climate action plan
West Lafayette has begun the process of developing a community-scale Climate Action Plan (CAP), estimated to be completed by the end of 2020. A CAP is a strategic plan that outlines how a city will reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to mitigate climate change. A CAP serves as a roadmap for making data-driven decisions to address climate change and ensure that a community meets its emissions reduction targets.
While the 2018 CAP detailed how the city's operations would decrease its emissions in the short and long term, this plan will incorporate strategies affecting the entire community, including residents, businesses, community organizations, and more.
The Climate Action Plan will include mitigation and adaptation strategies.
Imagine a car racing towards a brick wall. The driver has two tools: the brakes, which will slow the car down, and the airbags, which will cushion the passengers when they crash. With climate change, mitigation is the brakes, while adaptation is the airbags.
We need both methods to be resilient to climate change.
Analogy paraphrased from Climate Ready Communities: A Guide to Building Climate Resilience
actions that reduce or slow the effect of climate change through reduction of greenhouse gas emissions
actions that protect the community from climate change's impacts
WHy it matters
Climate action's benefits don't stop with the Earth.
Although we may not realize it, our climate is already changing — and this is affecting all of us in West Lafayette. Some of these changes include record heat and more frequent droughts, heavier rainfalls, and more flash flooding. The list goes on. We must work together as a community to mitigate the impact of climate change. This doesn’t mean that we’ll stop driving our cars or eliminate waste overnight. Real change takes time, careful planning, and collaboration.
By increasing West Lafayette's resilience to climate change, we will
encourage job growth and economic stability
increase public health in regards to air quality and excess heat impacts
protect financially- and geographically-vulnerable populations
maintain quality of life through changing climate conditions