Some “no-brainer” green decisions by council are the only things separating Mayor Larry O’Brien from a failing grade on local environmental groups’ “green” report cards.
The Ottawa chapter of the Sierra Club of Canada and Ecology Ottawa yesterday released their report cards on councillors’ voting records on motions related to the environment in the past year, with O’Brien earning a ‘C’.
But O’Brien’s grade would have been lower if not for his votes on motions that received unanimous council consent anyway, said Sabrina Bowman, a co-ordinator with Ecology Ottawa.
Approving projects like a city-wide giveaway day and recycling source-separated organics floated the mayor’s grade and counterbalanced less environmentally-friendly votes, said Bowman.
The report stated the mayor voted against green measures, such as a cap for increases in bus fares and the idling bylaw.
Bowman said councillors Diane Holmes and Alex Cullen were two standouts out of 10 who received an ‘A’ grade.
Six councillors earned a D‚ with Coun. Glen Brooks the standout of the group “because he was the only one who voted against source-separated organic waste collection,” said Bowman.
The fact that only eight motions judged by the groups as “green” came to city council shows the environment is not a priority.
“This is the capital of Canada, this city should be taking a leadership role when it comes to green initiatives and we aren’t doing that,” said Bowman.