LOS ANGELES — Canada and California are progressive spirits on climate change, Governor Gavin Newsom said Thursday as he and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau unveiled a new blueprint for working together to prevent the worst consequences of a warming planet. .
The framework, signed by Environment Minister Steven Guilbolt and Environmental Protection Secretary Jared Blumenfeld, their respective owners standing behind them, includes minor expansions on the same 2019 agreement.
It advances policy and regulatory steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and pollutants in both jurisdictions, as well as conservation measures and the worsening threat of wildfires.
And it will stand the test of time, Newsom said – whether in California’s governor’s mansion, the White House or the prime minister’s office, whoever is in power.
California is a $3.3 trillion a year economy, he said – the fifth largest in the world, and a “stable partner” whose efforts to address climate issues and pollution standards have been affecting other states and countries, including Canada, for decades. .
“We punch above our weight,” Newsom said, describing the state as a “stable partner” whose regulatory reforms have stood the test of time and the political whims of voters.
“We bear a lot of weight as it relates to low-carbon green growth, as it relates to efforts to change the way we produce and consume energy – no matter who is in the White House.”
Trudeau said Canada will always favor a partner who is ready to move forward and make progress on issues of common importance.
Trudeau said, “Canada has always been a country that is involved in the world, and whether it is engaging with like-minded countries or like-minded states like California, we are just up to the task.”
“When we find alignment on a lot of things — as we always do with California, but as we have especially under Gavin Newsom’s administration — we jump at that.”
Trudeau made an impassioned defense of his government’s efforts to re-brand Canada, an economically dependent country on its fossil-fuel resources, as a champion for tackling climate change.
Trudeau said Canada has additional credibility on climate issues because of that reputation as an oil-producing nation.
“It is really difficult for us to move forward on climate change. Our country has a thriving fossil fuel industry at a time where the world runs on fossil fuels and will last for many more years,” he said.
“The fact that we have it means that it’s more important for us to step up and show real leadership to fight climate change, and that’s exactly what we’ve done.”
The fellowship between Newsom and Trudeau, two progressive leaders in their early 50s who cut a similar silhouette, was evident from the time they met on the front steps of the California Science Center.
As they sat down for a brief luncheon meeting before their joint news conference, the pair had a good time and laughed out loud at each other’s jokes, where Newsom spoke about Trudeau’s popularity with his staff. joked, Canada’s lack of term limits and how he himself is a “future former governor of California.”
Bonomies and high spirits gave way to an even more dismal meeting later Thursday between Trudeau and US President Joe Biden in a cautious meeting room at the Americas summit.
Biden agreed during that meeting that he would eventually make a personal visit to Canada in the coming months, his first since becoming president amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
With Trudeau sitting next to him, Biden delivered the standard White House greeting about America, saying “there is no better friend in the world than Canada” and that he and the prime minister share a similar vision for the hemisphere.
“I think we both share the same sentiment that the possibilities are limitless for our hemisphere,” Biden called it “the most democratic hemisphere in the world.”
Trudeau responded by saying it was “extraordinarily important” for close allies such as Canada and the US, for each other and for allies around the world.
“The work we can do on supporting and projecting and sharing our values is really a way to support and influence citizens around the world,” Trudeau said.
In doing so, he said, it helps to make the case that “democracy is not only fair, but it is also better for the citizens, to put food on the table, to put the promise in front of them.”
Trudeau was also scheduled to sit with Argentine President Alberto Fernandez on Thursday, before sitting down with Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google’s parent company Alphabet Inc.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published on June 9, 2022.