Oct. 15, 2009
FREDERICTON (CNB) - The second phase of the Mayor's Eco-Challenge 2009 to fight against climate change will take place during the next six weeks. Environment Minister Rick Miles, Local Government Minister Bernard LeBlanc, and municipal leaders from across the province will participate.
"The Mayor's Eco-Challenge 2009 was launched back in February, and the first phase was very successful, with mayors reducing greenhouse-gas emissions by a total of 16 tonnes," said Miles. "I am very pleased to participate with these municipal leaders in the second phase of the challenge, and I encourage all New Brunswickers to track our progress and do what they can to get involved in the fight against climate change."
The challenge is a partnership between the New Brunswick Lung Association (New Brunswick Climate Change Hub), the Cities of New Brunswick Association, the Union of Municipalities of New Brunswick, Efficiency New Brunswick, and the Department of Environment. Its aim is to draw attention to the importance of climate change awareness, and to encourage action at the municipal level.
"I am very pleased to participate in this phase of the challenge," said LeBlanc. "I believe this is an excellent opportunity to lead by example and inform municipal leaders and taxpayers about climate change and how we can all make a difference."
Participants are making a commitment to reduce their carbon footprints by adopting a number of environmentally friendly habits, including using alternative or public transportation, conserving energy, reducing waste, and setting an example for neighbours.
The challenge will begin with participants choosing a family member, friend or colleague to participate with them. Participants will then calculate their current carbon footprint, and choose commitments from a list of possibilities to help reduce that footprint.
Participants will track and monitor their carbon footprints by using the provincial household activities calculator. The public will be able to follow the participants' progress by visiting the New Brunswick Climate Change Hub website.
The Government of New Brunswick launched the five-year New Brunswick Climate Change Action Plan in June 2007. As a result, greenhouse-gas emissions will be reduced in the province by 5.5 megatonnes annually by 2012. With the addition of federal initiatives, the plan will result in a reduction of New Brunswick's greenhouse-gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2012. The achievement of these reductions will position New Brunswick to realize further reductions of 10 per cent below 1990 levels by 2020.
Information on New Brunswick Climate Change Action Plan 2007-12 is available online.
MEDIA CONTACTS: Jennifer Graham, public affairs, Department of Environment, 506-453-3700; Barbara MacKinnon, New Brunswick Lung Association, 506-455-8961; Tracey Somers, Efficiency NB, 506-643-2860; Sandra Marks, Cities of New Brunswick Association, 506-693-0008; Raymond Murphy, Union of Municipalities of New Brunswick, 506-523-7991.