ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability

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ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability is an international organization in which membership includes more than 1200 cities, towns, and counties, to commit to the environmental sustainability.

Charlottesville's Membership in ICLEI

Charlottesville City Council approved a resolution on March 19, 2007 stating that the city would join ICLEI, estimate greenhouse gas emissions in the city, and establish an emissions reduction target.[1] City staff utilized ICLEI-supported software to develop inventories of greenhouse gas emissions published


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Albemarle County's Membership in ICLEI

Estimated and projected Greenhouse Gases (GHG) emissions, as of 2008, developed by Albemarle County staff using software supported by ICLEI.

Albemarle County was a member of ICLEI from late 2007 through mid-2011, and resumed membership in late 2019.

Albemarle County staff first applied for membership in ICLEI on October 3, 2007. In statements to the Board of Supervisors on June 8, 2011, the County's Environmental Compliance Manager indicated that staff had applied for ICLEI membership in 2007 based on their judgement that the technical expertise and software offered by ICLEI would assist staff's research into climate protection programs, consistent with prior Board of Supervisors interest in the topic. [2]

In accordance with a commitment in the Cool Counties resolution adopted by Albemarle County on December 5, 2007, staff developed a greenhouse gas emissions inventory, utilizing software tools supported by ICLEI. [3]

Opposition to Albemarle County's membership in ICLEI grew in 2011. In March 2011, the Jefferson Area Tea Party held a forum to review local sustainability initiatives, inviting speakers critical of international sustainability agendas.[4]

On May 4, 2011, Supervisor Ken Boyd stated his opposition to ICLEI membership and the Cool Counties initiative, out of concern that continued participation would have a negative impact on citizens by influencing their behavior. [5] [6]

At a press conference on June 2, 2011, the Chairwoman of the Jefferson Area Tea Party expressed concern that some sustainability initiatives constitute a "radical political agenda that strives to impose big government-style central planning under the guise of well-intentioned environmentalism."[7]

On June 8, 2011, the Albemarle County Board of Supervisors voted 4-2 to withdraw from ICLEI. During a public comment period prior to the vote, 83 individuals addressed the board, largely on the topic of whether or not the County should continue membership in ICLEI, and whether or not to accept a regional planning grant. Supervisors Boyd and Snow expressed concern that ICLEI sought to dictate, control, and/or monitor citizens' behaviors, to include their energy usage. Supervisors Mallek and Rooker indicated that the membership provided County staff with software and expertise that would assist in estimating greenhouse gas emissions in the County. Supervisors Duane Snow, Rodney Thomas, Ken Boyd, and Lindsey Dorrier voted in favor of a motion to direct the County Executive to withdraw from ICLEI; supervisors Ann Mallek and Dennis Rooker voted in opposition to the motion.[2] [8]

On September 18, 2019, the Albemarle County Board of Supervisors voted 6-0 to direct staff to rejoin ICLEI. [9] [10]

On October 16, 2019, the Albemarle County Board of Supervisors voted 5-0 (one member was absent) to adopt greenhouse gas emission reduction goals, aiming to cut emissions 45% by 2030 (relative to estimated 2008 levels), and to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. [11] [12]

References

  1. Web. Charlottesville City Council meeting minutes, .pdf, Council Chambers, City of Charlottesville, March 19, 2007.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Web. County of Albemarle, Albemarle County Board of Supervisors Minutes, Albemarle County Board of Supervisors, Albemarle County, June 8, 2011, retrieved February 5, 2021.
  3. Web. County of Albemarle, Albemarle County Board of Supervisors Minutes, Albemarle County Board of Supervisors, Albemarle County, December 5, 2007, retrieved February 5, 2021.
  4. Web. Tea Party hosting forum to review local sustainability initiatives, Brian Wheeler, Charlottesville Tomorrow, March 16, 2011, retrieved January 19, 2020.
  5. Web. Boyd seeks end to Albemarle’s ‘Cool Counties’ initiative and questions joint planning project, Sean Tubbs, Charlottesville Tomorrow, May 5, 2011, retrieved January 19, 2020.
  6. Web. County of Albemarle, Albemarle County Board of Supervisors Minutes, Albemarle County Board of Supervisors, Albemarle County, May 4, 2011, retrieved February 5, 2021.
  7. Web. Local activists call for public action on environmental and sustainability initiatives, Brian Wheeler, Charlottesville Tomorrow, June 2, 2011, retrieved January 19, 2020.
  8. Web. Supervisors drop ICLEI membership but renew grant commitment, Sean Tubbs, Charlottesville Tomorrow, June 9, 2011, retrieved January 18, 2020.
  9. Web. Albemarle County Board of Supervisors actions report for September 18, 2019, Albemarle County, Lane Auditorium, County Office Building, November 15, 2019, retrieved January 19, 2020.
  10. Web. Albemarle County Board of Supervisors Regular Meeting- September 18, 2019, retrieved January 19, 2020.
  11. Web. Albemarle adopts greenhouse gas reduction goals, Allison Wrabel, Daily Progress, Lee Enterprises, October 16, 2019, retrieved January 18, 2020.
  12. Web. Albemarle County Board of Supervisors actions report for October 16, 2019, Albemarle County, Lane Auditorium, County Office Building, December 16, 2019, retrieved January 18, 2020.

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