Alcan to serve as lead corporate sponsor in Global Sustainable Cities InitiativeAlcan has announced that it will serve as the lead corporate sponsor for the +30 Network initiative, whose aim is to create a global network of cities sharing expertise on sustainable urban planning for the next 100 years. Company CEO Travis Engen, said Alcan sees the +30 Network as a remarkable opportunity as he announced Alcan's involvement prior to the opening of the Globe 2004 conference in Vancouver on business and the environment.
"Our major product, aluminum, is one of the most sustainable products in the world because of its unique properties and infinite recyclability. We expect our involvement with the +30 Network project to help us identify future opportunities to incorporate aluminum, engineered products, and composites into the design of sustainable urban infrastructures. This is a very exciting project for Alcan with the opportunity to develop knowledge that is directly applicable to our business," he said.
Engen said the +30 Network project is consistent with the sustainability platform that Alcan has recently adopted for its Community Investment Program (CIP). He described it as Alcan's second "signature" project under the company's new CIP platform and said it was fitting that it has originated in British Columbia. Alcan is celebrating its 50th anniversary of operations in the province.
Alcan's first major project under its new CIP program is the $1-million (U.S.) Alcan Prize for Sustainability, launched at the World Economic Forum Annual General Meeting in January, to be awarded annually to a not-for-profit organization that has made outstanding contributions to economic, environmental, and social sustainability (ELW February 2, 2004).
The +30 Network project is a collaboration involving the Liu Institute for Global Issues, the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI), the Greater Vancouver Regional District (GVRD), and the International Centre for Sustainable Cities (ICSC). It is spearheaded by former BC Premier Mike Harcourt, who is a senior associate with the Liu Institute and chair of the ICSC Board.
The first phase of the project aims to create a network of 15 Canadian cities and 15 cities in other parts of the world which will act as a global "think tank" on sustainable urban planning. This phase will culminate in a progress report at the World Urban Forum in 2006, one of the major international events to be held in Vancouver leading up to the 2010 Olympics. The +30 Network is expected to grow and eventually become self-sustaining, as new cities join to learn best practices from established ones.