Climate Action Plan

Have Your Say Nov. 15-Dec. 5, 2021

What actions could help Port Coquitlam do more to address the impact of climate change?

We’re looking for your ideas as we develop a new Climate Action Plan for Port Coquitlam in 2021 and 2022 that will set out actions to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and manage the impact of climate change on civic services and the community.

Have You Say on Climate Action

From Nov. 15 to Dec. 5, 2021, take a fun quiz to test your climate knowledge, read the information below and then visit our online engagement tool at portcoquitlam.ca/letstalk.

A New Climate Action Plan for Port Coquitlam

Climate change is happening. Extreme heat, drought, storms and flooding are all signs of climate change that are affecting our community’s safety and well-being more every year.

Building on the City’s 2010 Corporate and Community Climate Action Plan, Port Coquitlam plans to adopt a comprehensive new made-in-PoCo Climate Action Plan in 2022 combining input collected over fall 2021 – from the public, Council, kʷikʷəƛ̓əm (Kwikwetlem) First Nation and other key stakeholders –  with climate science, research and technical data.

The plan will deliver:

  • New GHG emissions inventories and targets to be added to the Official Community Plan
  • Measurable corporate and community actions in a variety of areas to achieve the emissions targets
  • Identification of key partnerships for climate action planning and implementation
  • Consideration of natural assets (green infrastructure) to adapt to and mitigate the effects of climate change
  • Strategies for evaluating, reporting communicating the desired actions
  • A detailed implementation plan including annual progress updates, responsibilities, costs, timelines, and potential funding opportunities

The intent is to adopt a new Climate Action Plan by late spring or early summer 2022 that demonstrates strong leadership, is ready for implementation, and has a focus on educating and engaging people to participate in achieving its objectives.

Current Climate Action Plan

The Corporate and Community Climate Action Plan, adopted in 2010, is part of the City of Port Coquitlam’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gases (GHG), which are linked to climate change.

Developed through public consultation and research, the plan sets out targets and actions to help both the City and community reduce GHGs, mostly through reducing energy consumption and vehicle use.

Elements of the plan are reflected in the EnviroPlan – the City’s Environmental Strategic Plan that was implemented in 2011.

Take the Climate Action Plan Quiz

We're creating a Climate Action Plan to map out the best route to take to mitigate climate change and adapt to climate change. What do you already know about climate change? Take this quick quiz to find out!

What is the difference between weather and climate?
What is a cause of climate change?
What is the difference between climate mitigation and climate adaptation?
What is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in Port Coquitlam?
Which of the following are anticipated impacts of climate change to Port Coquitlam?
Which of the following have committed to net-zero emissions* by 2050?

Now that you’ve had a chance to test your knowledge (and maybe learn something new!) we want to hear from you about what we should consider in the Climate Action Plan and what your vision for a low-carbon future looks like: link to survey here

Why We Need to Act Now

While global efforts are under way to curb greenhouse gas emissions, further and more extreme climate change may become unavoidable unless concerted action happens soon.

Based on current trends for Metro Vancouver, climate projects include an expected average temperature increase of 3°C and a doubling in the number of summer days above 25°C as well as increased annual precipitation with more intense and frequent rain and windstorms and rising sea level.

Summers are expected to be hotter and drier, with increased risk of impaired air quality due to wildfire events. A 2018 International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report states that in order to avoid catastrophic climate change, global temperature rise must not exceed 1.5°C. As a result, many cities are setting emissions reductions targets that align with IPCC guidance to stay below 1.5°C of warming.

As communities across B.C. are grappling with the impacts of climate change (from wildfires and drought, to more severe river flooding and extreme storms), there is opportunity to create a future that is healthy and prosperous for all members of the community. Port Coquitlam’s Climate Action Plan will set a vision for a low-carbon future and identifies the steps required to get there.

The actions taken today to reduce our GHG emissions and adapt to climate change will also create healthier lifestyles and bring new opportunities in the emerging green economy.

Plan Development and Timeline

The City of Port Coquitlam is developing an updated Climate Action Plan with the support of Integral Group, a consulting group specializing in developing Climate Action plans for local governments both in Canada and internationally.

Project Timeline:

  • May-December 2021: Visioning, research and community engagement
  • December 2021 to spring 2022: Development of draft plan
  • Spring to early summer 2022: Public feedback and completion of final plan

Work in 2021 has included data gathering, research and analysis. The project team has hosted two workshops with the Climate Action Committee, a group of key staff and department heads who will bring inter-departmental perspectives to the plan development. A Council workshop was also held in fall 2021 to brief Council on the project and seek direction.

Public Engagement:

The fall 2021 public engagement aims to raise awareness of the project and collect community perspectives on:

  1. a shared vision for climate action,
  2. concerns and priorities for climate action, and
  3. trade-offs and implementation considerations.

The engagement strategy for this project intends to combine feedback and input from Council, staff, kʷikʷəƛ̓əm (Kwikwetlem) Fiirst Nation, key stakeholders, groups disproportionately impacted by climate change, and the general public, to create a cohesive Climate Action Plan reflecting Port Coquitlam perspectives and specific circumstances.

Our Commitment to the Environment

City Council approved the Blue Dot declaration in 2015 that affirms that all citizens have the right to a healthy environment, and subsequently designated Enhancing the Environment as one of its 2020-2022 priorities.

The budgeted Council priorities include the development of a new Climate Action Plan, a new Forest Management Plan with a tree canopy target and planting strategy, assessment of local watercourses and development of an improvement plan, updating of the City’s greenhouse gas targets and further work toward reducing emissions.

These Council priorities activities are under way in 2021 and 2022, and will add to the other City environmental efforts to date that include:

  • Adopting a tree bylaw to protect trees in 2019 and adding further protections in 2020,
  • Requiring electric vehicle (EV) charging rough-ins in new residential construction and recently installing EV charging stations at Port Coquitlam Community Centre (PCCC),
  • Banning the use of cosmetic pesticides and promoting pollinators and natural lawn care,
  • Rolling out energy-efficient LED streetlights City-wide,
  • Supporting agriculture through community gardens – including a new one at PCCC – and the Port Coquitlam Farmers Market,
  • Promoting waste reduction through community outreach and education and the annual City-wide garage sale,
  • Continuing to update the City fleet with electric and fuel-efficient vehicles,
  • Promoting green transportation though bus stop improvements, advocating for SkyTrain, an extensive network of cycling and pedestrian trails and safety features, and a new bike repair station at Gates Park,
  • Completing an award-winning remediation of contaminated soils at the Blakeburn Lagoons site while creating a natural oasis and functioning wildlife habitat, and
  • Adopting an Environmental Strategic Plan in 2011 to provide a framework for environmental actions and priorities.

Contact

Clarissa Huffman
Environmental Coordinator
Tel 604.927.5373
Email Huffmanc@portcoquitlam.ca