Previously, federal regulations required coal power plants to shut down after operating for 50 years. Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall accused Ottawa of ignoring commitments to collaborating with the provinces on climate change policies. “The federal government has now violated that commitment for a second time by making its second major policy announcement in advance of the first minister’s meeting in December — the announcement last month of a national carbon tax and now this announcement of an accelerated phase out of coal-fired electrical generation,” Wall said.

Saskatchewan has three coal-fired power plants, which provide 40% of the province’s electricity. Nova Scotia is home to four coal-fired generating stations. New Brunswick relies on one coal-fired plant.