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Clean Air Regulatory Agenda

Renewed funding for the Clean Air Regulatory Agenda (CARA) will support proposed regulations and other measures to address domestic industrial air emissions, including greenhouse gases (GHGs) and air pollutants, and to improve outdoor and indoor air quality. Renewed CARA funding will also support relevant policy, monitoring and reporting, and science activities.

Proposed regulations and other control measures will limit emissions of GHGs and air pollutants. Meanwhile, the proposed development of Codes and Standards for indoor air quality will reduce the pollutants found in Canadian homes. These measures are expected to have a measurable positive effect on the environment and human health.

The proposed scientific research, monitoring, modeling as well as policy and economic analysis are expected to have an indirect positive effect on the environment by providing foundational knowledge necessary to develop and implement regulations; providing assessments and reports on the effectiveness of measures; and improving knowledge about the current and projected levels of emissions. In addition, the Air Quality Health Index is also expected to have an important indirect positive effect on human health, by providing real-time information to Canadians on air quality. This will facilitate positive behavioural change, enabling Canadian to reduce their exposure to harmful air pollutants.

Consultations undertaken suggest general support from stakeholders, as the proposal demonstrates the Government’s commitment to improving indoor and outdoor air quality, and reducing GHG emissions. Taking concrete action to reduce emissions from major sectors of the economy is a key part of the government’s work to improve the environment and deliver real results for all Canadians.

To measure progress, federal departments will incorporate the activities supported by renewed CARA funding into their Program Activity Architecture and performance measurement frameworks. Departments will account for their initiatives through their respective Reports on Plans and Priorities and Departmental Performance Reports. Progress towards Government of Canada priorities for clean air and climate change will be communicated through horizontal reports, including Canada’s Performance Report. Performance measures will be developed for each proposed activity, and outcomes will be captured and assessed on an ongoing basis. 

In summary, renewal of CARA funding will have direct and indirect positive effects on the environment. It will also support the following Federal Sustainable Development Strategy goals and targets:

Goal 1: Climate Change - Reduce levels of GHG emissions to mitigate the severity and unavoidable impacts of climate change.

Target 1.1: Climate Change Mitigation - Relative to 2005 emission levels, reduce Canada's total GHG emissions 17% by 2020.

Goal 2: Air Pollution - Minimize the threats to air quality so that the air Canadians breathe is clean and supports healthy ecosystems.

Target 2.1: Air pollutants - Reduce air pollutants in order to maintain or improve air quality across the country and achieve the emission targets which are currently under development in consultations with provinces and stakeholders.

Target 2.2: Indoor Air Quality - Help protect the health of Canadians by assessing indoor air pollutants and developing guidelines and other tools to better manage indoor air quality.

These results will be achieved by reducing emissions of GHGs and air pollutants from key sectors while maintaining competitiveness in these sectors, reducing ambient concentrations of particulate matter and ground-level ozone, and changing behaviour by Canadians to reduce exposure to air pollutants to improve their health.

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