Amid heated debate on fossil fuel pipelines and tankers, Vancouver Economic Commission’s report shows 35% increase in green jobs, highlights the thriving low-carbon industry that helps drive the city’s nation-leading economic growth while decreasing emissions
June 7, 2018 – Vancouver, BC – Earlier this week, the Vancouver Economic Commission (VEC) launched the State of Vancouver’s Green Economy 2018 report, which will bring greater understanding of the impact, pervasiveness and projection of Vancouver’s green jobs and businesses to both local residents and the international community. According to the report, one in 15 Vancouverites now work in the green economy, up from one in 20 three years ago.
“Vancouver’s economy leads the country and the growth of the green economy is a big part of that,” says Mayor Gregor Robertson, who also chairs the Vancouver Economic Commission. “We continue to attract jobs and investment while relentlessly striving to be the greenest city in the world. Vancouver was the first city in Canada to commit to the goal of using 100% renewable energy, and our business leaders are embracing the shift to a clean, green economy with a record number of green jobs and seven Vancouver companies on the Global Cleantech 100 list.”
Vancouver’s economy grew faster than any other city in Canada while reducing its carbon emissions by 11 per cent since 2007. This decrease in the carbon intensity of Vancouver’s economy shows that focusing on green economic growth is a significant boost to both the city’s prosperity and a healthier climate and environment. Today, 30 per cent of Vancouver businesses offer a product or service that restores or improves the environment. Moreover, the number of green jobs in Vancouver increased by 35 per cent from 2010–2016. The VEC first began measuring and tracking green jobs in 2010 – making Vancouver the first and only city to date in the Americas to do this on a consistent basis.
“New technologies, reduced dependence on fossil fuels and a significant infusion of clean energy will benefit not only our economy, but British Columbians’ daily lives as well,” said Bruce Ralston, Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology. “As this report makes clear, the low-carbon economy is here to stay, and the B.C. government is fully on board by committing to grow a sustainable economy that helps people and industry seize new and lasting economic opportunity.”
VEC’s 32-page report profiles over 200 Vancouver companies making great strides in the development of low-carbon solutions to traditional and contemporary problems in buildings, energy, mobility and waste management. To many, the release of the report is especially timely given the ongoing dialogue around the recent federal announcement to invest $4.5 billion to acquire the Kinder Morgan Pipeline Expansion project.
The report breaks down Vancouver’s green economy into six parts: cleantech, green buildings and construction, waste materials management and the circular economy, green mobility, local foods, and sustainable business. It also points to numerous city, regional and provincial regulations that have spurred the widespread adoption of high-performance buildings, smart and clean energy systems, and circular approaches to materials and resources.
“The Vancouver Economic Commission warmly welcomes all interested to learn about the Vancouver advantages that have led to making the city a unique ecosystem for green business and a green economy,” says Juvarya Veltkamp, VEC’s Manager of Green Economy Initiatives and lead writer of the report. “The Green Economy Report is an open invitation to global leaders, innovative companies, and motivated citizens to collaborate on solving the challenges that remain an obstacle to a green and resilient future.”
Many have already answered the call. The launch of the report coincides with Sustainable Brands, an international business conference that assembles corporate brands repositioning themselves within a sustainable framework. Thousands of international delegates are gathered in Vancouver in recognition of the city’s outsized impact on sustainable thought leadership. Earlier this year, thousands more assembled for GLOBE Forum 2018, the world’s top leadership summit for sustainable business.
What Industry are Saying
“At Terramera, we are committed to transformational clean technologies and products that harness the power in nature so we can live healthy, make clean food affordable and feed the world. Creating conditions and support for companies building the green economy is one of the best ways our governments can help build more jobs and a strong, sustainable economy for all of us. Vancouver’s focus on the green economy has helped us recruit highly-technical and specialized talent from around the world. We are proud to be a global leader committed to making organic food and sustainable farming cheaper, more productive and abundant.”
– Karn Manhas, Founder & CEO, Terramera
“As a clean energy company that is moving towards large-scale commercialization of our technology, we’re delighted to be located in the Vancouver Lower Mainland, a hub for green businesses and the green economy. Our new downtown office will allow our business team to better leverage the green economy cluster in Vancouver, and to facilitate our search for partners to build the world’s first large-scale plant that removes CO2 from the air and converts it to clean transportation fuel. With this, CE will continue to increase the number of green jobs in our province, and the development of B.C.’s low carbon industry.”
– Steve Oldham, Chief Executive Officer, Carbon Engineering Ltd.
“Hundreds of printers, restaurateurs, roofers, retailers, and transport-related businesses are already profitably reducing their carbon footprints and driving clean growth across Canada. As Canada works to meet its climate commitments under the Paris Agreement, it’s exciting that the private-sector climate champions are already taking the lead. They are, in my view, Canada’s true innovation engine and key partners in the transition to a low-carbon economy.”
– Elizabeth Sheehan, President, Climate Smart
Ingrid Valou, Communications Specialist, Vancouver Economic Commission
604.868.1990 | firstname.lastname@example.org
About the Vancouver Economic Commission (VEC)
The Vancouver Economic Commission (VEC) is the economic development agency for the City of Vancouver. It works to strengthen the city’s economic future by supporting existing businesses, attracting foreign investment and promoting international trade. The VEC strives to position Vancouver as a globally recognized city for innovative, creative and sustainable business. www.vancouvereconomic.com