Operationalize UBC’s commitments to climate justice

Operationalize UBC’s commitments to climate justice: support climate leadership and initiatives led by Indigenous, Black, and people of colour.

In the Climate Emergency Declaration, UBC made a bold commitment to advance “just and inclusive climate solutions that work towards dismantling historic and existing barriers faced by marginalized communities.” Building on priorities laid out in other UBC strategic plans, it is essential to honour and amplify the labour of IBPOC community members through adequate compensation and integration of their ongoing feedback throughout UBC’s climate emergency response.

Progress Highlights

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SHORT TERM (1-3 YEARS)

Related CETF report recommendations focus on increasing representation for UBC’s IBPOC community, and supporting off-campus IBPOC-led climate initiatives.

The projects and activities below demonstrate UBC’s commitment to hiring and fairly compensating IBPOC community members, and extending resources to IBPOC communities off-campus to advance climate change and climate justice.
Project

Progress
Two new Climate Emergency Senior Manager positions were filled by the UBC Sustainability Initiative – including a new indigenous staff member – to convene and coordinate implementation of the Climate Emergency Task Force report. Sep 2021.

Professor Solomon Tesfamariam appointed as UBC Okanagan Principal’s Research Chair in Resilient Infrastructure Management (Tier 1). The Principal’s Research Chairs (PRC) program is designed to support the recruitment and retention of top researchers and promote research intensification. Sep 2021. Learn more.

Feasibility Study: Overcoming Policy Barriers to Indigenous Food Sovereignty in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside; supported by the student-led UBC Climate Hub in partnership with the Downtown Eastside Indigenized Food Sovereignty Cooperative. July 2021. Learn more.

Research: An Analysis of Environmentalism Among the Black Population within Vancouver; supported by the student-led UBC Climate Hub and faculty members Mohammed Rafi Arefin and James Connolly. July 2021. Learn more.

MEDIUM TERM (3-5 YEARS)

CETF report recommendations under this priority area also focus on engaging further with Black and POC communities to examine institutional practices and policies that reproduce inequalities for IBPOC communities at UBC.

Over the next 24 months, Climate Emergency Senior Managers will support engagement with IBPOC community members to develop ideas to transform inequitable institutional practices and policies, and create new structures of accountability that embed Black and POC perspectives into the Climate Emergency recommendations and future climate plans, policies, and initiatives.

Related Resources

Part I: All of US or None of US

Activists share their experiences and insights on environmentalism within the Black population in Vancouver.

Kanehsatake: 270 Years of Resistance

Director Alanis Obomsawin captures the historic confrontation between protestors, the Quebec police, and the Canadian army over a proposed golf course to be built on Kanien’kéhaka (Mohawk) lands in Oka, Quebec.

Indigenous Climate Action Pod

Part of Amplifying Voices led by Indigenous Climate Action, episodes build on the Indigenous rights movement and create a space for connection between Indigenous Peoples.

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