Bonnie Crombie announces climate action panel

Six eminent environmental leaders to head consultations on strong climate action plan, without a carbon tax

TORONTO, ON – Bonnie Crombie, Leader of Ontario’s Liberals, today announced the first of a series of expert policy panels to lead consultations to form the 2026 election platform. 

“Climate change is an existential threat to our province’s economic prosperity and to the health and safety of future generations. This Conservative government has taken us backwards — they have no plan to fight climate change, and have made things even worse. We are going to change that. Ontario Liberals will have the most innovative and ambitious plan for climate action this province has ever seen. As Mayor of Mississauga, we led award-winning climate action, and that same thoughtful, progressive approach is what I want for our Ontario Liberal platform. We’re going to do our homework and consult widely with Ontario families, scientists, environmentalists and other experts.”

– Bonnie Crombie, Leader of Ontario’s Liberals

The Climate Action Panel will be led by six stalwart environmental leaders:

  • Mary-Margaret McMahon (Chair) is the MPP for the riding of Beaches-East York and the Ontario Liberal caucus critic for the Environment and Climate Change. She’s a passionate environmentalist who has shown real leadership in protecting the planet throughout her time at Queen’s Park and as a Toronto City Councillor. 
  • Carol Mitchell was Ontario’s Minister of Agriculture, Food, and Rural Affairs. She has long-standing experience with how environmental stewardship and supporting our rural communities go hand in hand. Carol served as Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Municipal Affairs, Public Infrastructure Renewal, and Agriculture, Food, and Rural Affairs; was a key participant in the Ontario Liberal government’s Poverty Reduction Strategy and an inaugural member of the Rural and Northern Health Panel.
  • Cherise Burda is the Executive Director of City Building Research and Innovation at Toronto Metropolitan University, where she utilizes her expertise in relevant and proactive policy development, strategic communications, and creative engagement. She previously served as the Ontario Director of the Pembina Institute, the Program Director at the David Suzuki Foundation, and a senior researcher at the University of Victoria’s Eco-Research Chair in Environmental Law and Policy.
  • Chris Ballard has a long history of supporting environmental and restorative building and development practices. Chris currently advocates for affordable, high-performance buildings across Canada, and has also fought for consumer rights. He served as Ontario’s Minister of Environment and Climate Change, the Minister of Housing, and the Minister responsible for Ontario’s Poverty Reduction Strategy. 
  • Kathryn Bakos is the Managing Director of finance and resilience at the Intact Centre on Climate Adaption. Kathryn’s work is driving novel insights at the intersection of climate change and finance. Kathryn is a Ted Talk speaker, and a recipient of Clean50’s Emerging Leader 2023 award. She also serves on various committees and councils, such as the ISO 331 Biodiversity Mirror Committee, Ontario Biodiversity Council, Canadian Association of Farm Advisors, and others.
  • Vince Gasparro was most recently the Managing Director & Head of Sustainable Finance at a major Canadian bank. He also serves on the board of directors of the World Wildlife Fund. He has served at all levels of government and has represented Canada on its three most recent delegations to the UN Climate Change Conferences – Glasgow, Sharm El-Sheikh, and Dubai.

“We will ensure major polluters pay, but we will not have an Ontario carbon tax on consumers. Instead, I want robust action on building up public transit systems; investing in electric vehicle infrastructure; reforming land-use planning to build livable, walkable communities; protecting our water, sensitive land, and nature; decarbonizing our energy grid; supporting our farmers; and, most importantly, finding ways to help families save money by helping households become more energy efficient. We’re going to restore Ontario to a position of leadership in the fight against climate change.”

– Bonnie Crombie, Leader of Ontario’s Liberals

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