Skip to main content
Canada’s most-awarded newsroom for a reason
Enjoy unlimited digital access
$1.99
per week
for 24 weeks
Canada’s most-awarded newsroom for a reason
$1.99
per week
for 24 weeks
// //

If you’re reading this on the web or someone forwarded this e-mail newsletter to you, you can sign up for Globe Climate and all Globe newsletters here.

Good afternoon, and welcome to Globe Climate, a newsletter about climate change, environment and resources in Canada.

Still haven’t signed up for The Globe’s podcast? Catch up on The Decibel as Emma Graney, The Globe’s energy reporter, gives listeners a primer on hydrogen: the different ways it’s made, how it plays into governments’ net-zero-emission goals and why Canada thinks it could become a world leader in this growing energy sector.

Story continues below advertisement

Listen and follow The Decibel in your favourite streaming app: Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, iHeartRadio, Pocket Casts or RSS.

Now, let’s catch you up on other news.


Noteworthy reporting this week:

  1. From the oil patch to the pea field: One executive’s mission to bring plant-based protein to Alberta started with a dangerous bump in the head
  2. Two Calgary-based energy companies plan to develop a new carbon transportation and sequestration system in Alberta, which they say will form the backbone of the province’s carbon capture utilization and storage industry.
  3. Making buildings bird friendly: New measures at Toronto’s TD Centre aim to reduce bird-building collisions after years of complaints from activists

Henry Cardenas, an installer with Feather Friendly Technologies Inc., installs a film over the windows of an office building at 100 Wellington St. West on June 15, 2021.

Fred Lum/The Globe and Mail


A note from The Narwhal: From threats to the Greenbelt to rollbacks of environmental laws, The Narwhal kept hearing that Ontario needs more investigative journalism about the natural world. As a non-profit online magazine, they are giddy to grow beyond their western roots and bring reader-funded, visually stunning journalism to Ontario.


A deeper dive

The future of coal mining under a microscope

In this past week, three big decisions on coal mining may have changed the future of the industry.

Ottawa announced two significant policy shifts. First: restricting thermal coal mine projects, citing “unacceptable” environmental impacts. Second: Assessing all new and expanded projects over water contamination concerns.

Then third, on June 17 a joint federal-provincial regulatory panel rejected the proposed Grassy Mountain coal mine in Alberta.

And while governments won’t speculate on what the decisions mean for the future of coal, environmental groups say they reflect a much-needed global shift away from two types of mines.

Story continues below advertisement

  • Thermal coal is burned to generate electricity. One example was the Vista coal mine expansion in Alberta which was so vast that it was subjected to a federal environmental assessment. They wanted to more than double the mine’s output. Canada has been something of a cheerleader in the international push to phase out thermal coal, but it doesn’t mean the federal government is outright banning new or expanded thermal-coal mines.
  • Metallurgical coal is used in steelmaking, such as the recently rejected in the Grassy Mountain coal mine. A joint review by the Alberta Energy Regulator and the federal Impact Assessment Agency found the project would likely result in significant adverse effects on the environment and on some First Nations.

Also remember: a historic $60-million penalty to Teck Coal, the largest Fisheries Act penalty ever for the subsidiary. The submission stated it contaminated waterways in southeastern B.C.’s Elk Valley.

Ottawa’s shift comes shortly after G7 world leaders gather in Britain to address global challenges, including climate change. And recent surveys show that Albertans are mostly concerned about the environment in coal mining decisions.

But with a slip in the markets and the prospect of tougher restrictions, all this is to say that the future’s looking bleak for coal in Alberta and around the world, and it may be another component in forcing a move to renewable energy.

- Sierra


What else you missed

  • Dog owners in Nova Scotia should be on the lookout for blue-green algae in lakes and ponds this summer after two dogs died following a potential exposure to the bacteria, a veterinarian at the clinic that treated the fatally ill animals said.
  • Opponents of old-growth logging on southern Vancouver Island say they will stage a hunger strike in Vancouver until they can meet with British Columbia Premier John Horgan and Jonathan Wilkinson, the federal environment and climate change minister.
  • The Minnesota Court of Appeals affirmed state regulators’ key approvals of Enbridge Energy’s Line 3 oil pipeline replacement project, in a dispute that drew over 1,000 protesters to northern Minnesota last week.
  • A new study by researchers at the University of Toronto raises concerns that some all-day makeup looks could pose lasting harms to personal health and the environment.
  • Western heat wave threatens health in vulnerable communities. The record-breaking temperatures last week are a weather emergency, scientists and healthcare experts say, with heat responsible for more deaths in the U.S. than all other natural disasters combined.

Opinion and analysis

Doug Saunders: Can you end global warming while getting richer? Yes – just not in Canada


Green Investing

From Jeff Jones: ARC Financial Corp., stalwart funder of Canada’s oil patch, is expanding its investment strategy to include companies gearing up for the transition to a net-zero economy. The Calgary-based private-equity firm has secured the approval of its investors to seek out companies in a range of fields, from carbon capture, utilization and storage to biofuels, renewables and providers of construction and maintenance services for the sector.

Story continues below advertisement

From Globe advisor: Compelling environmentally focused stock picks for an ESG world

From the news: Musk says Tesla will accept bitcoins again when miners use more renewable energy


Making waves

Each week The Globe will profile a Canadian making a difference. This week we’re highlighting the work of Emily Chan working at the intersection of law and media.

Emily Chan, communications specialist and future law student.

David LeBlanc/Handout

My name is Emily Chan. I’m 27 years old and grateful to live on Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh territory, also known as Vancouver. I am a writer, communications specialist and future law student.

I have always used my writing to fight for what I think is important. I worked as a journalist before joining Ecojustice, Canada’s largest environmental law charity, five years ago.

My work at Ecojustice put me at the intersection of law, media and communications. I loved working with lawyers and reporters to amplify significant issues, including cases about Trans Mountain, the Alberta Inquiry and a landmark youth climate lawsuit.

Story continues below advertisement

I’ve learned the law can be a powerful tool for building the type of future I envision: A safe climate, recognition of Indigenous rights, thriving communities and healthy ecosystems. Working at Ecojustice also taught me that, sometimes, you have to understand a system in order to change it. With these lessons in mind, I’m excited to start law school in September.

- Emily

Do you know an engaged individual? Someone who represents the real engines pursuing change in the country? Email us at GlobeClimate@globeandmail.com to tell us about them.


Photo of the week

An aerial image shows solar panels part of an electricity generation plant on June 18, 2021 in Kern County near Mojave, California. The California ISO extended a Flex Alert asking customers to conserve electricity amid concerns of power outages during the heat wave.

PATRICK T. FALLON/AFP/Getty Images


Catch up on Globe Climate

We want to hear from you. Email us: GlobeClimate@globeandmail.com. Do you know someone who needs this newsletter? Send them to our Newsletters page.

Your Globe

Build your personal news feed

  1. Follow topics and authors relevant to your reading interests.
  2. Check your Following feed daily, and never miss an article. Access your Following feed from your account menu at the top right corner of every page.

Follow the author of this article:

Follow topics related to this article:

View more suggestions in Following Read more about following topics and authors
Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

If you do not see your comment posted immediately, it is being reviewed by the moderation team and may appear shortly, generally within an hour.

We aim to have all comments reviewed in a timely manner.

Comments that violate our community guidelines will not be posted.

UPDATED: Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies