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80 by 50 Spring Update

June 1st, 2020

A lot has happened since our last community update in December. As a result of COVID-19, we’ve had to adapt many elements of our work to digital means and postpone a number of events, however, there are many aspects of our work that continue to move forward full speed! Here’s an update on our community’s progress developing Waterloo Region’s long-term Climate Action Strategy, to achieve an 80% greenhouse gas reduction by 2050!

WHAT HAS CLIMATEACTIONWR BEEN UP TO?

  • We recently launched our new website! It has been updated to include what you need to know about our short and long-term community GHG reduction targets, how you can get involved, and resources to learn more – check it out! 
  • Before social distancing, our team attended three community events including a Kitchener Rangers game where we scored some great exposure within the community!
  • In response to the success of our 2019 workshop series, two additional community sessions were hosted earlier this year to help inform our planning- Thank you to all who attended
  • January marked the launch of THEMUSEUM’s 3 floor exhibit on climate change, titled ‘ALARM’. Although they are temporarily closed as a result of COVID-19, we partnered with THEMUSEUM to provide an informative and interactive exhibit on local climate action within our community, which includes making a Climate Action Pledge (see below for details).  
  • As part of building the technical pathway to the long-term strategy, we hosted a key workshop with municipal stakeholders from across all 8 municipalities within Waterloo Region, to identify obstacles and strategies.
  • We issued a technical survey to sustainability subject-matter experts within Waterloo Region, across Canada, and to contacts internationally as well! 

WHERE ARE WE NOW?

After 9 months of gathering ideas, thoughts, and feedback from community members, technical experts, and municipal stakeholders, thousands of data points have been summarized to share with you. What we heard will help to form the 80 by 50 Climate Action Strategy.

The following videos provide an overview of the common themes that came through from the data.

Community Engagement Results

In this presentation, Glen Lombard and Patrick Boot from Unless Design Partners share the findings from the extensive community engagement initiatives.

Technical Engagement Results

In this presentation, Patrick Darby from WalterFedy shares the findings from the extensive technical engagement initiatives.

Questions?
If you have any questions about any of the results/content of these presentations, please submit them here.

WHAT’S NEXT?

The momentum of this project continues over the next several months, with 3 core areas of focus for us:

  • Continued data analysis toward developing the draft 30-year Climate Action Strategy, and laying the framework for a Climate Action Plan which will address the first 10 years.
  • Delivery of two pilot projects focused on efforts that could reduce emissions from our highest emitting sectors: transportation and energy consumption from buildings.
    • A huge thank you to everyone who submitted your pilot project ideas! We received 30 proposals from across the community, and will be announcing the successful projects soon!
  • Providing a series of capacity building webinars and/or workshops for municipal staff and community stakeholders across Waterloo Region.

Get Involved!

Every action counts when it comes to our community’s goal to reduce local greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by the year 2050!

The first step toward this goal has been working toward our short-term target, since 2013, to achieve a 6% reduction by the end of 2020. As a member of our community, we each have a role to play at work, at home, at school, and everywhere in between. By pledging your intention to make a change in your day-to-day life, you are joining a region-wide collaboration to transform Waterloo Region to a low carbon community!
Make your pledge today!

If you have any questions or would like to offer your support or expertise, please connect with us at connect@climateactionwr.ca. 

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