This article outlines not only the reason for some optimism but also some of the challenges that remain in order to reach the targets.

Getting Started

Introduction to the article (perhaps by having everyone read it)

The Paris Agreement of 2016 has hovered over the heads of the signees and served as a reminder of the need to address climate change ever since it was finalized. Throughout the last four years it has challenged nations to act and there has been a great variance in response. The United States, for example, under the misguided direction of President Trump, simply withdrew from the agreement. Other nations, such as Morocco, The Gambia and, surprisingly, India have led the way in attempting to reach the promised goals. Canada’s efforts have varied under different federal leadership but the current federal Liberal government is putting an emphasis on addressing climate change and, indeed, is claiming that Canada could very well reach its stated commitments. If that is indeed the case, where does the credit lie? To what degree are the federal government, the provincial governments and the private sector deserving of credit? That is the focus of this lesson. The students will be assigned a structured research essay in which they will outline the degree to which each of the three deserve credit.

Subject Area(s) covered

Environmental studies, world issues, politics

New Terms to explain

Paris Agreement 2016

Materials Needed

Access to the article

Access to the 5-paragraph format page

Study and Discussion Activity

Key things students can learn from this lesson

The students will come to understand how well Canada is doing in terms of meeting its Paris Agreement commitments and who deserves credit or condemnation.

Action (here’s how we’ll do it)

  • Inform the students that the focus of the lesson will be on how well Canada is meeting its commitments made under the Paris Agreement of 2016.
  • Remind them that Canada under the Paris Agreement, committed to reducing its GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions by 30% below 2005 levels by 2030.
  • Explain to them that there has been some recent optimism expressed that Canada will indeed reach that goal.
  • Direct them to the article and allow them time to read it.
  • Explain to them that they are to research the following questions:
    • To what extent can the federal government claim credit for Canada’s success in approaching its Paris commitments?
    • To what extent can the provincial governments claim credit?
    • To what extent can the private sector claim credit?

Consolidation of Learning

  • The consolidation of learning will occur as the student utilizes the research material in composing and editing the required essay.
Success and Additional Learning

Success Criteria

  • The student will construct a cohesive and convincing essay in which he or she demonstrates not only a command of the research material but also an understanding of the degree to which each of the three major players deserve credit.

Confirming Activities

  • The confirming activity will be the construction of the essay which will be submitted for evaluation.

Helpful Internet Searches

Activities to do together

  • Explore what actions your provincial and municipal governments have taken to help in the efforts to address climate change.