Livable cities forum

Conversations for an inclusive future

October 3-5, 2022

Victoria, B.C.

2022 Program & Presentations

The 2022 program topics explored the need to integrate equity and inclusion into action on climate change mitigation and adaptation throughout three days of content.  Sessions were uniquely designed to go beyond presentation-style delivery, and included many interactive and engaging workshops, trainings, and discussion forums for more networking and hands-on learning opportunities. Details on the sessions included in the 2022 program are provided below. Speaker presentations, notes, and resources are included as available.

Day one

Monday, October 3, 2022

8:30 – 10:00 am

Welcome and Opening Plenary

Welcome and Opening Plenary

The Livable Cities Forum kicked off with an opening plenary welcoming all participants to the City of Victoria. Three high-level interventions set the scene regarding climate action, and highlighting the impact, challenges and opportunities presented by COVID-19 and the green recovery. Our speakers touched on why conversations for an inclusive future is the theme of LCF 2022 and why cooperation at all levels is necessary to drive climate action forward. Short opening remarks were followed by a keynote address from Farhaan Ladhani entitled Digital Inclusion and Social Resilience: Building Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in our online and public communities. 

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Brianna Bear, Songhees Nation Member
  • Lisa Helps, Mayor, City of Victoria
  • Honourable Bowinn Ma, Minister of State for Infrastructure, Government of British Columbia
  • Mary Rowe, President and CEO, Canadian Urban Institute
  • Megan Meaney, Executive Director, ICLEI Canada
  • Farhaan Ladhani, Co-founder, Digital Public Square
  • Ewa Jackson, Managing Director, ICLEI Canada

Recording:

10:00 – 10:30 am

Networking break

10:30 – 12:00 pm

Concurrent sessions

Nature-based Solutions for Climate Change

One of the big opportunities for adaptation lies in investing in the protection or enhancement of nature to strengthen people’s resilience. Known today as nature-based solutions, these interventions can be extremely cost-effective, either as a substitute or a complement to traditional infrastructure. Working with nature can also provide additional co-benefits, not the least of which being storing carbon rather than causing emissions. Not only do we need more investment in these types of solutions, but we also need to enable bigger scale interventions. Funding for these types of projects needs to be commensurate with this scale. In this session, panelists explored the opportunities relate to nature-based solutions and how we can apply them at scale across the country.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Vincent Loiselle, Senior Policy Analyst of Climate Change Adaptation Policy, Environment and Climate Change Canada — Moderator
  • Roy Brooke, Executive Director, Municipal Natural Assets Initiative
  • Dr. Chaeri Kim, Postdoctoral Fellow, Action on Climate Team, Simon Fraser University
  • Matt Osler, Senior Project Engineer, City of Surrey
  • Sheri Young, Climate Change and Energy Specialist, Town of Okotoks

Presentations:

 

Groundtruthing the City: My Main Street

CUI and city builders from across the country exchanged stories and best practices on rebuilding communities from the ground up, building local economies, climate resilience and social equity at the neighbourhood scale. Successes from the My Main Street and Healthy Communities initiatives were highlighted, showing the success of multi-solving approaches that include place-making, street activations and other interventions to strengthen the essential fabric of communities: our Main Streets. Participants brought their best examples of innovation and success, and abiding challenges to crowd source solutions!

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Gabriela Masfarre Pinto, Community Engagement Lead, Canadian Urban Institute
  • Gay Stephenson, Community Partnership Lead, Canadian Urban Institute — Moderator

Presentation and notes:

 

More Questions than Answers: Charting a Pathway Towards Achieving Net Zero Communities

Canada has committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050. Many communities across the country are leading the charge and have made a local commitment to this goal and are now defining a pathway to achieving it. But what are these pathways in practical terms? What are the actions required for moving towards this net-zero future? To what extent does net zero mean reducing existing emissions, versus capturing and storing GHGs? How do we ensure that the transition to net zero is equitable and inclusive? The idea of achieving net zero seems to raise as many questions as it does answers. In this session, examples, promising practices, and lessons learned from communities across the country were shared.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Jonathan Arnold, Clean Growth Director (Acting), Canadian Climate Institute — Moderator
  • Sara MacRae, Manager of Climate and Energy, Dufferin County
  • Megan Meaney, Executive Director, ICLEI Canada
  • Shannon Miedema, Director of Environment & Climate Change, Halifax Regional Municipality
  • Steve Young, Climate and Environmental Sustainability Specialist, City of Victoria

No presentations slides were used during this interactive session.

Conversations on the Role of Digital in Building More Inclusive Communities

More and more, there is a growing need to engage communities differently. But what does this mean? Who are we trying to reach and how will we reach them? Whether it’s supporting equitable access to services or how to better connect everyone in a diverse neighbourhood on what matters to them — digital engagement unlocks barriers to participation. In this sessions, ICLEI, Evergreen, and Digital Public Square focused on how to co-create an opportunity to engage whole communities in placemaking with a proven approach that emphasizes privacy while maximizing inclusive participation.

Speakers and moderators for this session include:

  • Ewa Jackson, Managing Director, ICLEI Canada — Facilitator
  • Hiba Kariem, Climate Change Project Coordinator, ICLEI Canada – Facilitator
  • Farhaan Ladhani, CEO and Co-Founder, Digital Public Square
  • Lois Lindsay, Chief Program Officer, Evergreen
  • Adriana Montes, Program Officer, Evergreen

Presentations: 

Foundations of BC’s Climate Preparedness and Adaptation Strategy

As the extreme weather events of 2021 have demonstrated, climate change is impacting BC now and will continue to do so in the future. The Climate Preparedness and Adaptation Strategy (CPAS) lays out actions in pathways to help prepare BC for the changing climate. This session introduced the pathways and actions in the CPAS that are most relevant to communities, including expanded community emergency preparedness funds, community wildfire risk reduction programs, and expanded hazard, risk and vulnerability assessment toolkit.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Charlie Gordon, Senior Policy Analyst, Climate Action Secretariat, Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy
  • Tina Neale, Director, Climate Risk Management, Climate Action Secretariat, Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy
  • Dominique Sigg, Manager, Climate Adaptation Governance and Strategy, Climate Action Secretariat, Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy
  • Emma Squires, Senior Policy Analyst, Climate Action Secretariat, Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy
  • Johanna Wolf, Manager, Climate Risk Programs and Implementation, Climate Action Secretariat, Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy

Presentation:

12:00 – 1:30 PM

Lunch

1:30 – 5:30 pm

concurrent Sessions on the move

Embedding Traditional Knowledge into City and Climate Change Planning

The Lekwungen Walking Tour was hosted by Mark Albany, a well-informed and charismatic member of the Songhees Nation. Participants joined Mark on an enlightening and revealing tour to experience Victoria’s inner harbour and downtown through a Lekwungen lens to learn about important Lekwungen sites and cultural practices, and about the history of displacement of Indigenous peoples in the creation of the City of Victoria. Through Mark’s words and heart, the tour demonstrates of the resilience of the Lekwungen speaking peoples and how their thousands of years of knowledge holds lessons for those working on climate adaptation, equity, and resilience-building.

This Session on the Move was led by:

  • Mark Albany, Member of the Songhees First Nation

No presentations slides were used during this interactive session. 

Local Food Solutions: Growing Together!

Interested in equitable food systems while cultivating community? This tour explored Victoria’s resilient local food network. Participants heard from local food champions including small scale commercial urban food producers, community garden coordinators, soil health and gardening education experts, and organizations supporting communities that face barriers to accessing fresh, healthy, affordable food. Topics highlighted included innovative programs like the City’s award-winning Get Growing, Victoria! and regional initiatives like Growing Together. Site visits included a tour of an urban farm, a community garden, the Compost Education Centre, and regional food distribution hubs (Food Redistribution Centre, the South Island Farm Hub), and Kitchen Connect!

This Session on the Move was be led by:

  • Alex Harned, Get Growing Victoria!

Presentation:

Buses, Bikes, and Boats... Oh My!

The City of Victoria’s Transportation Team led this multi-modal tour to explore transportation infrastructure, transit-oriented development, and placemaking features within the downtown streetscape. Participants learned about the City’s efforts to support safe and accessible, active transportation, traffic signal technologies, transit initiatives, shared mobility and EV charging. Sites included City Hall, Chinatown, Old Town and transportation hubs, including the downtown ferry terminal and harbour airport. Participants got a chance to experience the City by bike, walking and public transit with stops along the way to discuss mobility trends, pressures and opportunities in the growing capital city.

This Session on the Move was led by:

  • Sarah Webb, Sarah Webb, Manager, Transportation Planning & Development, City of Victoria

No presentations slides were used during this interactive session.

Zero Waste in Action

The City of Victoria’s Zero Waste Team guided this tour to showcase Victoria’s momentum towards a circular economy.  Participants visited a local deconstruction site where experts in salvage and reuse are taking apart a building piece-by-piece to preserve old growth lumber. Next, they visited Ecologyst, a locally owned and operated clothing company to explore tangible examples of the circular economy in action while sharing about their supply chain evolution, degrowth and carbon emissions reduction over the last few years. Participants ended the tour by learning how clever bin design, labeling and new sensor technology is helping to divert waste from the city’s streets and parks. 

This Session on the Move was led by:

  • Rhiannon Moore, Zero Waste Outreach Coordinator, City of Victoria

No presentations slides were used during this interactive session.

Exploring Victoria's Climate Friendly Buildings

Victoria is a hotbed of game changing climate-friendly new construction and retrofit projects of all types. It is also a place that is considered “the cradle of the craft beer revolution” where good beer is very much a part of the city’s social fabric. Participants joined Victoria’s Community Energy Specialists (and special guests) to visit and learn about some notable buildings as well as supportive policies and programs that are transforming both the new and existing building stock. The tour concluded at a selected craft brewery where attendees will had the opportunity to sample some of the town’s best ales and get to mingle with other attendees.

This Session on the Move was led by:

  • John Ho, Community Energy Specialist, Energy & Climate Action, City of Victoria
  • Derek de Candole, Community Energy Specialist, City of Victoria

No presentations slides were used during this interactive session.

Re-Connecting the Cycle: Bringing Water Back to the City

Victoria’s nature-based solutions, including the urban forest and green stormwater infrastructure, are sustainably and simultaneously adapting to and mitigating climate change. Participants explored numerous examples throughout the community where practical action is being taken to restore, protect, and enhance the urban water cycle. Discussions also included the tensions between preservation and development. This urban nature tour provided participants with the opportunity to learn and have meaningful conversations together.

This Session on the Move was led by:

  • Brianne Tenk, Stormwater Management Specialist, City of Victoria

No presentations slides were used during this interactive session.

Beyond the GHGs! Nurturing Youth and Nature through One Planet Living (START TIME OF 12:45)

Participants met amazing students, teachers and program providers in the Victoria region leading the change. The tour started at Artemis Place, a special education Independent school offering a nurturing community for students who haven’t found success in other school settings. The team shared how One Planet Principles are being embedded in their learning and work. Participants then took a tour with Reynolds Secondary School students who showcased their courtyard garden & microfarm, clothes swap program and nature conservation work. The final stop was at the beautiful Prospect Lake site of Power to Be, a non-profit creating access to nature for people of all ages and abilities with a focus on individuals, community groups, and families living with physical, financial and social barriers. Participants toured their amazing new innovative, inclusive and sustainable Gateway to Nature development which celebrates culture, spirit and place, and learned more about (and sampled snacks from!) the broader One Planet community, advancing sustainability in the region.

This Session on the Move was led by:

  • Rebecca Newlove, Manager of Sustainability, District of Saanich 

No presentations slides were used during this interactive session.

Day Two

TUESDAY, OCTOBER 4, 2022

7:30 – 8:30 am

Breakfast

8:30 – 10:00 am

Plenary

Multi-level government solutions - Plenary

Collaboration and cooperation are more important than ever to achieving climate goals. Reaching net zero commitments, improving long term resilience, adapting to immediate impacts and doing so in ways that are equitable and inclusive has required new ways of working together. Breaking down the silos of administration, jurisdiction, profession and perception will support the transitions needed to achieve those climate commitments. In this plenary, delegates heard from some of our local leaders on how they have been working with partners, networks and their constituents to achieve this change. Complementary results from investments by Infrastructure Canada to the Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program were shared and highlighted bridges of partnership that have been built between the federal government, municipalities and community organizations.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Rebecca Alty, Mayor, City of Yellowknife 
  • Lisa Helps, Mayor, City of Victoria
  • Megan Meaney, Executive Director, ICLEI Canada
  • Christine Poirier, Councillor, City of Laval
  • Geneviève Thouin, Project Director, Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program, Federation of Canadian Municipalities — Moderator

Recording:

10:00 – 10:30 am

Networking break

10:30 – 12:00 pm

Concurrent sessions

Integrating Western Climate Science and Indigenous Knowledges in Climate Change Action

For Canadians to build and improve resilience to climate change impacts, it is essential to continually develop and update climate change information that can guide adaptation strategies and action. A thoughtful approach to mobilize information and knowledge consists of both adequate translation of scientific knowledge and accurate translation of Indigenous Knowledge Systems. This session, combining both presentations and an interactive group discussion, focused on how climate change adaptation knowledge is developed, and how to build the capacity and incentive to both create and act on it.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Brett Huson, Research Associate, Prairie Climate Centre
  • Dr. Ian Mauro, Executive Director (Incoming), Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions, University of Victoria — Moderator
  • Kari Tyler, User Engagement and Training Specialist, Pacific Climate Impacts Consortium, University of Victoria

Presentation:

BC’s New Local Government Climate Action Program

Local governments have an important role in meeting the B.C’s legislated climate targets and are at the forefront of mitigation, adaptation and resilience measures. The new CleanBC Local Government Climate Action Program (LGCAP) provides local governments and Modern Treaty Nations with predictable and stable funding to support the implementation of local climate action that reduces emissions and prepares communities for the impacts of a changing climate.

LGCAP supports local climate action to help B.C. achieve provincial climate goals outlined in the CleanBC Roadmap to 2030 and the Climate Preparedness and Adaptation Strategy. This session consisted a presentation from the B.C.’s Climate Action Secretariat and opportunity to discuss the CleanBC, Local Government Climate Action program (LG-CAP). Discussions focused on Climate infrastructure and climate lens application, Clean Transportation Action Plan (CTAP) and efficiency-first model specific to local governments, and LGCAP Reporting and what local governments in B.C are up to.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Dave Aharonian, Senior Policy Analyst, BC Climate Action Secretariat,
  • Yaheli Klein, Senior Policy Analyst, BC Climate Action Secretariat,
  • Elizabeth Lytviak, Policy Analyst, BC Climate Action Secretariat
  • Ken Porter, Manager, BC Climate Action Secretariat

Presentation:

Mitigate AND Adapt: Advancing Low Carbon Resilience

How are cities achieving both adaptation and mitigation goals simultaneously? This session explored how local governments and their partners are taking action on all aspects of climate change that both reduce GHG’s and increase resilience to our changing climate with a focus on how to capitalize on multisolving actions that addresses building resilience and decarbonization, among other sustainability goals. This action-oriented conversation inlcuded innovative opportunities to achieve multiple benefits and that leverage tight budgets can create more livable cities.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Ian Dessureault, Professional Environmental Advisor, City of Laval
  • Jillian Hudgins, Environmental Strategist, City of Fredricton — Moderator
  • Élène Levasseur, Research Coordinator, Researcher, Architecture Without Borders Quebec
  • Kacia Tolsma, LCR Program Manager, ACT – Action on Climate Team, Simon Fraser University

Presentations:

 

Municipalities for Climate Innovation World Café

Communities across Canada have accessed the Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program (MCIP) delivered by FCM over the past five years to develop tools, projects, plans and networks.  This World Café allowed participants to learn about some of the resources that remain available to help your community.  Municipal staff and partner organization experts who developed specific projects or tools were on hand to demonstrate, share experience and answer questions. 

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Sara Brown, CEO, Northwest Terrirtories Association of Communities (NWTAC)
  • Montana Burgess, Executive Director, West Kootenay Community EcoSociety
  • Devin Causley, Manager Capacity Building , Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program, Federation of Canadian Municipalities — Moderator
  • Ewa Jackson, Managing Director, ICLEI Canada
  • Philip Kelly, Advisor, MCIP FCM
  • Ben Koczwarski, Senior Lead for Asset Management, MAMP FCM
  • Jarret Matanowitsch, Director of Planning and Building Services, District of Central Saanich
  • Megan Meaney, Executive Director, ICLEI Canada
  • Shannon Miedema, Director of Environment & Climate Change, Halifax Regional Municipality
  • Matt Osler, Senior Project Engineer, City of Surrey
  • Chloe Repka, Project Coordinator, ACT-SFU
  • Luke Sales, Director of Planning, Town of Qualicum Beach 
  • Rebecca Sivel, Project Manager, MCIP FCM
  • Jacquie Taylor, Funding Manager, MCIP FCM
  • Eric Timmins, Senior Lead, Projects, Quest Canada
  • Maria Tomovic, Manager Capacity Development, GMF FCM

Presentation:

 

Towards A Climate Ready Building Sector: Strategies, Toolkits, and Research on Barriers and Enablers

Resilient buildings can better withstand the stresses and shocks from climate change and earthquakes – maximizing the ability of people in the buildings, and the buildings themselves, to adapt, be prepared, and persevere. New resources are beginning to shed light on the strategies that need to be implemented to support more resilient new and existing buildings that work in tandem with supporting decarbonization. The recently launched Climate Ready Housing Design Guide is an editable toolkit that design teams can use to inform more climate resilient design of new or existing housing. Understanding that there are significant barriers to the effective implementation of climate resilient strategies in the building sector across the province, BC Housing and the Province of BC have also commissioned research on the barriers and enablers to realizing climate and seismic resilient buildings, and the findings will soon inform a toolkit for BC local governments.

This session offered an overview of these resources and provided participants with the opportunity to give their input on the barriers and enablers to advancing resilient buildings in their community as well as to hear about other community experiences through an interactive workshop.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Lisa Westerhoff, Principal, Integral Group
  • Tamsin Mills, RPP, Nationally recognized specialist in climate resilience and adaptation
  • Cariad Garratt, Principal, Pinna Sustainability
  • Steve Roddick, Sustainability Consultant, Pinna Sustainability

Presentations:

 

12:00 – 1:00 PM

Lunch

1:00 – 1:30 PM

DANCE PERFORMANCE

TOGETHER WE RISE

Through conversation, poetry, movement and the art of woven storytelling we ask questions. How do we lift our head when we walk down the street to see one another? How do we open our hearts and minds to see another in a new light? How do we lift hope up through the cracks in our city? Raino Dance, based out of Victoria BC, will showcase an interactive performance involving movement and spoken word as they interpret the themes of sustainable cities and conversations for an inclusive future.

Recording:

1:30 – 3:30 pm

Concurrent Sessions

Engaging Equitably: Understanding the Importance of Diversity and Inclusion in Climate Action

Climate action in the community means much more than counting and managing greenhouse gas emissions, although this is hugely important. It means adjusting our choices, habits, and attitudes. Responding to climate change affect how we live, work, and participate in our communities; ensuring that all voices are heard and equitably included is crucial as we plan for our shared future. In this session, three context setting presentations were followed by a non-hierarchical dialogue where audience and panel members were merged to discuss the role of equity, diversity and inclusion in climate action.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Sabrina Guzman Skotnitsky, Youth Climate Lab
  • Hiba Kariem,Climate Change Project Coordinator, ICLEI Canada — Facilitator
  • Megan Meaney, Executive Director, ICLEI Canada
  • Jodi Rechenmacker, Community Consultant / Principal, Urban Systems

Presentations:

Gender and City Design – The Ignored 51% in Infrastructure and Climate Planning

Cities and the way they are designed are not gender-neutral. Only 20% of mayors around the world are women, and a majority of technical work and infrastructure design has been historically considered a male domain. The result is that cities have been designed by men, systemically neglecting the needs and lived experiences of women and gender diverse people. In this highly interactive session, through a scenario-based discussion, participants looked at challenges and opportunities to develop cities that work for everyone.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Don Alexander, Professor, Geography Department and Master of Community Planning Program, Vancouver Island University
  • Laura Clark, Doctoral Candidate, Vancouver Island University
  • Jenna Dutton, Senior Planner – Social Policy, City of Victoria
  • Courtenay Miller, Masters Student, Vancouver Island University
  • Olivia Moores, Doctoral Candidate, Vancouver Island University
  • Rena Viehbeck, Climate Change Program Manager, ICLEI Canada — Moderator

Scenarios and resources:

Building a Business Case for Action: Understanding the Costs of Climate Change

Across Canada, extreme weather events – such as wildfires, flooding, heat waves, and storms – have caused billions of dollars in economic damages annually. Information on the economic consequences of climate change, as well as on the costs and benefits of adaptation interventions is increasingly being demanded by decision-makers at all scales. While of course the economic costs are of paramount importance, the costs to human health and well-being, as well as to the natural environment, must also be considered in order to allocate public resources for climate adaptation, and to ensure that these resources are directed towards the most efficient actions. This session brought together researchers and municipal practitioners and presented information on the tools and methodologies that can be used to understand the costs of climate change and the strategies of how to build a local business case for action.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Richard Boyd, Director, Research and Economics, All One Sky Foundation
  • Mark Boysen, General Manager, Operations Department, Cowichan Valley Regional District — Moderator
  • Ewa Jackson, Managing Director, ICLEI Canada
  • Chad Park, Vice-president of Sustainability & Citizenship, Co-operators

Presentations:

Spotlight on Vancouver: A Learning Journey for Communities, Big and Small

The City of Vancouver continues to take progressive steps towards climate action. This session explored some of the projects and plans that this metropolitan city is undertaking and explore what lessons can be applied to other communities. Participants discussed how equity can be centered in their own communities to face the complex challenges we all face. Spotlighted projects included: responding to the social equity, economic, and ecological challenges posed by sea level rise and coastal flooding; preparing for extreme heat through strategic alignment and community-partnered action; citywide ecological frameworks, and; implementing a just transition for workers that aligns with climate policies.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Angela Danyluk Senior Sustainability Specialist, City of Vancouver
  • Emily Dunlop, Senior Planner, Planning, Policy & Environment,Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation 
  • Tamsin Mills, Senior Sustainability Specialist, City of Vancouver
  • Cathy Pasion, Climate Policy Manager, City of Vancouver — Moderator
  • Vanessa Sun, Coordinator, Economic Transformation, Vancouver Economic Commission

Presentations:

Coming Together: Local collaboration as a key towards advancing climate action

Climate change response requires collaborative, community-based approaches where governments and non-government actors work together to reduce emissions, assess risks, co-produce plans, and take action. This session presented several case studies of cross-sector partnerships, including ingredients for success and key challenges, as well as the importance of equity in partnership planning.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Summer Formosa, Grant Writer and Project Coordinator, City of Victoria
  • Devanshi Kukadia, Research and Communications Manager, Clean Air Partnership
  • Lorenzo Magzul, Project Manager, Community Social Planning Council
  • Raphael Shay, Manager – Sustainable Development, Sunshine Coast Regional District
  • Kristie Signer, Climate Action Outreach Coordinator, City of Victoria
  • Glenys Verhulst, Sustainability Planner, District of Saanich
  • Robert Wilson, Climate Change Project Assistant, ICLEI Canada — Facilitator

Presentations:

3:30 – 4:00 pm

Networking Break

4:00 – 5:30 pm

Concurrent Sessions

From Planning to Action: Bridging the Implementation Gap

While developing adaptation plans is an important process, and one that is capable of delivering positive outcomes, it can also overestimate the ability of planning to deliver the indented outcomes of adaptation – namely a reduction of risk from extreme weather or other weather-related hazards. In this session, municipal practitioners talked about the drivers and constraints to implementation, as well as how they have used available funding, tools, and resources to help implement adaptation and resilience actions on the ground.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Kerrie Green, Risk Reduction & Business Continuity Planner, City of Calgary
  • William Grou, Environmental Advisor (Climate Change Specialty), Quebec City 
  • Deborah Harford, Senior Adivsor, Adaptation to Climate Change Team, Simon Fraser University — Moderator
  • Caroline Jackson, Manager, Environmental Sustainability, District of North Vancouver
  • Jeff Moore, Senior Environmental Analyst, Cowichan Valley Regional District 

Presentations:

Neighbourhood Level Action to Build Climate Resilience

Climate change is happening now. As the globe continues to warm, extreme weather events will continue to threaten and impact communities, infrastructure and people worldwide and across Canada. To be resilient, people and their communities must be able to anticipate, accommodate, and positively adapt to or thrive amidst changing climate conditions and extreme weather events. The way we experience resilience differs by setting, facility, and neighbourhood. Due to a history of marginalization and disinvestment, Indigenous people, people of colour, immigrants, refugees, and lower-income populations experience increased exposure and sensitivity to climate hazards and a reduced capacity to adapt.

This session explored collaborative projects that are taking action to build stronger, safer, and more resilient neighbourhoods for everyone. Panelists presented promising practices of where these activities are taking place and share insights what is working and where there are still challenges to be addressed. Presented ideas were then be put into practice while participants worked with peers to develop neighbourhood-level actions to bring back to their communities.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Stacey Barter, Executive Director, Building Resilient Neighbourhoods
  • Andrew Duffield, Director, Sustainable Development, City of Beaconsfield
  • Trisha Henderson, Climate Action Officer, Town of Oakville
  • Chris Hyde-Lay, Manager, Parks Services , Oak Bay — Moderator
  • Dr. Stephen Sheppard, Professor at the University of British Columbia, Adjunct Professor at Nanjing University, Sustainability Research Fellow at Plymouth University, and Director of the University of British Columbia’s Collaborative for Advanced Landscape Planning research group

Presentations and group exercise:

Advancing Net-Zero Transportation Alternatives Post COVID

Tackling GHG emissions from the transportation sector is key to reaching our net-zero goals. Transitioning to EVs, land-use planning, compact development and active transportation are all elements of a comprehensive approach to managing transportation emissions. In this session speakers helped frame both the problem and the opportunity and discussed the mechanisms local governments can use to address transportation challenges in the new post COVID reality.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Peter Whitelaw, Senior Planner, Renewable Cities
  • Glenys Verhulst, Sustainability Planner, District of Saanich
  • Sarah Webb, Manager, Transportation Planning & Development, City of Victoria

Presentations:

Collaborative, Region Wide Climate and Resilience Planning: A Wise Practices Guide

Not only is regional-scale climate mitigation and adaptation planning possible and effective, it is essential. At an annual Vancouver Island gathering of local elected officials in 2019, over 50 people met to discuss the threat of climate change to our local governments, communities, and First Nations. We asked, “What would it be like – and what would it take – to create a climate mitigation and adaptation plan for our entire region?” This interactive workshop offered the opportunity for participants to hear briefly from those involved in the collaborative climate planning work on Vancouver Island and the coast and to learn from each other about the opportunities, challenges and necessities of deep collaboration to address the climate and resilience issue with urgency.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Mayor Lisa Helps, City of Victoria
  • Mayor Michelle Staples, City of Duncan
  • Maya Chorobik, Director of Climate Leadership, Community Energy Association
  • Felicia Fischer, Planner, Alderhill Planning
  • Dr. Karena (Kara) Shaw, Associate Professor in the School of Environmental Studies, University of Victoria

Presentation:

6:00 – 8:00pm

Dinner & Drinks

Local Food Celebration

Delegates joined us for a lively and fun evening of food and drinks! Together, we mingled, networked, and enjoyed a delicious line up of locally sourced food. Live entertainment will to showcase the vitality of Victoria’s art and culture was provided by Kathryn Calder.

Day three

Wednesday, October 5, 2022

8:00 – 9:30 am

Breakfast and Fire Side Chat

Local Leadership on Climate Action - Fireside Chat

While delegates enjoyed a hot breakfast together, they were joined by Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps and Former Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson for a fireside chat. This discussion offered reflections on the forum and explored ways to continue having conversations and taking action to create an inclusive future in our respective livable cities. The discussion was centered on local leadership, climate action, and the role of local governments from the perspective of current and past elected officials. The candid conversation included examples of success stories, touch on areas where action is still needed, and leave delegates feeling inspired to implement action.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Lisa Helps, Mayor, City of Victoria
  • Don Iveson, Executive Advisor, Climate Investing and Community Resilience, Co-operators and former Mayor of the City of Edmonton
  • Ewa Jackson, Managing Director, ICLEI Canada — Moderator

No presentations slides were used during this interactive session. 

Thank you to Co-operators for sponsoring this session.

9:30 – 11:00 am

Concurrent sessions

Climate Change and Health: Exploring vulnerability, health outcomes, and the role of communities

Climate change will affect all of us, but some communities and populations are at greater risk of experiencing health impacts from a changing climate. Factors such as housing, income, social support networks, and community capacity all affect our ability to respond and adapt to climate change. This workshop explored what health equity means, and presented ‘climate and health vulnerability assessments’ as an approach to inform adaptation actions to reduce negative health impacts and increase local resilience.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Craig Brown, Climate Change and Health Lead, Vancouver Coastal Health
  • Anna Bunce, Senior Policy Analyst, British Columbia Ministry of Health
  • Rebekka Schnitter, Senior Policy Analyst, Public Health Agency of Canada
  • Raphael Shay, Manager, Sustainable Development, Sunshine Coast Regional District — Moderator
  • Jade Yehia, Climate Change & Health Lead, BC Ministry of Health

Presentations:

Building the New Urban Agenda: Listening to the Local

Since March 2020 CUI has worked with partners across Canada to host a national program called CUIxLOCAL. Calgary, Edmonton, Victoria, Windsor and Halifax were the first to host discussions and events that brought together diverse perspectives and experience, to discuss what was working, what wasn’t, and what was next for their cities. Reports from each are laying the foundations for a new urban agenda – what’s working, what’s not, and what’s next for Canadian cities? With key community partners including Chambers of Commerce and public libraries, local governments and dynamic community-based organizations, how can we mobilize cross sectoral, diverse partnerships that bring local challenges and solutions to the attention of provincial and federal policy makers and funders?

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Fran Hunt-Jinnouchi, Executive Director, Aboriginal Coalition to End Homelessness Society (ACEHS)
  • Gabriela Masfarre Pinto, Community Engagement Lead, Canadian Urban Institute
  • Maureen Sawa, Chief Executive Officer, Greater Victoria Public Library
  • Dr. Michael Schwandt, Medical Health Officer, Vancouver Coastal Health
  • Gay Stephenson, Community Partnership Lead, Canadian Urban Institute — Moderator
  • Kathy Whitcher, Executive Director, UDI Capital Region, Urban Development Institute

Presentation and notes:

WELL Cities - Fostering Resilience, Equity and Community Wellbeing

Launching in early 2023, the WELL City program will support and empower local governments that demonstrate leadership to advance health, well-being, and social equity in their communities. This program will recognize local leadership action on topics such as food justice, reimagining public spaces, resilient building infrastructure, micromobility, parks, and more. Attendees of this interactive workshop learned about the WELL City framework and contributed input to help shape the program framework.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Olesy Alekseev, VP & Canada Country Lead, International WELL Building Institute
  • Jodie Applewhite, Director of Advocacy and Policy, International WELL Building Institute (IWBI) — Moderator
  • Lisa Helps, Mayor, City of Victoria
  • Susan MacMurchy, Special Advisor, Delos
  • Liz Miles, VP Stakeholder Relations, International WELL Building Institute

Presentation:

Getting to Net-Zero in the Buildings Sector

GHG emissions from buildings are typically the largest share of a community’s GHG emissions profile, therefore buildings must be at the forefront of any local government’s net-zero emissions strategy. In this session, speakers will help to shed light on the complexity of reducing emissions in this sector, from scaling-up energy efficiency upgrades to transitioning to renewables, dealing with the current building stock and establishing policies to ensure the future building stock is net-zero ready.

Speakers and moderators for this session included:

  • Maya Chorobik, Director of Climate Leadership, Community Energy Association
  • Darynne Hagen, Development Manager, Geosource Energy
  • John Ho, Community Energy Specialist, City of Victoria
  • Varun Juneja, Business Development Representative, Mitsubishi Electric
  • Magdalena Szpala, Sustainability & Resiliency Director, BC Housing
  • Lisa Westerhoff, Principal, Integral Group — Moderator

Presentations and diagrams:

Thank you to Mitsubishi Electric Heating & Cooling for sponsoring this session.

10:00 am- 12:00 pm

Session on the move

Embedding Traditional Knowledge into City and Climate Change Planning

The Lekwungen Walking Tour was hosted by Mark Albany, a well-informed and charismatic member of the Songhees Nation. Participants joined Mark on an enlightening and revealing tour to experience Victoria’s inner harbour and downtown through a Lekwungen lens to learn about important Lekwungen sites and cultural practices, and about the history of displacement of Indigenous peoples in the creation of the City of Victoria. Through Mark’s words and heart, the tour demonstrates of the resilience of the Lekwungen speaking peoples and how their thousands of years of knowledge holds lessons for those working on climate adaptation, equity, and resilience-building.

This Session on the Move was led by:

  • Mark Albany, Member of the Songhees First Nation

No presentations slides were used during this interactive session. 

About

The Livable Cities Forum is ICLEI Canada's annual event to bring communities together. In 2022, the Forum is being hosted by the City of Victoria in partnership with ICLEI Canada and the Canadian Urban Institute. We provide capacity building, consulting, training, and information services to support local governments in becoming more sustainable.

Contact

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