Our process helps Canada achieve sustainable development solutions that integrate environmental and economic considerations to ensure the lasting prosperity and well-being of our nation.


We rigorously research and conduct high quality analysis on issues of sustainable development. Our thinking is original and thought provoking.


We convene opinion leaders and experts from across Canada around our table to share their knowledge and diverse perspectives. We stimulate debate and integrate polarities. We create a context for possibilities to emerge.


We generate ideas and provide realistic solutions to advise governments, Parliament and Canadians. We proceed with resolve and optimism to bring Canada’s economy and environment closer together.

Think Green; Act Green

Think Green; Act Green

The National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy (NRTEE) is committed to operating in an environmentally responsible way by reducing its carbon footprint and greening its operations. To demonstrate this commitment, we have adopted an Environmental Code of Practice and have formalized a comprehensive set of policies and practices to guide our greening activities. A tagline, Think Green; Act Green, created and selected by our employees, captures the spirit of our initiative.

The NRTEE Act states that “the purpose of the NRTEE is to play the role of catalyst in identifying, explaining and promoting … principles and practices of sustainable development.” Our greening initiative is a further expression of our efforts to lead by example and is consistent with the intent of the Act.

A key element of our initiative is how we track and evaluate our carbon footprint. We have instituted a process to conduct an annual inventory of the GHG emissions from our operations. We then calculate our carbon footprint according to recognized standards and methods, and make it public. We continually take steps to reduce these emissions, particularly from our business travel.

We have demonstrated how employees and management – our team – can work together successfully to create and implement our greening initiative, and how even small agencies can make a difference.


The NRTEE has voluntarily and actively implemented an Environmental Code of Practice that sets out the principles which will guide our policies and practices to save energy, reduce usage of other resources, and reduce waste from our operations. We will adopt, measure where feasible, and publish the NRTEE’s environmental practices, thereby providing an example of small agency leadership for sustainability within the federal government.



The NRTEE’s greening policies and practices align with government-wide categories, namely procurement, energy use (in office space and for business travel), waste management, and employee awareness and engagement.

  1. Procurement
  2. Energy Use: Office Operations
  3. Energy Use: Business Travel
  4. Waste Management/Diversion
  5. Employee Engagement, Awareness, and Activities


Carbon Footprint 2011 - pie chart


As a key element of its greening initiative, the NRTEE has instituted procedures to measure and track its carbon footprint on an ongoing basis, starting with the 2008 calendar year. This involves performing an inventory of the greenhouse gas emissions emitted from office space energy use, business travel and employee commuting, and then applying standard, recognized steps to calculate the footprint. The approach is consistent, to the extent possible, with the requirements and recommendations of the WRI/WBCSD GHG Protocol, and is checked and verified by an independent organization.

Earth Hour - image


As part of our employee engagement efforts, the NRTEE participated in the World Wildlife Fund’s Earth Hour event. Staff were encouraged to ‘do something in the dark’ at 8:30 pm on Saturday, March 26th. NRTEE staff joined hundreds of millions of people across the globe in a demonstration of concern about climate change.

Earth Day 2011 - image


In the spirit of Senator Gaylord Nelson, the NRTEE celebrated the 41th anniversary of Earth Day (April 22, 2011) with a garbage-free lunch and guest speaker. Master gardener Rebecca Last, spoke to NRTEE staff about the ABC’s of organic gardening – basic principles, plus the pro’s and con’s – just in time for the new planting season.

Cap-and-Trade Commuter Challenge - image


The NRTEE’s Staff Commuter Challenge

From June 14th – 18th, 2010, the NRTEE launched an innovative spin on the traditional employee Commuter Challenge by developing a commuter cap and trade system. The exercise was part of the Think Green, Act Green employee engagement, to draw attention to the environmental impacts of staff commuting, enable staff to experience how cap and trade systems work.

Locavore Challenge - image


In the spirit of the harvest season, on October 28, 2010, from noon – 1:00, the Green Steering Committee of the NRTEE hosted an innovative employee engagement initiative: The Locavore Challenge. Two teams were challenged to prepared three dishes (one appetizer, main, and a dessert) with ingredients grown or produced within a 100-km radius of the city of Ottawa. This challenge was meant to promote awareness among staff of the environmental and economic benefits of buying local produced food. The NRTEE received an honourable mention from the national Eco-Action Challenge for its Locavore initiative.