FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
K’JIPUKTUK (Halifax) December 13, 2018 – Environment and Climate Change Canada has released the final regulations for their plan to phase out coal electricity across Canada by 2030. The regulations would lead to significant emissions reductions, health improvements and health cost savings across Nova Scotia.
“These regulations are a fantastic step on the pathway to reducing emissions, investing in our health and creating good jobs in industries that are here to stay,” says Stephen Thomas, Energy Campaign Coordinator with the Ecology Action Centre.
The Ecology Action Centre interprets the final federal regulations as leading to an emissions cap for the Nova Scotia electricity sector of about 2.4 Million tonnes of greenhouse gases by 2030 – a reduction of about 66% below 2016 levels.
According to the regulations from Environment and Climate Change Canada, phasing out coal by 2030 will avoid 89 premature deaths, 8,000 asthma episodes and 58,000 days of breathing difficulty for Nova Scotians.
“We expect to see a plan put forward by the Nova Scotia government for equivalent emissions reductions, and we look forward to having the conversation in Nova Scotia about how we can meet our electricity needs with affordable, clean energy in 2030 and beyond,” says Thomas.
In November 2016, Nova Scotia and the federal government announced an ‘agreement in principle’, for Nova Scotia to keep many of its coal plants running past 2030, but make equivalent emissions reductions through the signing of an Equivalency Agreement. Nova Scotia currently has eight coal-fired generation units across four coal plants, all owned by Nova Scotia Power.
As part of the federal policy, the independent Just Transition Task Force has been meeting with coal workers and communities across Nova Scotia and Canada and is expected to provide recommendations to the federal government in the coming weeks on focused support for workers and communities transitioning to other sectors over the next 12 to 17 years.
“The rights of workers and communities in this shift to a green economy is critical. No one can be left behind, and we see that it is absolutely possible to create good jobs and opportunities in energy efficiency, renewable energy and the green economy here at home,” says Thomas.
The cost of renewable energy has been dropping dramatically in recent years. The energy and finance giant Lazard reported this year that the cost of new wind and solar energy is already often cheaper than the marginal cost of keeping coal units running.
“Phasing out coal in Nova Scotia makes more sense now than it ever has. In the long term we can save money, reduce emissions, protect our health and create jobs. Let’s get to it,” says Thomas.
Energy Campaign Coordinator, Ecology Action Centre
902 441 7136 firstname.lastname@example.org
Final ECCC Coal Regulations:
Lazard’s Levelized Cost of Energy Analysis V.12:
Federal Just Transition Task Force on Coal Workers and Communities: