Challenges and Opportunities of a Forthcoming Strategic Assessment of the Implications of International Climate Change Mitigation Commitments for Individual Undertakings in Canada

Sustainability 2018, 10(10), 3747

21 Pages Posted: 10 Nov 2018 Last revised: 19 Dec 2018

See all articles by Robert B. Gibson

Robert B. Gibson

University of Waterloo - School of Environment, Resources and Sustainability

Karine Peloffy

Quebec Center for Environmental Law

Meinhard Doelle

Dalhousie University - Schulich School of Law; World Maritime University (WMU); Dalhousie University - Marine and Environmental Law Institute

Date Written: October 18, 2018

Abstract

Canada is preparing to initiate a challenging, but potentially ground-breaking, strategic assessment on the implications of its climate change mitigation commitments for project assessments. The strategic assessment is immediately needed to provide project-level guidance for decision makers who will be required under new federal legislation to consider the extent to which each assessed project “contributes to sustainability” and “hinders or contributes to” meeting Canada’s climate commitments. However, Canada, like many other countries, has not yet translated its Paris Agreement climate commitments into an adequate suite of specific policies, pathways, budgets, and other directives for compliance. Consequently, the climate commitments’ strategic assessment will need to play a fully strategic role—in policy development as well as policy interpretation and elaboration for assessment purposes. This paper outlines the key considerations and required steps for a strategic assessment that fills the policy gap between Paris and projects, and develops guidance centred on a suite of tests for evaluating proposed major projects that may have important effects on Canada’s prospects for meeting its climate commitments.

Keywords: Climate Change, Mitigation, Paris Agreement, Strategic Assessment, Project Assessment Climate Policy, Canada, Impact Assessment, Law

Suggested Citation

Gibson, Robert B. and Peloffy, Karine and Doelle, Meinhard, Challenges and Opportunities of a Forthcoming Strategic Assessment of the Implications of International Climate Change Mitigation Commitments for Individual Undertakings in Canada (October 18, 2018). Sustainability 2018, 10(10), 3747, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3269287

Robert B. Gibson (Contact Author)

University of Waterloo - School of Environment, Resources and Sustainability ( email )

200 University Ave. W.
Waterloo, Ontario N2L 3G1
Canada

Karine Peloffy

Quebec Center for Environmental Law ( email )

454 Laurier East Avenue
Montreal, Quebec H2J 1E7
Canada

Meinhard Doelle

Dalhousie University - Schulich School of Law ( email )

6061 University Avenue
6061 University Ave
Halifax, Nova Scotia B3H 4H9
Canada

World Maritime University (WMU) ( email )

Fiskehamnsgatan 1
P. O. Box 500
Malmö, Skane 20124
Sweden

Dalhousie University - Marine and Environmental Law Institute ( email )

6061 University Avenue
Halifax, Nova Scotia B3H 4H9
Canada

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