We all have a role to play in reducing our ecological footprint: the amount of resources we use to meet our community’s needs.
Read about the:
Achieving the Lighter Footprint goal requires everyone to take action.
The focus of the Lighter Footprint goal for the next four years is to:
Our 2015-2020 priority actions for the Lighter Footprint goal are:
Recent initiatives that bring us closer to reaching the Lighter Footpint goal.
CityStudio students brought their innovation and creativity to the streets of Vancouver in 2015. One example is YIMBY Vancouver (Yes In My BackYard), which sought to foster a more inclusive community for homeless citizens.
At four cafes along Commercial Drive, patrons were encouraged to purchase an extra item, in the form of an anonymous voucher, to post on a YIMBY board to be later redeemed by a homeless citizen at the cost of kindness. Over 235 YIMBY vouchers were redeemed in one week.
In 2015, over $550,000 was granted to 136 worthy projects. Two projects that stand out are:
The Greenest City 2020 Action Plan received a “refresh” in 2015. Over 50 new actions were added to help us move closer to realizing our targets.
The public provided their input during “Bright Green Summer” in 2015 through events and celebrations, Pop-Up City Hall, and a Pecha Kucha grand finale. Over 46,000 people were included in this process, with over 13,000 people providing feedback in-person, online, and through social media. All of the feedback was used to contribute to and refine the Greenest City actions that will get us to 2020.
Get more details about our successes: Read the implementation update for 2015-2016 (8 MB)
Initiatives that brought us closer to reaching the Lighter Footprint goal from 2014 to 2015.
CityStudio students continue to show the best of innovation and creativity. With CityStudio, business students from Simon Fraser University created new and innovative products from textile waste in the False Creek Flats to explore new business opportunities and promote zero waste.
The popular Keys to the Streets (publicly accessible pianos in outdoor public spaces) returned in summer 2014, with thousands of participants. Over 300 community members enjoyed the Sunset Serenade on the seawall to end the summer.
The Greenest City Fund had a successful third year in 2014, with nearly $540,000 distributed to 150 projects. A standout project was Project Green Bloc, in which residents of Vancouver’s diverse Riley Park neighbourhood are working with Evergreen to lower their collective ecological footprint by 25% over three years through neighbourly collaboration.
The project piloted a new street-party permit, took on bulk purchases for energy audits and bus passes, hosted a series of workshops on footprint reduction, and participated in placemaking activities to strengthen their block. The effort will serve as a model for future projects.
Since launching five years ago, the Greenest City Scholars Program has connected 59 University of British Columbia graduate students with our staff to perform meaningful research on Greenest City initiatives. Examples of past projects include energy benchmarking for buildings, expanding the number of electric vehicles within the Vancouver Police Department fleet, and increasing social resilience for climate-related extreme events and emergency management.
Social lending, peer-to-peer accommodation, and car sharing are just some examples of how technology has pushed "the sharing economy" to a new level by making access to materials and resources easy.
On the economic side, the sharing economy has leveraged unused assets and created new revenue streams. The sharing economy has other promising benefits:
In 2014, two CityStudio projects focused on expanding the sharing economy in Vancouver while helping to achieve our priorities:
Get more details about our successes: Read the implementation update for 2014-2015 (2 MB)
The metrics for Lighter Footprint rely on annual counts of total number of people empowered within Vancouver.
Measuring Vancouver’s ecological footprint is very complex and made more difficult because much of the required data is only available on a national or regional level. Measuring the number of “people empowered to take action” is a way to measure success in the ultimate objective of the Lighter Footprint goal: to enable residents to help collectively reduce our community’s environmental impact.
This metric is maintained by the Sustainability Group within the City Manager’s Office at the City.
“People empowered to take action” is defined as those who are:
The definition excludes people:
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