For Immediate Release: Ontario climate plan torpedoes Ottawa’s halting progress

November 29, 2018

(OTTAWA) – The Province of Ontario’s newly-announced climate plan moves Ontario – and Ottawa –backward at a time when world bodies are issuing dire warnings about the urgent need for ambitious climate action. The plan lowers Ontario’s emission reduction targets, fails to price carbon, and fails to replace cap-and-trade funds previously earmarked for municipal climate action. 

“The province’s new climate policy is utterly reckless and is the opposite of evidence-based,” said Robb Barnes, executive director of Ecology Ottawa. “This government killed off an effective carbon pricing solution and has replaced it with empty rhetoric.”

The province’s new plan endangers halting climate progress made by Ottawa’s municipal government in two ways. First, it starves the city of funding for climate change solutions by eliminating cap-and-trade funds earmarked for energy efficiency and sustainable transportation projects. Second,it threatens municipal climate plans that rely on price signals from carbon pricing in order to succeed. Under the City of Ottawa’s current energy strategy,carbon pricing is necessary if Ottawa hopes to get anywhere close to its climate targets.

“The United Nations tells us we have 12 years to avoid climate catastrophe,” said Mr. Barnes. “Instead of enacting meaningful climate policy, the province has decided to welcome this catastrophe with open arms.”  

Le plan climatique de l’Ontario torpille les progrès d’Ottawa

29 novembre 2018

(OTTAWA) – Le plan récemment annoncé par la Province de l’Ontario – et Ottawa – fait reculerla Province de l’Ontario alors que les grands corps mondiaux font part de l’urgence absolue d’une action climatique ambitieuse. Le plan diminue les objectifs de réduction d’émissions, échoue à donner un prix au carbone etéchoue à remplacer le système de plafonnement précédemment affecté à l’action municipale pour le climat.

« La nouvelle politique climatique de la province est complètement irresponsable et à l’opposé de se baser sur des preuves concrètes, » dit Robb Barnes, directeur exécutif de Ecologie Ottawa. « Ce gouvernement a tué la solution d’un prix du carbone efficace et l’a maintenant remplacée avec une rhétorique vide. »

Le nouveau plan de la province met en danger la lutte contre le changement climatique du gouvernement municipal d’Ottawa de deux manières. Premièrement, cela prive la ville de fonds pour la mise en place de solutions pour lutter contre le changement climatique en éliminant le système de plafonnement affectés pour l’efficacité énergétique et les projets de transports durables. Deuxièmement, cela menace le plan municipal pour le climat qui repose sur des signaux de prix du carbone pour réussir. Sous la stratégie énergétique actuelle de la ville d’Ottawa, le prix du carbone est nécessaire si Ottawa veut se rapprocher de ses buts climatiques.

« Les Nations Unies nous disent que nous avons 12 ans pour éviter la catastrophe climatique » dit Mr. Barnes. « Au lieu d’adopter une politique climatique significative, la province a décidé de souhaiter la bienvenue à cette catastrophe avec les bras ouverts. »

– 30 –

Pour plus d’information, contactez :

Robb Barnes
Directeur exécutif
Écologie Ottawa
613-860-5353 (bureau)
613-276-5753 (cellulaire)

It’s #GivingTuesday! Show your love for Ottawa’s environment



On Giving Tuesday,a global occasion to support your favourite cause, we hope you’ll support your local environmental organization working to build a greener Ottawa. To mark this special day, we’re pleased to offer a limited run of complimentary calendars for new monthly donors or one-time donors giving gifts of $50 or more.

Eleven years into building a movement to fight for the city we love, Ecology Ottawa is proudly supported by nearly 90,000 residents across Ottawa, over 8,000 of whom have contributed financially to our work. This year, your support helped usher in a greener city council, promote green infrastructure solutions, deliver thousands of trees to residents across the city, and push for stronger action on climate change.

At a fundamental level, your support shows Ottawa’s political leaders that the environment can never be taken for granted. You have helped build a movement: more than ever before, decision-makers know that there is a large and growing network of passionate residents who will relentlessly stand up for climate leadership, green space, rivers and safe streets for pedestrians and cyclists.

These movements are built through advocacy campaigns and community outreach. This work – Ecology Ottawa’s most impactful and long-lasting contribution to Ottawa’s environment –is not typically supported by grants. Instead, it is powered by the support of generous one-time and monthly donors such as yourself. Thank you!

There so much more to do for Ottawa’s environment in 2019. Help power it today and receive a free calendar filled with gorgeous shots of the city you love. Here is a preview of the calendar:



Thank you for all that you do for our city.

Robb, Vi, Velta, Lauren, Marion, Agathe and the Ecology Ottawa team

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Ecology Ottawa thanks Dalton McGuinty for his leadership on lowering Ottawa’s greenhouse gas emissions

November 20, 2018

(OTTAWA) – The City of Ottawa’s most recent emissions report demonstrates that years-old provincial policy is having more of an impact on Ottawa’s emission reductions than any measures being taken by the municipal government. The report, “2012 and 2016 Community and Corporate Greenhouse Gas Inventories,” will be discussed as part of the November 22 meeting of the City of Ottawa Environment and Climate Protection Committee.

“Ottawa City Council and Mayor Watson should probably pause before taking credit for the emissions reductions observed in this report,” said Robb Barnes, executive director of Ecology Ottawa. “We should really be thanking Dalton McGuinty instead. Much more than any municipal action, the provincial coal phase out is behind the emission reductions observed in this report.”

The report indicates that community-wide greenhouse gas emissions declined by 11 percent between 2012 and 2016, on track to meeting the city’s short-term target of reducing emissions by 12 percent below 2012 levels by 2024. However, the report notes that the reductions are primarily due to the provincial coal phase out, which ended in 2014. In other major sectors such as transportation, emissions have barely changed since 2012.

“From an emissions reduction perspective, the coal phase out is a gift that only comes once,” said Mr. Barnes. “From here on out, it’s a mystery how the city plans to meet its long-term emissions targets. And the signs from the city are worrying – we’re seeing a delayed and piecemealed renewable energy strategy, infrequent emissions reporting, a lack of policy ambition, and inadequate funds for staff to implement the city’s vision.”

– 30 –

For additional information, contact:

Robb Barnes
Executive Director
Ecology Ottawa
613-860-5353 (office)

Écologie Ottawa recrute !


Écologie Ottawa recrute !

Cliquez ici pour consulter l’offre

Le programme francophone d’Écologie Ottawa Les Amis des Parcs, lancé en mars 2018 en partenariat avec Park People et avec le soutien du Gouvernement de l’Ontario, a été un véritable succès jusqu’ici. Déjà six événements ont pu être mis en place, célébrant les espaces verts de la capitale et liant les personnes issues de la communauté francophone d’Ottawa.

L’organisatrice actuelle a d’autres projets vers lesquels elle souhaite s’orienter ; nous recherchons donc quelqu’un pour la remplacer ! Vous êtes intéressé.e ou connaissez quelqu’un qui pourrait l’être ? Cliquez ici pour visualiser l’offre d’emploi !

Post-election analysis: Did we elect a greener city council?

A little over a week ago, the citizens of Ottawa elected a new city council.

What does this mean for local environmental issues?  Before the new council casts any votes on environmental issues, we can get a basic idea by looking at the results of our all-candidates’ survey. Starting in June, this survey was sent to all candidates running for council and the mayoralty. The questions, which can be found here, cover a range of issues such as climate change action, sustainable transportation, green space protection and waste management. In every case, we were asking for clear commitments on areas in which Ottawa City Council hadn’t made sufficient progress in the last term of council.

On the positive side, most members of council who responded to our survey demonstrated overwhelming support on our issues. Depending on the subject in question, it is clearly possible that a majority on council will pass ambitious environmental policy. We are encouraged by this response, and look forward to making headway on many important files over the next four years.

On the negative side, 11 of 24 council members couldn’t find the time to tell voters where they stood. This means we have much more work to do over the next term. We must make environmental issues more relevant to councillors city-wide. This means much more resident engagement and face-to-face interactions with council leadership.

Mayoral leadership is critical to so many of these files. More than anyone else, the mayor directs council’s focus and shapes the tenor of its discussions. The signs from the survey and the election campaign are worrying. While the mayor responded to our survey, he didn’t commit to any of the 15 issues put to him. He then skipped our all-candidates’ mayoral debate on the environment, effectively avoiding vigorous public discussion of his record or his future plans.

We urgently need stronger environmental leadership from the mayor’s office, especially on the climate file. The latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change makes this abundantly clear. Climate change is escalating out of control worldwide. The window for action is extremely short – 12 years – and requires unprecedented ambition. It’s up to all of us to ensure that the City of Ottawa does not stand idly by.  

Evidently, there’s no shortage of work to be done in the months and years ahead. If you’d like to help us hold this council accountable to their environmental commitment, sign up to volunteer with us, donate to support our work and stay tuned for many opportunities to plug in in the coming weeks.

The new Ottawa City Council - Where are they on environmental issues_ (2)

2018 Ottawa Municipal Election

Photo Contest – 2019 Calendar

Button_French version

Ottawa is an amazing city; it’s a city well worth protecting and working to improve. We are blessed with gorgeous greenspaces, the beautiful Ottawa River, historic buildings, and vibrant communities. You don’t have to look far to find reasons to love our city.

This Valentine’s Day, Ecology Ottawa was launching our first ever photo contest. Show your love for Ottawa by submitting your photo today.

The winning photos will be featured in our 2019 calendar showing the beauty of Ottawa through the eyes of its residents. Each photo should have a story, and should capture a scene that is unique to Ottawa. The photos can be of nature, people, or buildings. There is no classification or category; the only requirement is that the photo shows Ottawa’s spirit.

The competition will last until Monday, November 5, but photos don’t have to be taken in 2018. Also, more than one photograph can be submitted per person. Each photo must be in landscape format and of at least 800 x 1600 pixel in resolution.

A picture is worth a thousand words, so get out your cameras and tell us your story!


To submit your photos, please send an email to:

Webinaire Les Amis des Parcs – 11/07

Cliquez ici pour vous inscrire !

Vous avez envie de vous impliquer dans l’animation, l’entretien ou la protection d’un parc que vous aimez beaucoup, mais ne savez pas par où commencer? Lors de ce webinaire, nous vous aiderons à vous engager avec votre groupe Les Amis des Parcs local existant et vous montrerons un processus étape par étape pour lancer votre propre groupe. Nous vous partagerons aussi des exemples concrets d’autres groupes travaillant dans leur parcs et leur communautés.

Venez avec vos idées et repartez avec des réponses grâce à nos conférenciers.ères :

Cliquez ici pour vous inscrire !

Executive Summary: All Candidates’ Survey on Environmental Issues


Help us get out the environmental vote

This is it!

After months of knocking on thousands of doors, hosting debates and surveying candidates to raise the profile of local environmental issues, election day is where it all comes together. The Ottawa municipal election will take place on Monday, October 22, and we need your help to get out the environmental vote.

The new mayor and councillors elected on Monday can play a key role in making Ottawa a green capital – it’s up to us to vote with the environment in mind and ensure that the next council is the greenest ever. The next council has a lot of work to do, from taking strong action on climate change, to protecting vulnerable green spaces, to enhancing transportation options for pedestrians, cyclists and transit users. With help from many of you, we have raised these local environmental issues among Ottawa residents and candidates over the last five months.

Now, we need your help for the final push.

We need canvassers to visit voters and encourage them to vote. We need phone volunteers to call into target wards. And we need drivers to make our ground game happen on Sunday, October 21 (from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.) and Monday, October 22 (from 8:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.). Whether you have one hour or eight, we need as much help as you can offer.

To sign up, please email and indicate which day(s) you can help out and in what capacity.

We’ll also be celebrating and watching the election results roll in on Monday night, 7:30 PM at Fox and Feather.

Green Infrastructure in Canada’s Capital: Launch Party!

You’re invited to our Launch Party and Information Session

Join us while we kick off our Green Infrastructure campaign in Britannia! In the coming months we’ll be working with homeowners, builders, local organizations, and government officials to integrate Green Infrastructure into our homes, public buildings, and public spaces.

Learn how green infrastructure solutions like downspout redirects, green roofs, rain gardens, and rain barrels can prevent flooding, save money and help us adapt to climate change by slowing down, soaking up, and filtering rain water.

Refreshments, light snacks, and free home-level infrastructure adaptations will be available for all attendees!

Monday, November 19th, from 6:30 – 8:00 pm at the Carlingwood Public Library


Greeninfrastructure 101