On September 21, 2022, the Government of New Brunswick released its renewed Climate Change Action Plan: Our Pathway Towards Decarbonization and Climate Resilience. The renewed Plan outlines actions the province will take between 2022 and 2027 to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and prepare for climate change.
The Plan features three pillars: government leadership and accountability, with 30 individual measurable actions across the sections. Importantly, the Plan’s measurable actions include commitments to reduce GHG emissions to at least 46 per cent below 2005 emission levels by 2030, and to net zero emissions by 2050.
- Promote climate change literacy and professional development to ensure educational staff in K-12 have the tools to communicate climate change, with the goal of having 10-20 percent of educational staff per facility provided with climate change training by 2027.
- Establish a working group with Indigenous communities and organizations by 2024 to identify climate change priority areas and facilitate information sharing.
- Support the transition to zero-emission freight transportation (including completing a Zero-emission Freight Strategy by 2024 that will include market research, fleet assessments, targets, and piloting clean fuel and charging infrastructure).
- Develop a Clean Electricity Strategy by 2025 for achieving net-zero electricity emissions by 2035, based on guiding principles that support clean, reliable, efficient, and affordable electricity. The Strategy is expected identify the roles of renewable energy, distributed energy, clean fuels, among others. It will also include the development of two first-of-their-kind SMR technologies and a clear path to transition off coal-fired electricity.
- Enable the local production and use of renewable natural gas (RNG) and clean hydrogen to ensure that New Brunswickers have access to decarbonized fuels by 2030 to meet their future energy requirements.
- Develop a whole-of-government Sustainable Economic Development Plan for New Brunswick focused on decarbonization opportunities and barriers, specifically geared toward creating the economic growth conditions that will enable business and industry transition and growth. Promote workforce and skills readiness by conducting a Clean Technology Skills Gap Assessment by 2025.
In January 2022, the Atlantica Centre for Energy presented its Submission to the Standing Committee on Climate Change and Environmental Stewardship calling for the renewal of the Plan. Many of the Centre’s recommendations were reflected in the Plan design including to:
- reflect New Brunswick’s unique socio-economic and environmental attributes
- improve energy literacy, education, and awareness
- encourage economic development through innovation
- learn from communities (municipalities and First Nations) in driving successful decarbonization efforts
- support Emissions-Intensive Trade-Exposed (EITE) Industries
- provide transparent and efficient transitional support programs
Read more about the Atlantica Centre for Energy’s Submission regarding the Renewal of the New Brunswick Climate Change Action Plan.