Climate change is a direct threat to Midpen’s mission to acquire and preserve a regional greenbelt of open space land in perpetuity. Now and in the future, climate change has wide-reaching consequences for the Bay Area’s natural environment and the people who depend on it. Greenhouse gases released from burning fossil fuels for transportation and energy are changing our climate. As a result, we are already seeing warmer temperatures, changes to plant and animal habitat ranges, more intense wildfires, sea level rise, and more frequent droughts and floods. To minimize and prepare for these climate change impacts, Midpen began developing a formal Climate Change Program in 2017.
REDUCING GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS
The first milestone of Midpen’s Climate Change Program is the development of a Climate Action Plan to reduce the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that result from operating the District’s preserves and offices. The Climate Action Plan will set Midpen’s GHG reduction goals and provide a roadmap for how we'll meet those goals by changing how we operate. This effort is in keeping with the State of California’s GHG reduction goals and the Paris Climate Agreement. The Climate Action Plan is expected to be adopted by the Board of Directors in fall 2018.
The next area of focus for Midpen’s Climate Change Program will be assessing the expected impacts of climate change and opportunities to protect the plants, wildlife, and other natural resources in Open Space Preserves. Continuing to acquire and restore open space lands that store carbon and provide a variety of habitat options as the climate changes is a critical way that Midpen fosters climate resiliency.
DO YOUR PART TO FIGHT CLIMATE CHANGE
Follow our lead and take steps to reduce your own contributions to climate change. Driving less, buying clean energy, and consuming less resources and products are some of the most impactful actions you can take. Start today by calculating your carbon footprint and getting customized strategies using UC Berkeley’s Cool Climate Calculator.
For questions or comments regarding the Climate Change Program, contact project manager Hayley Edmonston.