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Vancouver Greenest City goals revised downward

Vancouver city hall is discovering it’s not easy being green.

A Greenest City Action Team report for Thursday’s planning and environment committee meeting recommends softening the goals to become the world’s most sustainable city.

The lofty aspirations from an October 2009 report included creating 20,000 new green jobs by 2020, cutting greenhouse gas emissions by a third, requiring all building construction be carbon-neutral and having the best air quality and drinking water of any city in the world.

Deputy city manager Sadhu Johnston’s report shows GCAT hopes Vancouver can instead double an unspecified “number of green jobs,” reduce “community-based” but not “corporate” emissions by a third and require buildings from 2020 onward to be operated – but not constructed – carbon-neutral.

The original goals for air quality and drinking water were to “always meet or beat the most stringent” B.C., federal and World Health Organization standards and guidelines.

The word “always” was deleted and WHO replaced by “international” in Johnston’s report.

GCAT is co-chaired by Mayor Gregor Robertson and environmental lawyer David Boyd.

Bob Mackin reports for Vancouver 24 Hours.

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