Municipalities are key to solving the climate crisis
Municipalities are not only driving emissions, they’re also key to lowering them. How we design, construct, manage and power our cities and towns in the years ahead will determine our ability to reduce a large part of our emissions globally.
Throughout Canada, cities and towns have been stepping up to take action on climate change, demonstrating the kind of bold leadership we need to create sustainable, equitable and just communities. Local governments can often be more ambitious and nimbler in their climate plans than provincial and federal governments. And because local governments are directly accountable to their constituents, residents hold a lot of power and can affect big changes.
That’s why the David Suzuki Foundation is working in key Canadian cities, helping municipal leaders develop and implement ambitious and equitable climate plans and helping citizen groups work with their local governments on climate action.
There is no climate justice without racial justice. Equity must be foundational to all climate action taken in our cities. Key to this is centring the voice of the community, especially those who are most marginalized.
Julius Lindsay, Director, Sustainable Communities
Two-thirds of global emissions
Globally, about two-thirds of emissions come from cities. And about 100 of the highest-emitting urban areas account for approximately 18 per cent of the global carbon footprint.
2.5 billion people
By 2050, 2.5 billion more people will live in cities. A lot of those cities have not been built yet.
80 per cent of Canadians
Eighty per cent of Canadians live in municipalities (towns and cities).
Where we work
In Regina, we work with community groups like Regina Energy Transition and other key stakeholders to advance the city’s energy and sustainability framework. We supported important climate equity research at the University of Regina that’s also relevant to other cities.
Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area
We support the growing environmental movement in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton area by helping communities advance high-impact, equitable climate action. We build synergy between local government and residents’ ambition for climate action.
We’re helping the City of Vancouver strengthen its climate plan and helping Metro Vancouver with its regional transportation strategy. We provide recommendations on best policies and practices that significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
In Edmonton, we support community groups working with the city to bring an equity lens to its energy transition strategy and to monitor its milestones.
We recently co-ordinated a group of 15 organizations involved in fostering citizen-led initiatives in Montreal. We’re now taking part in an initiative called Transition in Common, which aims to foster socio-ecological transition in Montreal’s neighbourhoods.