OTTAWA – After a procedural roadblock thrown up by Conservatives that forced a Wednesday night vote, Thunder Bay–Superior North MP Bruce Hyer’s private member’s bill, the Climate Change Accountability Act (Bill C-311) survived to move on to a final debate in the House of Commons.
“It was great to see a majority of the Members of Parliament come together to get this passed,” said Hyer after the vote. “Now just one final debate – and one last vote – and Canada will finally be on its way to having a clear framework for fighting climate change. The government has refused action for years, but a united opposition in Parliament can legislate action in law.”
C-311 is the country’s only federal climate change bill. The legislation sets firm science-based targets to reduce greenhouse gas pollution by 80% from 1990 levels by 2050, and is designed to compel government accountability to Canadians on climate change through regular reporting. The bill passed by a vote of 155 to 137 after thousands of Canadians contacted their Members of Parliament to voice their support for the bill.
“At a time when Canada badly needs clear and decisive leadership on the climate crisis, this historic piece of legislation is now one step closer to becoming law,” said New Democrat Leader Jack Layton. “Canadians have said loud and clear that they want us to be world leaders in reducing greenhouse-gas emissions, and this bill would help make that a reality.”
The landmark bill is expected to be debated for one last hour in late May or early June, with a final vote following within a week or two of the debate.