Vancouver City, ‘Best Green Policy’
The World Green Building Council has just awarded the city of Vancouver with their ‘Best Green Policy’ award for the Greenest City by 2020 action plan. This honour recognizes Vancouver’s leadership with green development in the building industry and focuses on the city’s goal for all buildings after 2020 to be carbon neutral and existing buildings to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20%.
The action plan responsible for this award was launched by Mayor Gregor Robertson in early 2009 and aims to make Vancouver the greenest city by 2020. The action plan may be a highly ambitious endeavor but it puts Vancouver at the forefront of sustainable development and designates our city as a world leader in environmental awareness.
New homes are required to meet stricter energy-efficiency requirements including better insulation, air-tightness as well as more efficient heating systems. Furthermore, audits and additional upgrades will be mandatory for buildings under renovation. This increasing demand for sustainability and efficiency will result with the end goal of all new buildings being completely carbon neutral by 2020, which is very fast approaching!
Not all actions and proposed changes in Robertson’s policy are met with open arms and thunderous applause. Some items, such as bike lanes and seaside walkways have cause uproar among residents and commuters. Additionally, many businesses have suffered as their accessibility has been reduced. There has been no shortage of controversy, but if the end result is to create an improved city with a focus on sustainability then at the end of the day it’s a positive change.
North Vancouver has always been an environmentally aware community with award winning projects like the Lonsdale Energy Corporation which provides well-priced and clean energy to many homeowners and commercial buildings. There are numerous sustainable development guidelines that apply to all new construction, including but not limited to: water efficiency regulations, EnerGuide requirements, construction waste management, renewable energy systems, use of recycled materials, and use of environmentally friendly materials.
These are all steps in the right direction to put Greater Vancouver in a position as a world leader in sustainable development and environmentally conscious living. From a Real Estate point of view, having the designation to be the Greenest city in the world, in a global community that is putting an ever-increasing importance on sustainability, will help attract investment by those recognize its significance.
North Vancouver homeownership represents living in a community that is closely tied to nature and places a high importance on sustaining its natural beauty and clean air. North Vancouver Real Estate, and the Greater City of Vancouver as well, will benefit from the global recognition as businesses and investors may look more favorably upon the city as a world leader.