The GTHA Is Responsible For Nearly Half Of Ontario's Total Carbon Emissions
Transportation and buildings are the main polluters.
It looks like the GTHA will have to start buckling down to reduce carbon emissions. A new report was just released on Ontario's progress in meeting our 2050 carbon emissions targets, and it's looking like there is room for improvement. The waste that the Greater Toronto & Hamilton area produce makes up 41% of all of Ontario's carbon emissions.
A report by The Atmospheric Fund (TAF) just shed some light on what areas we need to improve the most to reduce our carbon footprint, and they vary based on the city.
The report begins by acknowledging that Ontario has actually managed to start reducing pollution, but not by enough.
In 2016, Ontario's carbon emissions fell by 3.34%. In 2017, they went down by 0.04%.
The report also notes that Ontario's population has grown by over a quarter of a million people during this time, so this is still pretty good progress.
Unfortunately, more needs to be done. According to TAF, Toronto needs to cut emissions four times faster if we plan to meet our net-zero emission targets by 2050.
The main source of carbon emissions in Toronto is from buildings and transportation. In fact, these two sources make up 77% of emissions in the GTHA.
Of course, it comes as no surprise that Toronto has the highest emissions.
However, it is important to remember that Toronto also has the highest population density out of all of these cities.
So while all of the cities in the GTHA have different stats, the report says that "none of the municipalities in the GTHA function independently. We operate as a region, and our climate policies and programs must reflect that."
The report also mentioned that transportation emissions have been increasing by 4% between 2015 and 2017. This contributed to a third of the emissions from the region.
The reasoning for this was the spike in population growth (over 200,000 people) during this timeframe.
It looks like Ontario will have to consider the population increase as a major factor in emissions targets.
In Toronto, the buildings are a bigger issue than transportation emissions.
Since 2017, the city has seen 1,500 new buildings go up that met standards of energy efficiency and emissions reductions, according to the report.