2024: Canadian Nature Protection Turning Point | Updates & Ways to Act

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New legislation to protect nature could become a reality in 2024

For over 20 months, Greenpeace Canada and our supporters have been calling on the federal government to pass legislation making good on its international commitments to protect Nature and Biodiversity. We have written reports, researched and rallied with allies for big, ambitious commitments during the Convention on Biological Diversity “COP 15” in Montreal. But international commitments don’t mean much if they are not implemented.

Over the course of December of 2023, two big steps towards new legislation to protect nature in 2024 were taken.

Here are the latest developments and how you can be a part of making this crucial nature legislation become a reality in 2024.

December’s Declaration: Federal Intent for 2024 Nature Legislation

Last month, on December 9 2023, to little fanfare, the federal government announced its intention to introduce a new law in 2024. If Prime Minister Justin Trudeau follows through on this promise, it could be a real turning point for wildlife and nature across the country. On Trudeau’s watch, wildlife all around us continues to decline at an alarming pace. Signing the Kunming-Montreal Agreement in 2022 gave the Prime Minister an opportunity to hit the reset button. But there is no magic wand – passing this nature law is his chance to leave a lasting legacy for future generations.

<div>2024: Canadian Nature Protection Turning Point | Updates & Ways to Act</div>
Greenpeace Canada activists drop a 46-foot tall banner inside Montreal’s l’Anneau structure, on the heels of the opening of the UN Biodiversity Conference (COP 15).

While there is a lot of work still to do, we would not have been able to secure this commitment without tens of thousands of people across Canada calling, demonstrating and petitioning to make it happen. We will be watching closely to ensure the legislation delivers transparent reporting, strong public accountability and deep respect for Indigenous rights and knowledge. Passing this legislation before the next Nature COP in October of 2024 will serve as the ultimate litmus test of the government’s commitment to nature protection.

Parliamentary E-Petition Urges Trudeau to Act on Nature Legislation Promise

At the end of November of 2023, with the support of Greenpeace Canada, Ecojustice and West Coast Environmental Law, NDP MP Richard Cannings tabled parliamentary petition e-4673 before the House of Commons. The petition calls on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to actually pass this urgent legislation in 2024.

While the latest government announcement is an encouraging sign, it’s not enough. Minister of Environment Steven Guilbeault had already expressed his support for new legislation and the government has a history of failed nature protection promises. And so this parliamentary petition underlines the need for the legislation to finally be passed in 2024. Importantly, this petition will ensure Justin Trudeau’s government will need to provide a response on the progress, or not, of the legislation early in 2024. Watch this space!

YOU are making this possible

People power is working. Although since we are in the middle of a biodiversity crisis, we need to work faster.

55,000 of you have signed our petition calling for this new law.

Over 70% of the Canadian public want it to happen.

Together, we have marched in the streets, called MPs and taken action online.

In the lead-up to the Montreal-bound CBD COP 15, Greenpeace Canada with the help of like-minded volunteers, activists, and nature lovers painted a mural in front of Steven Guilbeault’s office, Minister of Environment and Climate Change, in Montreal, calling him to pass strong biodiversity protection law.

Now we need one last push to get this law passed in 2024. To do this, let’s reach 100,000 people calling on the Prime Minister to act before the NEXT Nature COP in the fall.

Our message is simple: Justin Trudeau has a year to get this done. No more excuses.