Can San Diego County Reach Zero Carbon by 2035?

By Lorenzo Nericcio, Newsletter Editor

With a progressive-leaning, newly-elected San Diego County Board of Supervisors, there is hope for an ambitious new plan: a zero-carbon San Diego County by 2035. The County will work with UCSD’s School of Global Policy and Strategy to get the plan moving, which involves transitioning the County toward more sustainable sources of transportation, sustainable housing, and a general push for environmental justice. 

SanDiego350 is helping to craft the policies and proposals that will make this effort possible—and, importantly, equitable for all San Diegans. 

David Harris of the Policy Team had this to say, “We applaud the Board for its commitment to bold climate action and encourage the supervisors to adopt a new Climate Action Plan to demonstrate how they plan to meet this ambitious target of zero carbon by 2035 […] To reduce San Diego County’s carbon footprint to zero by 2035, our elected leaders must focus on decarbonizing on-road transportation, electricity, and natural gas in buildings. These three sectors account for 78% of the County’s carbon emissions. This plan must center climate and equity, what we call a ‘just transition’, while also establishing aggressive targets to reduce emissions.”

SanDiego350’s priorities, thoroughly outlined in a letter to the County Planning & Development Services department, include the following areas of importance:

  • Sustainable built environment and transportation, including improved land use, expanded public transit, and incentives for telecommuting
  • Renewable energy, including microgrids with battery storage, and expanding electrification of new building projects
  • Sustainable food supply that incentivizes purchasing and producing less carbon-intensive foods
  • Consumption-based GHG inventory to assess the lifecycle of carbon and other greenhouse gasses originating from within the County. 
  • Social equity plans, including a Climate Equity Index built to advocate for a just distribution of renewable energy and other green advancements

As the County’s ambitious plans continue to take shape, SanDiego350 will continue to advocate for sustainable, equitable, and just development.

About Masada D

Masada Disenhouse co-founded SanDiego350 in 2011 and serves as its Executive Director. She is passionate about engaging volunteers and growing a powerful climate change movement.