Imagine a landmass 390 times the size of the city of Vancouver. That’s the “biocapacity” required to sustain Vancouver’s ecological footprint, according to local environmentalist Rex Weyler.
The Greenpeace International cofounder is set to give a presentation to city council on Tuesday (October 20) calling for the city to make a dramatic shift toward the local production of food and energy, and to put public transit over “car culture”.
“What I am talking about is large-scale planetary overshoot,” Weyler told the Straight in a phone interview. “That being the human use of all planetary resources beyond the capacity of the planet to sustain them.”
Weyler, a member of the Vancouver Peak Oil Executive, a group concerned about the impact of oil depletion, said he has decided to address the Vision-dominated council because he believes “that they sincerely want to do what they can to make Vancouver a sustainable community”.
Weyler said his numbers are based on the research of Bill Rees, the UBC professor who came up with the ecological footprint concept.
“A lot of my solutions fall under the category ”˜localize’,” Weyler added. “In other words, forget relying on global economics for our survival. In the future, what we need to do is focus our community on localization.”
On Monday (October 19), Weyler will moderate a panel discussion featuring Rees and others in Room 700 at SFU Harbour Centre, starting at 7 p.m.