Ecology Ottawa asked all candidates in the 2014 municipal election a series of questions on important environmental issues.
Many Ottawa streets are dangerous for cyclists and pedestrians and too many neighbourhoods lack affordable and convenient public transportation options. Badly designed streets discourage active and healthy lifestyles and limit transportation choices. In 2013, City Council adopted a Complete Streets policy that will put more emphasis on designing streets for all ages, abilities and users (pedestrians, cyclists, and transit users, as well as cars).
|Candidate*indicates incumbent||If elected, will you commit to prioritizing pedestrian, cycling and affordable public transit infrastructure over automobile infrastructure in meeting the future growth in travel demand in the urban area?||If elected, will you work to ensure that all new roads and road renewal projects integrate Complete Streets principles?||The City’s new transportation master plan increases funding for cycling infrastructure but delays many investments for over 15 years. If elected, will you work to increase the overall level of investment and accelerate the pace of implementation?|
|Alexander Aronec||NO – I will not prioritize one mode of transportation over another. I will ensure that there is adequate amounts of infrastructure for all modes of transportation in urban areas.||YES||YES – I believe the TMP has many shortfalls in its implementation. I would support working on cycling infrastructure particularly in rural areas.|
|Eli El-Chantiry *||YES – I could support this, but this needs to be addressed as part of the budget process to confirm the funding available to support this initiative.||NO – No I don’t support this for ALL new roads and road renewal projects. We need to work within the budget.||YES – But again we need to work within the city budget and I need to see what funding is available first.|
|Jonathan Mark||YES – In so far as a Rural City Councillor could. There are limitations in the Country.||YES – In so far as a Rural City Councillor could.||YES – I am a cyclist, so I will say yes. I don’t have enough details to make this a firm yes, and again, it is different in Urban Wards where yes, I think that we need to encourage people to ride their bikes to work, or wherever. We must be realistic as this is a big City however.|
About 75 percent of Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions come from activities that occur in cities, and municipalities have direct or indirect control over about half of these emissions. In 2014 the City of Ottawa adopted a new Air Quality and Climate Change Management Plan.
|Candidate*indicates incumbent||Do you agree that human-induced climate change is an urgent issue and all levels of government have a role to play in helping to reduce community greenhouse gas emissions?||If elected, will you push for the full implementation of the City of Ottawa’s Air Quality and Climate Change Management Plan, including items identified in the plan for the 2015 budget?||The Air Quality and Climate Change Management Plan establishes the modest goal of reducing Ottawa’s greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent per capita by 2024, but leaves open a lot of space for new initiatives to emerge in the coming years. If elected, will you push for actions aimed at surpassing the current goal?|
|Eli El-Chantiry *||YES||YES – I will POSSIBLY support this – but again need to review the 2015 budget before committing.||YES – Again, I can POSSIBLY support this – but need to review the city Budget first before committing.|
|Jonathan Mark||YES – I believe and side with Scientists, not Politicians when it comes to this topic.||YES – This is a clean and green City and I want to keep it that way. I need more info before I could push for FULL implementation. Again, I think you need a maybe in your poll here.||YES – I believe the World will easily surpass a 20% improvement as I believe people desire this. It is only a good thing It is possible both ecologically, and commercially. A great balance! It can also create jobs and stimulate economy if done properly — and not under the umbrella of shady Gov’t programs that are merely phantom projects that are made to make govt’s look good.|
Clean Water and Healthy Watersheds:
Every time it rains, a cocktail of contaminants (including bacteria, chemicals, fuels and heavy metals) washes off our streets and runs straight into our rivers and streams via the underground storm-sewer system. Ecology Ottawa wants the City of Ottawa to follow-through on its commitment to develop a Water Environment Strategy that improves stormwater management, invests in green infrastructure, reduces flooding, protects our streams, and makes it safer to swim and fish in our rivers.
|Candidate*indicates incumbent||The City of Ottawa is developing a Water Environment Strategy that will provide a framework for action to promote clean drinking water, reduce the toxins going into our rivers, and protect communities and streams from flooding associated with severe weather. If elected, will you support the development of a strong strategy and prioritize the investments necessary to realize the strategy’s goals?||The April 2014 Ontario Provincial Policy Statement (PPS) instructs planning authorities to promote green infrastructure measures (such as parklands, stormwater systems, wetlands, street trees, urban forests, natural channels, permeable surfaces, and green roofs) in order to reduce costs, protect ecosystems and adapt to extreme weather events. If elected, will you prioritize green infrastructure in addressing the City of Ottawa’s water management needs?||The production of clean water for public consumption has been falling over the past decade in Ottawa (ie., we are using less water). Between 2004 and 2013, the amount of clean water produced and used inside Ottawa fell from over 125,000 million litres to about 100,000 million litres (not including private wells). If elected will you commit to continuing this trend by prioritizing water conservation measures that reduce usage by 3 percent per year?|
|Alexander Aronec||YES – We need to be proactive to ensure water is not contaminated; reducing the need for more intense treatment.||YES – I am already working on bringing many of the these initiatives to the new Kanata North Development along March Road.||YES|
|Eli El-Chantiry *||YES||YES – I could support this, but this needs to be addressed as part of the budget process to confirm the funding available to support this initiative.||YES|
|Jonathan Mark||YES – A clean Ottawa River is one of our main 3 campaign platforms.||YES – Stormwater systems are a constant basic necessity and must be addressed in order to keep our River clean. Water is of the utmost importance for a quality human existence. Parklands, wetlands and trees play a huge part in the eco-system and the proper balance between development and ecology must always be addressed vigilantly, but realistically also.||NO – I don’t have enough details to comment on this at this time, is this per capita? Our City will most likely grow. This is neither yes or no, but needed to answer to continue.|
Healthy Urban Trees:
|Candidate*indicates incumbent||The Emerald Ash Borer infestation is killing millions of trees across Ottawa, including about 25 percent of the trees in the urban area. In response, organizations and individuals, including the City of Ottawa, are coming together to set the collective goal of planting a million trees in our nation’s capital as part of our contribution to Canada’s 150 birthday celebration in 2017. If elected, will you support and prioritize investments towards this goal?||The City of Ottawa has announced its intention to develop a new Forest Management Strategy. If elected, will you support the development of a strong strategy and the investments necessary to realize the strategy’s goals?|
|Eli El-Chantiry *||YES – I could support this, but this needs to be addressed as part of the budget process to confirm the funding available to support this initiative.||YES|
|Jonathan Mark||YES – I love trees! Again I cannot fully commit to this until cost/vs budget is discovered. I answer YES here because I would like for this to happen, but won’t commit to this until more information is available, I have participated in the City’s Tree Program both years it was personally available to me.||YES – Forest Management is a complete necessity, as long as we respect peoples personal property rights — and again the strategy reflects properly inside the overall City budget. I will answer yes again, but need more.|
Proposed Oil Pipeline Threatens Ottawa Water and Communities:
TransCanada wants to move more than a million barrels a day of tar sands oil through the City of Ottawa and across the World Heritage Rideau River on its way to export terminals in eastern Canada. The proposed “Energy East” pipeline puts communities and waterways in danger all along the pipeline route.
|Candidate*indicates incumbent||Do you think the City of Ottawa should conduct a thorough and independent assessment of the risks and costs that the proposed Energy East pipeline poses to the health of Ottawa’s communities and water?||Would you oppose the Energy East Pipeline if it was demonstrated that it threatened the health of Ottawa’s water, climate and communities?||Should the City of Ottawa intervene in the National Energy Board review of the proposed Energy East pipeline in order to ensure that the interests of the people of Ottawa are well represented?|
|Eli El-Chantiry *||YES – Sure I could support this – but who is going to pay for this?||YES||YES|
|Brendan Gorman||YES – There isn’t an “I don’t know” button. If a reputable study is done by another group than no. If there isn’t a reputable assessment than I suppose one should be done.||YES – Again, as long as the study was reputable||YES – Yes, if a proper unbiased assessment was not done or if a study showed it was too risky.|
|Jonathan Mark||YES – of course, but I also think our Country better learn self sustenance also, meaning piping it down to Texas and back to us at a higher cost makes no sense. We need to refine our own oil.||YES – A pipeline should never threaten people||YES – The interests of the people of Ottawa is the responsibility of all Councillors, and that is a constant|