FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
At the North American Leaders’ Summit in Ottawa today, U.S. President Barack Obama joined with Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to announce a set of energy and environmental agreements that will put the three countries on a unified course toward cleaner energy and lower greenhouse gas emissions.
The three leaders say they plan to get half the continent’s electricity from clean energy sources by 2025. All three countries also pledged to cut emissions of methane – an extremely potent greenhouse gas – from their oil and gas industries 40-45 percent below 2012 levels by 2025 and to introduce regulations limiting both new and existing methane sources as soon as possible, and to explore opportunities to reduce emissions beyond the stated target.
They also affirmed their strong commitment to securing agreement this year in the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) on a market-based measure to cap carbon pollution from international aviation, one of the fastest-growing sources of global emissions. In addition, they pledged to harmonized fuel economy regulations and phase out fossil fuel subsidies by 2025.
Remarks by EDF President Fred Krupp:
“These agreements reflect an unprecedented alignment among the three countries, with Mexico showing clear leadership in expanding on US-Canada methane action. Shared markets work best with shared standards. All three leaders deserve real credit for these actions and implementing them will be the true measure of success.
“Especially at a time when Europe is under strain, it is vital that North America’s leaders are moving together. They are showing the world that opening up a more unified energy market shaped by ambitious clean energy goals and strong environmental safeguards can be beneficial for both economies and communities.
“Cutting oil and gas methane pollution is one of the fastest, most cost effective ways to slow the rate of current warming, while we work toward a clean energy future. And we’ll get to that goal faster thanks to the three leaders agreeing to a strong target for clean power across all of North America.
“Mexico’s agreement to join the international aviation emissions program as soon as it takes effect in 2021 is especially important. An agreement on international aviation emissions could prevent an estimated eight billion tons of carbon pollution in the first twenty years, equal to more than five years of emissions from all the cars and trucks in the United States. This announcement sets the bar for leadership throughout the Americas on this critical issue.”
— Fred Krupp, president of Environmental Defense Fund
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Environmental Defense Fund (edf.org), a leading international nonprofit organization, creates transformational solutions to the most serious environmental problems. EDF links science, economics, law and innovative private-sector partnerships. Connect with us on EDF Voices, Twitter and Facebook.