NDP MLA for London-Fanshawe, Irene Mathyssen, will be putting forth a private members bill today that seeks to ban single-use plastic bags across Canada. Canada takes home over 55 million plastic bags each week, 75% of which end up in landfills. Read more in CTV News.
Surrey business leaders, education leaders and Mayor Diane Watts have joined together to appeal for more education funding. Surrey has the largest public-school district in the province and the local board of trade has argued that education is a cornerstone of a stable economy.The Surrey board of trade recently released a paper titled Education Today, Productivity Tomorrow.
Read Janet Steffenhagen’s article in the Vancouver Sun.
Listen to newly elected Calgary Mayor, Naheed Nenshion, talk to Anna Maria Tremonti on CBC radio’s The Current, about pluralism, community diversity, and about his mayoral campaign that reached out to young voters, used social media and worked hard to engage citizens on civic issues.
The OECD has released a report describing how taxes – a key policy tool– are being used to encourage local and global environmental goals. It draws on case studies from the UK, Israel, Sweden, Spain, Japan and others. Download the executive summary here.
The report, titled “Mainstreaming the Economics of Nature,” is written by Pavan Sukhdev, a banker who heads the UN’s green economy initiative, and describes the global tendency to take advantage of nature’s free services without applying economic value to them. The report points out that deforestation costs millions of dollars in flooding, greenhouse gas emissions, and water purification- more money than it provides to the world’s economy. Canada does a poor job of acknowledging the economic realities of environmental degradation and ranks 29th out of 33 countries in “creating economic incentives to reduce pollution and conserve nature.”
Esquimalt is very likely to pass living wage legislation in the very near future. Although some Victoria-area politicians are nervous about the idea, it seems most agree a living wage is essential for working families to make ends meet. The school district of Qualicum has just recently passed a motion to support the living wage and will be working to actively increase the number of families earning a living wage. Read the full story in The Tyee.
Faced with declining enrollment, many schools are taking on a dual role, acting as a school by day and a community hub by night. Schools throughout the Metro Vancouver region are now offering ESL classes, art and sports programs plus community services. Read the full story in The Tyee.