Green Budget Coalition Responds to Budget 2010:
Encouraged on Water & Indicators, Disappointed Overall
March 5, 2010 (Ottawa) —The Green Budget Coalition (GBC), comprising 21 of Canada's leading environmental and conservation organisations, stated today that it is encouraged by the important investments in water and natural capital indicators in the 2010 federal budget, but disappointed overall that the budget did not include the actions necessary for Canadians to transition to a green economy and to protect our country's biodiversity and ecosystems. The GBC also expressed concern about the questionable changes to environmental assessments.
The GBC's three priority recommendations for Budget 2010 focused on: ecosystems and biodiversity; water; and renewable energy.
"We are encouraged to see new investments in Canada's freshwater," said Barry Turner, Green Budget Coalition Chair, "including for cleaning up Areas of Concern and upgrading First Nations' infrastructure, as well as for protection from invasive species in the face of the current Asian Carp threat. Federal leadership is crucial to protecting Canada's limited freshwater resources and wetlands. We are also pleased to see funding to continue Canada's valuable natural capital indicators for two more years."
"However, amidst International Year of Biodiversity, in the lead-up to hosting the G8 and G20, we are disappointed that the budget contained no new funding to protect our biodiversity and to meet our commitments under the Convention on Biological Diversity," said Mara Kerry, Nature Canada's Conservation Director.
"Furthermore, this budget was a critical missed opportunity to invest in clean energy jobs and to live up to the climate change commitment to developing countries reiterated in the Throne Speech," said Tim Weis of the Pembina Institute. "Canada will be falling behind countries worldwide in supporting clean energy and thus missing out on the numerous economic advantages available to those leading the way to a greener economy."
The GBC also assessed other measures as:
The budget made no progress on GBC recommendations for:
The Green Budget Coalition's members are Bird Studies Canada, Canadian Environmental Law Association, Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, Centre for Integral Economics, David Suzuki Foundation, Ducks Unlimited Canada, Ecojustice Canada, Environmental Defence, Équiterre, Friends of the Earth Canada, Greenpeace Canada, International Institute for Sustainable Development, MiningWatch Canada, Nature Canada, Nature Conservancy of Canada, Pembina Institute, Pollution Probe, Sierra Club Canada, Social Investment Organization, Wildlife Habitat Canada, and WWF-Canada.
The GBC submits priority recommendations for each annual federal budget. The GBC's full Recommendations for Budget 2010: Investing in a Prosperous Green Future document is available at http://www.greenbudget.ca/2010/main.html.
The GBC will also be issuing a more detailed environmental impact summary and analysis of Budget 2010.
For more information, please contact:
For specific recommendations: