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FEATURE: Canadian carbon markets, climate policy hinging on next week’s election

An erosion of Canadian voter support for the incumbent Liberals and poll-leading opposition Conservatives may open a range of minority government possibilities ahead of the national election on Monday, the outcome of which will have a significant impact on the country’s federal and provincial climate policies and environmental markets.

Emboldened by government data showing that Canada is warming twice as fast as the rest of the planet, along with the rise of youth-led climate strikes domestically and abroad, climate change has become a central concern among voters heading into the Oct. 21 election.

The Liberals and Conservatives are each on track for roughly 125-140 seats in Parliament – well below the 170 necessary for a majority – while the NDP and Bloc are projected to each secure between 30 and 40 seats, according to polling data aggregated by CBC as of Oct. 17.

“If you look at the different platforms, it’s definitely Liberals, Bloc Quebecois, NDP, and Green Parties pushing a similar line,” said Michael Berends, managing director of origination at Toronto-based consultants ClearBlue Markets, in reference to their support of carbon pricing.

With current polling numbers, a minority Liberal government could force Trudeau into working with those parties on climate issues to stay in power, in particular the NDP or Greens.

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