Minister Guilbeault speaks at the World Sustainable Development Summit and outlines Canada’s leadership role at home and abroad
February 16, 2022 – Gatineau, Quebec
The Minister of Environment and Climate Change, the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, issued the following statement today after his participation at the World Sustainable Development Summit hosted by India:
“Unsustainable consumption and production endanger our planet’s survival.
“We all know the signs: food waste, carbon-intensive industries, destruction of natural habitats. We also know that we have an opportunity to put a stop to this trend now.
“As we gradually win the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, we can build greener and more sustainable patterns of production and consumption, embracing the principles of a circular economy.
“No one country has all the answers, of course. Given how intricate and interconnected the world has become, it would be fruitless to seek anything but a solution that involves as many nations as possible.
“Nor is the goal of greater sustainable development a matter of a single policy. Rather, it requires a broad range of measures. While citizen and consumer movements are important, governments must play a key role. We need to act collectively and with growing urgency.
“Governments and the private sector must also work together.
“Canada has made several concrete commitments to bolster sustainable consumption and production in our economy. For example, the Government of Canada is taking real action to reduce plastic waste and pollution at home.
“After thorough research and consultation with industry partners, we will be instituting a ban on harmful single-use plastics this year.
“We are also proposing to establish recycled-content requirements in plastic products and packaging. These will send the necessary market signals to drive investment in recycling infrastructure and spur innovation in technology and product design.
“Internationally, Canada supports the establishment of a legally binding global agreement on plastics that is ambitious, effective, feasible, and takes a full life cycle approach to addressing plastic pollution. Our country is co-chairing the process towards such an agreement at the United Nations Environment Assembly 5.2 at the end of February, alongside Ghana.
“Finance is another critical component to achieving greater sustainability in consumption and production. This is why Canada endorsed the framework of the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD), a body created in 2015 by the Financial Stability Board, an international organization that monitors the global financial system.
“To continue to align financial decision-making with sustainability in the interest of better protecting our natural world, Canada will also be joining the new Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures (TNFD).
“Given that more than half the world’s economic output is linked to nature, the recommendations of the TNFD will help financial institutions and companies incorporate nature-related risks and opportunities into their strategic planning, risk management, and asset allocation decisions.
“All of these initiatives demonstrate that government and the private sector must work together to achieve the objectives of more sustainable consumption and production.
“Successful transitions in our economies can lead us all to achieve the sustainable development that must be part of the 21st-century world.”
Office of the Minister of Environment and Climate Change
Environment and Climate Change Canada
819-938-3338 or 1-844-836-7799 (toll-free)