look to private sector innovation because we know
that addressing climate change and reducing greenhouse gas emissions requires collaboration
with businesses and stakeholders. Many private sector firms have already taken up
the challenge – for example, testing the use of innovative low-carbon fuels in the
As we move forward, we are going to look at actions that reflect all parts of our
province because what works in larger cities may not be sensible in other parts
of the province. I look forward to working together with people across Ontario to
evolve our plan in way that will work for our diverse communities – including rural,
Northern and Indigenous communities.
Our plan encourages all Ontarians to take meaningful action to protect and preserve
our natural environment. Together, I know that we can continue to ensure Ontario
tackles climate change in a way that maintains both a healthy environment and a