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File #: RES 18-1361    Version:
Type: Resolution Status: Passed
In control: City Council
Final action: 8/15/2018
Title: Expressing the commitment of the Saint Paul City Council to protect the children and grandchildren of this community from the risks of climate destruction.
Sponsors: Amy Brendmoen


Expressing the commitment of the Saint Paul City Council to protect the children and grandchildren of this community from the risks of climate destruction.



WHEREAS, the United States is the only country in the world that is withdrawing from the landmark Paris Climate Agreement, leaving the burden of countering climate change to state and municipal governments;


WHEREAS, the greatest burden resulting from an inadequate response to the climate crisis will be carried by the youngest generation, and all who follow;


WHEREAS, climate change has not and will not impact everyone equally, and some communities, especially those of color and low socioeconomic status, are disproportionately affected by climate change and other environmental hazards;


WHEREAS, the risks from an inadequate response are potentially devastating, and include economic and environmental disruptions-many of which are already being felt-such as more severe storms, longer and hotter heat waves, worsening flood and drought cycles, growing invasive species and insect problems, accelerated species extinction rates, rising sea levels, increased severity and frequency of wildfires, a dramatic increase of refugees from climate impacted lands, and-notably within the city of Saint Paul-a negative impact on Mississippi River ecosystems and wildlife wellbeing, as well as a substantial increase in invasive tree-boring species;


WHEREAS, leading climate scientists have indicated that further delay in significantly reducing greenhouse gas emissions will rapidly push humanity past the point where disastrous consequences can be avoided;


WHEREAS, Saint Paul, among other initiatives, already has District Energy St. Paul, North America’s largest cogeneration district heating and cooling system, fueled primarily by renewable wood waste; is working to reduce energy use in buildings through Energize Saint Paul: Race to Reduce; is committed to a goal of net zero carbon buildings at the Ford Site; gets its electricity primarily from Xcel Energy, which has committed to 80% carbon free energy by 2030; has entered into contracts to purchase energy from community solar gardens that represent more than 25% of City electricity use; is partnering with HourCar to build out a fleet of shared electric vehicle mobility hubs; is working to build out a network of safe bikeways and to finalize a Pedestrian Plan for the City that will prioritize walking over other modes of travel; is working to implement the Gold Line, Rush Line, Riverview and other transitway investments that will boost frequency and quality of transit service; is launching a new dockless bikeshare system and an e-scooter pilot;


WHEREAS, numerous governmental and non-governmental bodies across the nation and the world have already adopted climate action plans to immediately and rapidly reduce greenhouse gas emissions while also stopping them entirely within 25 years, and many large cities, including San Francisco, San Jose, and our twin city, Minneapolis, have committed to reaching 100% renewable electricity by or before 2030;


WHEREAS, youth of Saint Paul have brought this Council a Youth Climate Report Card highlighting the gap between what we are doing today and actions that would be necessary to protect their future;


WHEREAS, youth of Saint Paul have indicated a willingness to work with this Council on such actions, we, therefore, declare it: 


RESOLVED, that the Saint Paul City Council commits to working constructively, using ingenuity, innovation, and courageous determination to complete a Saint Paul Climate Action Plan that includes the goals of net zero greenhouse gas emissions and 100% renewable electricity in from City buildings by 2030, and the entire city overall by 2050, 100% renewable electricity by 2030, and 25% of electricity created within city limits;


BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Saint Paul City Council commits to finishing the Climate Action Plan by December 4, 2018, as was previously agreed to in the 151202 Compact of Mayors Council Resolution, or by the earliest possible date thereafter;


BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the implementation of these goals be equitable by ensuring that all communities, especially those that have been hit the hardest by environmental racism, receive the benefits from climate related policies and actions, and that representatives from these communities be included in the creation and execution of the Climate Action Plan and any related policies;


BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that a mechanism be created to formally include young people in the process of creating and executing climate related policies and actions, including the Climate Action Plan;



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