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1240 - 6/7/2022 8:06:42 AM  

Will Guelph ‘Show Us the Money’ for Climate Action?

For Immediate Release: Monday June 6, 2022, Guelph

Last December, the City of Guelph made commitments concerning interim climate change targets. 

This Friday it is expected to release new targets and budget considerations in accordance with the United Nations Cities Race to Zero pledge.

“This report will set the groundwork for climate change action and accountability for decades to come,” said Evan Ferrari, Executive Director of eMERGE Guelph Sustainability. “We want them to show us the money that must align with the 2023 budget” he continued.

“With a municipal election in the fall, we feel it’s important that a Guelph Climate udget sets the stage for more aggressive climate action for every year and council to come,” said Ferrari.

While the City of Guelph has a history of environmental leadership, it is no surprise that climate action has taken a backseat to the pandemic over the last couple of years. The rising costs of living have also made prioritizing the environment increasingly difficult for Guelph citizens.

“We can’t afford to delay this process any longer. The science on climate change is clear; we must act now, or we will pay much, much more later,” Ferrari urged. 

According to Morgan Stanley, North American climate-related disasters cost over $415 billion in the last three years. Climate change will only make economic struggles worse in Guelph. Investing in climate change is vital to our economy and in sustaining our future.

“We are hopeful that the city is moving in the right direction with a budget process, and we will be here to support them,” said Evan. 

What eMERGE expects from the City of Guelph Report on Friday Jun 10, 2022:

Establish the first set of interim targets for every four years, set in the third year of each council’s term

Report annually on how we are progressing on climate change. This needs to be done specifically for the City government and all of its activities (corporate) and the broader community (the rest of the city including homes businesses and institutions). 

Include a designated climate budget within the 2023 budget and all subsequent budgets.

We know that city staff are already doing this, but it needs to be clear to all of us how this is working.

Include climate adaptation planning in current and future projects, which agree with the above targets

Empower city staff to bring ideas forward and train on best practices to mitigate climate change

Ensure that diversity, equity, and inclusion is considered in climate action and all city work

About eMERGE - eMERGE Guelph Sustainability fights climate change to build a healthier society. It does this by engaging and equipping Guelphites to transition to a 100% renewable energy (100RE) economy. It uses the narrative of achieving 100% Renewable Energy by 2050 as a positive goal to win this battle. This is done primarily by helping people reduce energy and water use through an individual residential focus along with community events, outreach, and engagement that promote smart behavior, policy, and improved efficiency to help Guelph build a road map to beat climate change and achieve 100% renewable energy by 2050.

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