Under a business-as-usual scenario, Saanich will reduce its greenhouse-gas emissions responsible for sea-level raising climate change by nine per cent in 2050 — well short of its stated goal of 80 per cent.Black Press File

Academic study gives Saanich’s climate action plan middling mark

Saanich ranks 31st in a survey of 63 Canadian municipalities, Victoria 33rd.

A new academic study assessing the quality of municipal climate change plans places Saanich and Victoria in the middle of pack.

The study published in the journal Climatic Change ranks the respective plans of Saanich and Victoria 31st and 33rd in terms of overall quality. Kingston, ON., topped the list of 63 surveyed communities, with New Westminster, B.C., ranking last.

RELATED: ‘Bit frightening:’ Study finds most Canadian cities fail on climate change plans

The study — which describes itself as “a first attempt at assessing the quality of Canadian municipal climate change plans” — assesses plans against 46 indicators spread across eight large categories of quality characteristics: fact base, goals, policies, implementation, monitoring and evaluation, inter-organizational coordination, participation, and plan organization and presentation.

The report evaluated Saanich’s Climate Action Plan dated 2010 and Victoria’s Community Energy and Emissions Plan dated 2012.

Saanich’s Climate Action Plan receives generally strong marks in all but two areas: monitoring and evaluation (which the report defines as the “systemic framework” to tracking implementation activities and assessing their outcomes); and participation (which focuses on how the public and various stakeholder groups participate). Compared to Saanich, Victoria scores worse in the categories of fact base, goals, policies, coordination, and organization and presentation, while ahead in the other categories.

Overall, the report finds that Canadian municipalities “prioritize” climate change mitigation over adaption; implementation, monitoring and evaluation appear as relatively aspects of municipal climate change plans; and Canadian municipalities appear to have given insufficient consideration to public participation.

RELATED: Saanich well off mark when it comes to meeting goals of climate plan

In other words, Canadian municipalities have ambitious goals when it comes to mitigating climate change, but struggle to implement and track those goals, while failing to involve the public. The paper also chides Canadian communities for a lack of specificity, when it comes to the local effects of climate change.

“Almost all plans failed to include an assessment of the municipality’s vulnerability to specific climate change impacts,” it reads.

The report written by Dave Guyadeen of Guelph University and Jason Thistlewood and Daniel Henstra of the University of Waterloo appears as Saanich council Monday receives an update on efforts to update Saanich’s climate action plan.

It calls for an 80 per cent reduction in both corporate and community-wide greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) by 2050 below 2007 levels as Saanich seeks to become a 100 renewable energy community by 2050.

As of this writing, Saanich will fall well short of this goal. If current policies continue, Saanich will reduce GHGs by nine per cent by 2050.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

wolfgang.depner@saanichnews.com

Just Posted

Victoria feels the pinch at the pump as gas prices jump 18 cents

Gas up to 157.9 cents per litre at some stations

For Central Saanich couple, fight against MS is a matter of family

Altenkirks sell greeting cards and wooden bowls to raise money for MS Society

Rugby Canada helps recovery efforts in Japan after typhoon cancels final match

Canadian players wanted to “give back in whatever small way they could”

Coast Collective ready to Raise the Roof with Langford art auction

The fundraiser is Friday, Oct 18 at the Royal Canadian Legion on Station Road

Saanich residents planning Halloween fireworks displays must plan ahead

Folks are required to attend one of three safety courses, buy a permit

WATCH: Greater Victoria’s top stories of the day

A round-up of the day’s top stories

POLL: Do you think the day of the federal election should be a statutory holiday?

Increasing voter turnout has long been a goal of officials across the… Continue reading

UPDATE: British couple vacationing in Vancouver detained in U.S. after crossing border

CBP claims individuals were denied travel authorization, crossing was deliberate

After losing two baby boys, B.C. parents hope to cut through the taboo of infant death

Oct. 15 is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day in B.C.

Cheating husband sues mistress for gifted ring after wife learns about affair

The husband gave his mistress $1,000 to buy herself a ring in December 2017

B.C. boosts legal aid funding in new payment contract

‘Duty counsel’ service restored in some communities, David Eby says

VIDEO: Bear spies on cyclists riding by on Campbell River street

Riders seem unaware the bruin is mere feet away on the side of the road

Two Cowichan Tribes families devastated by duplex fire

Carla Sylvester sat in her vehicle, on Tuesday morning, with tears in… Continue reading

Alberta to join B.C.’s class-action lawsuit against opioid manufacturers, distributors

B.C. government claims opioids were falsely marketed as less addictive than other pain meds

Most Read