North Vancouver adding climate change warning labels at gas pumps

VANCOUVER — North Vancouver will become the first city in the country to require climate change warning labels on gas pumps, after city councillors voted unanimously in favour of the move.

Environmentalists are celebrating, saying warning labels on pumps will help people realize they are contributing to climate change.

Non-profit group “Our Horizon” was behind the idea. It has been working with various municipalities in Canada to require climate change labels on gas pump nozzles.

“It is historic on a global scale,” the group’s executive director Rob Shirkey told Global News.

It’s still not clear what the labels will look like or when they will be displayed at North Shore gas stations. Council also debated what message should be sent, with some worrying going negative is the wrong approach.

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But there is concern from those who own gas stations about the loss of valuable advertising space on the pumps.

“British Columbia is the only province in Canada that has mandatory pre-pay,” said Andrew Klukas with Western Convenience Stores Association. “So to have a negative image on that very valuable piece of real estate right around the pump, we would rather put something positive there.”

The message will likely be one that includes a climate change warning, as well as tips for drivers to help them get better fuel efficiency.

WATCH: Mayor Darryl Mussatto explains why his community is putting climate change warnings on gas pumps.

North Vancouver Mayor Darrel Mussatto told residents at Monday night’s public hearing that it’s time for the city to take action.

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“It is 2015 and we need to talk about how we are going to move forward as a society on a reduced carbon or carbon-free diet and it is going to be a challenge,” he said.

Other councils have supported the idea of putting the climate change labels on gas pumps, but North Vancouver is the first city to pass the motion unanimously.

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