Climate Action

Sustainability and climate protection have long been a part of the City's core values, policies and programs. To build a community that is resilient to future challenges, we recognize the need to lead by example.

Living City Climate Action Starts Here Summary Report

Corporate (City Operations) Climate Action Targets

  • Reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 15% below 2007 levels by 2020

Numerous actions have been taken to conserve energy and achieve emissions reductions in building and fleet operations and through waste reduction and diversion. The City’s Corporate Greenhouse Gas reductions have decreased by 19% below 2007 levels.  Reductions have been achieved primarily through implementing the following measures:

  • reductions to building natural gas consumption through discontinuing the use of older inefficient gas boilers and connecting more civic buildings to the Lonsdale Energy Corporation.
  • implementation of the Corporate Zero Waste Program in Civic buildings and facilities; and
  • incorporating electric and more efficient vehicles into the City’s fleet.

It should be noted that 2014 and 2015 were warmer years and did not require the level of winter or storm maintenance that is necessary in other years. Year to year fluctuations do occur depending on heating and snow clearing demand. Despite being slightly higher in 2016, corporate emissions are trending downwards over time since 2007.  These reductions represent a significant achievement for the City.

A number of actions are planned to ensure the City remains on track towards meeting our 2020 target of a 25% reduction in emissions below 2007 levels.  The City’s Corporate Climate Action Plan provides the overall strategy for moving forward and achieving these targets by 2020.

Community-wide Climate Action Targets

  • Reduce emissions by 80% below 2007 levels by 2040
  • Achieve net zero or 100% emissions by 2050

Following a Notice of Motion during the Council Meeting on February 25, 2019, the City has increased its greenhouse gas reduction targets to achieve net zero by 2050. The Notice of Motion recognizes the special report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change stating that emissions must by 45% from 2010 levels by 2030 and reach net zero by 2050 in order to avoid severe climate impacts, and the need for local governments to take the lead on climate action.

The City is a leader in developing sustainable transportation alternatives, building energy efficiency initiatives and in encouraging waste diversion. To meet our ambitious climate action targets, we recognize that timely efforts are required in our community. Staff are working to incorporate the new targets into updates to City plans, policies and business actions and will be reporting regularly on the City’s progress towards achieving the targets.

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