Ontario’s Action on Climate Change w/ Environmental Commissioner Dianne Saxe
Rm.149(basement), Earth Sciences Building, 5 Bancroft Ave., Toronto
DIANNE SAXE, Environmental Commissioner of Ontario
ABSTRACT: Dianne Saxe, Environmental Commissioner of Ontario, will release her first report on climate change in November 2016. The Commissioner will review the critical climate thresholds that have recently been exceeded, Ontario's current greenhouse gas emissions, and Ontario's new cap and trade program that will start to price carbon pollution on January 1, 2017. What are the major design issues that affect cap and trade, and what are the implications of the choices that Ontario has made? What does Ontario plan to do with the cap and trade revenue, and are those choices reasonable? How demanding are our greenhouse gas reduction targets? Will the government action plan get us there? If not, what options do we have? Optional additional paragraph: Ontario has a lot at stake. It is too late to avoid disruptive and expensive changes to our environment and economy. But there is still time to protect much of what we love, by reducing the greenhouse gases that we emit into the air, and by preparing for the changes that are coming. The transition to a low-emission future will take money, effort and political will, but inaction will cost far more - in money, in human misery and in ecological destruction.
BRIEF BIO: Dianne Saxe is the Environmental Commissioner of Ontario (ECO), a tough but fair watchdog over Ontario's environmental, energy and climate performance, and guardian of the Environmental Bill of Rights (EBR). The ECO is a bridge between the public and the government on environmental issues. Prior to her appointment, Dianne was one of Canada's most respected environmental lawyers. She has 40 years' unparalleled experience writing, interpreting, and litigating Ontario's energy and environmental laws. Dianne's career began with the Ontario Public Service and two major Bay Street law firms. She then established one of Canada's top environmental law boutiques. A Certified Environmental Law Specialist, Dianne is recognized in every Canadian and international legal rating service, including acknowledgement as one of the world's top 25 environmental lawyers by Best of the Best, 2008 and as Best Lawyers' first Environmental Lawyer of the Year for Toronto. Some of her numerous tributes and honours include the Award for Distinguished Service, the highest honour granted by the Ontario Bar Association; and the Gold Key Award for exceptional lifetime professional achievement, granted by Osgoode Hall Law School Alumni. Dianne has travelled extensively in Ontario and Canada, both in her professional practice and as a keen canoeist, kayaker and cross-country skier. Her five-year appointment will be focused on serving the Ontario Legislature, improving the effectiveness of the Environmental Bill of Rights and catalyzing better environmental, energy and climate outcomes, for and with the people of Ontario.