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Transportation & Fuel Source Technology

Canada's New Government Delivers the Environmental Goods on Freight Transportation

The Honourable Lawrence Cannon, Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities, today announced that Canada's New Government is launching the ecoFreight program-a series of initiatives, totaling up to $61 million in funding, aimed at reducing the environmental and health effects of freight transportation. "Canada's New Government encourages the freight industry to join the effort as we all have a role to play in the reduction of emissions from transportation sources, and the development of cleaner transportation systems, practices and technologies," said Minister Cannon. "Initiatives like these are a part of this government's ambitious and realistic agenda to protect our environment and the health of Canadians, as well as to promote economic growth," said the Honourable John Baird, Minister of the Environment. "We will continue to take real action to protect the health of Canadians and the environment by helping make freight transportation more environmentally friendly." The ecoFreight program is made up of six initiatives, two of which specifically focus on the trucking industry, through the removal of regulatory barriers and the reduction of fuel use and emissions. "The greatest source of untapped energy is the energy we waste, and when we cut waste, we cut emissions and we cut costs," said the Honourable Gary Lunn, Minister of Natural Resources. "We are helping trucking companies and other vehicle fleets reduce their fuel consumption, increasing their efficiency and reducing harmful emissions at the same time." The other initiatives target all four modes of transportation (air, rail, road and marine), as well as users of the freight system by establishing a Freight Technology Demonstration Fund, providing cost-shared funding, building and maintaining partnerships and demonstrating the potential of shore-based power. These initiatives support the Government's ecoTransport Strategy, which is aimed at improving the health of Canadians and the environment by reducing the environmental impacts of transportation; securing Canada's future prosperity and competitiveness by making critical transportation infrastructure sustainable, both economically and environmentally; and promoting an efficient transportation system that supports choice and the high quality of life that Canadians expect. Prime Minister Harper recently announced the Canada ecoTrust for Clean Air and Climate Change, which will be designed to provide financial support to provincial and territorial projects aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions and air pollutants. The resources for this initiative will consist of $1.5 billion of new funding on a national basis. As part of this new Canada ecoTrust, Canada's New Government has already announced its intention to provide Quebec with $349.9 million in funding as recognition of its leadership to protect Canadians from the consequences of climate change. This new funding will be contained in the upcoming budget and is a part of the actions to be taken on the fiscal imbalance. It will be available as soon as Parliament approves the budget.

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