In this issue, we celebrate the Greenbelt's 9th birthday with a victory at City Council and TEA pushes for actions to improve air quality in the city.
Happy Birthday Greenbelt!
As Council Watch readers know, TEA has been advocating for growing the Greenbelt into Toronto's precious ravines for many years. Last Friday marked the ninth birthday of the Greenbelt, and we're happy to report that City Council took a big step forward. City Council directed staff to develop a plan to include the publicly owned lands along the Don, Humber and Etobicoke Creek river valleys in the Ontario Greenbelt. This will provide an
additional layer of protection to these rich natural spaces and grow the Greenbelt into Toronto. The plan will come to Council for approval in the late spring.
Provincial action needed to improve air quality
TEA was at the Parks & Environment Committee meeting on Monday to push for immediate action in light of South Etobicoke's air quality study results. The study identified airborne toxic chemicals that pose health risks (including cancer), with four substances failing to meet provincial air quality standards.
Since traffic is the largest polluter, City staff recommend air monitoring along Toronto's highways and direct actions for reducing truck emissions. TEA supports these recommendations and will work to identify further actions City Council could take in advance of their early April meeting. Read the City staff recommendations and report for more information.
Polar Bear Plunge
This winter, TEA's staff are taking a plunge into Lake Ontario to help raise awareness about the impacts of climate change. We've challenged you, our members, to support us by raising $5,000 so we can continue campaigning at City Hall.
We've currently raised over $2,700. Thank you so much! We're getting close! Now help us finish the job by donating today.
New low-carbon policy for Toronto!
(Photo: Benson Kua via Flickr)
Thanks to the Toronto Atmospheric Fund,
Toronto is developing a by-law that will require large buildings to publicly report their energy and water use. Major cities like New York already use energy reporting to reduce their carbon footprint and save money!