Canadian environmentalist Louie Porta has been appointed chair of the Commission for Environmental Cooperation’s (CEC) Joint Public Advisory Committee (JPAC) for 2022.

The CEC was established in 1994 by the governments of Canada, Mexico, and the United States through the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation, a parallel environmental agreement to North American Free Trade Agreement.

Porta is the executive director of Oceans North, one of Canada’s largest ocean-focused charities. Porta has spent his career working with Indigenous and coastal communities in Canada and internationally, to advocate for a healthy, abundant ocean for generations to come.

He previously served as lead political advisory to Mary Simon, Canada’s first Indigenous Governor General, in her capacity as Minister’s Special Representative for Arctic Leadership. He serves on the Governing Council for the Ocean Tracking Network. He is also a senior advisor to the International Institute on Sustainable Development. He has published many articles on the threats facing the future of our ocean.


Louie Porta was one of the founders of Oceans North Canada.  He served as lead political advisor to Mary Simon, Ministerial Special Representative for Arctic Leadership.

Porta will chair the CEC’s advisory committee in the coming year as the body holds public consultations in the three countries on pressing environmental matters of global concern.

“The Commission for Environmental Cooperation is critical to continental environmental cooperation,” said Porta. “I am looking forward to working with the members of the Joint Public Advisory Committee from Mexico, Canada and the United States to make strong, impactful connections between sustainability, trade, and the day-to-day issues people are facing.”

Following its public consultations, JPAC provides advice to the CEC Council, made up of North America’s top environmental officials. JPAC is composed of nine citizen volunteers (three from each country) and advises the Council on any matter within the scope of the trinational Environmental Cooperation Agreement.

The JPAC chair is elected for a one-year term and by rotation from among the three countries’ members. JPAC meets throughout the year in different North American locations, typically in conjunction with CEC events.

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Featured images from CEC and Oceans North.

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