Here’s a follow-up to a story from November and December 2015. That was when the Paris climate talks were about to start and people were marching everywhere in support of meaningful climate action. Here in Kamloops, 1200 people signed a huge banner and many of us met at Riverside Park for a Climate Rally on a very cold day. Right after that, Marcia Dick and I did a presentation before Kamloops City Council, asking them to begin the development of a Community Energy and Emissions Plan. After all, Kamloops has many sustainability-related plans, including an Airshed Management Plan, a Transportation Plan, and a Corporate Energy and Emissions Plan covering municipal operations and facilities. But we don’t have a plan to reduce our energy and greenhouse gas emissions on a community-wide basis, and we should. The request was narrowly defeated at the time, but Mayor Peter Milobar and CAO David Trawin said that City staff expected to do some preliminary steps in late 2016 so the planning process could start in 2017.
Big news: City Council has followed through on that commitment! They recently added “Develop Green House Gas (GHG) Community Action Strategy” to their Council Strategic Plan and made it a “Now” priority. That was adopted on January 17, 2017, and you can read the details here. Staff in the Sustainability group have been working on finding out what other communities have done and how to proceed. We like to think we were a catalyst helping this along but there are other factors too, of course. We appreciate the fact that Council listened to us and came through. It is great news and we look forward to hearing what happens next!