Mayor Robertson Launches Vancouver Climate Pledge at Climate Week NYC

 

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Ten Prominent Vancouver Businesses Sign On, Challenge Others to Take Action

September 27, 2015 (New York City, NY)— Mayor Gregor Robertson today announced the launch of Vancouver’s Climate Pledge, demonstrating the commitment of Vancouver-based businesses to addressing climate change internationally while building a green economy locally. The announcement, made as the Mayor concludes his visit to New York during Climate Week NYC, kicks off the pledge with ten notable businesses in the City already signing on, including TELUS, Mountain Equipment Co-op, Hootsuite, Vancity credit union, Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics, Solegear Bioplastic Technologies, Hydra Energy, Brinkman Climate, East Side Games and the Vancouver Aquarium.

Vancouver’s Climate Pledge provides a formal way for Vancouver businesses to get behind the call for stronger action on climate change globally and also encourages businesses to align with Vancouver’s vision to shift to 100% renewable energy, to have their own corporate carbon reduction and renewable energy targets, and to challenge other businesses to sign the Pledge. The Pledge is a first step in many actions and programs planned to be launched by the City and the Vancouver Economic Commission in the coming months leading up to December 2015, when the world will converge on Paris, France for the COP21 Climate Conference.

“The Climate Pledge is our way of demonstrating that business leaders are behind stronger climate action,” said Mayor Gregor Robertson. “Businesses in Vancouver have supported our goal of being the greenest city in the world by 2020, and I’m excited to bring their voice with me to the international stage at COP21 in Paris – and to watch the pledge momentum grow as businesses challenge each other to take this important step.”

“Businesses in Vancouver know that supporting our green economy means opportunity – nearly $2 billion of economic activity resulted from green initiatives in 2014,” said Ian McKay, CEO of Vancouver Economic Commission. “We are certain that this trend will continue, and the support of Vancouver’s business community, across all sectors and industries, will accelerate this growth even more. The pledge is a perfect way for companies to showcase their commitment.”

Vancouver businesses interested in taking the Pledge and signing on to the climate commitments can do so at www.ClimatePledgeYVR.com There are three steps to the pledge: the pledge itself stating that a business supports strong climate action from national governments at COP21; a second option for the business to support Vancouver’s vision to be 100-% renewable; and a third option to disclose if the company or business has its own corporate carbon reduction or renewable energy targets. Companies with carbon reduction or renewable energy commitments will be featured on additional sites including We Mean Business CoalitionCDP; the RE100; and the UN Non State Actor Zone for Climate Action (NAZCA).

As the pledge continues to roll-out, it is anticipated that businesses will challenge one another to sign on and publicly demonstrate their commitment to climate action and a green economic future for the City of Vancouver. Businesses and the public are encouraged to follow the pledge momentum on social channels using #ClimatePledgeYVR and #GreenEconomy.

 

Quotes from First Businesses to Take the Vancouver Climate Pledge:

Andrea Goertz, Senior Vice President & Chief Communications and Sustainability Officer, TELUS

“TELUS is committed to sustainability and achieving responsible growth as we strive to be a globally leading corporate citizen. We recognize that Vancouver’s business community can be a critical agent of change and this is why it’s so important that our business goals include social and environmental responsibility. We are taking action to reduce our absolute energy consumption and emissions by building environmentally friendly workplaces such as the recently completed Vancouver TELUS Garden, Vancouver’s first LEED platinum tower that will reduce CO2 emissions by more than one million kilograms annually.”

David Labistour, CEO of Mountain Equipment Co-op

“Climate change is the key challenge of our time and how we choose to respond today will define the inflection point that will be remembered in history.”

Tamara Vrooman, president and CEO of Vancity credit union

“If a business is not environmentally sustainable, it’s not sustainable, period.”

Mark Wolverton, CEO of Lush North America

“Businesses today are in a unique position to bring about real change.  Just as we use Lush shops to campaign for a greener, cleaner and kinder society, we applaud the City of Vancouver on creating this platform to address climate change internationally.”

 

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About the Vancouver Economic Commission
The Vancouver Economic Commission (VEC) 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

Media contacts:

Braeden Caley 
Office of the Mayor, City of Vancouver
Braeden.Caley@vancouver.ca, 604-809-9951

Tania Parisella
Vancouver Economic Commission
tparisella@vancouvereconomic.com, 604-336-8013