2015 SBC Lifetime Achievement Award Winners
Please join Sustainable Buildings Canada in congratulating 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award recipients:
Dr. Louise Comeau
Executive Director of Climate Action Network Canada
Former Environmental Commissioner of Ontario and 2015 Federal Green Party candidate
Managing Director, Sustainability with ECD JLL
The three distinguished Canadians were recognized for their outstanding contributions to creating a more sustainable built environment on October 1st at the 2015 Green Building Festival held at Daniels Spectrum in the revitalized Regent Park community in downtown Toronto. The honourees received attractive 100% post-consumer recycled glass plaques.
Louise has extensive experience working with non-government organizations, associations, and climate change advocacy networks in Canada and internationally to advance federal, provincial and municipal climate and sustainability policy.
In addition to stints at the Ontario and BC climate change secretariats, Louise was instrumental in establishing the Green Municipal Fund now valued at $550-million at the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM), as well as a host of other successful initiatives, including the Sustainable Community Awards and Sustainability Communities Conference.
Louise has served on many boards and consultative processes, including the Ontario Power Authority, Sierra Club of Canada, and the Joint Public Advisory Committee, the engagement arm of the NAFTA Commission for Environmental Cooperation. Louise’s consulting focus is on bringing more positive and ethically grounded approaches and analysis to environmental education, public engagement, and policy and program development.
Louise completed a PhD in Environmental Management at the University of New Brunswick (UNB) in Fredericton in May 2014. Her research explored the environmental ethics associated with environmental practices. She completed her master’s in environmental education and communication at Royal Roads University in 2008.
As Executive Director of Climate Action Network Canada – Réseau action climat Canada (CAN-Rac), she is working to support our national coalition of more than 100 organizations that brings labour, development, faith-based, and aboriginal groups together with the key national and provincial environmental organizations working on climate change.
Gord Miller was the Environmental Commissioner of Ontario from February 1, 2000 to May 18, 2015. He was appointed to a five-year term in 2000 and was reappointed to this position in 2005 and 2010 for two consecutive five-year terms. As environment commissioner, Miller issued strongly-worded reports annually, calling the province to account on its environmental commitments. Starting in 2008, he added special reports on greenhouse gas emissions and energy conservation.
Miller did not shy away from direct criticism of government decisions and longstanding abuses in law. An early example was his direct condemnation of SLAPP lawsuits for their negative effect on public advocacy. Miller’s reports very strongly supported “environmental activists” who argued “the practice is widespread in the development industry and used to pacify activists and environmentalists”, that is, silence them with fear of civil liability. Ontario passed an anti-SLAPP law in 2010.
In 2013 Miller called to public attention the fact that Ontario’s cabinet had allocated to itself, in the 2012 budget, the power to turn over public land to the exclusive control of private, multinational corporations. In a formal report Miller said that this, combined with cuts to staff and programs at Ministries of Natural Resources and the Environment , all “quietly and without public consultation”, led to a situation with “no rules”. Other actions were, Miller said, “gutting” protections for species at risk and that it was time for hydraulic facturing regulation.
In 2014 Miller warned that Ontario had done “very little” other than closing coal plants to meet its 2020 emissions targets, and had failed to build transit and other efficient infrastructure.
On May 19, 2015, Miller sought the Green Party of Canada for the seat of Guelph and on June 8, 2015, he was selected to run. He had gone to university there in 1977-79 and helped found the Ontario Public Interest Research Group in Guelph.
As Managing Director, Sustainability with ECD JLL, Jiri Skopek provides advice to owners and managers of large portfolios on sustainable development in the fields of design, asset and facility management, emergency preparedness, business continuity and smart building intelligence.
Jiri is best known for developing Green Globes environmental assessment tools, which include modules for Design of New Buildings, Sustainable Interiors and Operation and Management of Existing Buildings (BOMA Canada/ GBI US), University Campuses (APPA) and Building Intelligence Quotient (BIQ).
These assessment modules have been adopted and are promoted in North America by various organizations such as Green Building Initiative (GBI), BOMA Canada, CABA and APPA. As an architect and planner, Jiri has contributed to Toronto’s skyline. He was senior designer with Bregman and Hamann Architects of Toronto, and Master Planner for the BCE complex in downtown Toronto.
In the 1990’s he ran the Paris office of Santiago Calatrava, Designer of BCE Place galleria. He produced a study of financial incentives to foster green development of Toronto waterfront precincts and developed Sustainable Urban Design Guidelines for communities including the Region of Niagara and Seaton Lands
Jiri has been involved in many international sustainable community activities throughout his career. He was a founding participant in Solar Research and Development at Milton Keynes Development Corporation, in England, and designed the first active solar house in the U.K. With the Llewelyn-Davies International he was a Planning Consultant to the governments of the Sultanate of Oman and Qatar on community development and government land use policies.
In Saudi Arabia, he designed the new town of Jizan and was the Chief Urban Designer for the new Campus, King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah. He was a City Planner, responsible for Land Use Control and Urban Design in Downtown Edmonton. He was a finalist in the International Milwaukee “City of the Future” competition and an International urban design competition for redevelopment of Railway lands in Prague.
Jiri has also been on the Canadian Team for the International Green Building Challenge every round from 2000 to the present and is a board member of Sustainable Buildings Canada, Sustainable Housing Foundation and Beach Renewable Power Coop. He also serves as the representative of the Canadian Committee to the ISO TC59/SC3 International Team on Sustainable Building Construction.