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The Latest on Irvine’s Climate Action & Adaptation Plan

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Development of Irvine’s Climate Action & Adaptation Plan (CAAP) is inching forward, as the City staff briefed the Council on the broad outlines of a plan that will be filled-in with details in the coming months. Staff also presented a timeline that would see the plan obtain state environmental certification by Fall 2024.
 
The conceptual plan presented at a June 27th  special meeting of the City Council identifies three major target areas for reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions: 1) building heating and cooling; 2) on-road transportation; and 3) solid waste. The plan also seeks to address land use and off-road equipment.

“Achieving GHG reduction targets will require measures that address emissions from both future development and the existing built environment,” said Sean Crumby, Director of Project Delivery and Sustainability, in his report to the Council.

The plan, as drafted, is targeted toward state certification, which means meeting state goals for GHG reductions to 48% below 1990 levels by 2030 and 85% below 1990 levels by 2045. (In 2021, the City Council set its own goal of net zero carbon emissions by 2030, which is more ambitious than the state goals.)

Mayor Farrah Khan asked: “Why are we talking state goals, not Irvine goals?” City Manager Oliver Chi replied that the CAAP being developed for state approval will be accompanied by “a set of aspirational goals based on the City’s goals.”

Public commenters criticized the plan for a lack of specific, measurable milestones. City Manager Chi said that those numbers will be filled in as the plan moves forward, saying that the state “requires accountability,” which means clear and precise goals that can be measured and assessed.

The City staff will now gather more public input through July and August, with a more detailed plan to be presented to the Council in November and then submitted to the state for certification in December.

Roger Bloom

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