Mayor Don Iveson, after talking to other delegates at the UN climate change conference in Morocco says Edmonton is ready to help other ‘green’ Canadian companies take their eco-friendly ideas and systems to the international market.
Iveson, on a conference call from Marrakesh, said it will mean Edmonton jobs. “Some of these technologies are looking for places to actually manufacture their stuff. So I exchange information and said we have skilled labour, we have available capacity, and we have an absolute culture of innovation in everything from energy to manufacturing in Edmonton so I’d love to talk to them more.”
“See if we can bring some of this wave of green jobs that I’m convinced after seeing this conference is coming as part of this transition. We need to make sure we get a piece of that in Edmonton and in Alberta to buffer us against the continuing commodity down cycle and the big decarbonization transition that is going to happen over the next generation.”
“We have the capacity already. We have the lay-down yards in Nisku to build these at a massive scale as well, and the opportunity as well to install these things around Canada or to export them to the world. Because of the economic downturn and because of the dollar, we are becoming cost competitive again in Alberta and so we have to seize that opportunity.”
Iveson said cities are playing a more prominent role at these climate talks, compared to nine years ago when he first went to Cop 13 in Bali nine years ago. “Local government was in a tent next to a side event way out the outside,” he laughed recalling his first experience as a new member of Edmonton city council. “I’m struck by what has changed over the years since. Mayors showed up in a big way in Paris last year and there aren’t as many mayors here this time and the Canadian delegation is much smaller too, but that’s because we made our way in.”
Iveson also said he’s been defending Canada’s oil and gas industry, and the use of pipelines saying Edmonton has pipelines criss-crossing the city, and he’d rather have that than a million barrels a day move by rail.