Vancouver city council votes on Greenest City Action Plan: LIVE BLOG

Deputy City Manager Sadhu Johnston presented a bold, some would say radical, road map to becoming the "greenest city" in the world by 2020 to city councillors Tuesday.

Today, councillors vote to adopt it, or not.

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LIVE BLOG:

6:56 -

All those in favour: everyone except Anton.

Reimer: We have a Greenest City Action Plan.

Followed by a loud and long round of applause from everyone in the room, except Coun. Anton.

6:51 - 

Mayor Robertson says he regrets this vote won't be unanimous, but is inspired by today.

Says he will clarify one component that Anton took issue with.

He says there is a very specific definition for green jobs. It's in the report. 

The second goal is around greening operations of businesses, he says. He hopes very company in every industry that is significant in Vancouver will participate in that.

What we want to see here is a lot of support for greening operations, he says. 

Robertson echoes Reimer's comments that it's unfortunate the GCAP has become a political issue.

 

6:48 -

Chair Reimer says she is at a loss for words. She is proud of council, proud of the city and of everyone that came to speak today.

She thanks everyone, except one person in the chamber, for their work. She says the atmosphere and the ocean don't care about politics.

6:38 - 

Coun. Louie now speaking in favour of the initiative. Louie is speaking directly to Anton now. He says he voted for eco-density, because parts of that plan made sense. Now, he says, it seems the intent doesn't matter, that council is trying to be better than it is.

Louie takes issue with Anton's comparison to Manhattan and explains that New York as a whole doesn't compare to Vancouver.

It is more than about just density, he says. There is much more to this plan. Louie hopes that the city can look forward and not play politics.

Coun. Reimer says Anton can have five minutes more, but Coun. Stevenson says that's okay as long as everyone gets the same.

Coun Anton: Says she is concerned about the economics of it.

Of the green economy, she says, only a small piece of the green jobs relate to actual production. She says that the VEC has been struggling to determine what a green job is. She says they have mainly come up with jobs that are supported by city tax payers.

She says focusing so much on the green industry takes our eye off the ball, off of the main industries that run our city.

She says the water meters plan involves unnecessary jobs to instal meters, green as those jobs are.

She goes on: the plan is not costed out, she says.

There are some real unknowns in the GCAP, she says. 

Anton goes back, again, to land use issues. They are most important, she says.

She says this GCAP is most about branding and boasting, and shouldn't involve tax payer money and people so we can do that.

Anton now talking about three new city hires she "found on the internet," referring NPA-friendly CityCaucus blog.

6:30 -

Coun. Stevenson supports the motion too. He says Mayor Robertson's leadership has been key. He too is disappointed in the NPAs position on this.

Coun. Jang puts his support behind the motion too. He may even get an electric car as a result.

Jang doesn't see anything or goofy or wacky, referring to the NPA press release today. He thinks those statement belittles the GCAP.

Coun. Anton now comments. The greenest district in NA is Manhattan, she says (going back to her density argument now). Our greenest district is Yaletown, she says, whose residents have a very small carbon foot print.

She says Vancouver has the lowest GHG emissions in NA. She says that's smart green. 

What worries Anton about the report is she thinks it is "taking our eye off the ball".

She says it feels like green washing. 

Greening our city through land use, she says, is more important than water meters. She says to other couns. "you campaigned against eco density."

This report, she says, doesn't even mention land use. 

Anton now speaking out against city council's decision not to allow higher density in the Oakridge area.

Coun. Anton runs through her five minutes. Coun. Reimer calls her on that.

Coun. Anton calls a point of order. Coun. Reimer tries to educate Anton on what that means.

Chair Reimer tries to sort things out. Coun. Anton

6:11 - 

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