I am engaged in researching and advocating for Green Infrastructure Policy in the Ottawa region. One of the most pressing issues facing my hometown of Ottawa is climate resilience, and Green Infrastructure is an extremely important aspect of developing communities that can thrive in the face of our changing climate. The following is an excerpt from a policy review I undertook working with a local NGO.
“Green Infrastructure is about working with natural systems to find ways to build a city that is biodiverse, resilient, beautiful, diverse and inclusive. Green Infrastructure necessarily employs principles of environmental and social justice to build networked systems between ecology, the built environment and its inhabitants. Green Infrastructure is cost-effective because when you design ecologically, the results are regenerative. Through Green Infrastructure, Ottawa has an opportunity to take a leadership role in building climate resilience, biodiversity, beauty, livability and civic engagement. Ottawa must take the lead in developing GI-specific policies and initiatives. Every citizen wants a healthier, more equitable community where families and business flourish, and that is hardened from risk. By recognizing the scope of the challenge before us, and motivating and empowering communities to co-create solutions, Ottawa can become an economic, ecological and social leader for the 21st century”
If Ottawa is to develop a strong Green Infrastructure policy, we must 1) Invest in data; 2) Develop strong policies with real targets for strengthening our Natural Capital; 3) Invest in, and engage with communities – especially local Indigenous communities and those who are traditionally disadvantaged.
You can access a copy of the draft report and the 13 recommendations I made here: