The housing crisis in Canada has been decades of policy failures in the making arguably starting in the 90s when the federal government stopped building housing for people. Now, the housing crisis has grown to the point where one of Canada’s largest banks is calling for socialized housing to be built again. This means building house for people who are so priced out of the market that renting is hard for them due to the downward pressures from wealthy home buyers.The bank also calls for other measures to be taken, as with most things, there isn’t one simple solution.
There is a case to critically consider next-best approach(es) to non-market housing across the country. There are many learnings to be leveraged from crowding private capital into affordable housing and there is still much more to be done in that ‘middle market’. This is essential but insufficient. The largely scathing OAG report on basic access to housing suggests we have neither adequate governance frameworks nor the tools at present to address the magnitude of the challenges at the acute end of the housing continuum.
Canada needs a more ambitious, urgent and well-resourced strategy to expand its social housing infrastructure. Aims to double the stock of social housing across the country could be a start. This would bring Canada just in line with OECD (and G7) averages, but well- below some European and Nordic markets. There is no particular magic behind this number: bringing the stock to 1.3 mn dwellings would not fully close gaps. But it signals far more ambition than the 150 k incremental units targeted under the National Housing Strategy with the bulk of its efforts focused on keeping the current count whole.
Money makes the world go round, but it can also make the world go burn. If you care about the planet, the people on it, or just life in general then you probably don’t want your investments to destroy what you care about. Investment funds that claim to protect the environment and it’s important to ensure that they actually do what they claim, and there are organizations that check that. As a consumer you can talk to your bank or financial advisor about this to bring more awareness to your concerns.
[#1] Blast the banks on socials.
Big banks are incredibly worried about their reputations, and they’re extra sensitive during their annual shareholder meetings. Those happen to be happening right now, so fire up those accounts and get to blastin’ about it.
[#2] Switch your bank.
If you don’t want your money being lent to fossil fuel companies, switch to a bank that won’t do that. There are a bunch of full service, FDIC-insured banking options out there to choose from.
[#3] Go outside and get loud!
Put on some pants, walk outside, and get loud about how absolutely f%&ed it is that banks are still lending to the fossil fuel sector.
Customers of banks are getting sick of their money being spent on destroying the world so they’re doing something about it. The Dirty Dozen banks are a group of banks that Greenpeace argues are the worst when it comes to investing. Barclays is one of those banks thanks to their investments in the shameful Canadian tar sands. Greenpeace started their awareness campaign and now people are taking the next step by losing their accounts with Barclays. It’s a great direct action to send an important message.
Of those who signed the petition, 6,000 told the environmental group that they were ready to close their accounts if Barclays did not heed their warning, while some said they had already done so.
â€œMoving your bank account is quite a big undertaking so we were genuinely surprised when people started doing it without us even suggesting it,â€ said Greenpeace oil campaigner Hannah Martin.
â€œThis new information shows that the opposition to Barclays funding dirty tar sands projects isnâ€™t just broad, but deep.
â€œPeople are prepared to put themselves through a bit of bureaucratic hassle to try to persuade their bank to do the right thing.â€
Banks have a reputation for being too greedy for the good of anyone outside themselves; however, some banks are thinking in the long term. The African Development Bank has announced a partnership with Green Climate Fund to push renewable energy and resilient systems. They figure that Africa is the best part of the world to achieve a sustainable economy because of the increasing investment in the continent and the ability to ‘leap frog’ older energy technology.
Together with the Green Climate Fund, we can do a lot to move the continent towards low-carbon and climate-resilient development.â€
Approved as a GCF Accredited Entity in March 2016, AfDB is working on a series of mitigation and adaptation initiatives at the national and regional levels designed to enhance African countriesâ€™ access to GCF resources.
GCF Executive Director, Howard Bamsey said GCFâ€™s partnership with AfDB will be key in unlocking the potential across the African continent to pursue climate resilient and low-emission growth.
Aspiration financial firm is a B-corporatoin that wants to help people “vote with their wallets”. It’s incredibly hard for individuals to stay up to date on the damage that large organizations do despite that a lot of people care. Consumers want to punish companies for some of their actions from United kicking people off airplanes to Shell lying about climate change. This means there’s an opportunity for Aspiration to help people divert money from companies that make the world worse, and the company is growing as a result.
Called Aspiration Impact Measurement (AIM), the program analyzes not one, but thousands of data points to generate two scores for companies: The â€œPeopleâ€ score gauges how well companies treat their employees and communities, and the â€œPlanetâ€ score assesses companiesâ€™ sustainability and eco-friendly practices. Every time an Aspiration customer swipes the debit card associated with their account to make a payment toward a company, that companyâ€™s Planet and People scores are funneled into the customerâ€™s personalized AIM score, which reflects the positive (or negative) impact of where they shop.
â€œPeople have been hungering for this exact kind of information,â€ Cherny says. â€œWe see this in our customers, we see this in all these surveys that are coming out about how younger people especially, but consumers overall, are thinking about how a company behaves and how its products are created as they make decisions on where to buy. But until now, they havenâ€™t really had the information to be able to do so.â€