Watsonville 2030 Climate Action & Adaptation Plan
The State of California supports local action on climate change by providing guidance for local jurisdictions to develop climate action plans or plans to reduce GHG emissions for projects. The State also requires climate change adaptation strategies to protect communities and critical infrastructure from climate impacts.
- The Climate Action component will be based on the City’s 2017 GHG inventory compiled by the Association of Monterey Bay Area Governments (AMBAG). The outcome of this analysis will be a set of emission reduction targets for meeting the City’s stated GHG reduction goals. Mitigation actions will be characterized by their potential to reduce GHG emission, implementation timeframe, cost, community support, and ability to provide additional community benefits. Example mitigation strategies include the installation of EV charging stations, promoting active transportation, and energy efficiency improvements.
- The Climate Adaptation component will be based on the City’s recent 2020 Local Hazard Mitigation Plan (natural disaster preparedness). It will also consider additional risks, including agricultural impacts, grid reliability, and potential influxes of short-term or long-term climate migrants. Potential adaptation strategies will categorize by their risk-reduction potential (effectiveness), implementation timeframe, cost, community support, and ability to provide additional community benefits. Some example adaptation strategies include installing emergency generators, designating community cooling centers, developing distributed energy systems, and increasing tree canopy and green infrastructure.
- The Repair and Restoration component will include specific solutions and methods of sequestering carbon and undoing the damage caused by climate change that are viable and applicable to our community. The results and actions from this initiative will be integrated into the CAAP as a 2021 plan update to the initial draft.
The outreach process consists of two community surveys (digital and physical). The first climate survey was open for a month July to August, and it was to inform residents of the Climate Action planning process and to get a sense of our communities’ concerns in regards to climate change. Please click here to view the first climate survey results.
The second follow-up survey was open from early November to late December 2020. The purpose of the second survey was to get community input on their level of support for some of the specific proposed climate strategies. The survey gave our residents an opportunity to prioritize the actions they want the City to take and help identify what opportunities for funding City staff need to apply to implement the selected strategies.
Please click here to view the second climate survey results.
Council Presentation and Community Meeting
City staff presented the Climate Action & Adaptation Plan update to the City on Council on October 13, 2020. To view the PowerPoint, please click here. Stay tuned for an upcoming virtual meeting in early Spring 2021 to learn more about the Climate Action & Adaptation Plan.
The city will host a community meeting in March to review the Climate Action and Adaptation Plan before it goes to city council for approval. We look forward to your participation in the community meeting, exact date and time to be determined.
Climate Action Plan Progress Report 2015-2018
The City’s first Climate Action Plan was adopted by Council in 2015 and since then, many accomplishments have been made in transportation, energy, water conservation, wastewater, solid waste, and green building.
One of the most significant reductions in our GHG emissions was due to Watsonville’s participation in the Monterey Bay Community Power project, which has been providing the community with 100% carbon-free and renewable energy since 2018. Other improvements include converting traffic signals and street lights to energy-saving LED’s; adding green bike lanes and trails; and installing solar panels on city facilities. The full progress report is available below and it showcases how Watsonville accomplished a 21.7% GHG reduction. This progress was made possible thanks to everyone’s actions and sustained commitment to keep us moving towards a more “climate-friendly” Watsonville.