ENN-5.03 - City of Portland and Multnomah County 2015 Climate Action Plan

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WHEREAS, the scientific evidence is increasingly clear that human activities are the primary cause of the accelerating changes in the global climate; and

WHEREAS, climate change poses a significant threat to Oregon’s forestry, fisheries, water supplies, and coastal resources; impacts are likely to include winter flooding, summer droughts, loss of shoreline, forest fires, diminished fish and wildlife habitat, retreating glaciers, decreased snow pack, and increased disease vectors and invasive species; and

WHEREAS, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) estimates that to avoid catastrophic disruption from climate change likely requires limiting warming to below 2°C; to achieve this requires reducing global greenhouse gas emissions 40 to 70 percent from current levels and industrialized countries like the United States have far greater opportunities to reduce emissions than developing countries; and

WHEREAS, the City of Portland 1990 Energy Policy (Ordinance No. 162975), 1993 Carbon Dioxide Reduction Strategy (Resolution No. 35207), 2001 Local Action Plan on Global Warming (Resolution No. 35995), and 2009 Climate Action Plan (Resolution No. 36748) established plans to reduce carbon emissions; and

WHEREAS, Resolution No. 36748 established the goals of reducing local carbon emissions by 80 percent from 1990 levels by 2050 and 40 percent by 2030; and

WHEREAS, the City has implemented many innovative policies and programs that have reduced carbon emissions while providing other economic and community benefits; and

WHEREAS, the City, working together with Multnomah County, residents and many private and public-sector partners, helped reduce carbon emissions to 14 percent below 1990 levels in 2013, which represents a per capita decrease of 35 percent; this decrease is markedly in advance of the national trend, which shows emissions declining in recent years but still seven percent above 1990 levels in 2013; and

WHEREAS, despite these accomplishments, the City and its partners face substantial challenges in continuing to reduce emissions and in achieving an 80 percent reduction that is likely required to stabilize the climate; and

WHEREAS, the State of Oregon has set a goal to achieve 10 percent emission reductions below 1990 levels by 2020 and achieve 75 percent emission reductions below 1990 levels by 2050; and

WHEREAS, Metro adopted the Climate Smart Strategy in 2014, helping align regional transportation and land use policies to achieve the metro region’s share of Oregon’s climate protection goals; and

WHEREAS, Resolution 36918 adopted the Portland Plan, a strategic plan for the future growth and development of the city over the next 30 years, which strongly influences the region’s ability to prosper without relying on carbon-based energy and to do so in ways that address substantial disparities in, and create equitable access to, economic opportunity and quality of life that currently exist in Portland; and

WHEREAS, The State of Black Oregon Report, published by the Urban League of Portland in May 2015, and Communities of Color in Multnomah County: An Unsettling Profile, published by the Coalition of Communities of Color in 2010, have documented the persisting disparate experiences of communities of color within Portland in comparison to their white counterparts in areas of housing, economic opportunity, access to jobs, education and health; and

WHEREAS, the Portland Development Commission’s economic development strategies have supported the growth of firms and industries that provide the products and services that are in increasing demand as the world transitions to a low-carbon economy; and

WHEREAS, an equity work group and a steering committee of residents, businesses, nonprofits and academia representatives guided the development of the 2015 Climate Action Plan; and

WHEREAS, a draft plan was released for public comment in March 2015, and the City held open house meetings and presented at various stakeholder meetings to discuss the draft plan with residents, businesses and community organizations; approximately 450 individuals or organizations submitted written comments through an online survey, by email or in letters; and

WHEREAS, the 2015 Climate Action Plan has been revised in response to comments received during the public comment period;

WHEREAS, the 2015 Climate Action Plan underscores the essential role of a broad array of partner agencies and organizations working on climate change locally;


NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the City adopts the joint City of Portland and Multnomah County 2015 Climate Action Plan; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, this Resolution is binding City policy.

Link to 2015 Climate Action Plan - Part 1  (PDF Document, 57 MB)

Link to 2015 Climate Action Plan - Part 2  (PDF Document, 26 MB)


Resolution No. 37135, adopted by City Council June 24, 2015.

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