‘Cool City’ winner: Irvine receives $1 million to reach carbon neutrality by 2030

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The United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) has launched in Glasgow, Scotland. California Governor Gavin Newsom will not be there in person. He’ll join virtually to discuss the state’s effort to reach carbon neutrality by 2045.

Some cities, such as Irvine, are shooting for an even more ambitious target. The City Council there set a target for the city to be carbon neutral by 2030.

As a result of those efforts, Irvine is one of three California cities that has won a $1 million grant from the Empowerment Institute’s Cool City Challenge. That money is to help the city find innovative ways to meet its target.

The LA Times reports that Irvine has signed up more than 200 volunteers to be “Cool Block” leaders. These leaders are tasked with finding ways for community members to reduce their carbon footprints, like changing light bulbs and conserving water. 

Meanwhile, the City of Irvine says it will take the next 18 months to create its own climate strategy to reach the 2030 goal.

This story is part of Covering Climate Now, a global journalism collaboration strengthening coverage of the climate story during the U.N. Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow.