The LCF2017 Program will explore building low carbon, resilient communities through several key topics, posted below.

Curious about last year’s program? Click here to download the official conference program from the 2016 Livable Cities Forum!

Click through the day tabs below to see our three day program.

Sunday, September 17

1:30 – 5:30 PM

Pre-event workshop: Taking Action on Green Resilience - Adaptation & Mitigation Synergies

It is time to align our efforts on climate change mitigation and adaptation planning, to increase the returns on investment in climate change and infrastructure and attract more funding for implementation. Join us to explore “Green Resilience” measures that yield both climate change mitigation and adaptation benefits, and discover how they can be financed and implemented across Canada.

Green Resilience Strategies and ACT (Adaptation to Climate Change Team) at Simon Fraser University have documented examples of synergistic Green Resilience measures in a variety of sectors, including energy, transportation, water and flood management. Participants will learn about green resilience opportunities such as microgrids + efficiency + renewables, green infrastructure, flood-proofing mass transit, building efficiency, and water conservation. Breakout discussions will focus on research,  analysis, and policy needs to advance the state of practice and accelerate the financing and implementation of green resilience solutions. Light refreshments will be served.

Cost: $45.00 plus 2.5% processing fee and 5% GST.

To register:

To register for the workshop only, click here. Please note registration for the workshop alone will not include access to the Livable Cities Forum from September 18-20, 2017.

To register for both the Livable Cities Forum and the Workshop, visit the Register page. When registering, select “pre-event workshop + conference fee” on the form.  Email for any questions.

Join us Sunday evening for the LCF Dine-Around!

The Sunday dine around event provides an opportunity for delegates to dine at local restaurants and get to know the people attending the Forum.  You can sign up for the dine-around when you register for the Forum.

Please note that delegates are responsible for the cost of their own dinner.


450 Swift St, Victoria

Located in designated heritage site on Victoria’s inner Habour, the timeless waterfront location, the soaring timber frames and rustic brick architecture at CANOE create a vibrant and versatile atmosphere. CANOE handcrafted beers have become legendary in Victoria and throughout the Pacific Northwest for their crisp, clean & pure flavours.  Great food made sustainably, including local seafood.


611 Courtney St, Victoria

10 Acres Bistro Bar and Farm are pioneers in the local Victoria locavore and the farm to table movement. The 10 Acres Farm is located on the Saanich Peninsula and supplies the restaurant with the finest seasonal and organically grown produce and livestock. Their commitment to the farm to table movement and purveyance of locally sourced products has garnered national and international attention.  10 Acres’ locally inspired menu guarantees you that the freshest, often most innovative ingredients available, are used to prepare your meal.


536 Yates St, Victoria

Ferris’ Oyster Bar features deeply coloured wooden floors and rich brick walls accented by candlelight – all of which is supported by a great wine list and the best in fresh seafood from our local waters.  It’s a great place to lounge and enjoy what Vancouver Island has to offer.

Meeting place: The Victoria Conference Centre, first floor registration area. Time to be determined.

Please contact if you have any questions about the Dine-arounds.

Day One

Monday, September 18


7:30 – 8:30 Registration and Buffet Breakfast


8:30 – 10:30     OPENING PLENARY

10:30 – 11:00   COFFEE BREAK


Revenue Strategies for Financing Low Carbon Resilience Initiatives

Explore mechanisms for financing low carbon resilience in your community. Hear about best practices for ensuring the uptake and success of revenue strategies for resilience. You will also learn about current opportunities and strategies for securing the funding needed to advance and implement mitigation and adaptation actions in a meaningful way.


Guillaume Couillard, Green Municipal Fund Advisor, Federation of Canadian Municipalities

Matthew Godsoe, Manager, Research Unit, Public Safety Canada

Laura Zizzo, CEO & Founder, Zizzo Strategy (TBD)

Building Low Carbon Resilience with First Nations

Ensuring First Nations communities have the tools they need to pursue climate change mitigation and adaptation is extremely important for all of Canada. Learn from First Nations climate leaders about the challenges, successes, and opportunities for working together to support the advancement of low carbon resilience.

Speaker announcements coming soon.

Canada's Most Costly Disasters: Exploring the Physical, Ecological, and Health Implications of Wildland Urban Interface Fires

Development in Wildland Urban Interface areas, coupled with the the impacts of climate change, exposes thousands of households to costly and life-threatening wildland fire hazards. This session will explore the physical, ecological, and mental health implications of Wildland Urban Interface Fires and what communities can do to adapt to these impacts.


Dan Sandink, Director of Research, Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction

Kelly Johnston, Executive Director, Partners in Protection Association, FireSmart Canada

Working Together Towards Low Carbon Resilient Communities: Public Sector Organizations and Local Governments

How can public sector organizations, such as conservation authorities or health units, work with local governments to build low carbon, resilient communities? Join us to learn about the projects and partnerships between public sector organizations and local governments that are improving resilience across Canada!

Speaker announcements coming soon.

12:30 – 2:00   NETWORKING LUNCH

12:15 PM Lunch and Learn: Making Canada's National Climate Change Assessment Relevant and the Community Level

Interested in climate change impacts and adaptation? Wondering how to find timely and credible information on the issue that’s relevant to you? Please join us for this interactive lunch-hour workshop on Canada’s national assessment process. Learn more about our assessments and our plans moving forward. Provide your input to help ensure the end products best meet your needs, and find out how to stay engaged as the assessment progresses.


Joanne Egan, Senior Policy Advisor, Natural Resources Canada

Don Lemmen, Manager, Research and Scientific Assessment

Fiona Warren, Senior Science Advisor, Natural Resources Canada


Blue, Green, and Gray Infrastructure: Integrated Solutions for Low Carbon Resilience

Learn about innovative ways that blue, green, and grey infrastructure have been used to meet challenges in urban water management. This session will explore how the three shades of infrastructure can be integrated, merged, and optimized to improve low carbon resilience along with several other co-benefits.


Colin Thorne, Professor and Chair of Physical Geography, Nottingham University

Inspiring Climate Action: The Unusual Suspects

If you’ve ever felt like you’re just preaching to the choir on climate change mitigation and adaptation, join us to learn about engaging the more “unusual suspects.” You might be surprised about who can play important role in low carbon resilience in your community.


Alain Normand, Emergency Manager, City of Brampton

Jack O’Halloran, Director, Business Development, United We Can

Elizabeth Sheehan, President, Climate Smart Businesses

Andrea McDowell, Project Manager, Air Quality and Climate Change, City of Hamilton

Designing Resilient and Low Carbon Buildings: Emerging Technologies, Codes, and Standards

What are the “key ingredients” for low carbon buildings that meet standards and codes, integrate new technologies, and optimize resilience? Learn about the design of low carbon buildings and the co-benefits for community adaptation and urban resilience.


Rob Bernhardt, CEO, Passive House Canada

Ronald Kellet, Professor and Director, School of Architecture + Landscape Architecture, University of British Columbia, Christina Bollo, Postdoctoral Fellow, School of Architecture + Landscape Architecture, UBC and Jon Salter, Postdoctoral Fellow, School of Architecture + Landscape Architecture, UBC

Zachary May, Senior Policy Analyst, Government of British Columbia

Thomas Mueller, President & CEO, Canada Green Building Council

Effective Climate Communication: Strategies For Getting Your Message Across

What is the role of communications in building low carbon and resilient communities? Learn from experts about tools, tricks, and trends in climate communications across Canada. Find out how climate communicators have engaged communities and helped to mobilize climate action through innovative, targeted strategies.


Mark Groulx, Assistant Professor, University of Northern British Columbia

Ewa Jackson, Manager, ICLEI Canada

Cara Pike, Executive Director, Climate Access

3:30 – 4:00    COFFEE BREAK


Highlight Reel: Municipal Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation Plans

This session will feature cities that have worked on combined climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies. Learn about the successes and challenges of doing so, and discuss ‘failing forward’ toward stronger frameworks for integrating mitigation and adaptation into municipal plans and policies.


Anna Mathewson, Manager of Sustainability, City of Surrey

Kerry Ann Charles, Environmental/By-Law Coordinator, Georgina Island First Nation

Kate Miller, Manager, Cowichan Valley Regional District

Jill Yanch, Outreach & Communications Specialist, Town of Bruderheim

Julius Lindsay, Climate Change Specialist, City of Mississauga

Creating Resilient, Low Carbon Food systems

Collective impact coaches have been supporting BC communities to focus their collaborative food system work to achieve a defined, measurable impact. All communities are at different stages and have focused on different food system topics, but all are using a collaborative impact framework.  This panel discussion will include collective impact coaches and  community representatives to talk about how they are using the collective impact framework to build and mainstream more local/low-carbon and resilient food systems.


Erica Crawford, Adaptation Planner and Facilitator, Erica Crawford Consulting (Moderator)

Deirdre Goudriaan, Coordinator, Surrey/White Rock Food Action Coalition

Jenn Meilleur, Coordinator, North Shore Table Matters Network

Parris Marshall Smith, Sustainability Coordinator, Regional District of Central Kootenay

Integrating Ecology and Nature into Low Carbon Resilience

What is the interaction between biodiversity, resilience, and climate change? What is the role of the natural environment in building low carbon and resilient communities? This session will explore case studies of organizations and initiatives that work to integrate ecology into resilience and low carbon planning, as well as the multiple co-benefits of doing so.


Roy Brooke, Principal, Brooke & Associates Consulting

Leslie King, Professor, Royal Roads University and Chris Ling, Assistant Professor, Royal Roads University

Dave Murray, Principal, Kerr Wood Leidal

Edward Nichol, Senior Researcher, Adaptation to Climate Change Team, Simon Fraser University

Is the Medium Really the Message? A Workshop to Explore Messages, Mediums, and Overcoming Communications Pitfalls

The ultimate workshop to learn tips and tricks on how to engage people and get results from experienced communicators. Learning how to develop an elevator pitch and apply gamification strategies to climate communications. ICLEI Canada has also been working on something big…don’t miss the launch of our newest gamification project!


Shelley Hazen, Climate Adaptation and Resiliency Specialist, AECOM

Ewa Jackson, Manager, ICLEI Canada

Shawna Peddle, Director, Partners for Action

6:00-9:00     MAYOR’S DINNER: A night of networking and dialogue on low carbon resilience

Day Two

Tuesday, September 19


7:30 – 8:30 Registration and Buffet Breakfast


8:30 – 9:30     MORNING PLENARY


The Power of Partnerships: Interdisciplinary Approaches to Building Low Carbon and Resilient Communities

Building livable, resilient, and low carbon communities requires interdisciplinary and multi-jurisdictional coordination.This panel includes representatives from  a university, local government, private consultant, climate science provider, and a professional association.


Deborah Harford, Executive Director, Adaptation to Climate Change Team, Simon Fraser University

David Lapp, Practice Lead, Globalization and Sustainable Development, Engineers Canada

Caroline Larrivée, Chef Vulnérabilités, Impacts et Adaptation, Ouranos

Jon Phillipsborn, Associate Vice President: Climate Adaptation Practice Director, AECOM

Cindy Toth, Director, Environmental Policy, Town of Oakville

Climate Change and Human Health: Identifying Connections, Assessing Risks, and Moving to Action

This session will explore multilevel perspectives on the impacts and importance of climate change and health. Questions to be discussed will include: What are the implications of climate change on health? How do these impacts affect communities and sectors differently?  How can public sector organizations work with local governments to reduce impacts of climate change on health? Applying the human health lens, what are the co-benefits of working on adaptation and mitigation?


Melanie Goodchild, Waterloo Institute for Social Innovation and Resilience (WISIR) Fellow/Research Associate, University of Waterloo (TBD)

Gregory Richardson, Policy Analyst, Health Canada

Karina Richters, Environmental Coordinator, City of Windsor

Angie Woo, Lead, Climate Resilience & Adaptation, Lower Mainland Facilities Management, Fraser Health (TBD)

Jackie Yip, PhD Candidate, Institute for Resource, Environment, and Sustainability, University of British Columbia

The Circular Economy: Creating Climate Resilient Economies

Exploring concepts such as the sharing economy, Cradle-to-Grave thinking, lifecycle accounting; this session will look at how moving towards a circular economy can help reduce carbon footprints and promote economic and social resilience.


Natacha Beauchesne, Conseillère en planification, Bureau du développement durable, Ville de Montréal

Jennie Moore, Associate Dean, School of Construction and the Environment, and Cora Hallsworth, ecoCity Footprint Tool Project Manager, Cora Hallsworth Consulting

Paul Shorthouse, BC Regional Director, Delphi Group

Ryan Zizzo, Technical Director, Zizzo Strategy

Managing Flood Risk: Extreme Rainfall, Overland Flooding, and Sea Level Rise Risk across Canada

Climate change impacts facing coastal communities are exacerbated by risks of extreme weather, storm surge, and flooding. Innovative advancements to address flood risk at the community level across Canada. This session will highlight new findings and best practices in adaptation to flooding, while exploring the low carbon opportunities that stem from these initiatives.


Angela Danyluk, Sustainability Specialist, City of Vancouver

Carrie Baron, Manager, Drainage and Environment, Engineering Department, City of Surrey

Gordon McBean, Professor, University of Western Ontario

Dan Sandink, Director of Research, Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction


11:30 – 12:00    COFFEE BREAK

12:00 – 1:30      CONCURRENT SESSIONS


Changing Urbanism and Smart Growth

Changing urbanism and smart growth promotes a shift in the conventional development patterns, and reaches out across disciplines.  This session will explore the implications of compact urban design for low carbon resilience and the importance of smart growth in creating walkable, safe, and sustainable communities.


Alex Boston, Principal, Boston Consulting

Catherine Dubois, Postdoctoral Fellow, Centre for Landscape Research, University of Toronto

Suzanne Smith, Planner II, City of North Vancouver

Ray Tomalty, Principal, Smart Cities Research Services

Sarah Webb, Active Transportation Project Management Specialist, City of Victoria

Getting from Targets to Local Action: Lessons on how to apply multilevel governance at the local level on Renewable Energy

This session will explore the importance of multi-level governance for achieving 100% renewable energy commitments. Representatives from the federal government, the Province of BC, and municipalities will discuss how 100% renewable energy targets can be achieved at the local level.

Brad Badelt, Acting Assistant Director, Sustainability, City of Vancouver

David Creery, CAO, Town of Woodstock, ON (TBD)

Rose Murphy, Postdoctoral fellow, Simon Fraser University

Brad Badelt, Senior Sustainability Specialist, City of Vancouver

Steve Young, Climate and Environmental Sustainability Specialist, City of Victoria

Innovative Approaches to Implementation

Pushing traditional boundaries of decision making and implementation requires creativity and local innovation.This session will explore unique and effective ways that communities have been able to bolster the implementation of low carbon and resilient action using partnerships, innovative financing, and communication and engagement.


Travis Allan, Partner, DeMarco Allan LLP & Suzanne Goldberg, Director of Research and Outreach, Sustainable Transportation Action Research Team (SFU Start)

Karina Richters, Environmental Coordinator, City of Windsor

John Madden, Director, Sustainability and Engineering, University of British Columbia

Decentralized and/or Locally Generated Energy Systems

This session will explore district energy, local renewables and the carbon and resilience implications and opportunities for pursuing cheap, local, energy now and into the future! Get inspired by practitioners and municipal leaders who are spearheading innovative renewable energy in their communities!


Lori Ackerman, Mayor, City of Fort St. John, British Columbia

Sara Barron, PhD Candidate, Collaborative for Advanced Landscape Planning, University of British Columbia

Jason Owen, District Energy Manager, City of Surrey

1:30 – 2:30    NETWORKING LUNCH


The Role of Municipal and Regional Governments in Building and Mainstreaming more Local, Low-carbon, and Resilient Food Systems

Municipalities and regions have an important role to play in creating more local, low-carbon, and resilient food systems and are increasingly taking a coordinated approach to retaining and expanding regional food and farming viability. This panel discussion will compare municipal and regional food system initiatives, highlight how this area has evolved over the past 20 + years, and look ahead at what is to come from a low-carbon perspective.


Virginie Lavallee-Picard, Food Systems Coordinator, City of Victoria

Jeff Weightman, SGI Economic Development for Food & Agriculture, Captial Region District

Mitigation and Adaptation: From Antagonists to Allies for the Development of Resilient Urban Environments

This session is meant to be a space for collaborative learning. The presence of adaptation and mitigation experts with their specific knowledge and experience will open the debate on resilience as an integrative and useful concept for fighting climate change in urban environments.

Speaker announcements coming soon.

Exploring Post-Secondary Leadership in Climate Action

What is the role of post-secondary institutions in developing low-carbon resilient communities? Hear from experts at universities and colleges about how they increase their resilience and reduce emissions both on campus and through local partnerships. 

Speaker announcements coming soon.


4:00 – 4:30    COFFEE BREAK


Changing Transportation: Getting People out of Personal Carbon-based Cars

How can communities create sustainable, low carbon, and resilient transportation networks? This session will explore the importance of regional collaboration in transforming transportation systems.

Rebecca Newlove, Manager of Sustainability, District of Saanich

Sarah Webb, Active Transportation Project Management Specialist, City of Victoria

Three Important Factors For Adapting to Climate Change: Location, Location, Location

In this session, representatives from three geographically adjacent regional districts (Metro Vancouver, the Capital Region, and Cowichan Valley) will compare and contrast recent experiences with climate adaptation planning initiatives. Each is at the regional district level, made use of the same future climate projections from the Pacific Climate Impacts Consortium, and even involved the same third party consultant to assist with authoring respective reports about the climate projections and impacts. All these similarities help to highlight the very different ways that information was received and used in each case. The lessons learned from this comparison should be useful to anyone carrying out adaptation planning in Canada.


Trevor Murdock, Lead, Regional Climate Impacts, Pacific Climate Impacts Consortium

Nikki Elliott, Climate Action Program Coordinator, Capital Regional District

Kate Miller, Manager, Cowichan Valley Regional District

Lillian Zaremba, Senior Project Engineer, Metro Vancouver

Plan4DE Workshop: Tool to Embed District Energy into Municipal Planning

District energy is a key strategy in the transition to renewable heating and cooling as well as increasing resilience of the energy system. Plan4DE (Plan for district energy) is an open source tool designed specifically for planners to facilitate consideration of district energy into official plans and neighborhood plans. Municipal planning can either enable or prevent the feasibility of district energy and Plan4DE is designed to embed district energy into the planning process. Attend this session to learn about Plan4DE!


Yuill Herbert, Director, Sustainability Solutions Group

Mel de Jager, Associate, Sustainability Solutions Group

Julie Meyer-Macleod, Director, Sustainability Solutions Group

Ted Sheldon, Clean Energy Advisor, Province of BC

Using Zero Emissions Vehicles to Improve Post-disaster Resiliency

As local governments work to reduce operational GHG emissions, the addition of zero emissions vehicles (ZEVs) to large vehicle fleets provide an added value of energy storage. This creates interesting new possibilities for local governments to improve resiliency alongside GHG reductions. In partnership with the BC Ministry of Energy and Mines and the Instiute for Integrated Energy Systems (IESVic) at the University of Victoria, the CRD has launched a zero emissions fleet initiative with the goal of significantly reducing emissions from the the CRD fleet. Through a research partnership with IESVic, an innovative element of the initiative includes investigating opportunities to use electric vehicles in emergency scenarios. With speakers from the CRD, BC Ministry of Energy and Mines and IESVic this panel discussion will present results of the Zero Emissions Fleet Initiative achieved to date.


Liz Ferris, Climate Action Analyst, Capital Regional District

Curran Crawford,  Associate Professor, University of Victoria

Dian Ross, Clean Transportation Engineer, Ministry of Energy and Mines, Government of British Columbia


Day Three

Wednesday, September 20


7:00 – 8:00 Buffet Breakfast


8:00 – 9:00 Breakfast Plenary

9:00 Study tour meet up and depart


Tour of Dockside Green

Dockside Green is a landmark sustainable development project located on 15 acres on Victoria’s Inner Harbour. This project is an excellent example of brownfield redevelopment and green building design including LEED for Neighbourhood Development certification, on-site wastewater treatment, water management, renewable energy technology, diverse mobility, and affordable housing options. The tour will include a historical and current review of the property and tours of the biological wastewater treatment plant and biomass gasification plant.

Heritage Building Tour

Much of Victoria’s lasting charm and character stem from its unique collection of well-preserved historic buildings, many of which date back to the earliest days of settlement in British Columbia. During this current period of high economic activity, a range of important issues must be considered to maintain the City’s commitment to preserve its heritage including seismic upgrades, affordability, and the low-carbon goals of the City. This tour will visit several development examples where the City and the development community have looked to find solutions to these broad challenges.

Bicycles, Buses, & Boats– Oh My!

Victoria is a city on the move. In order to accommodate new growth and support objectives on climate action, health, economic development and community resiliency, the City of Victoria is transforming the built environment to increase mode share for cycling, walking and public transit. This multi-modal tour will showcase examples of transportation infrastructure and services and provide delegates with insights on land use and development policies that help to reduce demand for parking. The tour will feature protected bike lanes, double-decker buses, car sharing, harbour ferries, bike parking, pedestrian paths and much more!

Explanatory note: This tour will be a true multi-modal experience. Participants should expect moderate physical activity and be prepared for the weather. Tour Size minimum of 10, maximum of 24.

Local Food Tour

Not only does Victoria have excellent local restaurants, gardening and urban food production are popular year-round activities in Victoria, the City of Gardens. Come learn about the innovative ways that the City of Victoria is helping to increase the amount of food grown in the city. Hear about commercial urban agriculture, backyard chickens and bees. Visit a community commons garden, a community orchard, and boulevard gardens. We will also visit a small-scale commercial urban food producer, growing and selling food crops right here in the City.


Program Topics

This year’s program will be delivered in a variety of unique formats and several interactive and dynamic sessions.

Showcasing local leadership in low carbon resilience of local governments and practitioners from across Canada and internationally.

Building the business case for investing in resilience, economic tools for measuring and financing actions, and ways the financial sector can be engaged in the conversation.

Maximizing the co-benefits of synergizing low carbon and resilient initiatives.

Integrating local solutions and building innovative, community-wide partnerships to enhance low carbon resilience.

Moving from planning to action on climate change adaptation and low carbon initiatives.