DIVIDED? Polarization and Canada’s Energy Future in an Age of Climate Change - October 2019

About the event

The future of Canadian energy in an age of climate change is passionately contested. Disagreement on an issue this important is not surprising, but is there really growing polarization on energy in Canada? If so, on what issues, between which groups, and why? What are the consequences of polarization? How can Canada effectively navigate and overcome a polarized environment to enable effective, evidence-informed decision-making about Canada’s energy future in an age of climate change, reconciliation with Indigenous peoples and public mistrust of institutions?

It was the first major conference of Positive Energy’s second three-year project and convened senior leaders form business, government, Indigenous communities, civil society and the academy to examine and address polarization in Canadian politics, in particular its effects on energy decision-making. At the conference, Positive Energy released original public opinion research on polarization (survey work with Nanos Research, our official pollster), along with original cutting-edge research on drivers of polarization and recommendations to address it. 

Opening keynote: Public Opinion and Leaders’ Views on Energy and Climate Issues

Keynote Speaker

Nik Nanos

Nik Nanos, Chair and CEO, Nanos Research

 

Session 1: Polarization over Canada’s energy future – who, about what, and how much?

Panelists

Marisa Beck

Marisa Beck, Research Director, ISSP, University of Ottawa

 

 

 

 

Stephen Bird
 
Stephen Bird, Associate Professor, Political Science, Clarkson University

 


 

 

 

Rhona Delfrari

Rhona DelFrari, Vice-President, Communications and External Engagement, Cenovus Energy

 

 

 

 

Nik Nanos

Nik Nanos, Chair and CEO, Nanos Research

 

 

 

 

Moderator

Michael Cleland

Mike Cleland, Senior Fellow, Positive Energy

Activity: Energy and the arts

Cameron Cross

Cameron Cross, Public Artist

Session 2: Is polarization over energy technologies a failure of public policy, regulation, industry, activism or all of the above?

Panelists

Neil Alexander

Neil Alexander, CEO, Bucephalus Consulting

 

 

 

 

Anne Raphaelle Audoin

Anne-Raphaelle Audouin, President, Waterpower Canada

 

 

 

 

James Donald
 
James Donald, Doctoral Candidate, School of Environmental Studies, University of Victoria
 

 



 

Christina Hoicka

Christina Hoicka, Assistant Professor, Sustainable Energy Economics, York University
 



 

 

Patricia Larkin

Patricia Larkin, Post-Doctoral Fellow, Positive Energy, University of Ottawa

 

 

 


Moderator

Tabatha Bull

Tabatha Bull, Chief Operating Officer, Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business

Session 3: What can we do about polarization of the Canadian energy discourse?

Panelists

Catherine Abreu
 
Catherine Abreu, Executive Director, Climate Action Network

 

 

 

 

Duane Bratt

Duane Bratt, Professor and Chair, Department of Economics, Justice, and Policy Studies, Mount Royal University

 

 

 

 

Larissa Crawford

Larissa Crawford, Speaker, Larissa Crawford Speaks

 

 

 

 

Patrick McCurdy
 
Patrick McCurdy, Associate Professor, Department of Communication, University of Ottawa

 

 

 

 

Normand Mousseau

Normand Mousseau, Academic Director, Trottier Energy Institute

 

 

 


Moderator

Meredith Adler

Meredith Adler, Executive Director, Student Energy

Closing plenary: What have we learned today?

Panelists

Niilo Edwards

Niilo Edwards, Executive Director, First Nations Major Projects Coalition
 
 
 
 
 
Tonja Leach

Tonja Leach, Executive Director, QUEST

 

 

 

 

David Lye

David Lye, Vice-President External Affairs, Encana

 

 

 

 

Aimee Richard

Aimee Richard, Bachelor’s degree, Public Administration and Women's Studies, University of Ottawa

 

 

 

 

Moderator


Monica Gattinger, Chair, Positive Energy
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