In 2017, the City of Oslo pioneered a game-changing approach to fighting climate change: the carbon budget. The budget sets a cap on how much the city can emit before 2030, when Oslo plans to become carbon neutral, and divides that amount into annual budgets. The City’s finance department considers the budget alongside its finances when making decisions. The City describes it as the “most important management tool” for achieving its ambitious goal of net-zero emissions by 2030. We couldn’t agree more. Read more
LONDON, MONTREAL, NEW YORK, and VANCOUVER, Dec. 17, 2020 [Press Release] — Five years into the Paris Agreement—and in the lead-up to the 2021 UN climate negotiations in Glasgow—UK cities are taking bold climate action. Cities worldwide have much to learn from their UK peers’ successes and challenges, according to a new report released Thursday by the 1000 CITIES Initiative, which aims to mobilise 1,000 cities to respond to the climate crisis. Read more
On October 22, Yuill Herbert and the City of Edmonton’s Abhishek Chakraborti teamed up to deliver a presentation on developing carbon accounting frameworks to manage GHG emissions at the Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ Sustainable Communities Conference. Read more
Venice is sinking. The West Coast is on fire. Climate emergency declarations have become commonplace. At SSG, we are in the trenches, working with cities across the continent to figure out how to move beyond planning and into climate action.
This requires treating our greenhouse gas emissions with the same attention, scrutiny, and importance as our finances. We recently helped the City of Edmonton become the first city in Canada to do just that by creating a carbon budget. Read more
Last week, Edmonton city council passed a historic plan—the first in Canada to incorporate a carbon budget limiting how many greenhouse gas emissions the city can emit.
SSG helped crunch the numbers behind the ground-breaking carbon budget and we hope Edmonton will be the first of many Canadian municipalities to take this step. Read more
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. Read more