Canada to Rely on Technology as G-7 Vows Deep Emissions Cuts

(Bloomberg) -- Canada will use innovation to meet its greenhouse-gas targets and avoid major industrial disruption, the Prime Minister said.

Stephen Harper explained his country’s technology-based strategy to reduce emissions by about a third by 2030 after the Group of Seven nations committed on Monday to a “decarbonisation” of the world’s economy by the end of the century.

The prospect of deep global cuts was applauded Monday by environmental groups. For Canada, it raises questions about the future of key emitters including the oil and gas sector, which is a source of much of the country’s projected emissions growth.

“I don’t think we should fool ourselves,” Harper told reporters at a press conference. “Nobody’s going to start to shut down their industries or turn off the lights. We’ve simply got to find a way to create lower-carbon-emitting sources of energy.”

The G-7 communique, published at the conclusion of a two- day summit in southern Germany, said “deep cuts in global greenhouse gas emissions are required with a decarbonisation of the global economy” by 2100. That includes emissions cuts of 40 to 70 percent from 2010 levels by 2050 -- a pledge made ahead of a major United Nations climate conference in Paris in December.

‘Strong Statement’

Harper, whose government is regularly criticized by environmentalists on its climate record, said “the challenge will be for the rest of the world to join us in moving forward” on the G-7’s “strong statement.” Canada has pledged a 30 percent reduction from 2005 levels by 2030 without saying how it will achieve that goal.

The country will rely on innovation to reach its domestic and global commitments, Harper said. “We do understand, and I think all leaders understand, to achieve these kinds of milestones over the decades to come will require serious technological transformation.”


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