Canada sets a 100% ZEV goal and fear not—electric cars hold their own at -39 C—plus why climate change is an ever-growing global health crisis


'I don’t want your hope. I want you to panic’

Everyone’s favourite junior-climate activist is back.This time, 16-year-old Greta Thurberg has taken her fight to the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland.

Conquering COP24 was not enough for the no-nonsense teen who proved that when it comes to climate solutions, excuses and swanky suits are out—and plain-talk and pigtails are in. During her speech, she call out those who use complexity as an excuse for inaction: “You say nothing in life is black or white, but that is a lie. A very dangerous lie.”

It’s no surprise that her message has inspired other school-goers to join the cause. All over Europe, students are striking from school and joining marches to demand action on climate change. The adults in the room (that’s us) should pay attention.

Watch Greta Thurberg's speech at the World Economic Forum Annual meeting

CO2 at a record high

I'll just let the facts speak for themselves on this one: after a brief slowdown, CO2 emissions are set to rise by a near-record amount in 2019. Greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere has not been this high for millions of years. See for yourself:

Speaking of inaction...

It appears Doug Ford might have missed the memo on the above. The Ontario Premier has lashed out at the federal government’s carbon price, suggesting it will cause a “carbon-tax recession.” This is contrary to all available evidence, every single economist who has weighed in on the issue, as well as the report Ford referenced (see tweet below).

Canada has committed to 100% ZEVs by 2040

Speaking after a meeting of Canada’s transport ministers Monday, Federal Transportation Minister Marc Garneau announced that ZEVs—like electric cars—will make up 10% of new cars sold by 2025, 30% by 2030 and 100% by 2040. As I told the Toronto Star last week, the goals are “ambitious but achievable”—of course, targets are only as good as the plan to hit them, and I look forward to seeing more details.

Are EVs also feeling the chill?

Has anyone ever told you that EVs won’t work in Canada because it’s too cold? If so, tell them about Mike Simon from the Yukon who drives his Tesla model 3 to work even when it’s -39 C. If they’re still unconvinced, send them this: “5 misconceptions about driving an EV in winter.”

Americans hit back at climate denial

Despite Trump’s insistence that climate change is of little consequence to the U.S., Americans are more aware than ever of the importance of climate change. According to a new poll, a record 73% of Americans now say global warming is real, up 10% from 2015.

Suffield goes solar

Alberta is about to get a new federally-funded 23-megawatt solar farm near Suffield, which will power 7,400 homes— a reminder that province has plenty to gain from the clean energy transition. In fact, it has a massive potential for geothermal energy exploitation, provided the policies can keep up with the shift.

EVs not just for city slickers

The EV momentum just keeps on growing. The president of GMC revealed the company is considering adding a new electric pickup to its repertoire to achieve its all-electric ambitions. What’s more, if motorbikes are more your thing, you’ll soon be able to get astride a new electric Ducati after the Italian motorbike manufacturer announced “the future is electric.”

Keeping ahead of the curve 

In case you’re still unsure how you’re going to charge that new electric pickup, peruse this article in The Conversation on how cities in Canada can support the EV transition. Key takeaway: the government shouldn't just incentivize the purchase of an EV, but also the installation of its charging point.

Climate change is a global health crisis

Warning: This one is far from uplifting, exploring the oft-overlooked link between climate change and human health. From disease to famine to reduced cognitive function, it’s not a pretty list. As the article concludes: “if you care about your health, you should care about climate change too.”

Clean Energy Review is sponsored in part by Genus Capital Management, a leading provider of fossil-fuel-free investments. 
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Images: The Guardian
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