Fund and Implement Our Ambitious Climate Action Plan
To state the obvious, we will not stop climate change here in Ann Arbor. We can, however prepare ourselves for its effects and do our part to reduce our community’s use of greenhouse gases. We are already altering the mix of our new street trees in anticipation of a warmer climate, and our storm water system will need to evolve to accommodate even greater precipitation.
With the federal government’s shameful renunciation of the Paris Climate Accords, local action has become more important than ever. To this end, I signed a Compact of Mayors pledge, which states in part that:
“We will continue to lead. We are increasing investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency. We will buy and create more demand for electric cars and trucks. We will increase our efforts to cut greenhouse gas emissions, create a clean energy economy, and stand for environmental justice. And if the President wants to break the promises made to our allies enshrined in the historic Paris Agreement, we’ll build and strengthen relationships around the world to protect the planet from devastating climate risks.”
Ann Arbor adopted a Climate Action Plan in 2012. We have not, however, had the funding to make meaningful progress. With the Fairness Rebate from the County Millage, however, we will now have nearly $900K+ per year to effect the goals of Ann Arbor’s Climate Action Plan including but not limited to funding EnergySmart Ann Arbor efforts in the areas of home audits, education and other programs that serve to improve energy efficiency and reduce consumption, Charge Up Ann Arbor! programs which support electric vehicle charging infrastructure, group buys and fleet conversions, and Solar for All programs providing discounted individual solar purchases for owned residential and commercial properties and community solar offerings.
Further, we have committed the City of Ann Arbor – the municipal organization – will meet the 100% clean and renewable goal by 2035 or sooner through a combination of energy efficiency measures, renewable energy sources and optimal business practices. This will not alone meet our Climate Action Plan goals – City municipal government operations account for only 1.3% of total community-wide greenhouse gas emissions – but it will be an important contribution to the community’s effort.