Are you our next Business Development + Communications Coordinator?

JOB POSTING

Business Development and Communications Coordinator

Full Time, Permanent

Location: Flexible

ABOUT SUSTAINABILITY SOLUTIONS GROUP

Sustainability Solutions Group (SSG) is a collective of Canada’s leading climate change planning professionals. We are an innovative workers cooperative that collaborates with clients to develop meaningful, creative strategies to integrate ecological, economic and social sustainability in their projects, organizations, and communities. We pride ourselves in working closely with our clients to achieve real, on the ground, social and ecological change through projects of unusual integrity. As a team, we demonstrate that the whole is much more than the sum of its parts – we build on each other’s experiences, enthusiasm, skills and innovation. SSG’s approach to work is unique because it embodies the following principles:

  • Action-focused
  • Based on solid theory
  • Considers the whole picture
  • Participatory in design and implementation
  • Fosters social change
  • Takes care of the commons

Our vision is a world of decarbonized, equitable, healthy communities for everyone. We are urban climate change planners, incorporating many skill sets and experiences in our team.

ABOUT THE POSITION

GENERAL DESCRIPTION

The purpose of this position is to coordinate SSG’s business development and communications activities. The Coordinator will perform many diverse tasks, including leading the RFP monitoring and proposal writing process, researching new business opportunities, maintaining SSG’s customer relationship management (CRM) software, and managing SSG’s web and social media presence. The Coordinator will work with SSG Principals and staff to ensure that SSG’s efforts align with the goals in its business development and communications strategies, updating the strategies where required.

SSG works closely with its sister company, whatIf? Technologies Inc (WiT). SSG’s and WiT’s business development and communications efforts are one in the same. The position will work closely with – and carry out a number of tasks directly for – WiT.

RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Administration and streamlining of SSG’s process for monitoring and responding to requests for proposal (RFPs)
  • Researching business opportunities for new markets and new services
  • Coordinating and administering meetings of SSG / WiT joint Business Development Group
  • Planning and coordinating SSG’s participation at various conferences
  • Leading communications efforts in all areas – including maintenance of the website, management of social media, newsletters and marketing materials – as guided by SSG’s Marketing Communications Group
  • Monitoring all business development and communications activities to ensure they align with SSG’s business development and communications strategies
  • Working with SSG Principals to update business development and communications strategies as required

 

WHO WE ARE LOOKING FOR

The successful candidate will have the following qualities and attributes:

1. Excellent project management skills

2. Excellent communication skills, written and oral

3. A high degree of self-motivation and ability to navigate ambiguity

4. A commitment to continual improvement and best practice

5. Flexibility to adapt to different levels of workloads and schedules

6. Proven track record of success working on project teams

7. Ability to think critically and creatively

8. Strong attention to detail

9. Strong problem-solving skills

10. Comfort with working virtually with a distributed workforce

11. Familiarity with and/or enthusiasm for workers co-operatives

12. Ability to work in a non-hierarchical environment

The successful candidate will have the following technical skills and proficiencies

  1. Proficiency with GSuite (Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, etc.) and/or MS Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.)
  2. Experience managing web and social media platforms for professional organizations

The following technical skills and proficiencies are considered assets but are not requirements for the successful candidate:

  1. College or University degree in Project Management or Event Planning or Communications
  2. Proficiency with Adobe Creative Cloud design applications (i.e. Spark, Photoshop, InDesign)
  3. Familiarity with city governance as it relates to urban/community planning, and knowledge of sustainable development practices
  4. Familiarity with and/or enthusiasm for workers co-operatives

SALARY, BENEFITS AND PROFIT SHARING

SSG workers are paid according to a salary scale that factors in years of professional experience and years worked at SSG. SSG workers are paid an hourly rate based on monthly hours worked. SSG expects salary of the successful candidate to fall close to $30/hour.

SSG offers a generous benefits package.

This position will be eligible for membership in the cooperative (i.e. co-ownership) within roughly six months. SSG distributes a minimum of 50% of its annual net income back to its members. Income distribution is in the form of shares or as cash, as determined by SSG’s Board of Directors.

OTHER JOB CONDITIONS

Some travel may be required (maximum estimate 10-15 days per year).

Occasional overtime may be required.

SSG offers flexible work hours.

IF INTERESTED

If interested, please send a cover letter and resume to Colin MacDougall at colin (at) ssg.coop no later than midnight on November 24, 2019. In the cover letter, we encourage you to speak to your interest in working with a worker’s cooperative.

For more information about worker co-ops in Canada, see the following resources:

Depending on the number of responses, we may be able to contact only those candidates whom we wish to interview.

SUSTAINABILITY SOLUTIONS GROUP (SSG) SUPPORTS YOUTH CLIMATE STRIKE

26 September 2019

SUSTAINABILITY SOLUTIONS GROUP (SSG) SUPPORTS YOUTH CLIMATE STRIKE

Victoria, Vancouver, Ottawa, Montreal, Halifax – Sustainability Solutions Group (Canadian Co-op), a leading local government climate change planning consultancy, will suspend services and join young people in their Global Climate Strike actions around the world on September 27th, 2019.

“SSG supports the actions of young people around the world who are demanding action on the climate crisis,” said Yuill Herbert, SSG Principal. “The urgent need for action is evident in our work every single day.”

Municipalities across Canada are increasingly declaring climate emergencies. SSG is supporting several in developing plans to respond to these declarations.

“Meaningful action to prevent dangerous climate change requires political courage and our analysis indicates that there are few downsides,” said Mel de Jager, SSG Principal. “Reducing climate change will create new jobs, people will feel healthier, and household and business energy costs will go down.”

SSG members will show solidarity with youth climate strikers, adding our voices to demand action from provincial and federal governments to end fossil fuel use.

“Supporting the climate strike is imperative for every single person on this planet,” said Naomi Devine, SSG Communications Director. “Now is the time to work for a climate-friendly future for all.”

The following co-operatives and democratically run businesses in Canada will be joining SSG on September 27th by supporting planned Climate Strike actions in their communities:

  • The Agency for Co-operative Housing
  • Affinity Bridge
  • Canadian Worker Co-operative Federation
  • CanTrust Hosting Co-operative
  • CoEnergy Co-operative
  • Pathway to Paris
  • Realize Strategies
  • La Siembra Co-operative
  • Ottawa Renewable Energy Co-operative
  • SolarShare
  • Urbane Cyclist Worker Co-op
  • Vancouver Renewable Energy Co-operative
  • WhatIf? Technologies
  • 1000 Cities for Carbon Freedom

About SSG

SSG is one of Canada’s leading climate change planning consultancy for local governments. Since 2004, SSG has completed community energy and emissions plans and climate action plans for more than sixty municipalities, including some of the most innovative projects in North America. Our work encompasses over a quarter of the Canadian population.

We have offices across Canada, including in Victoria, Vancouver, Ottawa, Montreal, and Halifax. SSG was founded youth climate movement leaders and is incorporated as a workers cooperative, differentiating ourselves from conventional businesses in terms of governance, transparency, democratic participation, and contribution to community.

About the Global Climate Strike

Young people have woken up much of the world with their powerful Fridays for Future school strikes for the climate. As we deal with devastating climate breakdown and hurtle towards dangerous tipping points, young people are calling on all of us across the planet to disrupt business as usual by joining the Global Climate Strikes on September 20, just ahead of a UN emergency climate summit, and again on September 27.

Together, we will sound the alarm and show our politicians that business as usual is no longer an option. The climate crisis won’t wait, so neither will we.

For more information on the Climate Strike, please visit: https://globalclimatestrike.net/

About Climate Emergencies

List of Governments who have declared climate emergencies:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1tb-LklFWLujYnjmCSvCWRcLUJCCWAL27dKPzVcFq9 CQ/edit#gid=0

About Worker Co-operatives in Canada

Worker co-operatives are businesses that are owned and democratically controlled by their members. The main purpose of a worker co-operative is to provide employment for its members through operating an enterprise that follows the Co-operative Principles and Values. When new employees join the business, after a successful probationary period they are encouraged to apply for membership. The worker co-op is, in principle, designed to provide benefits not just to the founding members but also to all future employee/members.

For more information, please see this resource from the Canadian Worker Co-op Federation: https://canadianworker.coop/about/what-is-a-worker-co-op/

 

-30-

 

Media Contacts

Naomi Devine

SSG Communications Director

778-676-7041

 

Yuill Herbert 

SSG Principal

250-213-9029

Enabling Low-Carbon Cities: The Role of Energy + Emissions Modelling

As an affiliate event to the Global Climate Action Summit held in September 2018 in San Francisco, Sustainability Solutions Group hosted a one-day symposium on modelling energy use and greenhouse gas emissions mitigation in cities. The event was a presentation and discussion forum for cities’ climate action success and challenges to date, and a discussion platform to determine future requirements and opportunities in modelling low carbon pathways for cities. The symposium convened top modelers, policy makers, academics, consultants, non-profits, and other key thinkers on city climate action.

Energy and emissions modelling is empowering cities to create informed climate policy. In leading cities, modelling is evolving to include broad land use, financial, and societal considerations, which is enabling urban policy that is balanced and effective in addressing climate and societal issues simultaneously. There are critical challenges in extending these approaches to all cities and in distributing climate action throughout city management and operations. With leadership from local, regional and senior governments, cities can secure resources, adopt leading approaches, and use appropriate modelling processes to create effective policy and achieve substantial progress in mitigating GHG emissions.

This brief draws on the presentations made and the discussions held during the day-long workshop. Download the full report here: Enabling Low Carbon Cities – SSG Symposium 1903_vIssued

Day 1 at the IPCC Cities & Climate Change Science Conference

The day started with the sun beaming in through a wall of glass looking out over Edmonton’s North Saskatchewan River. The discourse on cities was hopeful- tinged with periods of critical thought and realism. Presenters, including the Mayor of Edmonton, Don Iveson, talked about the need to track consumption-based GHG emissions; but the mechanisms that cities require to influence consumption of their citizens are both politically and legally limited. Many speakers talked about green jobs and low-carbon cities as engines of economic growth and development, while others reflected that economic development itself is the source of GHG emissions. Irrespective of the pathway forward, there is no question that the role of local governments and cities is gaining prominence and an increasing focus of UN agencies and other entities in the world; if cities can’t dramatically bend the curve, then there is no way that the world will achieve the necessary reductions of 1.5 degrees. Mayor Iveson emphasised this point with a story about UNFCCC COP 13 in indonesia; as a deputy mayor his option was to represent a non-profit organisation at a side event of a side event. Luckily, times have changed: urban areas are now a primary focus with an IPCC focussed conference on cities.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) will release a much anticipated report on what it will take for the world to stay within 1.5 degrees later this year; this report include a chapter on the role of cities. This 1.5 degree report is expected to the basis of extensive discussion at the next COP later this year, in Poland. In 2024, the IPCC will also  prepare a special report specifically on cities.

One of the most remarkable speeches was from Aromar Revi of the Indian Institute for Human Settlements (IIHS) and a lead author of the urban areas chapter of the upcoming IPCC report. He highlighted coal plants as stranded assets but said that the most signficant stranded assets are our cities, noting that economic activity, people’s homes, cultural centres in many great cities are at risk from sea level rise.

Under the 2015 Paris Agreement (UNFCCC COP 21/CMP 11), countries identified Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC), which were promised emissions reductions, in the lead up to the conference. Three years after those commitments were agreed upon in Paris, we’re about 1 degree above the 1850-1900 mean, which is two thirds of the way to the 1.5C level and halfway to the 2 degree level. The current INDCs are the fast elevator to 2 degrees; the question now are: could we experience an overshoot, how big will that overshoot be and how long will it last? If we had started GHG emissions reductions seriously in Rio de Janeiro (in 2012), we may have had the gift of choice but now societies need to accelerate the transformation of our energy systems, land-use, cities and regions, governance and financing.

Ultimately though, Aromar points out, the transition is a question of behavioural and cultural change. And if this transformation occurs, the empire, he indicated, will strike back as this is the nature of the systems. In this case, Aromar drew on the example of Gandhi taking on the greatest empire of the world at the time as a source of hope and inspiration; he concluded that ultimately the objective is to transform not only the system but ourselves.

In discussing future climate impacts, a presenter pointed out that the climate of the prairie provinces will resemble that of Texas by 2050; imagine what Texas will look like. The impacts are Increased precipitation early in the growing season and then longer, hotter dryer growing season, creating a need for some form of water storage. The researcher has developed and costed a natural infrastructure system that will provide water storage and protect the City of Winnipeg from flooding. In 2011, the City of Winnipeg experienced a major 1 in a 300 year flood. To protect the City, berms were broken to allow water to spread onto farmland, which both failed to protect the city and caused a nearly $1 billion loss in agricultural activity. A subsequent drought resulted in a further $1 billion in crop losses. No existing civil infrastructure mechanism could both prevent the floods and store water from that “rainy season”. The proposed natural infrastructure system not only solves these problems but also provides a spider web of ancillary benefits. In order to implement this system, a new form of agency will be required to raise the $5 billion required for implementation and generate returns from the different forms of benefits delivered.

SSG at IPCC Cities & Climate Change Conference

SSG directors, Yuill Herbert, and Jeremy Murphy, will be in Edmonton at the IPCC Cities and Climate Change Science Conference: Fostering new scientific knowledge for cities based on science, practice and policy, this March 5-7th. Sustainability Solutions Group is proud to be a silver sponsor of this conference.

This conference is an important one for the international climate research community. It will bring together representatives from national, local (city) and regional governments, academia, international research organizations, as well as urban planning and climate change practitioners.

The goals of the conference are to:

  • identify research and knowledge gaps related to cities and climate change;
  • inspire regional and global research that will lead to peer-reviewed publications and scientific reports; and,
  • stimulate research on cities and climate change throughout the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 6th Assessment Report (AR6) cycle.

The conference’s outcomes are important because they will inform upcoming IPCC reports as well as support cities and citizens in building low-carbon, climate-resilient and sustainable cities, the implementation of the Paris Agreement on climate change, the New Urban Agenda, and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

If you can’t make it to Edmonton yourself, you can join the live webcast here and get informed by reading the pre-session documents, available here.

Follow SSG on Twitter.

Follow the Cities IPCC on Twitter.

1000 Cities Launches at Carnegie Hall in NYC!

The latest Pathway to Paris concert took place at Carnegie Hall in New York City at the beginning of November. The concert included performances from: Patti Smith, Michael Stipe, Joan Baez, Flea, Talib Kweli, Cat Power, Tanya Tagaq, Tenzin Choegyal, Rebecca Foon, Jesse Paris Smith and featured activists Dr. Vandana Shiva and Bill McKibben.

At the concert, the 1000 Cities initiative was launched. The 1000 Cities initiative is a bold mission to meet and go beyond the targets of the Paris Agreement. The initiative invites all cities of the world to transition off of fossil fuels and move to 100% renewable energy by 2040, in order to turn the Paris Agreement into reality. This plan involves citizen engagement, supporting cities with the development of their ambitious climate action plans, and a creative implementation process in collaboration with a diversity of partners to develop one thousand 100% renewable cities by 2040, no longer dependent on fossil fuels.

SSG is a proud partner in Pathway to Paris, a collection of artists, activists, academics, musicians, politicians, innovators coming together to fight for climate justice. Co-founded by Jesse Paris Smith and SSG Director Rebecca Foon, Pathway to Paris includes a series of musical events in various cities, radio shows, and cutting-edge news, drawing upon proven examples to demonstrate that significant reductions in GHG emissions are possible and improve quality of life.

Toronto City Council Unanimously Adopts TransformTO

View the TransformTO report.

Sustainability Solutions Group (SSG) is pleased to announce that our latest report, TransformTO: Climate Action for a Healthy, Equitable, Prosperous Toronto (Results of Modelling Greenhouse Gas Emissions to 2050), was adopted, unanimously, by Toronto City Council today.

TransformTO is a community-wide, cross-corporate initiative of the City of Toronto and The Toronto Atmospheric Fund. It was designed to engage residents, other stakeholders, experts, and all City operations in identifying ways to reduce Toronto’s greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) by 30 percent by 2020, and by 80 percent by 2050, against 1990 levels.

SSG and whatIf? Technologies worked with city staff, stakeholders and community members to develop a pathway to achieve 80% emissions reductions by 2050 using currently available technologies. The process involved the development of future scenarios, spatial modelling, analysis of co-benefits and co-harms for the scenarios as well as community input. Opportunities for collaborative and sustained emissions reduction efforts by the City of Toronto, the private sector, higher levels of government, and Toronto residents are included in the report.

“This project clearly demonstrates that a low carbon future for Toronto is viable using current technologies,” said SSG Director and project lead Yuill Herbert. “We also determined that such a future has many benefits to public health, stimulating local economic development and employment opportunities, and addressing poverty, if actions are thoughtfully executed.”

SSG’s and whatIf? Technologies’ CityInSight energy, emissions and finance model was key to the analysis. CityInSight incorporates the Global Protocol for Community-Scale Greenhouse Gas Emission Inventories (GPC), a standard that enables emissions comparability between cities globally. The model creates and compares land-use scenarios that assess varying considerations for transportation, building types and densities, energy use, energy production systems, liquid and solid waste production and treatments, infrastructure, and all associated costs and paybacks, in order to assess what emissions reduction actions are possible and what should be prioritized.

Two scenarios were defined for the project: Business as Planned (BAP) and Low Carbon Scenario (LCS). The BAP scenario explored projected energy and emissions levels for the city under current and planned policies and actions by municipal, provincial and federal governments. The LCS explored additional actions options that, if taken, will achieve Toronto’s emissions reduction targets.

Council’s adoption of the TransformTO report signals the ambition of Canada’s largest city in taking the lead on climate change mitigation through critical emissions reduction actions – actions that will also improve the quality of life of Toronto’s residents. 

For more information on TransformTO, and to download the full report, please visit: ssg.coop/transformto
SSG Contacts

Yuill Herbert

TransformTO Project Lead                    

1.250.213.9029

yuill@ssg.coop

Naomi Devine

SSG Communications Director

1.778.676.7041

naomi@ssg.coop

 

Sustainability Solutions Group (SSG) is a climate change and sustainable communities consultancy with offices across Canada. We’re a cooperative of critical, creative thinkers who collaborate with cities, communities, and institutions to address some of society’s most pressing challenges: climate change, energy and emissions planning, sustainable development, public health, and democratic engagement. Over the past fifteen years we have worked with over 40 municipalities in Canada to help them build and plan for low-carbon, economically vibrant, and sustainable communities.

whatIf? Technologies was founded in 1989 by Robert Hoffman and Bert McInnis – to build upon their pioneering work in socio-economic modelling and simulation at Statistics Canada – and by software architect Michael Hoffman (current CEO). Over the last 25 years the firm has established itself as a leader in developing computer-based simulation models for strategic planning and scenario analysis. whatIf has successfully delivered modelling projects in urban and regional planning, energy systems, transportation, and long-term physical economic systems.

False Creek at night. Photo by Naomi Devine

Join SSG at Renewable Cities. We’re throwing an afterparty you won’t want to miss!

SSG is pleased to support Renewable Cities, a global program of Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue in Vancouver, Canada. We are participating in their Global Learning Forum 2017: a solutions-focused dialogue on the transition to 100% renewable energy in cities. Leaders from local governments, the private sector, utilities, and the NGO and research communities will be in attendance and we look forward to connecting with everyone.

In celebration of our recent report, TransformTO: Climate Action for a Healthy, Equitable & Prosperous Toronto – The Pathway to a Low Carbon Future, we are throwing an afterparty for all attendees of Renewable Cities. Join us for a social evening to connect, engage, and share your stories about how we are working to make cities renewable, one step at a time.

SSG members Jeremy Murphy, Julia Meyer-MacLeod, and Naomi Devine will be attending Renewable Cities. Be sure to connect with us and say hello at the event or at our afterparty.

Afterparty Details

Thursday, May 18, starting at 6:30 pm

The Belmont Bar, Vancouver BC
1006 Granville St