The City of Charlottetown is developing a Community Greenhouse Gas Reduction Plan and is seeking ideas from the public on what content should be in the plan and how the City can further reduce emissions.
The Greenhouse Gas Reduction Plan is being developed in five phases: establishing a Community Energy Greenhouse and Gas Inventory; public consultation and visioning; evaluation of proposed measures for reducing emissions; drafting and adopting the plan; and implementing the actions and monitoring success. The City’s Sustainability team recently completed the Community Energy and Greenhouse Gas Inventory. It, along with other resources, are available to the public at www.charlottetown.ca
During the month of January, the City will be offering a number of initiatives and opportunities for public feedback on the greenhouse gas inventory, and ideas for the reduction plan. This includes:
• an online survey, which can be found on the City’s website;
• a video contest for youth;
• a Greenhouse Gas and Climate Change presentation and discussion, ideal for those who wish to learn more before providing feedback. It will be held on Thursday, January 11 at Receiver Brass Shop (178 Water Street) from 7 p.m.-8:30 p.m.;
• a Community Energy Speaker Session hosted by Mayor Clifford Lee at City Hall (199 Queen Street) on Thursday, January 18 from 5:30 p.m. until 7 p.m.
• Public Consultation Session on Monday, January 22 at the Charlottetown Public Library with drop-ins welcome between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.; or the public can pre-register for the evening consultation session, which runs from 5:30 p.m. until 7 p.m. (light supper will be provided). The storm date for the drop-ins and the evening session is Monday, February 5.
• The public can also email ideas and feedback to the City at: firstname.lastname@example.org
"Climate change is a global issue that must be addressed by all levels of government and society. The Province released its energy strategy in 2016 and municipalities all across Canada have committed to doing their part to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions through the development of greenhouse gas reduction plans," said Charlottetown Mayor Clifford Lee. "The City of Charlottetown is thrilled to be part of this global movement toward a greener future, but we can’t get there without input from our citizens. We want to hear your ideas and concerns; help us shape the future and reduce emissions for the benefit of everyone."
The aim of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Plan is to help Mayor and Council chart a path to reduce the City’s greenhouse gas emissions through reducing energy use in all sectors and by identifying opportunities for alternative energy sources. The public consultation phase will allow the City to work with the community on identifying opportunities to create these reductions and to look at concepts such as reaching 100 percent renewable as a potential fit for Charlottetown. The plan will also allow the City to support the Province of PEI and the Government of Canada in reaching provincial and national emission reduction goals. Examples of efforts by other municipalities can be found at: www.charlottetown.ca/communityenergy.php
"You do not need to be an expert on energy, greenhouse gases, or climate change to join in these discussions and provide feedback," said Deputy Mayor Mike Duffy, Chair of the City’s Environment and Sustainability committee. "We have resources on our website and will make information available at our public consultation sessions. We will also be offering a greenhouse gas and climate change information presentation specifically for those who wish to get engaged but want to learn more first."
The City’s website also links to interactive tools that the public can use to calculate their own greenhouse gas emissions and find ways to be more energy efficient.
The City’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Plan and its five stages of development are estimated to cost about $125,000. The City received 80 percent of the project costs from the Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program (MCIP) and support from other community partners. MCIP is a new five-year, $75-million program designed to encourage Canadian municipalities to better prepare for and adapt to the new realities of climate change as well as reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The program is delivered by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) and funded by the Government of Canada. Additional funding partners include Maritime Electric Corporation Limited ($1,500) and efficiencyPEI ($5,000). The City’s contribution is $18,500, an amount that was included in the 2017 Environment and Sustainability operating budget.
What is the Greenhouse Gas Effect?
Greenhouse gases are made up of Carbon Dioxide (82%), Methane (10%), Nitrous Oxide (5%), and Fluorinated Gases (3%). The Greenhouse Gas effect is when the Earth’s atmosphere acts like a greenhouse around the Earth, trapping gases and warm air inside. Human activity increases the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, contributing to a warming of the earth’s surface. Human activities, such as burning fossil fuels and deforestation, is causing greenhouse gases to be released and trapped in the atmosphere at an alarming rate, leading to a significant change in the Earth’s climate.
City of Charlottetown