Sustainability Success Series: Oberlin, OH “Live Learn Lead”

City is awarded ICLEI’s Milestones 3, 4 and 5 for Monitoring & Verifying Emissions Reductions

Oberlin OHWith the community slogan, “Live Learn Lead”, Oberlin, OH is certainly taking those words very seriously and demonstrating considerable action on the climate front. Oberlin released its highly anticipated 2012 Greenhouse Gas Inventory Update as an opportunity to provide an update and monitor the progress of the City’s adopted Climate Action Plan. The update was performed by Cameron-Cole and Oberlin Municipal Light and Power System (OMLPS – the community-owned, not-for-profit electric utility) to assess the progress of Oberlin’s Climate Action Plan as it pertains to the City’s lofty goals of reducing community-scale emissions 50% by 2015, 75% by 2030 and 100%+ by 2050 based on 2007 baseline inventory. The 2012 GHG update leveraged the Global Protocol for Community-Scale GHG Emissions 1.0 (GPC) which has now been acknowledged as the premiere Global reporting protocol for all local governments to have one consistent and comparable framework for assessing community scale greenhouse gas emissions.

With the GHG inventory management system developed by Cameron-Cole, Oberlin has decided to make 2012 its new baseline. Even with this new baseline, Oberlin will meet its goal to reduce GHG emissions by 50% from 2012 in 2015. The majority of the reductions will come from renewable energy in its electric power portfolio. Oberlin’s renewable projects include landfill gas, hydro wind and solar. When all of these projects are online in 2017 Oberlin will have 89% carbon neutral electric.

ICLEI is proud to acknowledge and award the City of Oberlin and Council President and City Manager Eric Norenberg with ICLEI’s Milestones 3, 4 and 5 for successfully adopting their Climate Action Plan, Implementing Measures and Monitoring and Verifying their results. Oberlin truly is living up to its motto and ICLEI looks forward to continue to support the great work and leadership of Oberlin.

Oberlin was recently recognized by the White House as one of the sixteen Climate Action Champions for Leadership on Climate Change.

J.R. Killigrew is National Membership Coordinator & Senior Climate Program Officer for ICLEI USA.

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