Community

Plan to help ‘protect environment for generations to come’

As Canada’s climate is projected to warm at twice the global rate, York Region has released a Climate Change Action Plan that sets out 20 actions to help address the ongoing climate crisis.

“From extreme weather events to rising temperatures, we continue to experience the impact of climate change,” says York Region CEO Wayne Emmerson.

“We are addressing climate change to help strengthen and sustain our communities and protect the environment for generations to come. York Regional council remains steadfast in our commitment to these actions and the need to work together with all partners to build a more resilient future.”

The plan aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions with a long-term goal of becoming a net-zero Region by 2050. It also aims to increase resilience and capacity of the Region to withstand and respond to current and future climate events.

“It is imperative we have a plan in place to protect the future of York Region,” says Markham Regional Councillor Jim Jones, chair of the region’s Planning and Economic Development. “All levels of government, businesses and members of the community can work towards net-zero emissions and play a part in managing the outcome of climate change.”

Among other actions, the region says it will ensure infrastructure systems are built and maintained for both the current and future climate. It also plans to adopt corporate emission reduction targets and guidelines for low-carbon infrastructure construction and to establish community-wide greenhouse gas emission reduction targets.

York is already experiencing the impact of global warming. Blacklegged ticks that can spread Lyme Disease are increasing because of warmer temperatures. The region has experienced power outages and lost trees because of ice storms and has experienced flooding due to extreme rain events. It has also extended its road maintenance season because snow and ice storms are less predictable.

“These and other impacts are expected to increase in frequency with further warming of our climate,” it warns in the Action Plan, which builds on current plans, programs and activities, including the Energy Conservation and Demand Management Plan, Greening Strategy, Integrated Waste Management Master Plan (SM4RT Living Plan) and York Region Official Plan.

The region promises to regularly communicate progress on the plan. Visit york.ca/climatechange to learn more about the plan and how to help combat climate change.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Share This