Council Watch Updates

Pushing changes into the draft Official Plan

The Official Plan is Ottawa’s major land use and policy document, and will shape our city for at least the next 25 years. Something this big demands major public engagement, and Ottawans have stepped up in a big way. We’ve seen 500-person rallies to stop sprawl, packed Saturday morning Zoom workshops on neighbourhood design, and overwhelming public input into arcane city processes. We’ve seen community outrage at last-minute land use decisions like the Tewin development, and missives from senior city officials pointing to “unprecedented engagement” from the public.

Whose road is it anyway?

Ottawa is an excellent cycling city—how many times have you heard this statement while talking with neighbours and friends? Although Ottawa may have an admirable collection of multi-use pathways (MUPs) that are safe and accessible for all users, ages, and abilities, they rely on a safe road network to connect them. Unfortunately, many of our roads lack the appropriate infrastructure needed to make them safe, jeopardising the accessibility of our cycling network. 

The Future of Ottawa Parks and Recreation: My Very First Consultation

A few weeks ago I had the chance to attend my first series of consultations held by the city of Ottawa. These consultations were regarding the future of parks and recreation in the city and consisted of 6 separate 2-3 hour long sessions. I must admit, at first I felt very out of place as I am only 18 years old and was surrounded by citizens that were often twice my age. While thrilling, I do not think I would have participated in these consultations if it wasn’t for my involvement with Ecology Ottawa. Nonetheless, it opened my eyes to the importance of getting involved in the community to impact positive change. 

Debunking The Myth That Climate Action Is Too Expensive

How many times have you heard political pundits say that the public supports climate action, so long as it doesn’t affect their pocketbook? This claim is based on a false assumption that climate action is unaffordable, and, unfortunately, this “myth of unaffordability” leads many political leaders to be too timid when it comes to properly financing climate change mitigation. We’re here to show the skeptics that investing in climate change mitigation, if done right, is actually a smart financial decision paying huge dividends.

Recycling in Ottawa Parks

How many times have you walked through a park and searched in vain for a recycling bin? Or gasped in horror at the overflowing garbage bin, full of plastic bottles and other recyclable materials?

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: City’s proposed ‘Gold Belt’ is a mirage

(OTTAWA) – On January 16, on the heels of a May 2020 decision to expand Ottawa’s urban boundary, city planners released a draft report recommending the development of various parcels of land on the fringes of Ottawa’s urban area. Beyond the new land slated for development is a proposed “Gold Belt” that would create ultimate limits for Ottawa’s suburban communities. 

City of Ottawa Draft Budget 2021 – A tale of three budgets

On Wednesday, November 4, 2020, Mayor Jim Watson presented the City of Ottawa’s draft 2021 budget. As the mayor noted, 2020 has been a year unlike any other in Ottawa’s history, with the COVID-19 pandemic wreaking havoc on the daily life of all Ottawans, as well as on city finances.

What progress did Ottawa make towards becoming the green capital of Canada in 2020?

What's next for climate action, active transportation, urban biodiversity and greenspace protection as we look forward to 2021?

Join Ecology Ottawa's Executive Director Robb Barnes for the 2020 State of the City Year-in Review. We'll look at major council decisions, pressing environmental issues facing Ottawa, and opportunities as we approach the new year.

December 7, 2020

OTTAWA – The City of Ottawa has released its annual greenhouse gas emissions inventories in the lead-up to the December 15, 2020 meeting of the Standing Committee of Environmental Protection, Water and Waste Management. The inventories show new emissions data for 2019, now at 6,140 kt CO2e community-wide. This represents a rise in emissions above the levels recorded in each of the preceding three years. Local emissions have not been this high since prior to the provincial coal phase-out.

Today, council's Environment Committee will receive Energy Evolution, the latest and most comprehensive version of the city's climate action plan. There's a lot at stake to getting this right. Here are our thoughts...

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