As indicators of progress on the way to becoming carbon neutral by 2050, five “Big Moves” have been identified through the draft Climate Action Strategy. (Township screengrab)

Langley surveys its residents about building sustainable community

Township encourages people to have their say about climate action before Oct. 16

Langley wants to build a sustainable community – a place with clean air and drinking water; happy, healthy, and inclusive communities where residents can walk, bike or roll to everything they need in their neighbourhoods; where the wildlife and nature thrive; and local businesses and agriculture system are strong and robust.

At least, that’s the vision Township Mayor Jack Froese and council have, and they’re going to residents to see how best to make that possible.

More than 140 actions that will help the Township of Langley adapt to climate change and mitigate its harmful impact on the environment, people, and infrastructure have been proposed through a draft Climate Action Strategy (CAS).

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As part of the strategy’s development, a survey has been launched to gather public feedback on the CAS’s proposed targets, actions, and projected investment required by taxpayers, Froese explained.

“Climate change and the actions we can take to prevent it impacts all of us and we are asking residents to have their say about these important issues,” he elaborated.

Available at tol.ca/climateaction until Oct. 16, the survey asks participants general questions about climate action and seeks input on eight areas that have been identified as priorities in the strategy: transportation and mobility, buildings and land use, infrastructure, green space and ecosystems, health and emergency preparedness, agriculture, waste, and leadership and integration.

“We encourage everyone to complete the Climate Action Strategy survey and let us know what matters most to them,” said the mayor.

For more than 20 years, the Township has been a recognized environmental leader, putting numerous initiatives in place to protect the community and the environment. Last summer, Township council passed a motion recognizing the climate crisis and declaring that an emergency exists.

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The Township has also adopted a greenhouse gas emission reduction target of 45 per cent by 2030 and a goal to be carbon neutral, or zero carbon by 2050.

“Being carbon neutral means first reducing our carbon pollution as much as possible in areas such as buildings and vehicles,” said climate action manager Tess Rouse.

“Where we can’t achieve zero emissions, we will counter that carbon pollution through initiatives that remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere,” he added.

The Township has been working on the Climate Action Strategy for the past year, to provide clear direction for reaching those goals.

The strategy will also prepare the Township and its residents for the risks and uncertainties of a changing climate, Rouse said.

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As indicators of progress on the way to becoming carbon neutral by 2050, five “Big Moves” have been identified through the draft CAS.

By 2030, all new buildings in the community are to produce zero emissions, and more than half of existing buildings in the community are to be upgraded to produce zero emissions.

Natural systems are to be made more resilient by increasing tree canopy and rainwater capture, and more than half of current passenger vehicle trips are to be made by sustainable modes of transportation – such as active mobility, public transit, and electric vehicles.

The Big Moves also call for achieving zero emission corporate operations by 2040 through zero emission new facilities, facility upgrades, and zero emission fleet vehicles.

For more information, or, to take the survey, visit tol.ca/climateaction.

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