Toronto, Jul 10 (Canadian-Media): A progress report on the implementation of the City of Toronto's Transform TO climate action strategy was delivered today by Toronto Mayor John Tory, media reports said.
John Tory. Image credit: Facebook page
The strategy, unanimously adopted by City Council in 2017, identifies a series of short- and long-term actions to reduce community-wide greenhouse gas emissions and set Toronto on the path to a low-carbon, healthy, equitable and prosperous future.
Achievements and steps taken toward that goal over the last two year identified by the report showed that all of the short-term actions approved and fully funded by Council in 2017 are either complete or in progress.
Examples of innovative initiatives taken by the City to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions include: Issuing a $300-million green bond to raise capital dedicated to climate action; introducing zero-emission battery electric buses in the TTC's vehicle fleet; completing 21 energy retrofits in Toronto Community Housing buildings; implementing 100 Solar PV installations on City-owned properties generating 12 megawatts of electricity per year including the first solar PV and energy storage project on a paramedic services facility; building the City's first net-zero child care centre in the Mount Dennis neighbourhood ; expanding the building energy retrofit loan program; beginning the City of Toronto and Enwave partnership to build low-carbon thermal energy networks; launching a new community grants program to reduce waste; using City Council's investment in TransformTO to leverage over $135 million from external sources to support new and enhanced infrastructure, pilot projects, research and technical studies
In 2018, a report by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change emphasized the urgent need to reduce global carbon dioxide emissions to net zero by 2050 to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees and avoid catastrophic climate impacts.
Toronto's community-wide GHG emissions in 2017 were 15 mega tonnes. Achieving net zero emissions in Toronto by 2050 will require bold and robust policies, programs and significant investment.
In 2019, Toronto was one of 43 cities around the world to receive an A grade from CDP (formerly the Carbon Disclosure Project) for its leadership in managing, measuring and reducing emissions and adapting to climate-related risks.
Work to develop the next TransformTO Implementation Plan to 2023 is underway. The plan will be presented to Council in early 2020. Residents will have a hand in shaping this plan through a variety of consultation opportunities planned for this summer and fall, including a new TransformTO Reference Panel on Climate Action.
The panel, consisting 32 residents selected randomly through a civic lottery process, will convene this summer to advise the City on climate action priorities. An initial public meeting will take place on August 8 at the Scarborough Civic Centre.