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File #: RES. 2021-R049    Version: 1 Name:
Type: Resolution Status: Adopted
File created: 7/27/2021 In control: City Council
On agenda: 9/13/2021 Final action: 9/13/2021
Title: To declare the existence of a climate and ecological emergency that threatens the city of Richmond, the surrounding region, the Commonwealth of Virginia, civilization, humanity, and the natural world.
Patrons: City Council
Attachments: 1. Res. No. 2021-R049
Title
To declare the existence of a climate and ecological emergency that threatens the city of Richmond, the surrounding region, the Commonwealth of Virginia, civilization, humanity, and the natural world.
Body
WHEREAS, in Chapter 6 of the City's Master Plan entitled "Richmond 300: A Guide for Growth" (hereinafter referred to as the "Master Plan"), approved by Ordinance No. 2020-236, adopted December 14, 2020, Goals 15, 16 and 17 outline a vision for a sustainable and resilient city with healthy air, clean water, and a flourishing ecosystem; and
WHEREAS, upon information and belief of the Council, there is a consensus among scientists, as described in the recent United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, and further reflected in the City's RVAgreen 2050 plan goals, that the City must reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 45 percent from 2010 levels by no later than 2030, and reach net zero by 2050, in order to stabilize a 1.5? C (2.4? F) temperature increase to have a chance at avoiding profound and disastrous impacts on the city's local climate, ecosystem, and communities; and
WHEREAS, upon information and belief of the Council, climate stressors such as the urban heat island effect-whereby human-designed landscapes amplify local heat extremes by several degrees-have been shown by the Science Museum of Virginia to disproportionately impact historically redlined, majority Black neighborhoods in south and east Richmond and public housing communities, which lack the mature tree canopies that protect wealthier White neighborhoods in the northern and western parts of the city of Richmond; and
WHEREAS, upon information and belief of the Council, in addition to exacerbating the heat island effect, a lack of urban tree canopy worsens air pollution, harms wildlife, exacerbates erosion and stormwater issues, and threatens the economy and ecology of the city in a variety of interrelated ways; and
WHEREAS, upon info...

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