Environment

Climate change, pollution, drought, and environmental disparities are issues that affect us all, both locally and globally.


Bike Sharing Debuts in Berkeley

Bay Area BikeShare

                                                                                            Photo: Bay Area BikeShare

One in ten Berkeley residents bike to work, the highest share of bike commuters of any city our size, and we're working to make biking even more accessible. In July 2017, Berkeley unveiled a new bike sharing system featuring 38 stations around town, and over 4,000 bikes. Our bike stations will connect to a larger network, creating easier ways to get to BART, AC Transit, and other key destinations in Oakland and Emeryville.

 


         Climate Action Plan

Solar Panels

In 2017, the Mayor and City Council reaffirmed Berkeley's participation in the Paris Global Climate Agreement. The goals of the international accords, signed by nearly 200 countries, are in line with Berkeley's Climate Action Plan (CAP), approved in 2009, that aims to achieve zero net energy consumption for all new and existing buildings by 2050. Other CAP goals include making public transit, walking and cycling the primary means of transportation, sending zero waste to landfills, and achieving net zero energy on all city buildings.

With the passage of Measure G in November 2006, Berkeley voters issued a strong mandate for the City to aggressively reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In response, Berkeley City Council developed and unanimously adopted the CAP, linked below. 

 Executive Summary of Berkeley Climate Action Plan (download - PDF, 172KB - June 4, 2009)

 BERKELEY CLIMATE ACTION PLAN (download entire plan - PDF, 1.4MB - June 4, 2009 - final)

 

 


Urban Agriculture  

Growing food locally is also a key component of reducing greenhouse gases, and Berkeley's Urban Agriculture Package, which the Mayor proposed while representing District 4, makes key updates to zoning laws to remove barriers to growing food in in the city.

 Community Garden

 

 


Zero Waste Goals

Berkeley's Zero Waste Commission is developing ways to reduce how much waste goes to landfills, with the goal of eventually eliminating or diverting it altogether.

As of July 1, 2014, all businesses are required to have recycling collection for basic recyclable materials, and restaurants and markets are required to have organics collection for food scraps, food soiled paper and plant debris.

In addition, residential properties of over 5 units are required to provide recycling and organics collection for their tenants’ food scraps, food soiled papers and any plant debris generated at the property. Since 2013, the city has expanded its recycling program to accept all clean, rigid plastic containers. In fact, Berkeley leads the way nationally for its recycling efforts.

For more information, check out Alameda County's guide to Recycling Rules.

 


Zero Net Energy Building

Building with zero net energy goals means working to ensure that the total amount of energy used by a building is about the same as the amount of renewable energy created by the building, and it's key to meeting our sustainability goals.

In 2016, the city voted to move ahead with the study of the Berkeley Deep Green Building Initiative.

The initiative's goal is to incorporate practices such as ultra-efficient construction and deep energy retrofit projects that consume only as much energy as they produce from clean, renewable resources.

The Deep Green Building Initiative builds on the work of our Climate Action Plan and the Berkeley Energy Savings Ordinance (BESO), creating an incentive-based program to move Berkeley buildings towards zero net energy, ahead of the state.


Resources

Important Residential Energy Topics

Take the Climate Action Pledge

News and Updates on Solar Financing Program

New Berkeley Climate Action Website

Climate Action Tips

Berkeley Climate Action Kick-off draws over 170  

Study Finds Berkeley Reduced Greenhouse Gas Emissions 9% between 2000 and 2005

ICLEI Expert Hired to Help Direct City's Climate Action Campaign