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Nova Scotia meeting sustainability goals: report

According to a progress report, the Government of Nova Scotia says it is making good progress toward its goal of having a cleaner, greener, more economically sustainable environment. Environment Minister Sterling Belliveau and Economic and Rural Development Minister Percy Paris released the annual report detailing the province's progress on commitments in the Environmental Goals and Sustainable Prosperity Act.

 

“Through genuine leadership, our government is making steady progress in meeting these aggressive targets,” said Belliveau. “Our environmental and economic successes are making life better for families in every region of the province.”

 

The act sets out the province's key environmental goals. They range from reduced air emissions and waste, to new energy standards for buildings, and increased protection of land and water.

 

“Nova Scotia is faced with new realities,” said Paris. “The long-term prosperity of the province depends on how we manage our environment and our economy. The two go hand-in-hand. We are focused on creating good jobs and growing the economy.”

 

The report shows significant progress is being made on key goals in the Environmental Goals and Sustainable Prosperity Act. The report said the province met its goal to implement a sustainable procurement policy to ensure government considers environmentally sustainable products and services when making purchases.

 

A goal that was fulfilled five years ahead of the target date was to build an energy-efficient and sustainable demonstration building. The Nova Scotia Community College Centre for the Built Environment was built with government assistance and meets that commitment. It will open this summer.

 

Another goal to make buildings more energy efficient was achieved ahead of schedule and also exceeds the target level set by the act. New residential buildings, renovations or additions, and commercial buildings less than 600 square metres must now meet EnerGuide 80 standards or building code equivalents.

 

The provincial government says it is also working to green its own operations as a way to further support the goals of the act. For example, the government announced $1.55 million from the ecoNova Scotia Fund for Clean Air and Climate Change will be added to the department’s fund for making government buildings more energy efficient.

 

More information on the Environmental Goals and Sustainable Prosperity Act is available on the Department at www.gov.ns.ca/nse/egspa/.