The Quebec Legislative Building

Most governments have a Minstry of the Environment.  Quebec has a Ministry of Sustainable Development, Environment and the Fight against Climate Change.  Which means Quebec has both a sustainable development plan and a climate plan.

Quebec’s Sustainable Development Strategy

Quebec has a Sustainable Development Strategy (french only) that has been in effect since 2008 and was updated in 2015.

Like most things Quebecois, it’s detailed, down to earth and honest.  The strategy lists  eight goals that cover environmental protection, sustainable economic development and social well-being:

  1. Strengthen developing governance sustainable public administration
  2. a sustainable and prosperous economy
  3. Manage natural resources responsibly and respectful of biodiversity
  4. Promote social inclusion and reduce social and economic inequalities
  5. Improve public health through prevention
  6. Ensure sustainable land management and support strong communities
  7. Support sustainable mobility
  8. Promote the production and use of renewable energy and energy efficiency to
    greenhouse gas emissions

Quebec’s strategy is driven by legislation, the Sustainable Development Act of 2006, which gave the government one year to adopt a sustainable development strategy. Under the Act, the strategy is directed primarily at the public service, targeting government departments, agencies and enterprises and eventually applying to municipal bodies, educational establishments and health and social services institutions.  It must help better integrate sustainable development into government policies, programs and measures to ensure coherent action in this area.


To back up their strategy, the Quebec government has identified a list of sustainability indicators, including:

  • 20 sustainable development indicators
  • 84 indicators for monitoring the objectives of the Government Sustainable Development Strategy 2008-2013, and
  • 1585 indicators for monitoring the sustainable development actions of government departments and agencies.

Each provincial department is required to prepare its own sustainable development plan in support of the overall strategy, and the government is required to report on progress every five years and update the strategy as required.


Climate Change

The 2020 Climate Change Action Plan establishes measures for every GHG-emitting sector in Québec and specifically for transportation, industry, and construction, which together emit the most greenhouse gases. Several measures will also be put in place in support of the 2013-2020 governmental climate change strategy. A number of initiatives will also be launched in relation to land use management, research and innovation, public awareness, and governmental exemplarity, given the short-, medium-, and long-term impacts these sectors could have on our production methods, consumption habits and organization of our communities.