The Anchorage Assembly voted overwhelmingly to adopt a proposed Climate Action Plan. With more than 100 pages, the document sets ambitious goals, like reducing the city’s carbon emissions by 80 percent within about 30 years. But it’s primarily a set of non-binding proposals to guide municipal entities toward more environmentally friendly policies.
Of the 22 members of the public who testified at the Assembly’s Tuesday night meeting, all were in favor of the measure. Many spoke about the overwhelming evidence of climate change they see in their lives, like warmer winters, worse tree pollen, invasive insect species and increasing wildfire conditions. Middle schooler Tayleen Odom testified she wants to see more electric vehicles, public transit and bike infrastructure.
“That will cause less air pollution for us humans, but not just us: for animals and little critters, and importantly our planet,” Odom said.
Others speakers focused on specific technical elements outlined in the plan, such as greener transit infrastructure and renewable energy options. Former governor Bill Sheffield spoke on the importance of rail options for commuters.
The measure passed 8 to 2, with both of the Eagle River assembly members opposed.