Over the course of more than two decades, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ (FCM) Green Municipal Fund has enabled the completion of nearly 1,500 projects aimed at cutting greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the face of climate change, according to a new annual report.
From improving sustainability in key sectors such as energy, transportation, waste, water and land use, to wide-ranging energy retrofits of municipal buildings, the Green Municipal Fund (GMF) has helped avoid 2.87 million tonnes of GHG emissions since 2000, and contributed $1.2 billion to the Canada’s GDP, says the new report.
“The release of today’s 23rd annual Green Municipal Fund report shows that 22 years after its launch, FCM’s GMF continues being one of those important tools and sources of funding,” announced Alan DeSousa, GMF Council Chair, in a statement. “The report indicates continued progress in 2022-2023 in the number of projects supported, further contributing to reduced greenhouse gas emissions and energy use.”
In November 2022, the federal government invested $530 million in the GMF through the Climate Adaptation Action Plan to support, accelerate and scale-up community-based climate adaptation initiatives.
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Some of the GMF’s key initiatives are Community Efficiency Financing; Low Carbon Cities Canada; Community Buildings Retrofit; Partners for Climate Protection; Municipal Net-Zero Action Research Partnership; and the Circular Cities and Regions Initiative.
FCM, considered a national voice of municipal governments, says it is at the beginning of a new Three-Year Plan for 2023 to 2026. There will be a renewed focus on the horizon for more municipal climate change mitigation and adaptation plans, as well as further net-zero energy solutions.
“The Green Municipal Fund is helping Canadians to fight climate change and build more sustainable communities in every region of the country,” announced Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, in a statement. “The Government of Canada will continue to be a partner for Canadian municipalities in deploying solutions that deliver clean air and good jobs — including green buildings, zero-emissions transportation and energy efficiency projects.”
Since 2000, the GMF has completed 1,447 projects across Canada. A provincial breakdown reveals 487 projects completed in Ontario; 270 projects completed in Quebec; 265 projects completed in British Columbia; 161 projects completed in Atlantic Canada; 128 projects in Alberta; 58 projects in Manitoba; 53 projects in Saskatchewan; and 25 projects in the Territories.
Also, since 2000, the GMF has completed 41 initiatives with specific social impact targets, such as new libraries, cultural centres, cyclist and pedestrian pathways, as well as pools, rinks and recreation centres.