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Natural Resources committee  Thank you, Chair and committee members. I'd like to start off by acknowledging that I work, live and play on the traditional and treaty lands of the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation. Communities across Canada face increasingly critical times, leaving the most vulnerable even more precariously situated.

May 9th, 2022Committee meeting

Luisa Da Silva

Natural Resources committee  I'm a bit confused, because Iron and Earth is only in Canada.

May 9th, 2022Committee meeting

Luisa Da Silva

Natural Resources committee  It is absolutely reasonable. I would recommend that the way we start is by working with the communities, rather than working with the workers in isolation on their own. It has to be a community effort. We ran a community session in Hinton, Alberta. We brought everybody into the discussion, from the food bank to religious people to the workers.

May 9th, 2022Committee meeting

Luisa Da Silva

Natural Resources committee  We ran an Abacus poll last year that asked fossil fuel workers right across Canada these kinds of questions. Overwhelmingly, they were supportive of moving into the renewable sectors, but their concerns were consistent. They were concerned that they were going to be left behind if they were not provided with opportunities for upskilling and re-skilling within their communities.

May 9th, 2022Committee meeting

Luisa Da Silva

Natural Resources committee  I'd be happy to. Thank you.

May 9th, 2022Committee meeting

Luisa Da Silva

Natural Resources committee  It's so important to bring the entire community in, because you need to have everybody's voices. It's not going to be a singular person who is transitioning. This energy transition is going to bring everybody along, and it is going to happen. If I can make one point, in my organization, we work with a lot of remote and indigenous communities, and I've heard some people say today that Canada has had cheap, affordable energy.

May 9th, 2022Committee meeting

Luisa Da Silva

Environment committee  Thank you, esteemed committee members, for inviting Iron and Earth here today. In 2021, 42% of Canada's greenhouse gases came from burning fossil fuels for transportation, agriculture, and building or water heating. In Canada's 2022 budget, the two big-ticket items are EVs and CCUS, with CCUS receiving almost four times more funding than clean-electricity initiatives.

October 18th, 2022Committee meeting

Luisa Da Silva

Environment committee  Absolutely. Thank you. On proven technologies that are on the ground and would be able to be implemented right away, what come to mind are solar and wind. We have plenty of natural resources here in Canada. It would also benefit many of the communities that right now are completely diesel-dependent and have no other options.

October 18th, 2022Committee meeting

Luisa Da Silva

Environment committee  The federal government needs to put investments into creating projects, and those projects will then create the opportunities for the jobs. When we're speaking with people on the ground and talking to them about the opportunities, even just for transitioning, some people are becoming reticent to move over because of the looming recession.

October 18th, 2022Committee meeting

Luisa Da Silva

Environment committee  Yes, it goes back to what I said in my introduction, which is that for the fossil fuel workers it's just, “We follow the jobs.” That's what we've known for years. Wherever the jobs are—within Canada, in the U.S. or international—we go where the jobs are. That's what we're used to.

October 18th, 2022Committee meeting

Luisa Da Silva

Environment committee  The money needs to follow with entrepreneurs, I think, and you need to be putting the funds towards being able to create the projects within the private sector. Having the government put funds towards an upscaling program—for example, like the ESDC program—is fantastic. That's what will get it started, but there needs to be that funding to follow through for the private sector to take on the projects.

October 18th, 2022Committee meeting

Luisa Da Silva

Environment committee  It's a problem that's going to compound. I'm sure everybody in this room is also aware that people who work in skilled trades are going to be retiring, and there's going to be a shortage looming on the horizon. We're going to see a compounding effect there, because often it is the skilled trades workers who work in these positions.

October 18th, 2022Committee meeting

Luisa Da Silva

Environment committee  For me, what it speaks to is that the oil and gas sector has been very dominant in Canada. There is this infrastructure that's already in place, so when we're looking to find a solution that fits within the existing infrastructure, CCUS would fit, but CCUS can't be that silver bullet, so the volume of investment that has gone towards CCUS is disproportionate to the available renewable technologies that are out there that will actually make a difference.

October 18th, 2022Committee meeting

Luisa Da Silva

Environment committee  Absolutely. Thank you.

October 18th, 2022Committee meeting

Luisa Da Silva