Transition Brockville archive

Tag : Local government (64)

Trying to be Canada’s first carbon-neutral community

Maclean's / Alireza Naraghi / 23 July 2019

An hour’s drive from Toronto on the northwestern edge of Milton, Ont., is a little-known town with a little-known story of climate-change activism. With about 350 residents, Eden Mills has long sought to preserve its 19th-century charm, making it a haven for big-city escapees who enjoy cycling or placid walks along the Eramosa River. More recently, though, its inhabitants have worked toward a distinctly 21st-century goal: becoming Canada’s first carbon-neutral community.

The project has defined the past 12 years of Charles Simon’s life. He got the idea after watching a TV program about Ashton Hayes, which is aiming to become England’s first carbon-neutral village. It also happens to be located near where Simon, a retired engineer, grew up. After a summer visit to the U.K. in 2007, he returned to his own community with a vision. And to his surprise, his neighbours bought in.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

Township office targets net-zero-energy consumption

Federation of Canadian Municipalities / 17 June 2019

The Honourable Bernadette Jordan, Minister of Rural Economic Development; and Joanne Vanderheyden, Second Vice-President of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM), today announced over $2.7 million in grants and loans through the Green Municipal Fund (GMF) to support green initiatives in McNab/Braeside towards the construction of the new township office.

The new township office will optimize energy performance through improved building construction, and design considerations such as water usage, natural light and passive solar heating. The new building could generate annual energy savings of up to 127,208 kilowatt hours, a 67% reduction in energy consumption. This reduction in energy use combined with the renewable energy produced by the ground-mounted solar photovoltaic system would make this a net-zero building. The new building, expected to be completed during the summer of 2019, will also improve the overall quality and efficiency of municipal services by creating a more accessible and functional space and improving air quality by reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

[ FULL MEDIA RELEASE ]

7 municipalities partnering with Brock U for Niagara Adapts

St. Catharines Standard / Beth Audet / 03 July 2019

St. Catharines and Niagara-on-the-Lake have seen significant flooding in Lakeside Park and the Dock Area respectively, Pelham’s iconic arches toppled in a windstorm, Niagara Falls has had issues with frozen pipes in the deep freeze of winter, Niagara seniors have struggled with the extreme humidity of summer, farmers have to cope with challenging crop planting in overly wet seasons and the bee population is declining.

“The impacts are here and we’re all feeling them,” she said, but quickly added that there are tangible things we can do about it if we work together.

Brock held its inaugural Niagara Adapts workshop on June 14, where community leaders from St. Catharines, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Grimsby, Lincoln, Niagara Falls, Welland and Pelham met with the four members of the Environmental Sustainability Research Centre.

The partnership will proceed with a series of nine workshops held at the university over the next two years. There are also plans to engage with citizens and spread awareness as well, through public events or online forums.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

Cornwall to create new climate change committee

Cornwall Standard-Freeholder / Alan S. Hale / 27 June 2019

The City of Cornwall is expected to establish a new environment and climate change committee by this fall to find ways for the municipality and residents to reduce their impact on the environment.

At Monday’s city council meeting, city administrators said they will be working through the summer to come up with the new committee’s structure and scope. The plan is to have some kind of public consultation on the committee’s mission before submitting a final proposal to city council this September.

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

Healthy environment a right: Councillors

Recorder & Times / Ronald Zajac / 03 April 2019

Brockville council will vote next week on a motion declaring “the right to a healthy environment.”

Members of council’s planning and operations committee on Tuesday unanimously backed Coun. Cameron Wales’s motion to adopt the declaration put forward by the David Suzuki Foundation’s “Blue Dot” movement.

The full council is expected to put the declaration to a final vote next Tuesday.

The Blue Dot movement website describes it as “a national grassroots campaign based on the idea that everyone in Canada deserves the right to a healthy environment, including clean air and water, and a say in decisions that affect our health and well-being.”

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

Kingston’s climate change strategy is number one in country

TVO Current Affairs / David Rockne Corrigan / 14 December 2018

The municipality that has billed itself as “Canada’s most sustainable city” since 2009 now has some solid evidence to back up the claim.

The November issue of the journal Climatic Change contains a ranking of the climate-change plans of 63 Canadian municipalities — and Kingston comes out on top.

Plans were evaluated based on eight criteria, including how a community sets its climate goals, how effective those goals are, and how it measures and achieves progress.

Municipalities are the “most vulnerable” of all levels of government when it comes to climate change, explains lead author Dave Guyadeen, of the University of Guelph, because they face the most immediate impacts. ”So we wanted to know how they are responding to it,” he says.

So what lessons can Kingston offer other municipalities trying to come up with or improve climate-change plans?

[ FULL ARTICLE ]

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The Transition Framework

What the Transition movement does incredibly well is small-scale experiments which are practical, which resonate with local people, which look as if they’re doable, and that can engage people at a practical and meaningful level. It connects up the big issues and the local issues and shows you that change can happen at a local level.

— Julian Dobson, 21 Stories of Transition
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