At their March 6 meeting, Airdrie City council approved the development of a climate mitigation strategy with a corporate greenhouse gas emissions reduction target of five per cent per year based on the 2019 baseline.
The strategy will outline a plan of action to achieve a substantial reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, according to a council agenda report.
Joad Clement, municipal energy advisor, presented the request to council. He said the presentation would be followed by a proposed five-year plan presented to council next fall.
He added the efforts are in line with other municipalities and federal efforts to mitigate their carbon footprint.
“We are not talking about building a 25-year plan, we’re talking about a five-year plan,” he said during the presentation. “The strategy ties into a five-year plan that we would present to council next fall.”
Following the presentation, several council members voiced their concern with the motion as originally presented (including a suggested reduction of greenhouse gas emissions of 80 per cent by 2050). Coun. Tina Petrow said she does not believe the target is achievable and would not be supporting the motion as it stands.
“I think this [strategy] is based on a lot of assumptions. I don’t like putting unrealistic expectations out to our community about what we can achieve here and what the community can achieve,” she said. “I would rather put out something we can get behind and achieve in a reasonable time frame.”
Council members unanimously agreed to give the go ahead to the development of a strategy but stipulated that the original 80 per cent target would not be included until further investigation has been done to determine its feasibility.