Mayor Robert Garcia signed the Compact of Mayors pledge on Monday in downtown Long Beach, furthering efforts to address climate change issues.
Surrounded by community leaders at the Cesar Chavez Park Children’s Garden, Garcia pledged to take part in the climate change initiative in response to President Barack Obama’s request that 100 cities sign the Compact of Mayors.
“Long Beach is doing a lot already to combat climate change,” Garcia said. “We’re really proud of the work from the Port of Long Beach (POLB), to our city departments, to our businesses, but we also need to take a proactive step forward just to make sure that we’re doing everything we can to meet the needs of us here locally but really across the country.”
The Compact of Mayors is a global coalition of mayors pledging to reduce local greenhouse gas emissions, enhance resilience to climate change and report transparently, according to its website.
The mayor’s pledge comes a few weeks before the 21st Conference of the Parties—an annual meeting on climate change—set to begin November 30 in Paris.
Garcia also announced the city’s climate change initiatives already underway or planned for the near future, including:
- A community-wide inventory of greenhouse gasses by the middle of 2016.
- A major report from the Aquarium of the Pacific for best practices in creating a climate resilient city.
- Continuing the Green Port Policy.
- Recommendations from the Sustainable City Commission for expanding electric vehicle infrastructure.
- Adding more than 1 megawatt of solar panels at city facilities in the next year.
- Planting 6,000 new trees by 2020.
- Expanding bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure.
- Support for urban agriculture, with more than 18 community gardens and urban farms across the city boosting the local food movement.
All photos by Stephanie Rivera.