The extreme weather events we are witnessing in British Columbia and around the world are tangible evidence of what climate scientists have been warning us about for decades.
Every individual, every business and every country must come together united in determination to turn the tide of climate change and save this planet.
There is literally no other choice.
The City of Richmond, with my consistent support and advocacy, has made the tough decisions and taken not-always-easy steps in the right direction.
Our strategy comes at the problem from two related but different angles:
We are implementing policies that reduce emissions and increase sustainability
We are applying climate mitigation strategies to protect our people, land and environment from extreme weather and incremental changes like rising sea levels
I have always been a determined voice for the environment. I am proud that Richmond is one of Canada’s most progressive cities confronting the challenges of climate change.
Our families, businesses, quality of life and everything we cherish is contingent on a healthy environment.
I have been proud to support significant steps toward a greener, cleaner future.
• We have increased the efficiency and reduced emissions of our civic vehicle fleet, lessening reliance on fossil fuels and increasing use of low-carbon alternative energy sources.
• Forward-thinking recycling and organic diversion programs that we implemented many years ago have diverted vast amounts of material from landfills.
• Living as we do, at the confluence of a great river and the Pacific Ocean, Richmond is vulnerable to the changing sea levels and we have invested in dike amelioration, which is an insurance policy for future generations.
• Our storm water system has been upgraded to be ready for more frequent, intense precipitation events.
There are a great many initiatives I have supported, and the city has introduced, which address this existential crisis. In every instance, we have done so based on the best science, in cooperation with citizens and stakeholders.
It is vital to recognize that all we have done does not, in any way, give us a right to let down our guard. We must double down on policies that ensure our children, grandchildren and successive generations will thrive in this wonderful city.
I have always been a strong voice at City Hall for the most robust approaches to the climate crisis … because I know that there is no other choice.
Our generation will leave a legacy. I am determined that, decades and centuries from now, history will look back and see that this was the time when the trajectory changed, that we were the generation who recognized the magnitude of the crisis and chose to act.
We will not turn back. And as long as I am serving on city council, Richmond residents will have a steadfast advocate for the most powerful climate policies.