On January 28, 2023, Climate Positive Energy was pleased to support the student-led 2023 Sustainability Conference. Titled Back to the Future of Sustainable Urban Development and co-organized by the University of Toronto and Toronto Metropolitan University chapters of the Sustainable Engineers Association (SEA), this was the group’s first in-person conference since 2020.
Highlighting initiatives, policies, and perspectives that positively impact sustainable urban living, industry professionals including CPE Member Kevin Golovin shared experience and insight into ideas and technologies that are at the forefront of the shift to sustainable practices.
Professor Golovin commented on the interdisciplinary nature of addressing sustainability solutions: “Social issues cannot be separated from environmental issues, and environmental issues cannot be separated from engineering issues.”
One of the areas of interest to Professor Golovin is reducing the amount of microplastic fibres shed when washing synthetic fabrics, which was not only the topic of his session during the conference, but also the recent focus of this U of T News article.
Keynote speaker Laura Tanguay, a researcher from York University, opened the conference with a talk on developing infrastructure within the Ring of Fire region in Northern Ontario, and its implications for Indigenous communities, engaging with an environmental justice framework. Expanding on the focus of integrating and serving communities, the closing keynote by Homaira Siddiqui, Senior Policy Advisor for Ontario’s Ministry of Energy, discussed enabling an equitable transition to resilient communities.
Attendees enjoyed breakfast and lunch served by Vert Casse-Croûte, a certified green caterer who is also part of the 1% for the Planet group, taking advantage of the Muuse reusable boxed lunches program to reduce single-use plastic waste.
Congratulations to the Sustainable Engineers Association, including CPE member Yazan Zamel, on an engaging and insightful conference!