Ottawa

Kingston council asked to declare climate emergency

A Kingston city councillor wants the eastern Ontario city to declare a climate emergency. Council will vote on his motion Tuesday night.

Canadian cities including Vancouver, Halifax have taken similar action

City councillors in Kingston will vote Tuesday night on a motion to declare a climate emergency in the eastern Ontario city. (Lars Hagberg/Canadian Press)

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  • The motion passed unanimously on Tuesday.

A Kingston city councillor wants the eastern Ontario city to declare a climate emergency.

Coun. Robert Kiley, who represents the Trillium district and previously ran unsuccessfully for the provincial Green party three times, will put forward the motion Tuesday night.

"We want to declare a climate emergency, essentially to give the city further impetus to act on climate as quickly and swiftly and efficiently as possible, because we know that climate change threatens our very way of life, economically, socially, environmentally," Kiley told CBC Radio's Ontario Morning on Tuesday.

Vancouver, Halifax and Edmundston, N.B., have already declared climate emergencies.

'Deepen our commitment'

Coun. Robert Kiley represents the Trillium district in Kingston, and was a three-time provincial candidate for the Green party. (Robert Kiley/Facebook)

Kiley said the move would better frame environmental discussions in Kingston and "deepen our commitment."

It would also help provide the "people power and resources" to further reduce the city's greenhouse gas emissions and carbon footprint going forward.

Kiley said Kingston is already a "climate leader" — pointing to big gains in transit ridership and a commitment to meeting its Paris agreement targets — but added more can be done.

"We're moving in the right direction, but declaring a climate emergency gives us the why, the reason for ... continuing on in this action," he said.

CBC Radio's Ontario Morning

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