Paris climate change deal brings calls to action from Canadians - Macleans.ca

Paris climate change deal brings calls to action from Canadians

While Canada’s environment minister applauds the newly approved “Paris agreement” on climate change, some say that merely signing the pact isn’t enough.

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Minister of the Environment and Climate Change Catherine McKenna speaks at Canada 20/20 in Ottawa November 20, 2015. (Photograph by Blair Gable)While Canada’s environment minister applauds the newly approved “Paris agreement” on climate change, some say that merely signing the pact isn’t enough.

Nearly 200 countries agreed to a deal on Saturday — it asks all countries to limit their greenhouse gas emissions for the first time.

The agreement limits temperature rise to two degrees Celsius.

On Twitter, Catherine McKenna writes that she’s proud to be part of the agreement, saying it makes history and is “for our children.”

However both NDP leader Tom Mulcair and World Wildlife Fund Canada say merely approving the agreement isn’t enough.

Related: Behind the scenes with Canada’s lead climate conference negotiator

They say the Canadian government must act to reduce fossil fuel emissions.

The Conservative Party did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the agreement.

Related: Why the Tories must shake an association with climate change skepticism 

Erin Flanagan, the federal policy director of Pembina Institute, says the federal government should establish a climate change plan quickly.

She said provincial commitments won’t be enough to reduce emissions, but the agreement “ 1/8underscores 3/8 a powerful global transition away from high-carbon fossil fuels.”