Golden town council has committed to transition the community to 100 per cent renewable energy by 2050.
The resolution adopted at the Feb. 15 council meeting makes Golden the first community outside of the West Kootenays and the 12th community in the Kootenay region to commit to taking meaningful action for healthier, safer and more secure communities.
The move comes after a presentation to council on Tuesday, Dec. 7, by Calvin Beauschesne, a volunteer with EcoSociety, asking the town to declare a state of emergency over the ongoing climate crisis.
“I’m proud that Golden has committed to moving away from fossil fuels so that our communities can be safer, cleaner and more resilient to the impacts of climate change,” said Beaschesne about the move.
While the resolution to commit to 100 per cent renewable energy was passed, the motion to declare a state of emergency over the climate crises was not adopted at the Feb. 15 meeting.
Coun. Caleb Moss explained the move as prioritizing actions over words.
“We invest money in roads, we don’t declare them important,” said Moss.
Coun. Leslie Adams had moved to declare the state of emergency, saying she thought it would help grab the attention and help promote education of green living.
The endorsed resolution states: ‘Council direct staff to address climate change mitigation and adaptation by engaging and committing to the West Kootenay 100% Renewable Energy Plan initiative, and that staff is to include climate action as integral in the renewal of the Town of Golden Official Community Plan.’
“This town council has been committed to addressing climate change as an overarching guiding principle since the beginning of our term in office,” said Mayor Ron Oszust.
“We are excited and proud to be a part of this initiative, furthering our commitment to climate change and outlining our tactical plan to address climate change moving forward.”
The move to renewable energy is based on the 100 per cent Renewable Kootenays 100 % Energy Plan initiative, which is led by the West Kootenay EcoSociety with a goal of working with communities across the Kootenays towards a renewable energy future.
The EcoSociety’s desired outcome is to have the Kootenays transition to 100 per cent renewable energy at the community level no later than 2050. The Plan is developed around four areas referred to as ‘Big Moves’ which includes transportation,buildings, waste and energy generation.
The next steps will see town staff engaging with the EcoSociety and the Renewable 100% Energy Plan Working Group to develop a roadmap and set of Big Move actions specific to Golden.