Manitoba, Alberta premiers announce partnership on renewable energy

Energy is on the table as Western Canada's two NDP premiers meet today in Winnipeg.

Premier Rachel Notley, Premier Greg Selinger to swap climate change strategy ideas going forward

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley and Manitoba Premier Greg Selinger announced Friday in Winnipeg that both provinces will be collaborating on climate change and renewable energy strategies going forward. (Bert Savard/CBC)

Premiers from Western Canada's two NDP provinces met in Winnipeg today to discuss climate change policy and renewable energy.

Manitoba Premier Greg Selinger and Alberta Premier Rachel Notley swapped ideas on energy infrastructure, renewable energy and climate change priorities.

Selinger praised Notley's government and its recent commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

"Alberta has shown very admirable leadership on the climate change file since Premier Notley has taken office," Selinger said.

"Alberta's climate leadership plan places the conversation on [the] Energy East [pipeline project] in an improved context as the country moves towards a low carbon future."

Selinger added that Notley's long-term vision to create more jobs in the renewable energy sector squares with Manitoba's clean-energy plan and pledge to create more green jobs.

"Alberta and Manitoba will support each other in our goals on creating greener economies based on good jobs and sustainability," Selinger said.
Premiers from Western Canada's two NDP provinces met in Winnipeg today to discuss climate change policy and renewable energy. 1:05

6,000 green jobs promised

Last month, Selinger promised to cut greenhouse gas emissions by one-third in the next 15 years and bring in a cap-and-trade system for the province's 20 largest emitters to help meet that goal.

The government promised to create 6,000 green jobs in the next five years, expand its Power Smart program to help people reduce energy use and bring in an environmental bill of rights with an independent watchdog.

In Alberta, Notley last month introduced a sweeping new climate change strategy, including a plan to cap oilsands emissions at 100 megatonnes and charge a $30-a-tonne carbon tax by 2018.

"Calls for action on both [energy and the environment] are getting louder every day and that is because the science is clear: climate change poses an immediate and serious threat," Notley said Friday in Winnipeg. 

"There's no room for complacency; we simply must act now. Both Manitoba and Alberta are doing that."

Moving forward, the two provinces will be sharing information on how to better integrate energy grids in western Canada, Selinger added.

"It's a partnership that will benefit not only Albertans and Manitobans but the whole country," Selinger said.

"Climate change is one of the defining issues around the planet right now, and it's a challenge that we've all signed onto as a result of the Paris agreement."

With files from the Canadian Press

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