First climate action plan falls short, Columbia tries again

7 months 3 weeks 9 hours ago Thursday, November 30 2017 Nov 30, 2017 Thursday, November 30, 2017 1:16:00 PM CST November 30, 2017 in News
By: Chris Joseph, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - The city of Columbia is working with a recently hired consultant this month who would help the city with its latest attempt to address climate change.

It's the next step in the formation of Columbia's climate action plan.

Mayor Brian Treece pledged last June the city would create the plan with his commitment to the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy.

The city council approved Treece's measure the same month.

The move was in response to President Donald Trump's decision to pull the U.S. from the Paris Climate Accords, an international agreement to address climate change that former President Barack Obama had signed.

A similar set of circumstances led to Columbia's attempt to address climate change in 2006.

The Kyoto Protocol, another international agreement on climate change, was entered into force by the international community in 2005. The United States did not participate because President George W. Bush opposed it.

Public records show the Kyoto Protocol was brought to the city council's attention in May 2006 by a concerned citizen. 

Two months later, then-mayor Darwin Hindman and the city council approved measures to "meet or exceed Kyoto Protocol targets for reducing global warming pollution."

The city said it would create an action plan to reduce emissions.

"It became apparent we needed to have a concerted effort," Hindman said.

When the Kyoto protocol was originally adopted in 1997, the U.S. was tasked with reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 7 percent from 1990 levels by 2012.

The city took steps to make its buildings energy efficient, but emissions still rose.  

A green house gas report, given to the city council by the office of sustainability in August, shows carbon dioxide emissions in Columbia have gone up since 2005 by more than 36 thousand metric tons, or 1.5 percent. Emissions went down briefly in 2010 but have since rebounded.

Hindman said the city lacked a clear department to take the lead on the plan. 

The office of sustainability was created in 2010 for that purpose. Barbara Buffaloe is the coordinator and one of her jobs is implementing the city's new climate action plan. 

"That was about the time when we actually started then really measuring our green house gas emissions and looking at what opportunities we had to go forward," Buffaloe said.

She hopes the city council gives her an emissions reduction goal by December.

Laura Wacker, the sustainability coordinator of the environmental non-profit Peaceworks, has called on the city council for 100 percent emissions reduction by 2050.

"We want them to be sure to follow through this time," Wacker said. 

Buffaloe said she can't begin creating or implementing a climate plan until the emissions goal is in place. In the interim, she is working with members of the community to come up with solutions.  

Buffaloe contacted EARTH (the Environmental Authority on Rehabilitation Treatment and Health). It's a capstone class for a group of MU student engineers led by professor, John Bowders.

"They've picked several parts of the project they thought they could contribute to, and help the city in that way," Bowders said. 

The students are working with Buffaloe on how MU could contribute to the climate action plan, as well as researching ideas for increased energy efficiency in the city.

EARTH Project Manager Nick Eschbacher said increased energy efficiency isn't just a technological issue, but a social one as well.

"Some of the ideas with businesses is to offer incentives for certain ideas, so if there's like electric powered cars, having charging stations in front of their businesses might be advantageous," Eschbacher said. 

Buffaloe said she will continue to engage the community for solutions until the climate action plan is finalized. 

More News

Grid
List
(CNN) -- Russian intelligence operatives attempted to hack into the online accounts of staffers on three congressional campaigns in the... More >>
2 days ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 8:46:27 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — As Charlotte, North Carolina, celebrates being chosen Friday to host the 2020 Republican National Convention, an... More >>
2 days ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 8:05:32 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- A cardiologist who treated former President George H.W. Bush was killed Friday morning in a bicycle-to-bicycle drive-by shooting... More >>
2 days ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 7:34:02 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Police Department will move into a new neighborhood over the next few weeks. In July,... More >>
2 days ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 6:41:00 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
CALLAWAY COUNTY - A Steedman man was sentenced to 12 years in prison after pleading guilty to charges of domestic... More >>
2 days ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 5:22:00 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
ST. JOSEPH (AP) — A Missouri man has pleaded guilty in the fatal beating of his 77-year-old grandmother while he... More >>
2 days ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 3:59:00 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- The FBI is in possession of a recording between President Donald Trump and his former personal attorney Michael... More >>
2 days ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 3:38:16 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in Continuous News
JEFFERSON CITY – House Minority Leader Gail McCann Beatty will resign from the Missouri House of Representatives effective Sunday in... More >>
2 days ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 12:57:00 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in Top Stories
COLE COUNTY — The Cole County Sheriff’s Department responded to possible weapons violation on Thursday night. When the officers... More >>
2 days ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 11:47:00 AM CDT July 20, 2018 in Top Stories
(AP) - President Donald Trump has indicated that he's willing to hit every product imported from China with tariffs and... More >>
2 days ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 8:52:00 AM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
BRANSON - Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley will meet with investigators Saturday at Table Rock Lake to receive a briefing... More >>
2 days ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 7:23:00 AM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
BRANSON (AP) — A former chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board says duck boats aren't designed for commercial recreational... More >>
2 days ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 7:16:00 AM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
BRANSON - The recent boat incident that killed 11 and injured seven in Branson isn't the first time Ride the... More >>
2 days ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 2:06:00 AM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Thursday evening around 9:00 pm, two cars collided head-on at the intersection of Worley St. and W. Boulevard.... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 11:14:00 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A southern Missouri sheriff and a subordinate with whom he was having a romantic relationship have... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 10:46:00 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The City of Columbia confirmed Friday the household hazardous waste collection is cancelled. The waste collection was... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 10:16:00 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- More illnesses have been reported across the United States in two separate cyclospora outbreaks, federal health officials said... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 9:31:35 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- Gun-rights activists have reached a settlement with the government that... More >>
3 days ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 8:57:04 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 69°
1am 71°
2am 70°
3am 69°
4am 68°