Authors: Colleen Collins and Herb Emery
October 2022

Transparency and the Pan-Canadian Climate Framework in Action in the West

The case of Saskatchewan

Support for climate policy needs a well-informed Canadian public as well as Indigenous rights holders and key stakeholders including provincial governments who not only share responsibility for environmental protection but also are the owners and managers of provinces’ resources.

However, transparent information on the economic impacts of the Pan-Canadian Climate Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change at anything other than the national level are not publicly available. Because of Canada’s diverse resource endowments, economies, emissions and energy systems, national level evaluations have little value at a local level.

A case in point is the 2021 federal appendix to A Healthy Environment and Healthy Economy, the follow on plan to the Pan-Canadian Framework. The Modelling and Analysis of a Healthy Environment and Healthy Economy provides historical and future emissions projections to 2030 at the sector and provincial level, but only one national GDP growth reduction number and no provincial economic impacts.

National outcomes mask the potentially massive redistribution of jobs, investment and GDP from resource exporting regions to the core central Canadian economy. An analysis of the federal government’s estimation of the impact of climate policies finds that their estimates essentially assume away the problems created for resource export dependent provinces like Saskatchewan and Alberta. Estimates using more realistic assumptions for Saskatchewan find major impacts.

Failure to understand, recognize or be accountable for the policy implications of the diverse conditions and requirements of all regions means that the policy cannot be truly “Pan-Canadian.”

Our new paper, Transparency and the Pan-Canadian Climate Framework in Action in the West: The case of Saskatchewan, looks at the lack of transparency, reasons for it and its impacts on the West with a special focus on Saskatchewan.

Additional reading

Assessing the Validity of CGE Modelled Impacts of the Federal Climate Policies on the Saskatchewan Economy, Herb Emery and Kent Fellows, March 2022

About the authors: Colleen Collins is Vice President at the Canada West Foundation and Herb Emery is the Vaughn Chair in Economics at the University of New Brunswick

Read the full report