JPAC calls for compatible policies and support for low-carbon economies
Montreal, 17 May 2010 – Following its most recent public meeting on “North America’s Energy Market: Aligning Policies and Managing Carbon,” held in March in Vancouver, Canada, the Joint Public Advisory Committee (JPAC) has issued recommendations for promoting low-carbon economies throughout the region.
The recommendations to the Council of the Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC) -the top environmental officials from Canada, Mexico and the United States- include the need to develop a joint energy policy approach for the three countries as well as common definitions for clean, renewable and green technologies.
JPAC, a group of 15 independent citizens-five appointed by each North American country-advises the Council on any matter within the scope of the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation and serves as a source of information for the CEC Secretariat. JPAC holds regular public meetings to seek input on a wide variety of environmental issues.
The group also stressed the importance of identifying possible adverse effects and unintended consequences of developing energy and climate-change policies, and analyzing the cumulative effects of renewable energy projects on a smaller scale.
Other recommendations stemming from the public meeting include:
- Support funding of research on carbon capture and storage and the development of compatible rules and standards.
- Develop compatible market decisions in each country to ensure the North American carbon market functions effectively and is characterized by a clear price signal.
- Enhance the North American Environmental Atlas to include geographic data on substances such as methane and black carbon that are of concern for their potential to contribute to climate change.
- Foster forestry management practices in each of the three countries to support natural carbon sequestration.
About the CEC
The Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC) was established in 1994 by the governments of Canada, Mexico and the United States through the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation, a parallel environmental agreement to NAFTA. As of 2020, the CEC is recognized and maintained by the Environmental Cooperation Agreement, in parallel with the new Free Trade Agreement of North America. The CEC brings together a wide range of stakeholders, including the general public, Indigenous people, youth, nongovernmental organizations, academia, and the business sector, to seek solutions to protect North America’s shared environment while supporting sustainable development for the benefit of present and future generations
The CEC is governed and funded equally by the Government of Canada through Environment and Climate Change Canada, the Government of the United States of Mexico through the Secretaría de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales, and the Government of the United States of America through the Environmental Protection Agency.