Mike Sparrow

Following are the answers given by the candidate. See other candidates

1.  What actions have you personally taken to support a more sustainable climate?

Since the Mid 1980’s I have owned homes that have not had fossil fuel or wood burning as the heating source. Moving away from fossil fuels into a more sustainable renewable energy source Is important for future generations. When I was working, I would ride my bike to work for a number of years, except on days that were freezing. I recycle all that I can.

2.  What opportunities do you see at your municipal/electoral area/school board level to reduce greenhouse gas emissions?

 I would like to see a better system to help people move to a renewable heating source. Last year only one person took advantage of the wood stove exchange program. This program should be looked at to see if it needs to be modified or improved. A study should be commissioned to see if it would be feasible to subsidise chipping of wood waste of large plots of land instead of large-scale outdoor burning within areas that have a population base. Keep some meetings to video chats, thereby reducing greenhouse gases by eliminating driving time to and from events.

3. What will you do, if elected, to overcome polarization in local politics around the challenges of climate change and to build a middle ground that encourages listening, understanding, and consensus that can move climate change action forward?

The words Climate Change invoke a response, let’s accept the facts and move towards a solution for the conditions that exist today. The fact that there has been very little rain in the past few months and that the South of the Island is in drought level 4 conditions is an indicator that we need to change our thought patterns of what is happening. We need to look at what the future will be if this continues and what steps are needed to mitigate our area from getting into conditions that are present in the South Island. Whether you believe in Climate Change or not, the weather patterns that were here when I was a child are no longer present. We have to accept the new weather patterns and adjust accordingly. It is getting past trigger words and understanding that we need to work together towards a better future.

4. What opportunities do you see for climate leadership in the following sectors? Please pick at least two.
Transportation, Housing, Land use and Development, Equity.

Transportation by the use of hybrid electric vehicles where appropriate. Housing, the use of better insulated and energy efficient houses.

5.  If elected, what would your first action be toward reducing greenhouse gases in your area of responsibility? 

 As per answer in question 2. A study should be commissioned to see if it would be feasible to subsidise chipping of wood waste of large plots of land instead of large-scale outdoor burning.

6.  The climate emergency requires long term thinking and planning.  How do you envision a climate sustainable City/Electoral Area/School District, 50 years from now?

 50 years from now there should be no more oil burning residences, as they are being phased out right now, just as coal was. Backyard burning will be a thing of the past as there will be reducing stations to accept the wood products. Public transport will be all converted to a renewable energy source. Water will be a valuable commodity and infrastructure improvements now will pay dividends later. Housing improvements to insulation will help with the heat of the summer and the rain of the winter. Air conditioners will be commonplace and may be required in new homes to help combat the heat domes that may appear. Photovoltaic panels will become more prevalent, as will houses using low wattage appliances and lighting. Work schedules may have to be shifted to allow for the heat of the day.