Montreal, May 19, 2023 - The improved investments in the 2030 Plan for a Green Economy, which were announced in the budget, are welcomed by Équiterre. However, by postponing the extension of the deposit refund system on the same day, the government is sending contradictory signals to what the Premier promised in his 2022 opening speech.
"There are interesting measures in the update, particularly in the decarbonization of buildings and in active transportation. However, the government still seems to be hesitant and timid about certain measures that would have a much more significant impact on people's actions," says Marc-André Viau, Équiterre’s Director of Government Relations.
The government is also encountering some problems with the funding of some of its programs, such as the "Roulez Vert" program to encourage the switch to electric vehicles. Équiterre has been highlighting this issue for years.
"The reason is simple: the government is not using all the fiscal tools that would help to self-finance the program. It’s now coming to the conclusion that we reached a long time ago. A surtax on the most polluting vehicles would help solve the problem. The cost of electric vehicles will not be going down, because the automobile industry only wants to manufacture larger and larger vehicles," adds Marc-André Viau.
Équiterre hopes to see results quickly from the $255 million boost to help the industrial sector decarbonize, now totaling a generous $1.9 billion. "With this much money invested, we expect short-term results and better industrial choices in the long run," she believes.
Équiterre would also like to highlight some good news:
There are increased investments in active transportation, which we welcome, though they remain far too modest.
There are increased investments in climate adaptation. However, Équiterre believes that these programs would be more effective if they were structured as part of an adaptation strategy.
Équiterre is looking forward to seeing the details of the zero emission vehicle standard for heavy-duty vehicles - a regulation with significant GHG reduction potential.
Équiterre's offices are located on Indigenous lands that have not been ceded by treaty, which we now call Montreal and Quebec City. We recognize that Indigenous peoples have protected their territories since immemorial times and have used their traditional knowledge to guard the lands and waters. We are grateful to live on these lands and are committed to continuing our efforts to protect them. Read more »