More than 2,000 residents have shared their ideas to reduce Toronto’s greenhouse gas emissions and create a low-carbon city through TransformTO: Climate Action for a Healthy, Equitable and Prosperous Toronto, a City initiative in partnership with the Toronto Atmospheric Fund.
“We invited the community to help shape Toronto’s future, not just for a low-carbon city but as one that will also be healthier, more prosperous and more equitable as a result of the actions we take to reduce our emissions,” said Councillor Gord Perks (Ward 14 Parkdale-High Park), Chair of the Subcommittee on Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation. “Community input and action will be essential to our success.”
Areas for action identified most frequently by residents included better transit, making communities more complete, dense and walkable, increasing urban agriculture, improving cycling infrastructure and creating more green space. Overall, improving transportation and encouraging behaviour change were the top priorities among participants.
TransformTO will deliver a plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Toronto by 30 per cent by 2020 based on 1990 levels, and a longer-term approach to achieve the City’s 80 per cent reduction target by 2050 while enhancing the local economy, reducing inequalities and shifting consumption patterns. The City’s targets were unanimously adopted by City Council in 2007. To date, city-wide emissions have been reduced by 24 per cent.
The next phase in the TransformTO project, technical scenario modelling, will consider the community’s input and analyze the impact of potential actions to help identify the most effective ways to reduce emissions.
The Parks and Environment Subcommittee on Climate Mitigation and Adaptation will meet on November 14 to consider the TransformTO staff report and the community engagement report. – CINEWS