Dramatic increases in greenhouse gas concentrations since 1750 have caused changes to the Earth’s climate. Cities emit a substantial portion of global greenhouse gas emissions, but also play an essential role in addressing this challenge. By adopting innovative policies regarding energy consumption, building design, transportation infrastructure and land use, cities are finding cost-effective methods for reducing their climate impact while realizing related benefits. At the same time, cities are exploring adaptation strategies that account for changes in sea level, temperature, precipitation patterns, ocean acidification, and more. NLC works to catalyze climate efforts at the local level by serving as a resource for elected officials and highlighting best practices from cities and towns across the country.
Measuring Emissions and Creating a Greenhouse Gas Inventory (2010)
Many cities are conducting inventories of carbon dioxide, methane, and other greenhouse gas emissions to serve as the foundation for informed and effective climate action plans. Cities are finding that these projects also save money, reduce air pollution, improve public health and boost a city's reputation for livability. This guide provides guidance for municipal leaders seeking to take this first step toward mitigating climate change.
Global Models in Sustainable Energy (2007)
City and town governments are significant consumers of energy and producers of greenhouse gases. Programs with the longest track record for success often come from outside the United States, and this resource offers examples of sustainable energy programs being carried out in cities across the globe.
EPA's Green Power Partnership: Helping Cities Fight Climate Change by Supporting Renewable Energy (September 27, 2010)
To reduce greenhouse gas emissions, more and more cities are choosing renewable energy sources. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Green Power Partnership is a voluntary program designed to promote and recognize the use of green power by leading U.S. organizations and communities.
NLC Delegation Champions Local Government at Climate Talks (January 11, 2010)
Representatives of the National League of Cities brought a local government perspective to the 15th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP-15), held in Copenhagen, Denmark. America's cities have been the leaders in the U.S. on climate change, and are positioned to take on both mitigation and adaptation measures in the future.
Local Perspective: Local Governments are Climate Change First Responders (January 11, 2010)
Henrietta Davis, councilor in Cambridge, Mass., and chair of NLC's Energy, Environment and Natural Resources Policy and Advocacy Committee, discusses the role of local elected officials in international climate negotiations.