Vancouver’s economy is at a turning point: we can double-down on a just and equitable zero-carbon future, or we can let the world race ahead without us. The City of Vancouver declared a climate emergency in 2019, and approved the Climate Emergency Action Plan in 2020. Governments are now committed to climate action — but where does that leave businesses and workers?
The Vancouver Economic Commission (VEC) has tracked metrics related to the green economy since 2011, and has helped thousands of businesses step up to the plate by taking decisive climate action. And yet, greenhouse gases have not fallen quickly enough, and many workers and businesses are still struggling to make an efficient and equitable transition. The barriers are numerous: challenges accessing the right information about what and where to buy the right climate solutions; affordability constraints and unclear profitability projections; unclear training and upskilling opportunity; and many, many more.
VEC’s new Zero Emissions Economic Transition Action Plan (ZEETAP) aims to address all of these challenges over the next three years through 25 actions in six thematic priority areas.
In addition to supporting the City of Vancouver’s goal of reducing emissions by 50% by 2030, ZEETAP works towards four goals:
Embed equity and justice across all ZEETAP activities and work directly with equity-deserving populations
Remove barriers that prevent organizations from understanding decarbonization challenges and solutions
Remove barriers and build collective, scalable climate solutions that meed the needs and context of businesses
Reduce the cost of climate solutions through new programs, collaborations, and policy and regulatory advocacy
Increase markets’ understanding of the value in climate solutions and financial risk of climate endangering activities
Create systems that support the spreading of climate action initiatives across the entire economy
Want to understand how ZEETAP was developed, the analysis that underpins it, and the actions envisioned over the next three years? Download the full plan today. If you’d like a higher-level overview that summarizes the plan’s key points, see our ZEETAP Backgrounder.
Download ZEETAP or Read the Summary
Are you a business looking to take your first steps on climate change? Check out this resource VEC has developed to provide guidance and connections to supports and resources.
Want to provide an overview of ZEETAP to your organization, partners, or community? Check out our Backgrounder, which provides an overview of the process to develop ZEETAP, highlights its actions and theory of change, and situates the plan in relation to other regional climate work.
Are you a worker trying to help your employer take climate action? We’re working with unions, workforce development organizations, and community members to design tools specifically for you. If you’d like to help us, please reach out through our engagement link.
Project Greenlight forges connections and partnerships between public infrastructure bodies and private enterprises (members) and technology innovators to accelerate Metro Vancouver’s transformation to a smarter, more sustainable economy.
By leveraging academic and industry collaborations, the Economic Transformation Lab (ETL) aims to produce research that results in actionable goals, best practices, and insights that inform policy advocacy or programs to help future-proof Vancouver’s economy.
VEC has developed a huge variety of programs and research related to green buildings, touching on topics from finance to embodied carbon, resilience, and the circular economy. To learn more about our work, see VEC’s Green Buildings and Construction page.
Innovation is a crucial part of climate action. Angels for Climate Solutions is an ongoing program that supports early-stage companies eager to work with angel investors and other ecosystem leaders.
While not fully included within ZEETAP, the circular economy is an important element of decarbonization activities. Learn more about VEC’s work on the circular economy.
The City of Vancouver’s Climate Emergency Action Plan guides ZEETAP by setting the vision and creating a policy-driven foundation for our work.
Metro Vancouver’s Climate 2050 and Clean Air Plan help set a crucial policy and regulatory foundation for regional climate action.
CleanBC is the provincial climate action strategy and roadmap to 2030 set the large-scale context for much of Vancouver and VEC’s climate action.
ZEETAP can only succeed through collaboration with partners. If you are interested in supporting implementation of ZEETAP, reach out through our engagement form.
Unfortunately, VEC is not in a position to offer any monetary incentives or grants for businesses. VEC works carefully with all levels of government and many other funders to ensure that businesses can access the resources they need to undertake climate action.
VEC is proud to operate Project Greenlight, a regional technology demonstration and commercialization platform operating across Metro Vancouver with major institutional partners such as TransLink, FortisBC, the City of Vancouver and the City of Coquitlam. To learn more, check out the Project Greenlight website.