The City Council on Tuesday unanimously passed a resolution declaring a climate emergency and a focused commitment to net zero emissions by 2030.
It’s a direction the City has been moving in dating back to 2014, when the City Council adopted the Calistoga Climate Action Plan, with a goal to reduce the City's emissions by 15% from its 2005 baseline.
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The resolution was one of the first actions brought before the council by the Green Committee, formed earlier this year, and in doing so joins a growing list of communities committed to a goal of net zero climate pollution, measured in terms of net contribution to excess trapped heat.
The resolution also states that the City will, at the earliest opportunity, amend the City's General Plan to prioritize climate goals and practices.
Councilmembers questioned the potential financial impact of the resolution, which could bring with it significant costs toward upgrading facilities, vehicles and the General Plan.
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Because the action is a resolution, not a mandate, however, Planning and Building Director Zac Tusinger pointed out that the move is more a focused way to “look at policies through that lens” of a climate emergency. And any future costs associated with the resolution would be examined by the council before any action is taken.
Calistoga Green Committee Chair Antoinette Malliard also pointed out the intention behind the resolution is “To show the community the commitment is real, and the attention to it becomes part of the culture. Whatever the cost is, it’s going to be less than what it will cost our future without it.”
On July 20, the council also took a significant step in reducing the City's emissions by voting 5-0 to "opt up" all City municipal electric accounts to Marin Clean Energy's Deep Green level of service. As a result, all energy used to power City facilities in Calistoga will come from wind or solar, generating no emissions.
You can reach Cynthia Sweeney at 942-4035 or firstname.lastname@example.org.