Vancouver hires well-known environmentalist to guide green policy
Matt Horne, previously of the Pembina Institute, is the city's new climate change policy manager
The City of Vancouver has hired a well-known environmental advocate to help guide its quest to become the greenest city on the planet.
Matt Horne, the former associate director of environmental think-tank the Pembina Institute and a member of B.C.'s climate leadership team, is the city's new climate change policy manager.
Horne is specifically tasked with shepherding the city's "The Greenest City 2020 Action Plan" — adopted in 2011 — and creating further policies and plans to be implemented to make the transition.
Part of Horne's role will include helping the city transition into using 100 per cent of its energy from renewable sources by 2050.
"A lot of the decisions that we make today have long lasting implications. Buildings we build today, they're going to be here in 2050," he said. "It is a big challenge, a daunting challenge, but I think one that is achievable."
Some of the policies associated with this goal have been the subject of some controversy, especially the city's commitment to phasing out natural gas from non-renewable sources.
Critics say that commitment would force Vancouver residents to choose higher cost options and could detrimentally affect affordability.
Horne said policies won't come at the expense of affordability.
"It's an expensive city to live in," he said. "So, we have to think through when we're making these changes — how do we do this in an affordable way? If we don't think that through well, the strategy is going to be undermined in a big way."
Horne has been with the Pembina Institute for 13 years.
With files from The Early Edition
To listen to the interview, click on the link labelled Meet Matt Horne, Vancouver's new climate change policy manager