1. Who is behind the Ontario Green Policy Hub?
The Ontario Green Policy Hub (OGPH) is an initiative of the Greater Toronto Chapter of the Canada Green Building Council (CaGBC-GTC) as the one-stop, searchable on-line resource for sustainability policies by Ontario municipalities. The OGPH was made possible through the support of the founding sponsors of the GTA Chapter, the Toronto Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) and funding from the Ontario Power Authority's Conservation Fund.
2. What is the Ontario Green Policy Hub?
The Ontario Green Policy Hub (OGPH) is web-based resource centre with user-provided and -updated content for use in the development of green building and sustainable community planning tools across Greater Toronto Area (GTA) municipalities.
3. Why do we need this type of initiative?
The benefits of green buildings and communities are clear: reduced energy consumption, reduced water consumption, reduced solid waste, and healthier indoor and outdoor environments. There exists a good foundation of green building expertise; however, this building-by-building approach will not suffice. To significantly reduce energy consumption we must begin an effort toward sustainable city building–and municipality–and region-wide green building and sustainable community planning policies are needed to drive market transformation.
The OGPH provides a central resource with information on step-by-step policy development and implementation to allow Municipalities across Ontario to see what works and what doesn’t and to help them build their own green policies.
4. How do I use this site?
The OGPH is designed as an easily-navigable online tool to allow users to browse and search policies related to their current needs. The Home page features a snapshot of the three most recent policies uploaded to the site. By selecting the ’Read More’ button, the full policy backgrounder will be displayed, featuring helpful tips such as the step-by-step process by which the policy was developed. You will also find relevant policy documents that you can view and save for future reference.
5. What is covered within each category?
The following policy categories have been developed to reflect the broad influence of Municipalities on development:
This category includes policies related to planning, land use, neighborhood design, and project planning.
This category includes policies related to community energy initiatives, energy efficiency targets for buildings, homes, and equipment
This category includes policies related to parks, open space, green roofs, site landscaping, tree strategy, stormwater / LID policies, etc.
This category includes policies related to facilities owned, managed, or occupied by municipalities and other government agencies, boards and commissions.
This category includes policies related to active transportation, carpool parking, transit pass initiatives, transit proximity, walkability, fleet vehicles, etc.
This category includes policies related to construction waste diversion, waste management initiatives, material handling, etc.
This category includes policies related to irrigation, black and grey water re-use, supply infrastructure, etc.
6. How do I submit a policy?
You can click the ’Submit a Policy ’ button on the top-right corner of any page and use the form to complete your information. The Submit a Policy page also features a Word template you can save, edit, and circulate internally prior to uploading your information to the OGPH. The template provides tips on what type of information is particularly helpful to other users and provides guidance on how to complete the form. To assist you in developing your profile, feel free to print a PDF version of any of the policies currently featured on the site.
7. Why do you need my contact information?
The CaGBC-GTC takes your privacy seriously. We follow the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act and we will not disclose your contact information without your consent. The policy profile page includes the Policy Contact, Title, and Department since this helps compete the policy development picture and helps other users navigate policy bureaucracy.
8. I’ve submitted my policy–now what?
All submissions will be sent to the CaGBC-GTC for a brief review for general completeness. This is not a vetting process; the Chapter is interested in participants sharing policies as quickly and efficiently as possible. Once the policy is reviewed it will be posted to the site and you will be notified. Your policy will be featured in one of the three spaces on the home page until surpassed by newer policies.
9. What kind of policy documents should be uploaded when I submit my policy?
Policy documents typically are available publicly on a Municipalities own website; however, they can sometimes be moved around on the site during departmental restructuring or removed if a particular policy is updated. To protect against this loss of information and to provide as complete a policy profile as possible, the OGPH will host related policy documents for reference by those interested in developing similar policies.
10. How do I attach the related policy files?
At the bottom of the ’Submit a Policy’ page, you will find space for up to 5 files to be uploaded. Use these spaces to browse and select the pertinent documents. If you have more than 5 related policy documents, please email them to the Chapter contact listed on the Contact page.
11. What if I want to update our policy profile?
The policy profile page will be editable by any user of the site, including those not directly involved in the policy development. Before making changes to the online version, the changes will be reviewed by the CaGBC-GTC and you may be contacted for any clarifications or to confirm that you consent to having these changes made. The Policy Contact has the final say in what gets published to the site.