The City of Edmonton’s environmental management programs have earned it high marks from other Canadian municipalities.
The City received a Sustainable Community Award at the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) Annual Meeting in Whistler on June 6, 2009.
The FCM-CH2M HILL* award is given to municipal projects that demonstrate excellence in sustainable community development.
The City of Edmonton won the award in the planning category for its ISO 14001 environmental management program.
“We are very proud to have been presented with this award,” says Barry Anderson, Environment and Energy Branch Manager. “It is further proof that the City is on the right track with its environmental initiatives.
"It also shows that we are moving closer to the goal, stated in the City’s 10-year strategic plan, of being the nation’s leader in environmental preservation and sustainability,” Anderson says.
ISO 14001 is one of the most rigorous environmental management systems in the world. It was developed by the International Organization for Standardization, which has representatives from more than 100 countries, including the Standards Council of Canada.
More than 100 requirements must be met to qualify for ISO 14001 certification. The City is one of few municipalities in the world to implement the standard on such a large scale.
Between 2004 and 2008, the city’s 7 most environmentally high-risk branches were certified to the ISO standard by outside auditors through the city’s EnvISO program. The City is on track in its plans to have other high-risk departments meet the standard by the end of 2010.
The city has also produced an Environmental Construction Operations (ECO) Plan Framework for new construction. By becoming certified to the ISO 14001 standard, the City of Edmonton has reduced the environmental impacts of its operations while also applying hundreds of changes that improve operations throughout the corporation.
Nine branches have achieved certification under the ISO 14001 program:
- Drainage Services
- Waste Management
- Edmonton Transit
- Transportation Operations Branch
- Fire Rescue Services
- Operational Services
- Mobile Equipment Services
- Roads Design and Construction
Two other City branches are working towards ISO 14001 designation and expect to be certified in 2010.
Sustainability and environmental responsibility is a key policy and program focus for the City of Edmonton.
As part of Edmonton’s commitment to environmental leadership, City Council declared a vision for Edmonton to be an environmentally sustainable city – through an initiative called EcoVision Edmonton.
*CH2M HILL is a global engineering and construction firm.