On January 18, 2018, The Maison du Développement Durable (MDD) hosted the 5@7 Créatif where members, partners and various organizations were invited to promote their respective upcoming initiatives and programs. The community groups and NGOs were encouraged to find creative ways to showcase their work, making the MDD’s events convivial, as usual.
Knowing that half of humanity now lives in cities, and that the world’s cities occupy just 3 percent of the Earth’s land but account for 60-80 per cent of consumption and 75 percent of carbon emissions, we, at The Climate Reality Project Canada (CRP) now focus our efforts on harnessing the potential of Canada’s municipalities in the fight against climate change. With the goal to make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable, we aim to make change happen from the ground up. This entails a participatory approach.
In that perspective, and to promote our upcoming event “Citizens taking the lead: participatory democracy and the transition towards a low-carbon economy”, our team thought of a special way to engage fellow community members to share their ambitions and needs for their city:
CRPC asked the MDD’s guests: “How would you like to democratize your city?” and “How would you like to make your city more eco-friendly?”
The guests were invited to write their answer on a white suit, worn by Climate Reality Campaign Coordinator Matthew Chapman, that was later on sent to newly elected Montreal’s mayor, Valérie Plante. This initiative aims to ensure that Montreal’s elected officials understand their citizens’ concerns about our cities’ resilience to climate change. Not only do we want increased investments made in the transition towards a low-carbon economy at the local level, but we want the process to be more participatory.
Curious about what our community members want for their city? Here is a short list of some of the answers we’ve got:
To the first question:
- Online participation with the municipal council
- Transparency: access to information
- More services to the most in needs
- More intergenerational communication
- More physical and virtual sharing spaces
- More cooperation
- Participatory budgets
- More student involvement
- Consultation before decision
To the second question:
- Local and plant-based markets
- More green spaces: shared green spaces on roofs, back streets at the heart of the city.
- Create an urban forest
- More protected natural zones
- More bike paths
- Bike supports on taxis
- The pink metro line
And if you want to join us in making your city more economically, socially and environmentally sustainable: visit climatehub.ca to see what we’ve been up to.
 Sustainable development goals, UN 2016.