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Ontario Tech acknowledges the lands and people of the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation.

We are thankful to be welcome on these lands in friendship. The lands we are situated on are covered by the Williams Treaties and are the traditional territory of the Mississaugas, a branch of the greater Anishinaabeg Nation, including Algonquin, Ojibway, Odawa and Pottawatomi. These lands remain home to many Indigenous nations and peoples.

We acknowledge this land out of respect for the Indigenous nations who have cared for Turtle Island, also called North America, from before the arrival of settler peoples until this day. Most importantly, we acknowledge that the history of these lands has been tainted by poor treatment and a lack of friendship with the First Nations who call them home.

This history is something we are all affected by because we are all treaty people in Canada. We all have a shared history to reflect on, and each of us is affected by this history in different ways. Our past defines our present, but if we move forward as friends and allies, then it does not have to define our future.

Learn more about Indigenous Education and Cultural Services

Annual Report

The annual Region of Durham Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory and Progress Toward Net-Zero Climate Targets report provides a public-facing, comprehensive inventory of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in Durham Region, including emissions inventory data as well as sectoral and jurisdictional  analysis. It includes key recommendations for the regional municipality and local  area municipalities.
The report:

  • Accounts for emissions,
  • Facilitates action on emission reduction,
  • Supports change management within the municipal, industry and residential sectors, and
  • Transparency, public engagement and awareness of the necessary actions and how they are being addressed by the relevant accountable bodies.

The November 2023 Report is available now!

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Executive Summary

This report provides an estimate of all greenhouse gas, GHG, emissions attributed to the residents and businesses in Durham Region (11.9 Mt CO2e, 16.01 t per capita, in 2022). This comprehensive, community-wide GHG inventory is considered the baseline to which overall net-zero targets pertain. The inventory is more comprehensive than the Region’s corporate emissions (about 170,000 tonnes per year) or limited scopes of inventories such as The Atmospheric Fund (5.73 Mt in 2021). The 11.9 Mt value is consistent with provincial and national inventories, but is broader, including upstream and downstream activities associated with the residents and economy of Durham. Of those 11.9 Mt CO2e, 3.15 Mt CO2e were associated with items exported from the Region. How these emissions relate to Canada and the world’s overall emissions is discussed, with a focus on ‘fair’ attribution.

Like the Government of Canada, this assessment defines ‘net-zero’ as the economy either emits no greenhouse gas emissions or offsets its emissions. And like Canada, Ontario, and most of the rest of the world, the Region of Durham is not on track to meet net-zero targets. A credible path to net-zero by 2050 remains elusive.

Efforts are considerable and the pace is increasing, however locally and globally, our collective progress is not on track to meet the Paris Agreement’s aspirational goal of limiting global temperature increases to 1.5o C above pre-industrial values, nor even the minimum ‘safe’ target of limiting temperature increases to below 2o C (prerequisites for a net-zero economy). The UN finds that climate policies currently in place point to a 2.8o C temperature rise by the end of this century[1].

The inventory in this assessment requires estimates in several areas; however, it is sufficiently robust to facilitate comparisons across communities in Canada and globally (many with similar net-zero targets) and is structured to help integrate and monitor joint efforts by Durham-based partner organizations with their own net-zero targets, e.g., Ontario Power Generation (2040) and Ontario Tech University (2040).

Clear GHG mitigation priorities exist for the region. These include:

  • Shift to low-carbon integrated mobility (far fewer single occupant vehicle trips, especially in internal combustion engine, ICE, vehicles);
  • Redesign neighbourhoods to be far less reliant exclusively on car access; Phase out natural gas for space heating (consider adopting, or urging provincial adoption of, bans on natural gas in new neighbourhoods, similar to Nanaimo and Montreal);
  • Shift personal purchasing practices, g., fewer flights and cruises, eat less meat (especially beef), emphasize waste minimization (especially food waste).

[1] https://www.unep.org/resources/emissions-gap-report-2022