Public input wanted for new Salt Spring Climate Action Plan

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Salt Spring Islanders have the opportunity to tell their leaders what they want to see in a climate action plan for their community through an online public engagement survey launched by Transition Salt Spring this week.

“We’re really excited to offer all Salt Springers this unique opportunity to participate online to help develop a climate action plan for our community,” said Darryl Martin, chair of the volunteer steering committee that has been working in cooperation with local officials since last fall to develop a Salt Spring Climate Action Plan. “Salt Spring is lucky to be one of six communities across Canada piloting this forward-looking community climate action tool.”

The Salt Spring Climate Action Plan’s goal is to reduce emissions to 50 per cent of 2007 levels by 2030, and to a net-zero basis by 2050. Recommendations range from building an on-island chipping and composting facility, and providing comprehensive agricultural support to help farmers grow more food, to building infrastructure to protect Ganges Village and enhancing the island’s forests. 

Some of the big ticket items in the plan include the completion of an off-road trail system across the island for biking and other forms of active transportation.

With COVID-19 making in-person public meetings impossible, the online tool will help the committee choose the best options that will have the most public support. Users can vote on policy options and community actions, and help build an updated plan that works to reduce emissions as well as to prepare the island for higher wildfire risks and more severe winter storms. 

Islanders have until June 20 to complete the survey, which is available at  https://saltspringclimate.ethelo.net/page/climate-emergency-planning.

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