Home
 
Choose Your City
Change City

Red tape trips green push

Mayor David Miller’s pro­mise to make Toronto the greenest city in North Am­erica is failing, trapped in a nightmare of bureau­cra­tic delays, says an environmental watchdog group.

Mayor David Miller’s pro­mise to make Toronto the greenest city in North Am­erica is failing, trapped in a nightmare of bureau­cra­tic delays, says an environmental watchdog group.

In its annual Smog Report, the Toronto Environmental Alliance gave Mill­er an A-plus and the majority of council high grades for giving the green light to climate-change projects. But it found 30 per cent of those plans languish in myriad city departments.

The mayor, who was briefed on the report, said he found its criticisms “misguided” and insisted Toronto is still on track to be North America’s greenest city.

“I think that concern is wrong,” Miller said. “There is so much happening on the environmental front at city hall. I think TEA needs to step back a moment. The initiatives that have happened in the last two and a half years are extraordinary.

“Are one or two a bit slower than we had hoped? Yes. But there are also tremendous accomplishments happening in other areas.”

Among the green projects the alliance says are stuck in red tape:

• The blueprint for Toronto’s sustainable energy plan has been delayed for more than a year;

• Plans to obtain 25 per cent of the city’s electricity from green energy starting in 2008 are facing a delay of at least two years;

• A report on Toronto’s green job development strategy was expected in late 2007, but remains outstanding;

• Delayed staff reports on the two-stroke engine ban (gas-powered lawnmowers and the like) mean it is likely to miss its implementation date of 2010.

The alliance’s Katrina Miller, one of the report’s authors, said she and executive director Franz Hartmann spent five months researching it and consistently found problems with bureaucratic delays.

The report notes Toronto’s successes in public transit and energy conservation. It gives the city a B-plus for 2008 and says it showed significant pro­gress.

 
 
Consider AlsoFurther Articles