Presentation to Environment Committee

Ottawa-Strategy-Map-ApexOn May 21 the City of Ottawa’s Environment Committee met for the first time since February. On their agenda was an item related to the March 23 Greenhouse Gas Roundtable.

Unlike the Environment Committee, whose members are city councillors, the recently established Environmental Stewardship Advisory Committee is made up of volunteers from the public and it was their workplan that was being approved by the elected councillors on Environment Committee.

On behalf of Ecology Ottawa I made three points to Ottawa’s Environment Committee:

  1. I offered Ecology Ottawa’s support to the new advisory committee and have since emailed the councillors this report on the roundtable; the report was produced by volunteers.
  2. I pointed out that Mayor Watson’s promised climate change plan by summer 2014 was out of synch with the current planning process (the Official Plan, Transportation Master Plan, Waste Plan, all due in 2013) and encouraged that city staff working on reviews be directed to anticipate climate change initiatives in these plans. This could be done by meeting with the staff who will be working on the climate change plan refresh and familiarizing themselves with past climate plans such as this and this one.
  3. For us to make significant local progress on climate change I noted that public consultation and engagement was needed. In an otherwise successful roundtable, a failing in the area of public consultation has been mentioned to me by numerous people. I asked that the City of Ottawa get going early and enhance its efforts at public consultation and engagement concerning the refresh of the Air Quality and Climate Change Management Plan.

I’ll be working with Ecology Ottawa and others to encourage the city in these directions.

This post cross posted with Ecology Ottawa.

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