VIDEO: How can co-operatives overcome barriers to climate action?

  31 October 2023

October 15 to 21, 2023 was Co-op Week in Canada. This year’s theme was “Co-operating on Climate Action.” The theme focused on co-operatives and mutuals working together to find reliable solutions to help their planet and their communities. It is together, as a movement, that we can find and share reliable solutions to serve our communities and our planet

On Wednesday, October 18, Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada (CMC) hosted an online a panel discussion entitled “How can co-operatives overcome barriers to climate action?”. This online panel brought together climate action experts from various sized co-ops from different sectors. Each face unique challenges specific to their industry. They also hold similar opportunities for leveraging larger networks of support for sharing knowledge and resources.

Carol Fraser, Consultant and Senior Analyst at Sustainability Solutions Group (SSG), moderated the panel:

  • Alison Coates, Director, Climate Strategy and Performance at Vancity
  • Tom Ewart, A.V.P., Sustainability at Co-operators
  • Irfaan Hasham, Regional Energy Coach at CHF Canada
  • Noémie Varin-Lachapelle, Environmental and Emergency Measures Director at Sollio Groupe Coopératif
  • Joanna Hausen, Manager of Operation and Projects at Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada

Ms. Fraser guided the various panellists through an engaging discussion. They explored—among other things—the difficulties faced by their organizations when approaching climate action. The panel agreed it is no longer possible to put off confronting the realities of the climate crisis. They explored how the co-operative movement can support a just and resilient transition to a decarbonized future for all.

A green house icon with a leaf cutout in the middle.