Toronto Places 9th as Greenest North American City | Miratel Solutions

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Toronto Places 9th as Greenest North American City

Being a Toronto business that prides itself on its CSR business mandates and green initiatives, we were extra pleased to hear that Toronto placed 9th on the US and Canada Green City Index conducted by Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) and sponsored by Siemens. Last week we happily wrote about Toronto ranking 4th as the most liveable city on the global list of the Summary of the Liveability Ranking and Overview August 2011, released by EIU. Previous to that, we wrote about Toronto coming in 2nd as a ‘City of Opportunity’ amongst 26 leading global metropolises and then our city took the top spot in the CIBC World Markets’ Metropolitan Economic Activity Index Ratings.

This latest placement on The US and Canada Green City Index was released in the US in June 2011 and in Canada September 8th and “seeks to measure and assess the environmental performance of 27 major US and Canadian cities across a range of criteria.” As stated in the Introduction,  the report is divided into five parts:

  1. It examines the overall key findings;
  2. It examines the key findings from the nine individual categories in the Index: CO2, energy, land use, buildings, transport, water, waste, air and environmental governance;
  3. The report presents a variety of leading best-practice ideas from across the US and Canada;
  4. It gives a detailed description of the methodology used to create the Index; and
  5. An in-depth profile for each city outlining its particular strengths, challenges and ongoing environmental initiatives. These profiles rightly constitute the bulk of the report because the aim of the study is to share valuable experience.
Toronto contact centre CSR business - Toronto skyline

Toronto skyline taken from Riverdale Park East by jamiegreen08 @ flickr.com/photos/30855862@N07

The findings included in the in-depth profile for Toronto were promising and although the report applauded Toronto’s efforts in waste management and recycling the city had the unfortunate distinction of the longest average commute of any of the 27 cities. “Due to heavy congestion and sprawl, residents need on average 40 minutes to drive to work, compared with the index average of 29 minutes,’’ the Index noted. Another area Toronto fell short was Environmental Governance ranking 24th. The index recognized the city’s numerous environmental plans but went on to state “the reporting and transparency of these plans fall below the standards of most other cities in the Index, which weighs on Toronto’s score in the environmental governance category.” Other notables in the profile included that Toronto is the largest city in Canada, the fourth largest city assessed in the US and Canada Green City Index and is home to one of the most diverse populations in the world. It also stated that Toronto was “on average one of the colder cities in the Index, which places a larger burden on its energy needs.”

Other Canadian cities in the Index study were Vancouver which was the greenest city in Canada placing an amazing 2nd on the list, Ottawa which came in 12th, Calgary was 14th and Montreal was a respectable 19th. The round up of the top 10 US and Canadian cities on the Index included: 1) San Francisco, 2) Vancouver, 3) New York City, 4) Seattle, 5) Denver, 6) Boston, 7) Los Angeles, 8) Washington, D.C., 9) Toronto, and 10) Minneapolis.

We’re happy with Toronto’s placement – we’re not thrilled, we’re not ecstatic. We can’t help but feel there is still much room for improvement but it will take a commitment from the government, CSR business governance from the private sector and dedication from all citizens for real change to happen. It requires involvement on all levels to keep our collective eye on the prize and to keep everyone in check but it’s doable.  We believe that Toronto and all Canadian cities can and will do better in the future because “Canada is a great country, one of the hopes of the world.”

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Miratel Solutions is a Toronto call centre, eBusiness, and letter shop mail house specializing in professional fundraising services including telephone fundraising, online fundraising, lottery services, donation caging, donation processing and other donor management services. We are committed to our CSR business values and advancing the missions of the non-profits we proudly serve.

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4 Responses to Toronto Places 9th as Greenest North American City

  1. Congratulations Toronto!
    Most U.S. Cities, such as New Orleans, Philadelphia, New York City, Las Vegas, Atlanta, could never meet tougher, greener Canadian standards, much less supposed American green living and public health standards. Quite a few cities in the 50 states still chose to live and operate in the dark ages, clueless and indifferent about being proactively and progressively green.

  2. Actually, New York City placed third on this list which is amazing. I think that Canadian cities still have a long way to go and can do much more than they do. I like to believe that with the major cities on this list leading the charge, environmental concerns will become a greater priority overall.

  3. Pingback: » Canada’s Takes Top Spot on Forbes Best Country for Business List

  4. Pingback: 10 Most Prosperous Cities in the World and Toronto Places 3rd | Miratel Solutions

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