During Earth Week of 2002, the Board of Supervisors adopted a resolution that recognizes both the gravity of global warming and the responsibility for local action. The resolution commits the County to the following activities:
1.Analyze greenhouse gas emission levels. Determine current greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and forecast the growth in emissions that will occur without preventative action.
2.Set a reduction target. Marin County has set a goal to reduce GHG emissions 15-20% below 1990 levels by the year 2020 for internal government and 15% countywide. 3.Develop a local action plan. This plan is a description of policies, programs, and measures that Marin will implement in order to meet its target.
4.Implement the local action plan. Follow through on the proposed actions. 5.Monitor the progress and report results. Determine the success of the plan.
As a result of analyzing emissions from internal government operations as well
as from the County as a whole, a target has been made to voluntarily
reduce greenhouse gas emissions 15% - 20% below 1990 levels by the year 2020 for internal government and 15% countywide.
Internal: The County has taken many steps to reduce energy and water
use and waste generation, where possible. Actions such as purchasing hybrids,
retrofitting facilities for energy efficiency, lighting retrofits, providing
commuter alternatives for employees and switching incandescent traffic signals
to light emitting diodes (LEDs) have all helped the County reduce internal operation
emissions by at least 4% over baseline levels.
Countywide: Recycling programs (71% diversion rate, highest in the state),
energy rebate programs (32 rebates where given to unincorporated Marin residents
that purchased PV systems, in addition to the state CEC rebate), the Green Business
Program, renewable energy purchases and alternative fuel vehicles have all contributed
to reducing overall greenhouse gas emissions.
Climate Protection Efforts of Marin's Cities and Towns
Mounting scientific and economic information suggests that global climate change
is a result of escalating greenhouse gas emissions and that immediate action
to reduce these emissions should be taken to reduce its negative environmental,
social and economic impacts.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), an international scientific
body assembled by the United Nations Environment Program and the World Meteorological
Organization, determined that "the balance of evidence suggests a discernible
human influence on global climate."
In 1997, twenty-five hundred United States economists, including eight Nobel
laureates, published a statement stating that economic research supports the
Global climate change carries with it significant environmental, economic,
social, and geopolitical risks.
Preventive steps are economically justified.
There are many potential policies to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions for
which the total benefits outweigh the total costs.
For the United States in particular, there are policy options that would
slow climate change without harming American living standards.
These measures may in fact improve U.S. productivity in the longer run.
Climate Change Links
Cal-Adapt - Great website that tracks California's climate change research and has excellent interactive mapping tools. http://www.cal-adapt.org