September’s record-breaking temperatures are a stark reminder: climate change is here, now. Whether in northern communities, a small agricultural town or a bustling city, every Ontarian felt climate’s wrath this summer. The smoke from raging wildfires in northern Ontario and Quebec filled my lungs thousands of kilometres away in Mississauga.

Government action cannot be a distant aspiration; it's an immediate necessity. Mississauga has championed aggressive climate action, introducing the city’s first climate action strategy and setting ambitious emissions reduction targets on the road to achieving net zero by at least 2050.

My mission started when I was elected the city's mayor in 2014. I earned a mandate to transition a suburb into a thriving, densified, urban landscape. Recognizing the need, we transformed carbon-heavy sectors like buildings, transportation and energy.

By ending exclusionary zoning in our downtown and promoting infill development and gentle density, we have made Mississauga a more walkable, livable community. We’ve remediated brownfield and contaminated sites and underused shopping malls, transforming them into thriving, mixed-use neighbourhoods. One of our proudest feats? One of North America’s first net-zero firehalls.

Alongside urbanization, we are massively investing in public transit. The Hazel McCallion Line will be the spine of our LRT network integrated with expanded GO Train service and improved local bus and bus-rapid transit systems. We’ve lowered fares to make eco-friendly commuting convenient, replaced 41 diesel-powered city buses with hybrids, and installed over 70 municipal EV-charging stations.

In addition to reducing emissions from fossil fuels, we’ve made tremendous progress on protecting nature with the creation of new parks, trails and green spaces. I helped lead the charge to protect our Great Lakes as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Our council was one of the first to oppose Doug Ford's removal of protected land from the Greenbelt to build a highway because I will always stand up for our green spaces and agricultural lands.

While cities like ours are surging ahead, there's a distressing lack of provincial leadership. Premier Ford doesn’t have a plan. He’s cancelled programs that could reduce pollution, clean the air, improve our health and create green jobs.

I have a different approach. I'll make combatting climate change a central operating principle of the next Ontario Liberal government so we can set up future generations for success — just as I have as mayor of Ontario’s third-largest city.

Ontario deserves better than what we see today. Under my leadership, we will make Ontario a net-zero province by 2050 and lead by example by transforming the public sector itself by 2040. We will protect 30 per cent of Ontario's land and water by 2030, including the Great Lakes, Lake Simcoe and other major bodies of water. This interconnected action includes permanently protecting and expanding the Greenbelt — not swapping pieces out to benefit well-connected, wealthy friends.

While cities like Mississauga are surging ahead with climate measures, there's a distressing lack of provincial leadership in Ontario, writes @BonnieCrombie @OntLiberal #CityofMississauga #onpoli #OntarioLiberals

Partnerships with Indigenous communities on all matters related to their land and water rights will be foundational. We will encourage Indigenous Protected Areas and responsible development of critical mineral deposits. We will electrify transportation, make homes more energy-efficient and roll out EV infrastructure.

With a focus on a sustainable economy, we will also target doubling waste diversion rates in a decade, invest in clean technology, revitalize public transit and implement sustainable urban planning initiatives like protected bike lanes and green spaces.

The overarching goal? Make Ontario climate-change resilient, healthy and thriving.

We owe action to future generations — it’s a moral imperative. Engaging with young people and communities across Ontario this summer fortified my resolve to protect nature, clean our energy sources, improve transit and invest in climate-resilient infrastructure.

Bonnie Crombie is mayor of Mississauga and a candidate for leader of the Ontario Liberal Party.

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From a British Columbian:
You have done good work! Best wishes on defeating Ford!

Bonnie Crombie is an example of exactly where Canada's political effort needs to be placed and, with her work on the ground, exactly what to do regarding Canadian cities. She has provided a plan.

Trudeau's response should be rewarding cities that have followed through on the smart planning measures Crombie enacted with new levels of transit and electrical upgrades in cities and individual homes and businesses.

This proves that often the best work on climate is local.

There doesn't seem to be much "Bolder" to her comments. I know she's still a municipal politicians but her comments sound like those of a municipal politician. We need to decarbonize and we need to do it fast. What is she going to do with the electrical supply. Currently Doug Ford is making it worse with gas plant expansion and nuclear expansion that will take too long and be extremely expensive. How does she propose to electrify the transportation and manufacturing sectors of Ontario? How is she going to persuade citizens to pay attention to the impending environmental collapse and not listen to the oil and gas propaganda? Is she going to help people electrify. The current federal rebates for home and cars is inadequate for serious adoption to occur. She really just sounds like another Trudeau. All talk and lots of help for the oil industry.

Perhaps you missed the part about eroding exclusionary zoning. Cars / oil / km of asphalt depend on demand, and the suburbs are filled to the brim with them because they were designed specifically to be utterly car dependent.

Municipal politicians have more power and leeway than commonly assumed. Urbanize the suburbs with multi-use zoning and efficacious urbanism catalyzed by high capacity electric rail. These are long term solutions, whereas EVs, charging infrastructure and buses will help decarbonize personal transportation until the suburban conversion is complete.

I wish the Ontario Liberal candidate much good will.

As an Ontarian I am supporting Bonnie Crombie to be the new leader of the Ontario Liberal Party.
Why? There are many reasons to support her, including her demonstrated commitment to take strong action on Climate Change. And perhaps especially because I think she can beat the corrupt government of Doug Ford and become an honest and great new Premier of Ontario.