How can we reach our 2020
Greenest City Targets?

GC 2020

How can we reach our 2020 Greenest City targets?

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  1. Drinking water fountains + bottled water ban

    Ban bottled water. Install public fountains instead! Make sure they're designed so you can fit a tall Sigg steel water bottle underneath to fill it.

    Many restaurants and cafes are nice enough to provide water taps/pitchers and glasses - encourage the rest to do so.

    426 votes
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      started  ·  26 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    • Change the Building Code to require rainwater collection & water efficient irrigation systems

      Outdoor water consumption represents a significant portion of residential water use. In particular, the watering of lawns and gardens is one of the more water intensive of outdoor water activities. Requiring installation of rainwater harvesting devices for irrigation purposes would decrease the dependence on treated water for irrigation purposes. In addition, specifying the installation of water efficient irrigation systems would further reduce water demand.

      314 votes
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        11 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
      • Require residential water metering

        The City of Vancouver could expect to achieve about a 20 % reduction in water use if residential meters were installed. However, the average water bill for single and two family homes would increase by about 30 %. These costs are related to the installation and maintenance of the meters and to the fact that the majority of the cost of water is related to the filtering and distribution infrastructure - the cost of which remains the same regardless of how much water is used.

        In other cities where water meters are used for billing, people have a better understanding…

        196 votes
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          12 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
        • Allow, educate, and encourage households to use greywater

          In many countries, grey water is used by households and other buildings to collect run-off from roofs, washing machines, sinks, and bathtubs to water gardens and flush toilets.

          Allow and encourage people to install alternative plumbing systems to make this possible. In Australia, there is an entire sector of the plumbing industry dedicated to installing and maintaining these systems.

          41 votes
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            0 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
          • Introduce water conservation rebates to encourage purchase of water-saving fixtures and appliances

            The City could introduce water conservation rebates to encourage the purchase of appliances and fixtures that use innovative water-saving technology. High efficiency toilets and fixtures, rain sensors, rainwater harvesting, water efficient appliances among other initiatives are proven to reduce water consumption.

            Water efficient rebate programs would be targeted towards homes and businesses built before 1995 when the City Plumbing Code began to mandate high efficiency fixtures. Since this time, the City Plumbing Code has required low flow toilets, showerheads, and aerating faucets in all new construction. The industry standard for new toilet installations is now to use six litres of…

            33 votes
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              6 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
            • Enforce lawn sprinkling restrictions during summer months

              In the summer months, water use can double, with most of this water being used on lawns. Sprinkling restrictions have been in place since 1998 without strict enforcement. By implementing an education and enforcement strategy, Vancouver could expect to achieve a 15 % reduction in outdoor water use.

              The cost of an education and enforcement program would be off-set by the revenue from the ticketing program. Additional revenues could be reinvested into other conservation measures, like incentives for low flow toilets and shower heads.

              32 votes
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                5 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
              • Ban garburetors - they waste water and put waste in water

                Change the building code to ban garburetors. Organic material shouldn't use drinking water to be conveyed to the sewage plant for treatment, it should go in a composter

                26 votes
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                  5 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                • Bylaw to ban auto-flush toilets

                  Aside from being the worst invention of all-time*, auto-flush toilets are also incredibly wasteful.

                  I estimate that an auto-flush goes off at least twice as often as it needs to. In the offices and malls where these devices are installed, that could mean a vast amount of wasted water.

                  15 votes
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                    5 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                  • 15 votes
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                      0 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                    • Stop automated sprinklers

                      I've seen automated sprinklers spraying while it's raining! Encourage people to choose plants that will thrive knowing that summers are dry periods. Or at least accept less-than-perfect lawns for a couple months of the year. I notice this mostly around condos that just have small strips of grass. They should replace the lawn completely with alternate groundcover - nobody uses it as a lawn anyway.

                      15 votes
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                        2 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                      • Provide rainwater catchments to those living in condos with balconies to help with urban gardens

                        While waiting for building codes to come into effect requiring rainwater collection and water efficient irrigation systems, this can be a simple way to assist condo dwellers in using less water when it comes to their own balcony gardens.

                        13 votes
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                          2 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                        • Change the Building Code to require water efficient fixtures in a wider range of house renovations

                          The building code specifies the kinds of efficiencies required by water fixtures in all buildings. Currently a home owner has to be undertaking a significant renovation ($95 000 value) before permits are required. The code could be changed to lower that threshold (to $50,000), thereby increasing the number of homes that would be required by law to install fixtures with a high degree of water efficiency.

                          12 votes
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                            0 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                          • Provide home owners with a tax rebate for installing compostable toilets.

                            The availability of composting toilets is growing, with a variety of kinds to suit home owners' purposes. Our clean water sources in Canada are abundant, but also the equivalent to gold on an international scale: we should treat it this way. Let's not flush our potable water sources down the toilet. Composting toilets use little to no water at all. We should provide incentives for Canadians to make this change.

                            12 votes
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                              1 comment  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                            • Encourage grass lawn alternatives

                              [Submitted via email by Patrice Allen]

                              Grass lawns use excessive water and toxic fertilizers, just to get that lush look. Why not more veggie & flower beds? Or Japanese style pebbles, bricks, tiles, and water-recycling ponds (also to help prevent noise pollution and give the birds a place to drink from) and, most low maintenance of all, a herb lawn of thyme or any of the other fragrant, soft, herbaceous carpets that grow themselves. Encourage planting of succulents (less watering) and native plants and grasses.

                              11 votes
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                                3 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                              • Stormwater/Rainwater capture

                                Kitchener/Waterloo has just introduced a innovative system to reduce the volume and increase the quality of stormwater runoff.
                                In 2011 they will reduce the property tax and then charge every land owner a "Stormwater Levy" based on the quality and quantity of stormwater coming off of their property. In 2011 this will be a revenue neutral program.
                                However, there will be a CREDIT program to reduce your stormwater levy by reducing the volume or increasing the quality of the stormwater leaving your site. This creates an economic incentive for the landowner to implement some of the water recycling programs that…

                                9 votes
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                                  1 comment  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                • Ban grass lawns

                                  Green lawns look nice but they consume a vast amount of water, we could reduce the amount of water used if we a) had maximum sized lawns allowable in private residence. b) Banned the planting of grass for lawn areas, there are a number of plants that you could use to create a green walkable space that consume little water to sustain, why then do we waist so much water on grass lawns, alternate style of ground cover could be looked at.

                                  7 votes
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                                    3 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

                                    The City does not limit the amount of lawn, but does limit the amount of impermeable surface allowed. We encourage alternatives to lawns through the water wise landscape guidelines. Strengthening education programs in supprt of alternatives to lawns is part of the plan.

                                  • Waterless Urinals

                                    Save millions of gallons of water!
                                    Plumbers don't like them but i think there is a huge potential for this!

                                    6 votes
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                                      0 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                    • Require all coffee shops to install Japanese style toilets ( grey water) and save water

                                      Install a small sink on top of the toilet. When the patron flushes the toilet the water first comes through the tap. see the sinkpositive site http://sinkpositive.com/site/home/ or this you tubevideo http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7kulnVSG0FY&feature=related
                                      for an example. Installed in restaurants and coffee shops this would save space and save hundreds of litres of water a year.

                                      2 votes
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                                        0 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                      • nTio2

                                        Replace power washers by employing the green techology of the self cleaning coating "nano Titanium Dioxide (nTiO2).
                                        It's a better way to keep buildings clean while protecting the environment and it's available here in the lower mainland.

                                        1 vote
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                                          0 comments  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                        • Ban power washers for residential use

                                          [Submitted via email by Patrice Allen]

                                          "Ban power washers for residential use, and monitor their use or find alternatives for commercial use. At present they are noisy, gas-sucking or power sucking annoyances that waste tons of water while owners wash their trucks, their driveways and their dogs. It stuns me. I have sat outside of a Safeway store at the tables provided and watched while two men have power washed a concrete planter and a small portion of sidewalk, for HOURS, using TONS of water and power. Why, in Rain City, do we have to powerwash everything that is exposed…

                                          0 votes
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                                            1 comment  ·  Use less water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

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