We’ve done our very best to be good eco-citizens this 2016. We hope you’re on your “good” list though we know we haven’t been perfect. We’ve written a list of what we’d love to get under the tree this year…and we promise, you’ll be able to fit down the chimney with these presents in your sack! Dearest Santa, please bring us…
- More funding for transit. We love rapid transit and support its continued growth in Winnipeg. But we also know the entire transit system is grossly underfunded to meet current demand across the city, not to mention any growth in ridership.
- Build a connected grid of protected bike lanes in downtown Winnipeg. Sherbrook St. and Assiniboine Ave demonstrate how attractive protected bike lanes are for cyclists of all ages and abilities.
- An opened and redesigned Portage and Main to make it inviting and safe for people who are walking or cycling. This iconic intersection represents our fixation on prioritizing movement of cars over people. We all deserve to travel easily and safely through this intersection no matter our mode.
- Mandatory School Travel Planning. The Province and the Government of Canada both need to contribute to fund this international best practice that resolves barriers to walking and biking to school. Every school division should have an active transportation coordinator, in addition to the bus transportation coordinator.
- Expand Cycling Skills Education in Manitoba Schools. The Province, the City of Winnipeg, and our Insurance Providers (MPI, CAA), need to contribute and support the expansion of cycling education skills training to all schools in Manitoba.
- An organics landfill ban by 2020. Please ask the Province to impose a ban on organics in landfills by 2020, which will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and ease the burden on landfill space needs.
- Curbside Composting The City of Winnipeg has spent years discussing implementing curbside composting, which could divert potentially 40% of our waste from the landfill and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. It’s time for Winnipeg to catch up to cities across the country who have had curbside organics programs for years!
- School composting incentives and support. When schools compost, it raises a generation of children more in touch with the food cycle and aware of waste diversion. It also diverts large amounts of waste and saves money on disposal for schools. We’ve even seen composting schools help transform entire community’s approach to organic waste! Please ask the Province and municipalities to provide incentives to schools across Manitoba to compost on-site to reduce waste and provide learning opportunities for students
- A maintained cosmetic pesticide ban! With recent polls showing that a majority of Manitobans support our existing ban on cosmetic pesticides, and new evidence from Health Canada indicating that some widely used pesticides are not safe for ecosystems, we urge Manitobans to support the ban, which exists to protect public health, and natural ecosystems.
- A carbon tax. Ensure the Province makes those who add GHG emissions pay to reduce them through a carbon tax. Carbon revenues should be targeted toward technologies and programs that reduce or mitigate GHG emissions directly or provide alternatives to current practices.The lowest income groups in Manitoba should receive some form of subsidy or direct payment to alleviate the impact of the carbon so as not to increase provincial poverty levels.
We want to say “thanks” for some of the great things you brought us in the 2016 cycling season!
The Green Action Centre staff
Happy Holidays everybody!