Around 100 people took part in a demonstration against Kinder Morgan and expansion of the Trans Canada pipeline on March 23, 2018 out front of MP Murray Rankin’s office in Victoria, B.C. Victoria mayor Lisa Helps, Sooke mayor Maja Tait and Saanich coun. Ned Taylor hope the CRD will be declared an emergency climate change area. (Ragnar Haagen/Black Press Media)

Greater Victoria officials take climate emergency request to CRD

CRD environment committee gives support for emergency climate change declaration

Greater Victoria is in a state of climate change emergency, say local officials. And it’s time it be declared.

Victoria mayor Lisa Helps, Sooke mayor Maja Tait and Saanich coun. Ned Taylor brought a delegation to the Capital Regional District’s Parks and Environment Committee today, recommending the committee bring a recommendation to the CRD that the region be declared an Emergency Climate Change area.

Helps said the declaration is not just symbolic, but would send a message that the region is aware of a climate emergency.

“If your house is on fire…and you can see your house burning, you don’t stand around and have a debate about it, you throw water on it,” she said. “We have the solutions we need, we know what kind of water to throw on the fire, let’s start treating this, as a community, as the kind of emergency it is.”

RELATED: CRD directors demand declaration of climate emergency

RELATED: City of Victoria drafts plan to fight climate change

The request follows a unanimous decision by the city of Vancouver in January to declare a climate emergency in the city and strengthen Vancouver’s climate action plan.

Vancouver joined a growing list of cities in making the declaration, including seven in Australia, 11 in the United Kingdom and seven in the U.S.

RELATED: Vancouver councillors unanimously approve motion declaring climate emergency

RELATED: B.C. YouTuber to seal himself ‘in a jar’ in Courtenay to demonstrate impacts of climate change

In October, a report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) described the harm a two degree rise in global temperature would cause compared to a 1.5 degree rise. But the report said it was still possible to limit the rising temperature if governments, organizations and authorities from the around the world worked together.“Everyone has a role to play,” reads a report to the CRD committee.

The report referenced Bristol, England, which declared a climate emergency in 2018 and asked the mayor to “provide the power and resources” to make a 2030 carbon neutral target possible.

Helps, Tait and Taylor are seeking a similar target – asking the CRD to take a leadership role in working towards climate neutrality by 2030, knocking 20 years off existing plans.

“With additional staff and financial resources, the CRD could play an enhanced role in supporting local governments and other partners to understand collaborative opportunities, priorities and needs for climate action,” reads the trio’s report.

Helps said the declaration would see the CRD request specific resources and authorities needed to make big changes – an example brought up during the meeting was charging cars for driving on regional roads – ultimately helping the provincial and federal governments close the gaps on their climate change goals.

If the CRD accepts the declaration it would ask all local governments to make similar declarations.

More than a dozen citizens came forward in support of the declaration during Wednesday’s meeting.

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


 

nina.grossman@blackpress.ca

Just Posted

Victoria’s Belfry Theatre hosts its first ‘relaxed performance’ for a diverse audience

Performance of Every Brilliant Thing is first to pilot the option

Car crash at Quadra and Finalyson Streets affects Saturday traffic

VicPD and the Victoria Fire Department responded

We Are One! celebrates solidarity, inclusion with song and dance

Nov. 30 performance includes performers from across Greater Victoria

Greater Victoria students help bring small-scale urban farming to community

The high school students presented their work at City Hall on Nov. 13

VIDEO: North Island man trapped under ATV for days shows promise at Victoria hospital

Out of induced coma, 41-year-old is smiling, squeezing hands and enjoying sunshine

Greater Victoria 2019 holiday craft fair roundup

Get a jump on your holiday shopping

Port Alberni mom takes school district to court over Indigenous smudging, prayer in class

Candice Servatius, who is an evangelical Christian, is suing School District 70

Family of B.C. man killed in hit-and-run plead for tips, one year later

Cameron Kerr’s family says the driver and passengers tried to cover their tracks

Princeton couple pays for dream vacation with 840,000 grocery store points

It’s easy if you know what you are doing, they say

Chilliwack family’s dog missing after using online pet-sitting service

Frankie the pit bull bolted and hit by a car shortly after drop off through Rover.com

B.C. wildlife experts urge hunters to switch ammo to stop lead poisoning in birds

OWL, in Delta, is currently treating two eagles for lead poisoning

B.C. First Nations drop out of court challenge, sign deals with Trans Mountain

Upper Nicola Band says deal represents a ‘significant step forward’

Most Read