Opinion: Climate ambition at its highest as Montreal organizations mobilize to accelerate the metropolis’ climate transition

MONTREAL – The 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference draws to a close.

The event brought together representatives from 195 countries, thousands of scientists, companies and delegates from around the world with the aim of accelerating the climate transition and slowing global warming.

Meanwhile, in our own city, it is clear that a culture of climate action is taking hold within the business community and civil society, as well as elected officials.

Like other cities around the world, such as New York, Paris, London and Oslo, which like us are members of the Cities Climate Leadership Group (C40) and have stepped up their efforts, Montreal is building a low carbon future.

We are members of the Montreal Climate Partnership, an unprecedented grouping of around 100 economic, philanthropic, institutional and environmental organizations in Montreal.

Our common goal is as simple as it is ambitious: to accelerate the decarbonization of Montreal and strengthen the city’s climate resilience within the deadlines set by climatologists.

We are launching our Great Expectations: Quickly advance Montreal’s climate transition campaign as a call to mobilize our organizations and the entire Montreal community to make Montreal a resilient and low-carbon city.

We encourage all city organizations to take effective action, improve their climate plans and shorten the timelines for initiatives they have already planned.

Because our sphere of influence extends beyond our employees, customers and business partners, we, the organizations, will help strengthen climate leadership in Montreal and, in doing so, consolidate our leadership position in climate transition. .

We believe that this collective commitment will lay the foundations for the city’s economic, social and environmental development now and for the next generation.

The sixth report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on the physical aspects of climate change, released in August, highlighted the key contribution of our organizations, large and small, and the system as a whole. to minimize the impacts of human activity on the planet.

This report indicated that the only way to keep global warming below the 1.5 degree Celsius threshold by the end of the century is to immediately and aggressively reduce GHG emissions to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. .

What lies ahead is more than just a change from the status quo. We need to rework our internal policies and business strategies, bring about changes in behavior and improve the acceptability of our projects.

These are investments that will bring significant returns. Not only do we need concrete changes in our business models and practices, but we also need to shorten the timelines to achieve them.

While some organizations are pushing hard to do more, others are still hesitant. We invite them to join us in taking action.

In order to align ourselves with the objectives of the Paris Agreement and the City of Montreal’s Climate Plan – and to ensure the sustainability of our businesses – we must mobilize all our resources, starting today, to reduce carbon emissions. GHG of the City of Montreal by at least 55% by 2030 and put the city on the path of carbon neutrality by 2050.

The task ahead can be daunting, but it is crucial. Montreal has its place among the cities that will pave the way for a low-carbon and resilient future.

It has everything to assert itself, whether through its leadership in sustainable finance, its innovators, its university researchers, its citizen projects or its start-up ecosystem.

The Climate Partnership is betting that we will meet the challenge of this generation by combining the expertise, creativity and commitment of each of us.

We do not all start from the same place, but we can change our practices in the same direction, provided that the fight against climate change becomes a central and non-negotiable concern of our organizations at both operational and strategic levels.

It is time for leaders to take action in our organizations and make new commitments through the Montreal Climate Partnership’s climate engagement platform, launched this week.

This letter is signed by the member-partners of the Steering Committee of the Montreal Climate Partnership:

  1. Julie Boucher, Vice-President РCustomer Experience, Communications and Community Relations, Hydro-Qu̩bec

  2. Marie-Claude Bourgie, Executive Director, Greater Montreal Climate Fund

  3. Janie C. Béïque, President and CEO, Fonds de solidarité FTQ

  4. Graham Carr, President and Vice-Chancellor, Concordia University

  5. Danielle Charest, President and CEO, Jalon

  6. Geneviève Morin, President and Chief Executive Officer, Fondaction

  7. Déborah Cherenfant, President, Junior Chamber of Commerce of Montreal

  8. Leïla Copti, President, Copticom

  9. Daniel Dagenais, Vice-President, Operations, The Port of Montreal

  10. Guy Cormier, President and Chief Executive Officer, Desjardins Group

  11. Magda Fusaro, rector, University of Quebec at Montreal (UQAM)

  12. Sarah Houde, CEO, Propulsion Québec

  13. Anne-Marie Hubert, Managing Partner, Eastern Canada, EY

  14. Sabaa Khan, Executive Director, Quebec and Atlantic Canada, David Suzuki Foundation

  15. Michel Leblanc, President and CEO, Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal

  16. Emmanuel Rondia, General Manager, CRE-Montreal

  17. Christian Savard, Managing Director, Vivre en Ville

  18. Eric St-Pierre, Executive Director, Trottier Family Foundation

  19. Caroline Tessier, Executive Director, Association of Business Development Companies (SDC) of Montreal

  20. Kim Thomassin, Executive Vice-President and Head of Quebec Investments and Stewardship, Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec

  21. Stéphanie Trudeau, Executive Vice-President, Quebec, Énergir

  22. Natalie Voland, President and Founder, Quo Vadis Property Management

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