The City of New Westminster’s Seven Bold Steps for Climate Action have picked up an honourable mention at the Union of B.C. Municipalities convention.
During its virtual convention, the UBCM presented its 2021 Community Excellence Awards, which showcases outstanding initiatives and shares them with other members to implement in their own communities.
New Westminster received an honourable mention in the Sustainability category, which is given to a UBCM member that incorporates the four pillars of sustainability (cultural, social, economic and environmental) into local government planning, policy and practice. (The City of Nanaimo won in this category for its complete streets engineering standards and design guidelines.)
“The city is very proud of the work we are doing with our Seven Bold Steps to tackle climate change,” Mayor Jonathan Cote said in an email to the Record. “Our bold steps are critical to address climate change at the local level, and we are pleased to be recognized by the UBCM for our work.”
Adopted in November 2019, the Seven Bold Steps are intended to help guide the City of New Westminster towards a zero carbon future by 2050. The seven bold steps are: carbon-free corporation; car-light community; carbon-free homes and buildings; pollution-free vehicles; carbon-free energy; robust urban forest; and people-centred public realm.
“These seven steps are vital in helping us view our strategic plan through a climate emergency lens,” Lisa Spitale, the city’s chief administrative officer, said when they were approved by council. “We feel aggressive action is required to achieve the targets we’ve set to achieve net zero emissions by 2050.”
Awards are given out in four categories: Governance; Service Delivery; Asset Management; and Sustainability. A new addition the UBCM awards categories was the Presidents Committee Choice award, which recognizes a community felt was deserved of special recognition for its outstanding response to the pandemic.