Richmond wins national municipal environment award for its City-wide Pollinator Program
18 May 2022
The City of Richmond, BC has received national recognition for its City-wide Pollinator Program from the Canadian Association of Municipal Administrators (CAMA). The City was presented with the 2022 CAMA Environmental Leadership & Sustainability Award, in the over 100,000 population category, during a Virtual Awards of Excellence Ceremony held today.
“CAMA is pleased to recognize Richmond for the municipal excellence demonstrated by their City-wide Pollinator Program,” said Jack Benzaquen, CAMA president, CAMA representative for Quebec and City Manager for the City of Dollard-des-Ormeaux, QC. “Their efforts to conserve pollinators and develop and protect their habitat set an example of how a land manager can be a leader through conscientious community programming, and meaningful community engagement. There is much that other municipalities can learn.”
Pollinators are paramount for a stable and thriving natural environment, which is known to improve the physical and mental health of residents. However, there is growing evidence that pollinator species, such as bees and butterflies, are in decline globally due to the pressures of urban development.
As a result, Richmond has taken a proactive approach to natural area management, conservation, and protection. Initiatives throughout the City have found creative ways to engage residents and businesses into the action of protecting pollinators and their habitat.
Since 2015, Richmond has designed and implemented over 10 pollinator-specific programs; has engaged over 1,800 residents through free, interactive community workshops and planting initiatives; and dedicated approximately 22,700 m2 of land to enhance pollinator habitat and increase community awareness.
Richmond has a long history of promoting pollinator conservation in the community and actively supporting its local agricultural sector. The City’s Enhanced Pesticide Management Program was adopted in 2009, reducing the exposure of unnecessary pesticides and restricted their cosmetic use.
Pollinator protection and conservation is a key element of larger scale environmental management. City staff utilize novel methods of data collection and communication. The City also takes advantage of existing platforms to engage the community and collect data.
Pollinator enhancement has been integrated into the City’s public works delivery, with many projects utilizing pollinator friendly plantings along roadways and dikes, in parks, and at City facility horticulture installations.
“Enhancing the City’s natural environment not only enriches the health and livability of our communities, it provides access to nature within Richmond’s urban neighbourhoods and supports our vibrant agricultural sector,” said Richmond Mayor Malcolm Brodie. “The response to Council’s commitment to the pollinator program has been overwhelmingly positive, and we will continue to find new and innovative ways to protect and foster pollinator conservation throughout the city.”
“The CAMA Awards of Excellence recognize the achievements of local governments and their senior staff in the development and implementation of successful programs, projects or services,” said Gary Kent, Chair of the 2022 CAMA Awards, CAMA Member-At-Large for Municipalities with a Population Over 100,000, and Chief Financial Officer and Commissioner of Corporate Services for the Region of Peel, ON. “Thirty-five submissions from across the country were received for this year’s awards. Congratulations to the winners and all those who took time to enter the awards program.”
To find out more about the City of Richmond’s award, as well as the other 2022 CAMA Awards of Excellence winners, visit camacam.ca/awards and look for the award recipients link.