*NEW* – We will be presenting a resolution to Councils in the Town of Bracebridge, Town of Gravenhurst, Town of Huntsville, Township of Lake of Bays, and Township of Muskoka Lakes. Substantially unchanged from the resolution presented to The District of Muskoka our new resolution can be seen.– here
On Monday, December 21, the darkest day of 2020, Muskoka District Council brought light, hope, and the best Christmas present ever to the people of Muskoka, unanimously passing A New Leaf: Muskoka’s Climate Strategy to address the Climate Crisis, with a goal of ensuring a safe, just and healthy future. Read our media release – here
We have composed the following resolution to declare a climate emergency, to be presented to councils throughout our region. We are looking for community groups, organizations, business and leaders in our communities to endorse our resolution. Scroll to the bottom to endorse the resolution.
Endorsements are still welcome.
Declaration of Climate Emergency Resolution
Developed by members of Climate Action Muskoka
Updated July 27, 2020
WHEREAS the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 2018 Report ‘Global Warming of 1.5C’ states the urgency of keeping global heating below the 1.5C goal and also acknowledges that the world is currently on track for more than 3C increase in temperature rise based on policies that are now in place; and
WHEREAS this current track of climate heating will lead to catastrophic social, economic, cultural and environmental impacts in our community and elsewhere and that the IPCC estimates less than 11 years to avoid the worst impacts of climate change; and
WHEREAS many municipalities across Ontario and Canada understand the major benefits of and the need to be at the forefront of action on climate change, with many having declared a climate emergency already; and
WHEREAS much of the financial damage associated with climate change will come from impacts to municipal core infrastructure such as roads, bridges, water, wastewater and storm water systems and from destruction of natural infrastructure; and
WHEREAS it is necessary not only to reduce carbon emissions, but also to increase community resiliency in the face of climate change, and that these approaches can offer multiple benefits including improved health and air quality, increased innovation, economic development and reduced costs in the long run; and
WHEREAS many people in Muskoka have demonstrated a strong interest and commitment to address climate change and continue to make Muskoka a leader in environmental action and protection;
NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT the District of Muskoka officially
- Declare a Climate Emergency immediately to name and deepen the District’s commitment to protecting our economy, our community, and our ecosystems from the impacts of climate heating; and
- Develop a Climate Action Plan (CAP) to reduce corporate and community greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs), which includes the identification of firm, ambitious targets with a goal of greater than 50% reduction of GHG emissions by 2030 and reaching zero GHG emissions by 2050; commit to becoming a drawdown/regenerative community, taking an active role in the repair and regeneration of our systems, including in the areas of the built environment, natural infrastructure, land use, transportation, energy, waste, health, and food security; and
- Support and participate in the establishment of a Community Working Group, which will provide input to the CAP and will assist in the regular review and updating of the CAP as the science evolves. The Community Working Group should be diverse and representative of the Muskoka community; be balanced according to ethnic background, geography, economic status, gender identity, age; act in partnership with Indigenous leaders; and include scientists and other key stakeholders; and
- Collaborate with other municipal governments, institutions and industry associations to improve standards and protocols that can positively address climate adaptation and mitigation; and
- Seek and secure funding opportunities from both internal and external sources for 2020 and beyond to adequately finance climate actions necessary to meet 2030 and 2050 emission reduction targets; and
- Commit to putting climate action at the forefront of all decision-making, large and small, working to achieve community wellbeing and resiliency, equity, reconciliation, and leaving no one behind. Require all future reports to council to include a section titled Climate Change Implications that will identify how the recommendations will contribute to meeting the objectives of the CAP; and
- Work with other community stakeholders to educate the public at large about steps that can be taken by individuals and businesses to reduce GHGs; and
- Urge both Provincial and Federal governments and opposition parties to work rapidly to deliver the GHG emission reductions needed to keep global heating below the 1.5C goal to minimize the life-threatening impacts of climate change. Forward the resolution to the Premier of Ontario, the Ontario Minister of Environment, Conservation and Parks, the Association of Municipalities of Ontario, Parry Sound Muskoka representatives Hon. Norm Miller MPP and Hon. Scott Aitchison MP, and the leaders of the other political parties.
View the Endorsement Page
Find out who is endorsing this resolution and how you can add your name to the list. (Links to endorse the resolution are also at the bottom of the endorsement page.)
Add Your Name to the Endorsement List
We invite everyone in Muskoka — individuals (including seasonal residents and cottagers), groups and businesses — to endorse this resolution. Click the links below to fill out a short form confirming your endorsement or your group or business’ endorsement. Thank you.
Questions? Email us at email@example.com. Thank you for your interest and support.