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Cities Band Together to Meet Kyoto Emissions Reduction Goals

City mayors provide online resources to help communities reduce greenhouse gas

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City heat island from greenhouse gas and global climate change Because of the struggle to quantify Greenhouse Gas emissions back to the baseline year 1990, several nonprofits, including Local Governments for Sustainability (ICLEI), are helping cities to create a climate action plan that includes an energy audit and a plan for reducing carbon emissions. ICLEI’s consultants use special software to calculate GHG emissions and to calculate the monetary and energy savings associated with carbon-cutting measures.

The long-term goal for participating cities is to further cut emissions 80% by 2050, the amount most scientists say is needed to avoid potentially catastrophic climate change.

Mayors from cities all over the U.S. are quickly ramping up efforts to promote energy-efficiency, weatherize buildings, capture methane gas from landfills, switch municipal fleets to hybrids, promote mass transit and buy cleaner electricity.

The 720 mayors who have signed the mayors’ Climate Protection Agreement (as of 11/06/07) represent cities that collectively account for a quarter of the nation’s population. By joining the agreement, initiated three years ago, mayors have pledged to cut greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to 7% below 1990 levels by 2012 — the target suggested for the U.S. under the 1997 Kyoto Protocol.

RESOURCES FOR COMMUNITIES:

The Green Playbook The Playbook provides local governments with tools and resources to rapidly advance green buildings, green neighborhoods and green infrastructure. The Playbook to help promote the goals set out in the U.S. Conference of Mayors Climate Protection Agreement. More than 600 mayors, representing more than 50 million U.S. residents, have signed the agreement, which commits communities to reducing greenhouse gas emissions to the targets set in the Kyoto Protocol.

Local Governments for Sustainability: ICLEI is an international association of local governments and national and regional local government organizations that have made a commitment to sustainable development. More than 700 cities, towns, counties, and their associations worldwide comprise ICLEI's growing membership. ICLEI works with these and hundreds of other local governments through international performance-based, results-oriented campaigns and programs.

Edited by Carolyn Allen
| city | community planning |

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