Taking Concrete Action on Climate

Last week we saw climate strikes and other gatherings around the world including here in Kingston. Declarations and demonstrations are important to call attention to the need for action on climate. What matters most, and what we need to be measuring, is action and real steps towards reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. That’s why I’m proud to say Kingston is showing leadership on this issue. We are taking effective and measurable steps to become carbon neutral as soon as possible.

Here’s what City Council has committed to over the next three years:

– Completing energy retrofits of all City buildings
– Starting to shift transit buses from diesel to electric, starting with our first purchase of two electric buses in the coming months
– Starting to shift other light duty city vehicles to electric
– Planting close to 8000 new trees across the community
– Reducing waste by expanding green bin recycling to apartment buildings and schools
-Exploring the potential to produce bio-gas from Utilities Kingston’s wastewater treatment system as an alternative to natural gas

Taken together these actions, among the many climate initiatives that were already underway at the City, will significantly reduce GHG emissions from our operations by the end of this term of Council. By working with residents, businesses and institutions, we can realize similar reductions in GHG emissions across the community. This is what smart growth looks like; our emissions will continue to lower even as our City grows as we embrace new technologies and take concrete action to green our community.