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The Natural Step is Lead Advisor on Corporate Knight's Third Annual Sustainable City Ranking - Canada
Submitted by Kim Mackrael on January 29, 2009 - 8:07am.
Corporate Knights Magazine unveiled the third-annual Corporate Knights Most Sustainable Cities in Canada list today. The comprehensive ranking identifies Canadian cities whose practices leave the smallest environmental footprint possible and contribute to healthy, thriving populations. Corporate Knights examined 17 cities, including Canada’s top ten cities by population and the largest city in each province and territory*.
In order to strengthen its ranking system, Corporate Knights invited The Natural Step Canada (TNS) to be lead advisor on its national advisory board, which also included Greening Greater Toronto (GGT) and Smart Growth BC (SGBC). The advisory board helped Corporate Knights to identify areas where it could make its methodology more robust by suggesting new and improved metrics that better encompass a city’s strengths and weaknesses.
“Sustainability presents enormous opportunities for Canadians in the most important task there is: creating safe, healthy and vibrant communities for this and future generations,” says Chris Lindberg, Director of Partnerships and eLearning, TNS. “The Natural Step Canada is pleased to work with Canadian communities and progressive organizations such as Corporate Knights to make real change happen for the benefit of all.”
Cities were assessed based on five categories: Ecological Integrity, Economic Security, Governance and Empowerment, Infrastructure and Built Environment, and Social Well-Being. Publicly available information, including Statistics Canada data, and a city survey conducted by Corporate Knights were used to determine city scores.
Overall, Corporate Knights found that cities are doing a good job of self-regulating: setting GHG emission reduction targets for the city corporation, banning pesticide on city-owned property and mandating environmentally friendly design for new city buildings. But they hope that there is room to grow.
“We challenge councils to extend these programs to the whole city, and fully integrate what are often seen as side initiatives,” says Melissa Shin, Managing Editor.
The full results of the Ranking, including the surveys completed by each city, are available on www.corporateknights.ca/cities and are summarized in the Responsible Investing issue (Vol. 7.3) of Corporate Knights. They are also distributed in some issues of the Globe and Mail today.
Advisory Intern Alaya Boisvert was a part of The Natural Step advisory team. Read her blog about her work with Corporate Knights here.
*Note: Due to lack of data, Iqaluit was omitted from this year’s ranking.