A mayoral candidate wants to create a green team within the city’s planning department as part of his plan for a more sustainable Ottawa.
The green team will make it easier for projects striving to achieve more in green building, said Jim Watson at Petrie Island yesterday.
“We need to make sure that planning is done in such a way that it protects the environment while also embracing green technologies,” he said.
Watson said he would restructure the city’s planning department so departments with similar expertise can work together. He would also dedicate a portion of each year’s budget surplus to establishing an environmentally sensitive land reserve fund and to expanding the city’s waste-diversion program.
Most of these initiatives don’t require more funds, but are about reallocating resources already in place, he said.
Mayoral incumbent Larry O’Brien criticized Watson’s green-team plan.
“The city does not need bureaucratic green police adding to the cost of construction,” said O’Brien. “Just like the Green Energy Act at the province, this would lead to higher building costs for Ottawa.”