The City of Ann Arbor has a longstanding commitment to energy conservation, dating back to 1981. More recently Ann Arbor has taken action to address the urgent issue of climate change. In 2005, Mayor Hieftje joined signees of the U.S. Mayors Climate Protection Agreement, aspiring toward activities and reductions consistent with the international Kyoto Protocol.
In 2010, a Pollution Prevention grant from the State of Michigan enabled the City to begin a formal Climate Action Planning process. The Energy Commission appointed a Climate Action Task Force in 2011, assigning this group the responsibility of identifying measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to meet current short-term goals, and setting mid- and long-range targets for emissions reductions into the future. The Task Force met from September 2011 – May 2012; early plan drafts and targets were discussed at meetings including the Climate & Energy Sustainability Forum in March 2012.
A final draft of the Climate Action Plan is now available for the general public. The Ann Arbor City Council adopted the Ann Arbor Climate Action Plan at its December 17, 2012 meeting.
The City of Ann Arbor recognizes the serious threats that climate change poses to the local environment, economy, and livelihoods. This Climate Action Plan recommends three targets for community-wide greenhouse gas emissions reductions, all of which are relative to a year 2000 emissions baseline:
- Short-term target: reduce CO2e emissions 8% by 2015
- Mid-term target: reduce CO2e emissions 25% by 2025
- Long-term target: reduce CO2e emissions 90% by 2050
A complete version of the Ann Arbor Climate Action Plan (updated 12/2012) is also available; although this file is approximately 20 MB in size, it is a low-resolution version and the quality of some of the graphics may be compromised. For high resolution versions of each chapter, you may wish to access links to individual sections as outlined below. These chapters include detailed descriptions of the recommended actions to achieve the Plan goals, separated by the four main categories of action. Please note the following chapters are high-resolution files and may take awhile to download if you are on a slow connection.
- Energy & Buildings
- Land Use & Access
- Resource Management
- Community & Health (and Conclusion)
Note that Acrobat Reader is recommended for viewing all parts of the Climate Action Plan.
Many recommended emissions reduction actions depend on more than City Council approval and would require participation from members of the community and local businesses or other entities. Thus, future collaboration among residents, businesses, local organizations, city government, the University of Michigan, and other stakeholders is essential to design and implement solutions that achieve the recommended GHG reductions.
For comments or questions on the Ann Arbor Climate Action Plan, contact the Ann Arbor Energy Office.