Climate-Safe California Resolution

WHEREAS California is experiencing the beginning of a climate emergency with climate-change-fueled, record-breaking heat waves, drought, wildfires, smoke storms, rainfall and flooding occurring more regularly; and

WHEREAS climate change impacts are rapidly worsening with nine of 15 global tipping points already activated and on par with the United Nations climate scientist panel’s worst case scenario; and

WHEREAS the economic cost of maintaining the status quo is much greater than the cost of action, with damages from delayed greenhouse gas reductions in the US costing an estimated $600 billion per year as of 2020, and insured and uninsured losses totaling $80 billion in California in 2019 alone due to wildfires; and

WHEREAS the Paris Agreement of 2015 calls for preventing average global temperatures from rising more than 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and pursing efforts to keep warming below 1.5 Celsius; and

WHEREAS attempting to remain below 1.5 degrees Celsius of warming requires massive and rapid reductions in greenhouse gases as well as major progress on sequestration, as well as major progress on sequestration of warming compounds already in the air; and

WHEREAS to reach the necessary targets California must invest in providing comparable jobs with transferable skills and workforce training to those currently working in the fossil fuel sectors; and

WHEREAS investing in GHG reduction will create secure jobs in a sustainable economy, utilizing the skills and experience of current trades as well as expanding career paths for a new generation, especially members of disenfranchised communities; and

WHEREAS addressing climate change will promote equitable health outcomes for frontline communities disproportionately impacted by climate change including low-income communities and communities of color who suffer from climate change impacts with significantly lower life expectancy as well as higher rates of asthma, cancer and other diseases than those in wealthier communities; and

WHEREAS California has taken numerous steps to reduce greenhouse emissions and successfully reached its 2020 target of 1990 levels of emissions four years early; and

WHEREAS the state has initiated investments in pilot programs on natural land management and restoration for sequestration; and

WHEREAS these efforts, although recognized nationally and globally, are inadequate to meet the existential climate change threats; and

WHEREAS California can lead the nation and the world towards a more sustainable, equitable and vibrant climate-safe future; and

WHEREAS (add appropriate climate actions that CITY OR COUNTY has taken)

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED THAT (CITY OR COUNTY) endorses the overarching goals and concepts of the Climate Safe California platform and calls on Governor Newsom and California legislators and regulators to enact the following:

  1. No later than 2022, commit to accelerating existing state policy timelines to achieve 80% below 1990 levels of green-house gas emissions and net-negative emissions by 2030;
  2. Secure a just transition for workers and their families whose livelihoods depend on fossil fuel industries;
  3. Close the climate gap when enacting climate-safe policies to ensure lower-income communities are no longer disproportionately harmed;
  4. Enact by no later than 2025 the suite of policies required by science to achieve net-negative emissions by 2030 including:
    1. Accelerating the phase-out of fossil fuel development, production and use;
    2. Increasing carbon sequestration;
    3. Investing in community resilience; and
    4. Generating the public and private funds needed for speed and scale climate action.

By approving this resolution, the XX City Council agrees to send a letter to the Governor, state senator, and Assemblymember with this approved resolution asking for accelerated climate action timelines commensurate with this resolution.