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A Sustainable Jobs Blueprint

Part II: Putting workers and communities at the centre of Canada’s net-zero energy economy

As the demand for lower carbon energy grows, workers in high-emitting sectors must be supported through this transition to a clean energy economy. Governments need to help the regions that are most impacted by the transition prepare for what is already underway and take proactive steps to avoid stranded assets and stranded workers.

Other countries, including Denmark, Germany, New Zealand, Scotland, Spain, and the United States, have already modelled components of successful governance to support the transition to sustainable jobs.

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In 2023 Canada produced its first federal Interim Sustainable Jobs Plan. This was followed by the tabling of the Sustainable Jobs Act in June 2023, which outlines an approach to creating a prosperous net-zero future for all Canadians.

This act represents the beginning of a framework to ensure that workers and communities are at the table, not on the menu. A variety of labour and environmental organisations have endorsed this act as a promising step towards centring workers in the conversation; they maintain, however, that amendments must be made to ensure the implementation lives up to its potential.

As echoed in the aftermath of less successful transitions, workers want to see a practical plan so that they can make informed decisions about their future. This report is the second in a series exploring various policy themes associated with the sustainable jobs legislation.

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