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President Obama and Prime Minister Harper launched the U.S.-Canada Clean Energy Dialogue (CED) in February 2009 to encourage the development of clean energy technologies to reduce greenhouse gases and combat climate change in both countries. The CED is charged with: expanding clean energy research and development; developing and deploying clean energy technologies; and building a more efficient electric grid based on clean and renewable generation. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) leads the CED for the United States, and Canada’s effort is led by Environment Canada, with participation by Natural Resources Canada (NRCan).
DOE and NRCan co-chair three bilateral Working Groups which carry out this mandate in specific areas identified for enhanced bilateral cooperation: carbon capture and storage (CCS), clean energy R&D (in advanced biofuels, clean engines, energy efficiency, advanced transportation, marine energy, and other areas), and making the electricity grid a smart grid. Environment Canada co-chairs the Clean Energy R&D Working Group with NRCan.
The working groups developed an action plan of twenty initiatives to undertake jointly in the areas identified for enhanced cooperation. The action plan and a report to leaders on progress to date were released on September 16, 2009. A second report to leaders was announced and released on February 4, 2011.
Action Plan II was released by DOE, Environment Canada, and NRCan on June 21, 2012. Action Plan II contains continued and new initiatives to be implemented through 2014 that will build upon those undertaken by Working Groups under Phase I of the CED, and will deepen bilateral collaboration in the three focus areas, with greater emphasis on energy efficiency by the Clean Energy R&D Working Group.