BC cities to the climate change rescue!
Colwood, Surrey and Vancouver are now vying for the top prize of Earth Hour City Challenge national Canadian winner as well as for the top prize overall- global champ. And the City of North Vancouver, also in BC, won an honourable mention.
What explains this leadership from BC?
As I wrote in an article published in the Vancouver Sun, it’s likely that BC’s comprehensive Climate Action Plan and legislated greenhouse gas emission targets have made a huge difference, and spurred many of the changes at the local government level. BC’s high green consciousness likely translates into voting in strong municipal leaders as well.
Here’s a little more detail on what actions made the BC cities rise to the top in this contest:
Colwood, a small town on Vancouver Island, is home to the innovative Solar Colwood program designed to retrofit up to one-sixth of its residences with renewable clean energy in a bid to grow the green building economy, and reduce energy costs and harmful greenhouse gas emissions.
The environmental credentials of Surrey, BC’s second largest city are growing almost as fast as the city grows. A geothermal based District Energy system will power both the new Surrey City Hall, now under construction, being built to meet LEED Gold building standards, as well as the nearby City Centre Library.
The Greenest City Action Plan has the audacious goal of making Vancouver the greenest city in the world by 2020 with measurable targets developed and implemented with multiple partners, most importantly thousands of local residents . Vancouver is well on the way with the lowest carbon pollution per person of any major city in North America.
And the City of North Vancouver was awarded an Honourable Mention for its groundbreaking work, which includes an energy efficient buildings density bonusing initiative, and collaboration on green buildings and award winning projects throughout the City.