Fourteen of Ottawa’s community associations recently sent a letter to Mayor Jim Watson calling on the City of Ottawa to do its part in making climate change action an official city priority. Meanwhile, more community associations, businesses and other organizations continue to sign the letter, which has already gotten the attention of the Mayor.
The community associations, members of the Community Association Forum on Environmental Sustainability (CAFES), are urging the city to designate climate action a “Term of Council Priority", which would put it front-and-center in planning and budgeting processes for the next four years.
By designating action and accountability on climate change a Term of Council Priority the issue will be eligible for part of $37.4 million that has been set aside for “priority initiatives” this fiscal year.
There is still time for individuals and organizations to make themselves heard. NOW is the time to tell your city councillor, the mayor (Jim Watson) or David Chernushenko, the chair of Environment Committee – or tell all three – that climate change MUST be a City of Ottawa priority.
City Councillors are discovering that it is not just environmentalists who care about the climate. With hundreds of letters pouring in from concerned citizens across the city, they are sitting up and taking notice that climate change is a major issue of concern for the people of Ottawa. We need to continue this push.