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Partners for Climate Protection Program

Why is positive action important?

Gases that trap heat in the atmosphere are known as greenhouse gases. Some (but not all) greenhouse gases occur naturally, and are emitted to the atmosphere through natural processes. But increasingly, human activities are causing significant additional levels of greenhouse gases to be released into the atmosphere, including carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide and fluorinated gases.

Higher levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere are causing climate changes - to our weather, wind patterns, the amount and type of precipitation and the types and frequency of severe weather events. The implications of climate change are serious and could cause:

  • warmer average temperatures
  • changes in precipitation patterns
  • increased evaporation from surface waters such as lakes and streams
  • increases in extreme weather events and weather variability
  • sea level rise and stronger coastal storm surges
  • reduced snow pack, shrinkage of the polar ice cap, and most glaciers

What is the Partners for Climate Protection (PCP) Program?

The Partners for Climate Protection Program is a network of Canadian municipal governments that have committed to reducing greenhouse gases and acting on climate change.  The City of Pickering is one of over 300 municipalities that are members of this network.

The PCP program is based on a 5 milestone framework:

  1. Completion of a greenhouse gas (GHG) and energy use inventory, and forecast for the community and municipal operations
  2. Setting local GHG reduction targets
  3. Development of a Local Action Plan to meet established reduction targets
  4. Implementation of actions identified in an adopted Local Action Plan
  5. Monitoring and measurement of actions and results

What has the City accomplished so far?

In 2015, Pickering was recognized for achieving Milestone Five, the last step of the PCP program. Pickering is one of only 26 other municipalities in Canada to have achieved this distinction. Building upon this work, the City's Corporate Energy Management Plan (CEMP) was developed in 2014 and provides a 5-year roadmap for energy management in the City. The plan focuses on the use of electricity, natural gas, and fuel oil for heating and cooling in municipal facilities. The Plan covers the period from 2014-2019 and is designed to help the city comply with the provincial energy conservation and demand management (CDM) planning requirements. The Plan addresses buildings, technology, streetlights and traffic signals, as well as people, processes, and information.

With regard to community energy and greenhouse gas emission reduction goals, the City is collaborating with the Region of Durham, utilities, and all eight municipalities within the region to develop a Community Energy Plan.

Community Targets

2016 community/capita energy consumption target 35% reduction relative to 1995 levels

2016 community/capita GHG emissions target 19% reduction relative to 1995 levels

To meet this target, Pickering residents and businesses must reduce per-capita energy consumption by 4.5% per year until 2016.