How Mayor Mike Rawlings Is Positioning Dallas to Be a Global Leader in Addressing Climate Change

Months before the City Council voted to move forward on Dallas' first climate action plan, Mayor Mike Rawlings was working to make the city a global leader in addressing climate change.Besides exploring ways to limit the negative effects of environmental damage on the region, he wants the city to help find ways to prevent that damage.Large metropolitan areas have an outsize effect on climate change and "urban areas are going to make the biggest impact" in combating it, Rawlings said.The council voted last month to grant a contract to AECOM Technical Services to develop a comprehensive environmental plan. Another resolution included support for urging Congress to enact a national carbon fee and dividend."We understand what weather can do to a city, and it's imperative that we join other cities on this issue," Rawlings said.The council's goal is to have the Dallas climate action plan in place by April 2020 and commit to goals aimed at reducing emissions and preventing climate change.Rawlings also wants Dallas to join an international network called C40 Cities, which is committed to addressing climate change.C40 is named for the 40 cities that launched the Cities Climate Leadership Group in 2005. The organization has grown to 94 cities, which account for a population of more than 700 million people around the world.In addition to positioning Dallas as a leader on environmental issues, city leaders hope joining the C40 network will provide resources to measure the effectiveness of their efforts, as well as to open opportunities to receive money that could be put toward climate initiatives, according to the Dallas Office of Environmental Quality and Sustainability.C40 membership also should create opportunities to work with other cities on policies to help adapt to changing climates.The City Council's resolution in January also formalized support behind Dallas' effort to become a part of C40. Rawlings has been meeting with leaders of the group since last year.  Continue reading...

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