Chicago/ Real Estate & Development
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Published on May 16, 2024
Montréal, Chicago, Québec City, and Milwaukee Mayors Unite for Blue-Green Economic Hub in Great Lakes and St. Lawrence BasinSource: X/Mayor Brandon Johnson

Montréal played host to a landmark agreement as Mayor Brandon Johnson and his counterparts from Montréal, Québec City, and Milwaukee inked a pledge to turn the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River Basin into an economic hub with a focus on sustainability. The mayors proclaimed their united front at the Cities Initiative Annual Conference, setting a ten-year goal to foster a resilient and inclusive economy that also strings along the safeguarding of precious freshwater sources, as reported by the City of Chicago.

"I am proud to join other mayors across North America in pledging to transform our basin into a thriving blue-green economic corridor," Mayor Johnson stated, emphasizing the initiative's intention to combat the longstanding underinvestment in places like Chicago by prioritizing good-paying jobs and affordable water resources. Notably, with the Cities Initiative membership tallying over 270, a resolution was passed to kickstart the Mayor's Commission on Economic Transformation, a concerted effort to develop the Great Lakes region strategically.

Mayors from the involved cities recognize the untapped potential of the basin which comprises a staggering 84% of North America's surface freshwater. They see this natural wealth as a catalyst for drawing blue and green industries into the fold, potentially fostering sustainable economic growth, the announcement detailed.

"Blue-green economic transformation is at the heart of our work in Montréal, and I am happy to see this shared commitment rippling through the basin," Mayor Plante of Montréal commented, serving as the Canadian Co-Chair of the freshly launched Mayors Commission. The move was flavored with optimism about utilizing natural resources to couple economic development with the protection of freshwater. The pledge marks a significant stride for economic revitalization, Mayor Johnson of Milwaukee chimed in, highlighting Milwaukee's existing forays into freshwater innovation and green infrastructure.

It's clear, from Québec City's Mayor Marchand, that the collaboration is essential—not just for the sustainability of natural resources but as a framework for cities to learn from one another's triumphs and pitfalls in this arena. The cities at the forefront of this agreement are stepping up as pioneers, setting a course to mesh sustainable practices with economic prosperity in a world increasingly in tune with environmental imperatives.

Chicago-Real Estate & Development