Taking Action Together: Muskoka’s Roadmap to Net Zero

Community Energy and Emissions Reduction Plan (CEERP) Calls for Collective and Inspired Action

Muskoka’s Community Energy and Emissions Reduction Plan (CEERP) was introduced at the District of Muskoka’s Community and Planning Services Committee yesterday.  The plan outlines strategic actions to achieve Muskoka’s goals for GHG reduction, and responds to commitments made by District and Area Municipal Councils to reduce GHG emissions in Muskoka by 50% by 2030 and to be net-zero by 2050. 

“This is a bold and ambitious plan created by the community for the community, and achieving the goals will require collective and inspired action from everyone. Residents have told us that protecting and preserving Muskoka’s environment is a top priority and taking action on climate is essential to community and health and well-being. We owe it to future generations in Muskoka.” 

District Chair Jeff Lehman
Key Action Focused on Top Emission Sources

The CEERP was shaped by a task force of community members and partners from across Muskoka, who were asked to consider the best path to meet Muskoka’s GHG reduction goals.

The plan targets Muskoka’s top emission sources by focusing action on three key areas:

  • Transportation: Accounting for 74% of Muskoka’s GHG emissions, the plan focuses on promoting electric/low-carbon vehicles, public transit, and active transportation to decrease reliance on fossil fuels.
  • Buildings: Accounting for 20% of the region’s emissions, initiatives include energy-efficient retrofit programs and integrating renewable energy sources to reduce the carbon footprint of Muskoka’s infrastructure.
  • Community Systems: Addressing the remainder of emissions through waste reduction, sustainable tourism, education, and community design to foster a resilient and environmentally friendly community.
Cross-Sector Collaboration and Community Engagement Critical to Success

The CEERP calls for urgent, collaborative action from all community members, including residents, businesses, and government, as well as substantial financial investment across various sectors over several years.

“All sectors – government, businesses, community groups, and residents – must come to the table and do their part to create a sustainable future for our communities.” 

District Community and Planning Services Chair, Nancy Alcock

Building awareness of sustainable practices and the importance of reducing energy consumption is central to the CEERP’s implementation strategy, along with innovative financing and strategic investments.  Another critical factor will require continually evaluating and adapting the plan so that emerging technologies can be incorporated to deepen emissions reductions.

Leveraging CEERP to Accelerate District Efforts

The CEERP includes actions that will help reduce the emissions that are generated from delivering District programs and services (potable water, garbage and recycling pickup, etc.). Financial forecasting is underway to estimate the costs associated with implementing these actions, which can be prioritized in the 2025/2026 Budget and accelerated through investments from the newly established District Climate Change Reserve Fund.

To learn more or stay up to date on work underway to implement the CEERP, visit www.muskoka.on.ca/CEERP

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