​Finance Minister Morneau Resigns: Opens Door for New Opportunities

A Resilient Canadian Economy

Canadian Finance Minister Bill Morneau’s resignation on August 17, 2020 could open up a potential opportunity for his successor to embrace a more climate resilient, energy efficient recovery as a cornerstone of the federal government’s COVID-19 recovery strategy.

There is no decision yet as to who will replace Morneau as the Minister of Finance.

There are many across-the-economy investment decisions that have to be made when the new Minister is selected – transportation, to infrastructure, to housing, to renovating the existing building stock for energy efficiency and climate resilience. The new Minister of Finance could pave the road towards these goals and not let one of the most wasteful sectors, Canadian buildings, fall by the wayside. Canadians need sustained investments in retrofitting our built environment, not just for future-proofing for the climate, but also for an economic recovery.

Resilient and efficient cities and buildings should be at the centre of Canada’s COVID-19 recovery strategy, and could become the guiding principle for infrastructure and policy decisions moving forward, depending on who the next Minister will be and their plan.

Strengthening the Canadian Economy is Twofold

Energy efficiency is one of the key areas where that investment will have to take place, said Efficiency Canada Policy Director Brendan Haley (reference to the article). “More jobs are created as demand is increased in the supply chain – for example through the increased manufacturing of insulation, heat pumps, and windows,” Haley writes in his article on Energy efficiency’s role in Canada’s economic recovery. Not only will this help create a more energy efficient Canada, but it will also fuel job creation at a time when Canadians need it most. Governments can launch these job creation efforts by supporting efficiency in all sectors and regions.

Re-opening the economy is not just about bringing back outdated, unstable jobs during a time when economic recovery will be paramount. It’s about creating and providing more secure, in demand jobs that will last, such as those in the energy efficiency sector – an already steadily growing sector. Creating new jobs and leaning into more efficient buildings can co-exist in a single recovery strategy.

A New Canadian Finance Minister is on the Horizon

There is no time like the present to make a change towards a better future for Canadians. With the resignation of Finance Minister Bill Morneau, a new door opens for both a more resilient, energy efficient Canada and fuel for an economic recovery.

Read related article: The Road to Recovery: Canada’s Post-Pandemic Economy