The City of Richmond and UC Berkeley are working on a Climate Action Plan. But before anything is finalized, they want feedback from members of the community.
The plans examine greenhouse gas emissions in the city, and proposes ways to reduce them.
Last year Richmond resolved to confront climate change and pollution, and as part of that process, it’s creating this Climate Action Plan. A new law, signed by Governor Jerry Brown last year, directs money from California’s emissions market to “disadvantaged communities.” In theory, the CAP could make Richmond more eligible for this money.
“CAPs are not required to receive State funding at this juncture,” said Adam Lenz, Richmond’s Sustainability Coordinator. “However, it is anticipated that cities will likely have to have an adopted CAP to receive funding in the future.”
The plan is supposed to improve the health of Richmond residents as well as reduce emissions.
Last Wednesday night, Mayor Gayle McLaughlin and City Manager Bill Lindsay spoke briefly about Richmond’s environmental successes before students from Berkeley’s City and Regional Planning program presented their initial recommendations for Richmond’s plan.
Afterward, community members walked around the council chambers to different stations where they learned more details about the plan. They wrote suggestions and feedback about the on sticky notes.
More than 50 peopled attended the session, but the majority were UC Berkeley students.
“I would like to see more people from my neighborhood,” said Cheryl Vaughn, who lives in the Iron Triangle. “We should be here because of our proximity to Chevron.”
In 2005, commercial and industrial businesses accounted for 89% percent of emissions, according to an inventory by Richmond. Due to privacy restrictions, the city does not know how this number breaks down for each business. Students are working on an updated inventory that will help track progress and inform next steps.
In December, students will present their final findings and suggestions to the City Council.