Tonight, Boise City Council unanimously approved a bold set of climate action goals. The approval sets a carbon neutral goal for city government by 2035 and for the entire community by 2050.
“Tonight is truly an historic moment for our city,” said Mayor Lauren McLean. “This is a time of great challenges, and also immense opportunity that Boise is uniquely positioned to face head on. We’re the generation that must solve the climate crisis because our health and economy depend on us doing this now. Boise will be a climate innovation leader, and we will rise to the challenge of this moment.”
The need for climate action comes from risks to Boise’s environment, the health of community members and the local economy. In 2016, the City of Boise commissioned a study with researchers from Boise State University, the University of Idaho and the Langdon Group to examine climate impacts specific to our city. Those impacts include hotter summer days, worsening air quality, heavier precipitation days, shifting seasonal water levels, earlier snow melt and increasing drought frequency.
“I cannot overstate the importance of this moment for our community,” said City Council President Elaine Clegg. “We’ve been hard at work on climate action for years, and now we have an ambitious and achievable goal that match the spirit and resolve of our community.”
The Climate Action Roadmap, which outlines how the city will achieve its climate goals, focuses on both reducing greenhouse gas emissions and building our city’s resiliency to be able to adapt to climate impacts we expect to see. The plan details and focuses on seven priority areas:
- Buildings and Energy
- Consumption and Waste
- Food Systems
- Natural Environment
- Innovation and Engagement
“This is the culmination of a lot of hard work,” said Steve Hubble, Climate Action Division Manager at the City of Boise. “We certainly recognize the challenges we face, but those same challenges also present opportunities for innovation. We will move in a smart, strategic and determined fashion. This is work we must undertake together as a community, from residents and businesses, community organizations, our utility partners, and the city government.”
The City of Boise has been working to address climate impacts for many years. The Climate Action Roadmap builds on current initiatives which include:
- A 100% clean electricity goal
- The nation’s largest direct-use geothermal system
- The state’s first-ever net zero energy building
- Citywide compost program
- Recycled water program in development
- Green and open space initiatives
- Celebrated ridge-to-rivers trail systems
- Extensive environmental education programs
More information at cityofboise.org/climate.