Support Ann Arbor’s A2Zero Carbon Neutrality Plan

Please considering asking the Ann Arbor City Council to take two actions:
1) Approve the new A2Zero Carbon Neutrality Plan

2) Approve the first-year budget to implement that Plan

These issues will be discussed at virtual City Council meetings now scheduled for April 20, May 6, and May 20. Here is the plan itself, the slide presentation, Missy Stults’ videotaped presentation to Council, and the M-Live article about it.

Typically there would be opportunities for members of the public to formally address the Council during those meetings. With the shelter-in-place order, the best ways to communicate with Mayor Taylor and City Council are through petition, email, phone, and social media.

1. Please sign and circulate this petition as widely as possible. The petition is being circulated by the Ann Arbor Climate Partnership, a coalition of environmental groups such as the Sierra Club, the Ecology Center, the Huron River Watershed Council, and Interfaith Council for Peace & Justice. We would like to have hundreds of signers on it to share with City Council as early as April 20, and no later than May 20.

2. Please contact City Council members and the Mayor to express your support for the plan and related budget and to stress the importance of this plan, even during the COVID-19 emergency. If you live in Ann Arbor find email addresses and phone numbers for your Councilpersons at https://www.a2gov.org/departments/city-council/pages/home.aspx. If you don’t live in A2, you can still contact Council and the Mayor at [email protected]. Greenhouse gases don’t recognize city borders, and other communities are affected by the action or lack of action that Ann Arbor takes. For more information, contact Jan Wright ([email protected])

*There is a new process to publically speak to City Council by phone. As with the usual process, you must call right at 8:00 a.m. on the day of the council meeting to get one of the ten allotted spots. More information about public participation in virtual meetings here.

More Information about the Draft Plan:

This will not be easy. Some of the plan can be done by the City but much of it will require help from individuals (such as us!) and groups (such as ones we are a part of!) as well as changes in state legislation (which we will need to lobby for). We will continue to communicate with you about ways you can be part of these efforts.

Key Elements of the Draft Plan:

  • Power our electrical grid with 100% clean and renewable sources of energy
  • Switch appliances and vehicles from gasoline, diesel, propane, and natural gas to electric
  • Significantly improving the energy efficiency of homes, businesses, schools, places of worship, government buildings, and recreational sites
  • Reduce the miles we travel in our vehicles by at least 50%
  • Significantly change the way we use, reuse, and dispose of materials
  • Enhancing resilience

Suggested Talking Points in addressing Council:

  • Thank you for voting last year to make Ann Arbor “carbon neutral” by 2030 — a timeframe consistent with what scientists have told us needs to be done.
  • But a goal is not enough. Ann Arbor needs a plan and adequate resources to get us there.
  • The climate crisis demands urgent action, and “business-as-usual” will not do the job.
  • Discuss one area of climate action that is especially important to you personally.
  • The City’s draft carbon neutrality plan is extremely ambitious, but it is also do-able, and it meets the scale of the challenge.
  • It will take leadership from every one of us to make Ann Arbor carbon neutral, and to rise up and solve the climate crisis. We look to you to be a leader in your Ward and engage your constituents about it.
  • Please vote YES to approve the City’s carbon neutrality plan. And please vote YES to fully resource the City’s climate work.