Canada and US establish taskforce for clean energy and nuclear

Following a meeting between Canada Prime Minister Trudeau and US President Biden, both countries have agreed to establish an Energy Transformation Task Force.

The new body, which will be chaired by the US Special Presidential Coordinator for Global Infrastructure and Canada’s Deputy Prime Minister, will work across the spectrum of the clean economy.

The task force will be charged with accelerating cooperation on critical clean energy opportunities and supply chains, including but not limited to: securing and strengthening renewable energy and electric vehicle supply chains, critical minerals and rare earths, grid integration and resilience, advanced and conventional nuclear energy.

Both countries said they will work to harmonise charging standards and develop cross-border alternative fuel corridors, drawing on $7.5 billion in the US Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and C$1.2 billion in Canadian funding to build a network of electric vehicle fast chargers and community charging options on both sides of the border.

Building on Canadian and US commitments to achieve net-zero power grids by 2035 and to accelerate efforts to phase down new, unabated coal power generation facilities, both countries also intend to propose regulations before this autumn that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions from their respective sectors.

The United States and Canada also intend to work with other major energy importers and exporters to develop an internationally aligned approach to measurement, monitoring, reporting, and verification for lifecycle methane and CO2 emissions across the fossil energy value chain.

Canada and the United States added that they will work together to address the climate impact of goods, promote North American trade of low-emissions goods, including the promotion of common approaches for trade in low emissions goods, including green steel and aluminum.

On civil nuclear engagement, Canada will join the Foundational Infrastructure for Responsible Use of Small Modular Reactor Technology (FIRST) program, providing funding and in-kind support.

Both countries will also coordinate efforts to develop secure and reliable North American nuclear fuel supply chains and build broader partnerships with longstanding allies and partners, both of which will help to ensure access to low enriched uranium, including High-Assay Low Enriched Uranium.

Canada and the United States added that will work together to create a strong, environmentally responsible, and resilient North American critical minerals supply chain:

“We are committed to identifying, securing, and developing critical minerals extraction, processing, manufacturing, and recycling opportunities in both countries to diversify supply chains essential to clean energy, electric vehicles, semiconductors, aerospace, and defense, among other sectors, that meet strong environmental, sustainability, worker, health and safety, Indigenous and Tribal consultation and partnership, and community engagement standards.”