CETA and the environment: a gold standard for the planet or for big business?

The Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) between Canada and the European Union is presented as one of the most progressive trade agreements ever negotiated. This analysis conducted by legal NGO ClientEarth and T&E looks into a number of key areas in CETA with likely implications for environmental protection. 

The analysis finds that its provisions do not make it a ‘gold standard’ deal for people and the planet. For CETA to deliver for the environment, improvements are warranted in the following areas:

- the Investment Court System should be removed;

- the environment chapter should be made binding, with meaningful enforcement;

- regulatory cooperation should serve to promote and improve social and environmental policy;

- the Domestic Regulation chapter should be more cognisant of environmental licensing and permitting procedures;

- a Clean Hands Clause should be added to strengthen the parties’ rights to regulate through consumption and export rules;

- CETA should reflect both parties’ commitment to the Paris climate agreement;

- tariff reduction should be differentiated according to environmental characteristics.