Ottawa: An Indo-Canadian international human rights law expert is set to be the next chief commissioner of the Ontario Human Rights Commission, a media report said.
“I want to extend my congratulations to Renu Mandhane on her nomination as Ontario’s new human rights commissioner,” Canada-based The Voice quoted Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne as saying on Thursday.
Mandhane is currently serving as the University of Toronto’s executive director of the international human rights program.
A long-time advocate for the advancement of women’s rights, Mandhane is a member of the Canada Committee of Human Rights watch.
“As a long-time advocate for human rights with a focus on advancing women’s rights, we are fortunate that someone so passionate and experienced will lead the important work done by the Ontario Human Rights Commission,” Wynne said.
Mandhane welcomed the nomination as an opportunity to serve “the needs of the most vulnerable members of our society”.
“My work at the international level has impressed upon me how important it is to act locally to ensure sustainable social change. I am humbled to be provided with an opportunity to take up that challenge,” she said.
A mobile application launched in dozens of U.S. and Canadian cities on Monday measures the planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions of inner-city travel, its creators said, letting concerned commuters map their so-called carbon footprints.
Mapping app Cowlines can suggest the most efficient route as well which uses the least fuel, combining modes of transport such as bicycling and walking, within cities, its Vancouver, Canada-based creators said.
Some two-thirds of the world’s population is expected to settle in urban areas by 2050, according to the United Nations.
The trend presents an environmental challenge, given that the world’s cities account for the bulk of greenhouse gas emissions.
Not only will the app measure a trip’s emissions and suggest alternatives, it will provide the data to cities and urban planners working on systems from subway lines to bike-sharing programs, said Jonathan Whitworth, chief strategy officer at Greenlines Technology, which created the app.
“As you would imagine here in Canada, especially Western Canada, most people are driven by the environmental side of it,” Whitworth told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.
The app aims to encourage users in 62 U.S. and Canadian cities to use cleaner modes of transportation, from mass transit to walking or biking, he said.
In the United States, mass transit accounts for less than 2 percent of passenger miles traveled, according to Daniel Sperling, founding director of the Institute of Transportation Studies at the University of California, Davis.
“People are starved for good information and data for good travel choices,” said Sperling.
The app’s suggested route is a cowline – city planner parlance for the fastest route, said Whitworth. In pastoral settings, a cowline is the most direct path cattle use to reach grazing grounds.