Annual report: Compete and Succeed in a Net-Zero Future

Annual report: Compete and Succeed in a Net-Zero Future

Nov 23, 2023
5 min read
Annual report: Compete and Succeed in a Net-Zero Future

Ottawa, Canada, January 27, 2023 – Today, Canada’s Net-Zero Advisory Body (NZAB) released its annual report, Compete and Succeed in a Net-Zero Future, featuring concrete solutions the Government of Canada should implement to ensure Canada benefits from a global net-zero economy, accelerates the attainment of a net-zero emissions economy, and generates clean prosperity for generations to come.

Canada has committed to fight climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 40 to 45% by 2030 from 2005 levels and reaching net zero emissions by 2050. Canada has built a credible foundation to meet these targets, but it must remain at the forefront of the net-zero movement to ensure competitiveness in the global economy, sustain well-being, create good net-zero compatible jobs, and attract investments to leverage competitive advantages. Independent advice and targeting a whole-of-society approach to transformation across all parts of the economy, is critical to achieving Canada's climate objectives.

The report to the federal Minister of the Environment and Climate Change includes 25 recommendations across the NZAB’s three lines of inquiry identified for 2022-23: net-zero governance, net-zero industrial policy, and net-zero energy systems. This advice was informed through engagement with over 100 decision-makers and experts, including industry experts, academia, non-governmental organizations and associations, and Indigenous rights-holders. Implementing these actions without delay is essential to succeed in creating a prosperous net-zero future for all Canadians. The net-zero transition is our generation’s moonshot, and we must undertake it with a clear sense of urgency.

Launched in February 2021 and formalized under the Canadian Net-Zero Emissions Accountability Act in June 2021, the NZAB is mandated to provide independent advice to the Minister of Environment and Climate Change with respect to achieving net-zero emissions by 2050. In turn, the Act requires the Minister to publicly respond to the advice outlined in the annual report within 120 days.

In 2023, the NZAB will continue to deepen its advice.


  • Compete and Succeed in a Net-Zero Future is the third report to the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change since the NZAB was founded, and first legislated annual report under the Canadian Net-Zero Emissions Accountability Act.
  • The NZAB’s annual report contains 25 pieces of advice across three priority areas: (1) net-zero governance, (2) net-zero industrial policy, and (3) net-zero energy systems.
  • To inform this annual report, the NZAB hosted briefings, roundtable discussions, and conference engagement activities with a range of decision-makers and experts, including industry experts, academics, Indigenous organizations, labour representatives, and non-governmental organizations. It also received emailed comments from members of the public.



“While climate plans to date set a strong foundation for reducing emissions, there needs to be widespread understanding that eliminating greenhouse gas emissions from the economy in a net zero way, is fundamentally different from reducing greenhouse gases. Incremental change to our current systems will simply not result in systems that are functional and net zero by 2050. We need to define the necessary future systems now to allow sufficient time to build them by 2050.”

– Dan Wicklum, NZAB Co-Chair

“Seizing the upsides of net-zero by 2050 will require unprecedented transformations of Canada’s economy and energy systems, both of which depend on a firm collective commitment towards shared objectives.”

– Marie-Pierre Ippersiel, NZAB Co-Chair

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Members from Canada’s Net-Zero Advisory Body (NZAB) will once again be attending the 28th annual United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties, known as COP, taking place this year from 30 November until 12 December 2023 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE). NZAB is co-hosting an event at the Canada Pavilion on December 5, 2023, with the Canadian Climate Institute (CCI).

The Developing a Net-Zero Energy System Vision for all Canadians event will build on momentum from recent COP meetings where countries increasingly recognized the massive transformation required for energy systems to meet net-zero commitments.

Panels will explore the role visions can play in leading this transformation by describing credible pathways to drive collective action and discuss the opportunity for just transitions by creating visions through collaboration and principles to meet socio-political and economic objectives. Canadian and international panelists will also provide their perspectives on developing net-zero energy systems reflecting the diversity of nations’ populations.

Check out the event page for more information about this event including speakers from SevenGen Energy, the Métis Nation of Alberta, the Environment and Climate Change Youth Council, and Presidential Climate Commission of South Africa.

Don’t forget to check back here for a summary of NZAB attendance and reflections after COP28 concludes!


Future Vision
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Building Momentum Toward Net Zero

Mark your calendars! On November 9, 2023, join the Canadian Climate Institute and the Net-Zero Advisory Body for our third annual pan-Canadian climate conference: Building Momentum Toward Net Zero.

Date: Thursday, November 9, 2023, full-day conference

Last year’s conference was a huge success with more than 1,500 participants. This year’s conference promises to be just as dynamic with our great line-up of national and international speakers including:

  • Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Natural Resources
  • Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Environment and Climate Change
  • Corinne Le Quéré, Chair, The High Council for Climate, France
  • Geoffrey R. Pyatt, Assistant Secretary for Energy Resources, U.S. Department of State
  • Catherine Cobden, President & CEO, Canadian Steel Producers Association
  • Celyeste Power, President and CEO, Insurance Bureau of Canada
  • James Jenkins, Executive Director, Indigenous Clean Energy


8:30 am Welcome and Land Acknowledgement

  • Tosh Southwick, Climate Institute
  • Sarah Houde, NZAB
  • Elder Verna McGregor

8:45 am Latest results of NZAB and the Climate Institute’s advice and analysis

  • Dan Wicklum, Co-chair, Net-Zero Advisory Body
  • Rick Smith, President, Canadian Climate Institute

8:55 am Opening remarks

  • Mairead Lavery, President & CEO, Export Development Canada
  • Bea Bruske, President, Canadian Labour Congress

9:05 am Panel 1: Regulating Zero Emission Vehicles

  • Moderator: Simon Donner, NZAB
    Speakers: Brian Kingston, Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers

                         Joanna Kyriazis, Clean Energy Canada

                          Katya Rhodes, University of Victoria

  • Increasing the uptake of zero-emissions vehicles is key to reducing pollution from the transportation sector. This panel explores the federal government’s work to ensure 60 per cent of new light-duty vehicles are zero-emissions by 2030, en route to 100 per cent of new light-duty vehicles by 2035.

9:55 am Remarks

  • The Honourable Gavin Newsom, Governor of California (video)

10:10 am Keynote: Geoffrey R. Pyatt, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Resources

  • Introduction by Peter Nicholson, Chair, Canadian Climate Institute
  • Geoffrey R. Pyatt, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Energy Resources
  • Interviewed by Sean Speer, Editor at Large, The Hub

10:40 am Ministers’ discussion

  • Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Environment and Climate Change Canada
  • Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Natural Resources
  • moderated by Catherine Abreu, NZAB

11:30 am Panel 2: Greening Canada’s Buildings

  • Introduction by Philippe Adam, President and CEO, Pomerleau
  • Moderator: Kate Harland, Climate Institute
    Speakers: Bryan Flannigan, Building Decarbonization Alliance

                          Raegan Bond, Dunsky

                          Monica Gattinger, Institute for Science, Society and Policy

                          James Jenkins, Indigenous Clean Energy

  • Climate pollution from the building sector is increasing, putting Canada at risk of missing its 2030 emissions reduction target. This panel discusses the use of policies such as the Green Building Strategy to address these rising emissions while also making new and renovated buildings more resilient to extreme weather events.

1:05 pm Video Greetings

  • Crispian Olver, Executive Director, Presidential Climate Commission, South Africa
  • Premier of B.C. David Eby

1:10 pm Keynote: Corinne Le Quéré, Chair, France High Council on Climate

  • Introduction by Frank Marchetti, Minister-Counsellor
  • Corinne Le Quéré in conversation with Éric-Pierre Champagne, La Presse

1:45 pm Panel 3: Policies for a Bigger, Cleaner, Smarter Electricity System

  • Introduction by Jonathan Price, CEO, Teck
  • Moderator: Sachi Gibson, Climate Institute
    Speakers: Mark Jaccard, BC Utilities Commission

                          Francis Bradley, Electricity Canada

                          Laura Arnold, VP, External Affairs, Sustainability and Market Policy,                           TransAlta

                          Moe Kabbara, Transition Accelerator

  • The “big switch” from fossil fuels to clean electricity is the backbone of Canada’s clean energy transition, and will require coordinated actions from all orders of government. This panel looks at how policies and regulations can decarbonize, expand, and modernize the grid to provide clean, affordable, and reliable electricity to all Canadians.

2:35 pm Panel 4: Improving Output-Based Pricing Systems in Canada

  • Introduction by Catherine Cobden, President & CEO, CSPA
  • Moderator: Dale Beugin, Climate Institute
    Speakers: Sarah Petrevan, Cement Association

                           Caroline Brouillette, CAN-Rac

                           Michael Bernstein, Clean Prosperity

  • Output-Based Pricing Systems (OBPS) create incentives for industrial emitters to reduce emissions while protecting their international competitiveness. Several provinces have their own systems; the federal backstop applies in others. This panel will discuss changes that could be made to improve the OBPS’s impact and drive emissions reductions in sectors like electricity,  steel, and cement.

3:45 pm Panel 5: Implementing the National Adaptation Strategy

  • Introduction by Mandy Gull-Masty, Grand Chief, Cree Nation of Eeyou Istchee
  • Moderator: Sarah Miller, Canadian Climate Institute
    Speakers: Celyeste Power, Insurance Bureau of Canada

                          Erin Myers, Métis National Council

                          Caroline Larrivée, Ouranos

  • The summer of 2023 was marked not just by unprecedented wildfires, floods, droughts, and other extreme weather events all across Canada, but also by the publication of Canada’s first National Adaptation Strategy. Senior governments have historically undervalued and underinvested in climate change adaptation but with the National Adaptation Strategy the federal government has now spotlighted adaptation as a critical national priority on which it must play a leadership role. This panel discusses what needs to happen now to ensure the strategy delivers on protecting Canadians from the increasingly severe impacts of climate change.

4:35 pm Panel 6: Capping Oil and Gas Emissions

  • Moderator: Dan Wicklum, NZAB
    Speakers: Mark Cameron, Pathways Alliance

                          Chris Severson-Baker, Pembina

                          Sara Hastings-Simon, University of Calgary

  • Scientists are clear that to avoid the worst consequences of climate change we need to attain net zero emissions by 2050 and follow a steady emissions reduction trajectory between now and 2050. This is a key reason countries must set interim reduction targets like Canada’s 2030 target. This session explores the emissions performance of the domestic oil and gas sector as it relates to global peers, in the context of meeting Canada’s 2030 target, the upcoming regulatory cap on oil and gas emissions, and future Canadian competitiveness.

5:20 pm Closing Remarks

  • Elder Verna McGregor

5 min read

Special Event: October 25, 2021

Canada’s Net-Zero Economy: Securing Prosperity in a Net-Zero World

A pan-Canadian conference on the risks and opportunities ahead

Key links:

Event details:

Monday, October 25, 2021, from 1pm – 5pm (ET)

Presented by:

The Net-Zero Advisory Body and The Canadian Institute for Climate Choices

Compete and succeed in a net zero future

Concrete solutions that the Government of Canada should implement to ensure that Canada benefits from a carbon-neutral global economy, accelerates the achievement of a carbon-neutral economy and generates clean prosperity for generations to come.