The following statement of the Sonoma Ecology Center and Transition Sonoma Valley was delivered at the Sonoma City Council meeting on September 7, 2016.
Climate change threatens what we cherish about Sonoma Valley. The initial path for action is clear and urgent. We urge the City to act now.
Our hills, our crops, and our wildlife suffer withering droughts, followed by floods. Wells are drying up. Fresh tragedies in Lake County show how vulnerable we are to wildfire. Our businesses and governments must cope with uncertainties never before contemplated.
It’s urgent that local governments act boldly now to protect a livable future. Sonoma County’s new Climate Action 2020 Plan (CAP) has a menu of climate action measures itemized for each jurisdiction, showing where we must first focus our efforts. We know we need to implement at least these measures as soon as possible.
The CAP isn’t perfect. As you know, it’s been sued as incomplete and insufficient. Because of the lawsuit, you voted to postpone adopting the Climate Action Plan. Until the case is resolved, it is likely that other cities will also postpone adoption of the plan.
But the ravages of climate change don’t wait years while lawsuits are resolved. Formal adoption of the Climate Action Plan might have to wait, but local governments need to take action now to slow and stop climate pollution. The Sonoma Index Tribune agrees: “if the council is truly serious about taking a leadership role in mitigating the effects of global climate change… it should re-agendize the [climate] measures it was set to consider”.
We strongly urge you to safeguard the future of this city by committing now to implement at least the initial measures proposed by staff, plus the eight additional measures proposed by Council (thank you!).
We will be joining with other organizations to urge the councils of other cities throughout the County to act as well.
We ask you to re-agendize the discussion, preferably on Sept 19. We have already waited too long to get started.
Our children are counting on us.