Community Development DepartmentPlanning

Welcome to the Climate Action Plan web page!   

Livermore Climate Action Plan (pdf)
 
In November 2012, the City Council adopted the Livermore Climate Action Plan.

The City of Livermore prepared a Climate Action Plan (CAP) to outline strategies and activities the City and Community can take to do our fair share to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emission levels produced within the City.

The CAP implements General Plan policy, adopted in 2009 via a Climate Change Element of the Plan, to reduce GHG emissions to 15 percent below 2008 conditions by 2020.

Implementation of the CAP will also support the statewide effort, under the California Global Warming Solutions Act will also support the statewide effort, under the California Global Warming Solutions Act (
Assembly Bill 32), to reduce GHG emissions in California to 1990 levels by 2020.


If you have questions about the CAP, please contact:

                Susan Frost, Principal Planner (925) 960-4450,
smfrost@cityoflivermore.net or
                Ingrid Rademaker, Senior Planner (925) 960-4475,
irademaker@cityoflivermore.net


Funding

In 2010, the City has received a Federal Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) to conduct public involvement efforts and develop the CAP.  EECBG funds are appropriated by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, which is intended to stimulate the economy and create and retain jobs.  These funds are issued by the Federal Department of Energy.

 Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Climate Change

In recent years a there has been heightened attention paid to the global increase in GHGs. This is because an increase in emissions can profoundly impact the planet and our state. The earth’s climate has been evolving for many millions of years and has experienced both warm trends and ice-age cycles. Most recently, the climate has been stable and relatively warm; however, during the past 50 years there has been a rapid warming trend, one that most climate scientists, based on extensive investigation in a number of different fields, believe is not attributable to nature alone.

This warming trend is thought to be caused by excessive GHGs, such as carbon dioxide (CO2), methane, and nitrous oxide that are emitted from fossil fuel combustion, deforestation, and other human activities. Increased GHGs in turn cause the earth’s average surface temperature to rise, a condition known as global warming. Global warming is thought to be the root of notable changes in the climate, including reduced snow packs, changes in rainfall cycles, and sea level change. These effects are known as climate change.

These changes are occurring at a time when California’s population is expected to increase se from 34 million to 59 million by the year 2040, meaning the number of people contributing to and being affected by climate change will continue to increase unless something is done to reduce emissions. In response to global warming, the State of California passed the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 (Assembly Bill 32), which is designed to reduce statewide GHG emissions to 1990 levels by 2020.

 Livermore's Commitment to Reduce GHGs and the Climate Action Plan

In 2009, the Livermore City Council adopted a Climate Change Element of the Livermore General Plan, on of the first of its kind in California.  As part of the Climate Change Element, the City prepared an inventory to identify its GHG emissions.  This inventory serves as a baseline for projecting future emissions and evaluating and developing emission-reduction measures, such as those included in the CAP.

View the Climate Change Element of the General Plan
View the 2003-2025 General Plan

Climate Action Plan

During 2010 the City of Livermore (City) began developing the Livermore CAP to outline ways to reduce the amount of GHGs produced within the City to a level 15 percent below 2008 conditions by 2020.  Consistent with AB32 targets, the CAP includes specific incentives, actions, and requirements to reduce GHGs produced by City agencies, private businesses, and public agencies.  This effort is another way the City is working to improve the overall health of Livermore and contribute to the emission reduction goals of the State of California.   

What is the City Doing?

The City has been working to reduce GHGs for several years.  Following are policies and programs in the areas of water conservation, waste reduction, and energy efficiency that the City has implemented to reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions:

  • Use of Hybrid Vehicles and city charging stations.  The City operates seven hybrid vehicles and has installed charging stations at both City Hall and the Maintenance Service Center for electric city trucks and employees with electric cars.
  • Use of recycled water and materials.  The City has implemented a recycled water system that contains a pump station, 1.9 million gallon reservoir, and over 14 miles of pipeline.  The City uses recycled water for irrigation and fire protection.  Through its Recycled Product Procurement Policy, City staff also purchase and use recycled materials for City operations such as office supplies, furniture, park benches, picnic tables, and school and park playground structures.
  • Use of Rubberized Asphalt Concrete (RAC) on City major arterial road paving projects.  This practice reduces the stockpile of waste tires statewide.
  • Damaged asphalt recycling.  The City has been using a cold milling machine since 2003 to remove and recycle damaged asphalt - eliminating landfill waste and high disposal fees.
  • Livermore's Green City Hall.  In 2002, the Livermore City Hall was renovated using salvaged and recycled materials from the original building. The renovated building includes a Photovoltaic System generating 13.5% of the facility's annual electricity.
  • Street-Level imagery project allows staff to inspect City streets via photo files thereby reducing City vehicle trips for on-site inspections.
  • Spare the Air Program.  On declared "Spare the Air" days, City maintenance crews curtail turf mowing, paving work, and use of two-cycle engines.
  • Tree City USA Program (National Arbor Day Foundation).  The City was recently awarded the Sterling Tree City USA designation for urban forestry achievements in education and public relations, planning and management, partnerships, and tree planting and maintenance.
  • Electronic Waste Recycling events.  The City conducts annual Electronic Waste Recycling events and free E-waste and cell phone drop-off at City Hall.
  • Community Recycling.  Livermore began Community Recycling more than 30 years ago

Livermore employees are also seeking ways to reduce GHG emissions and incorporate sustainable practices in their daily work activities. An employee “Green Team” was established to identify short- and long-term actions to conserve city resources and protect the environment while still maintaining a high level of customer service. Specific actions included: Eliminating water cooler service and paper delivery service; Reducing landscape irrigation water use; Replacement of paper/plastic ware; Turning off computers when not in use and paper recycling.   



 What Can the Community Do?

There are a number of ways you can help reduce GHG emissions and reduce the effects they have on the environment.  Your carbon footprint is the measure of the GHGs produced by your own actions.  If we each reduce our individual carbon footprint, we could make a big difference in Livermore and across California!

      Calculate Your  Carbon Footprint! 

         Use the Cool California Carbon Footprint Calculator to compute the GHGs you produce, also know as your carbon footprint.

      http://www.coolcalifornia.org/calculator


Ways to reduce your footprint include:

Use mass transit when possible and/or carpool and/or drive a vehicle with high gas mileage ratings; Walk or bike when you can for local trips; Look for the Energy Star logo when buying an appliance; Unplug electric appliances when not in use (think: hair dryer, electric toothbrush charger, oscillating fans, and lamps; Switch to compact florescent lights (CFL); In the summer: Turn your thermostat up 5 degrees when you are home and down 10 degrees when you are not home; Add insulation or energy-efficient windows to your home; Use renewable energy; call your utility provider to see whether they offer it in your area; Recycle or reuse materials whenever possible (this reduces landfill emissions); and Conserve water (reduces energy used in pumping).

Programs and Resources

The City realizes that no one party can reach the emissions reduction goal alone and that this effort must be a collaborative one.  That's why the entire Community is encouraged to get involved, spearhead conservation efforts, connect with colleagues to make a difference at work, and mobilize to help achieve the goals of the CAP and create a healthier community.  Check out the websites below for resources, contact information, and programs for ways you can make a difference.