COVID-19 Updates

Follow along on the latest on COVID-19 news, as it concerns the environment, climate and health. If you come across something you'd like for us to fact-check for you, or if you want to provide us with a submission to share, please send us an email at

Fossil Fuel Financing, COVID-19 Recovery, and the Perils of a Return to Normalcy

WHO’s and UNEP’s Plans for Returning to a Greener 'Normal' Post COVID-19

Climate-Related Financial Disclosures and How They Impact Business COVID-19 Grants

Looking for something to do? Check out our COVID-19 care tips!

Latest News

UBC professor uses knowledge of SARS to develop COVID-19 drug

September 24th, 2020: A B.C. doctor who helped discover an enzyme and develop a drug to stop the spread of SARS more than 20 years ago is using that knowledge to fight COVID-19.

Concentrations of greenhouse gases in Earth’s atmosphere hit record high despite COVID-19 lockdowns: UN report

September 9th, 2020: Concentrations of greenhouse gases in the Earth’s atmosphere hit a record high this year, a United Nations report showed on Wednesday, as an economic slowdown amid the coronavirus pandemic had little lasting effect.

COVID-19 vaccine not a 'silver-bullet solution' to ending pandemic: top public health official

August 5th, 2020: Canada’s top public health doctors warned Tuesday that vaccines in development for COVID-19 provide hope but will not mean an immediate end to the pandemic.

Fight climate change to prevent future pandemics like COVID-19, countries told

July 6th, 2020: Land degradation, wildlife exploitation, intensive farming and climate change are driving the rise in diseases that, like the coronavirus, are passed from animals to humans, United Nations experts said on Monday.

Doug Ford government restores environmental protections it suspended amid COVID-19

June 15th, 2020: Ontario restored environmental protections Monday that the government suspended in April amid the early stages of the COVID-19 crisis.

Back to school: Quebec daycares and elementary schools outside of the Montreal Area reopen

May 11th, 2020: The province has stated that attendance is not mandatory, although staff and students will be practicing sanitation and physical distancing measures while at school. Libraries, gyms, and cafeterias remain closed and students are to be separated in the classroom at most schools.

Federal Government to support Canada’s agriculture and food industry with a $252-million aid package

May 5th, 2020: The Canadian Federation of Agriculture had reached out for financial aid last month, and the government has recent announced an initial investment of $252-million. Specifically, $77-million will be allocated to expand domestic processing capacity through protective equipment and supporting physical distancing measures.

The Ontario government announces reopening of certain workplaces for May 4th

May 1st, 2020: The Ontario government has decided to allow the reopening of a small list of specific businesses and workplaces amidst the pandemic, given they adhere to strict public health measures. These businesses can plan to open for May 4th, including garden centres, lawn care, essential construction projects, automatic car washes, auto dealerships, and golf courses and marinas for preparation only.

Projections of record setting emission reductions in 2020 may not be the best news

April 30th, 2020: Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, new research projects that global emissions will drop by nearly 8 percent. This drop is the largest global greenhouse gas emission decline ever recorded. Although this research sounds like good news, experts caution that this drop in emissions is not sustainable to combat the effects of climate change. As the pandemic subsides, there may be significantly increased emissions in the coming years due to rebuilding economies. Unless systems change is implemented and climate policy created, the decline in emissions throughout COVID-19 will likely not lead to long-lasting benefits.

Ontario study reports evidence of COVID-19 origin using unique methods

April 28th, 2020: A study conducted at Western University finds evidence that the virus had originated in bats, duplicating the findings of other global research efforts. However, the leaders of the study claim that although they are not the first research team to link the virus to bats, they may be the fastest. Using programming developed by their team, they believe that this may help expedite the processes of researching treatments.

"A Framework for Reopening our Province": Ontario Government releases a 3-stage framework for recovery

April 27th, 2020: The Ontario Government has released a plan to reopen the province in 3-phases. Although timing cannot be determined, the plan progresses through 3 phases: protect and support, restart, and recover. See the full report for more details.

Government of Canada invests in emissions management and cleaning orphaned oil wells amidst COVID-19

April 17th, 2020: On April 17th, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced $1.7 billion to clean up orphan oil wells in Alberta, Saskatchewan, and British Columbia,. Notably, this investment expects maintain 5,200 jobs in Alberta, which will receive approximately $1 billion. Secondly, a $750 million emission reduction fund was also announced, aiming to create jobs through environmental protection efforts, specifically methane emission reductions.