North West Territories


44,904 (1)

Current majority government:

Consensus Government (All Members of Legislative Assembly are Independents) 

Premier: Caroline Cochrane (Range Lake) (2)

Environmental stance of majority party:

“Through implementation of the 2030 NWT Climate Change Strategic Framework, the GNWT [Government of the Northwest Territories] will address the concerns and interest of NWT residents by providing the GNWT with a long-term comprehensive and coordinated response to climate change, outlined in three goals: 1) Transition to a strong, healthy economy that uses less fossil fuel, thereby reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 30% below 2005 levels by 2030. 2) Increasing understanding of climate change impacts occurring in the NWT. 3) Building resilience and adapting to a changing climate.” (3)

Percentage of 2020/2021 budget estimated to be allocated to the environment:

$97,085,000 (5.1% of Total Government Expenses) (4)

Main provincial-level legislation for environment protection:

Environmental Protection Act (5) -Broad act regulating pollution and environmental contaminants. 

Environmental Rights Act (6) -Defines the environmental values of the NWT and states that “every adult resident in the Northwest Territories has the right to protect the environment and the public trust.”

Specific government-based environmental programs:

2030 NWT Climate Change Strategic Framework (7) -Lays out the Northwest Territories’ goals and plans in terms of climate action. 

Renewable and Alternative Energy (8) -Directory of resources about alternative energy sources in the NWT and government programs in regard to them. These alternative energy sources include: -Hydro Power -Solar Power -Wind Power -Biomass -Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) 

Science and Monitoring (9) -Home of the the government’s climate science program tracking the effects of climate change on the territory

Next election date:

On or before October 2nd, 2023 (12)

Extra information:

Environment + Energy (13) -Government Department responsible for conservation, climate change, energy, and wildlife. As of April 2020, the Minister responsible is Shane Thompson.

What makes this province different?

Because of the intense fuel demands required to live in northern communities disconnected from the rest of the country, the NWT has significant greenhouse gas emissions per capita, not to mention the greenhouse gas emissions and high costs associated with the need to import most goods. As well, according to Canada's Changing Climate Report (2019) (14), the Territory is warming at a rate three times higher than the national average. Warming is causing tangible effects on many communities, including increased permafrost thaw, erosion, longer seasons without ice, and a greater risk of forest fires. These environmental changes “are also impacting the health and well-being of residents, Indigenous culture and lifestyle, the territory's infrastructure and some economic activities.” (15)

  Quick facts:  

The NWT is a member of the Pan-Territorial Adaptation Partnership (16), Arctic Energy Alliance (17), and Under 2 Coalition (18).

Thawing permafrost causing damage to public infrastructure like roads and buildings (19).

Beaufort sea water levels expected to rise up to one meter in 21st century, threatening coastal communities in NWT (20).

Due to climate change, the NWT are expected to have an increased risk of wildfires in the years to come (21)

  Last Updated:  

August 1, 2020

Who We Are

Shake Up The Establishment is a youth-led, registered (#1190975-4) national non-partisan non-profit organization that operates within the geographical confines of what is currently known as "Canada", but what is referred to by its First Peoples, as Turtle Island. Indigenous peoples have inhabited Turtle Island for over 10,000 years, and were the sole inhabitants less than 500 years ago. We acknowledge that our address resides on Treaty 3 land, and is the traditional territory of the Erie, Neutral, Huron-Wendat, Haudenosaunee and Mississaugas Peoples. Turtle Island is still home to many Indigenous peoples and we at SUTE are thankful to be able to live, learn and work on this territory, whilst continuing to create meaningful change for the climate justice movement. We are aware that our actions as an organization and the work we put out have an impact on our land, and on all that inhabit it. We are humbled to be able to follow the lead of centuries long Indigenous-led efforts towards the protection and stewardship of this land and the people that inhabit it. We are committed to continually evaluating & decolonizing our practices, and we do our best to incorporate the lived experiences of the land defenders and protectors within our work. We also want to honour the voices of Black, and non-Black people of colour within our work, and continually recognize their resiliency in the face of years of systemic oppression as imposed by the Canadian state.


Our enterprise is inclusive of all folx who call the geographical confines of what is currently known as Canada, home, and we celebrate the horizontal learning that comes from our diverse identities. As an organization, we will try our utmost best to ensure that only individuals with lived experiences are speaking on behalf of their communities, while still recognizing that Black, Indigenous and communities of colour as well as the LGBTQ2S+ community, are not a monolith. We firmly believe in accountability, and commit to being as transparent as possible in our activism space; to research our topics well, support and centre community care, and minimize any harm, no matter the intent. We have strict policies and procedures to uphold these tenets, and update these on a yearly (or as-needed) basis.

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