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March 23, 2007
Toronto targets climate change and clean air
  
With the release today of a framework for public engagement and review, the City of Toronto has set the stage to engage residents in developing a bold and comprehensive Action Plan to battle climate change.

The framework, called Change is in the Air: Toronto’s Commitment to an Environmentally Sustainable Future is part of a report to be considered by the City’s Executive Committee on Monday, March 26. It includes 27 exemplary actions that the Toronto Government, residents, businesses and industry can take to tackle climate change and improve air quality wherever they live and work.

Complete with an inventory of the major sources of greenhouse gases and air pollutants in Toronto, the framework provides ideas regarding the types of strategies, policies, programs and projects needed to meet the City’s ambitious reduction targets.

The framework will see Toronto commit to a six per cent cut in greenhouse gas emissions from the Toronto urban area by 2012 (based on 1990 levels), a 30 per cent cut by 2020, and an 80 per cent reduction by 2050. The targets mirror recently announced European Union goals. In keeping with Mayor David Miller’s commitment, the City will reduce levels of smog-causing pollutants by 20 per cent by 2012.

“As Canada’s biggest city we have an opportunity and an obligation to lead by tremendous example. Cleaning up the air is the issue of our time; maybe of all time,” said Mayor Miller. “The City cannot win the war on climate change on our own, but we’re prepared to lead the way.

“With the release of this framework, we are inviting the citizens of Toronto to get involved in developing and implementing a Climate Change and Clean Air Action Plan as we work to create an urban area that is environmentally sustainable. I know that Torontonians will partner with us and rise to the challenge. They are ready to act.”

The City will invite Torontonians to attend consultation sessions beginning in April, where citizens can learn more about the issues, provide input on the plan and identify opportunities to take action. Residents, large and small businesses, environmental groups, community groups, the financial sector, professional associations and institutions are encouraged to attend. The framework is available at http://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2007/ex/bgrd/backgroundfile-2428.pdf.

Toronto is Canada’s largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine of Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America. In the past three years, Toronto has won more than 50 awards for quality and innovation in delivering public services. Toronto’s government is dedicated to prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents.

Media contacts:
Don Wanagas, Communications Director, Office of Mayor David Miller, 416-338-7134
Lawson Oates, Director, Toronto Environment Office, 416-392-9744


 

 

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