Kansas City climate leaders say there is 'terrific energy' to reach net-zero emissions by 2050
A climate action plan for the Kansas City region set a goal to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. This Saturday, local leaders and community members will gather for a climate summit to celebrate what's already been achieved and identify goals for the future.
Efforts to decrease the carbon footprint of the Kansas City metro are well on their way.
Kansas City Manager Brian Platt says the city is working toward a variety of sustainability initiatives, including a solar farm that could be one of the largest of its kind in the country. And across the region, municipalities are working towards LEED-certified buildings, new offices of sustainability, electric vehicle charging networks, and more.
Created in 2021, the Kansas City Regional Climate Action Plan set a goal to achieve net-zero carbon emissions in the region by 2050. Local leaders are optimistic that the goal can be achieved.
Nineteen municipalities representing 80% of the population have signed on to the Climate Action Plan, and federal funding for sustainability projects is at an all-time high thanks to "unprecedented levels of funding" from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and the Inflation Reduction Act.
But there's still more to do to get there.
"We're doing a lot, and it's just wonderful," said Tom Jacobs, chief resilience officer at the Mid-America Regional Council. "There's terrific energy, but I'd say there's a need to do more. How can we go bigger? How can we scale up? How can we go faster? How can we work smarter together?"
- Hillary Parker Thomas, board chair, Climate Action KC and Mission City Council member
- Jeremy Knoll, president, Climate Action KC
- Tom Jacobs, Chief Resilience Officer, Mid-America Regional Council
Climate Action KC's Climate Summit 2023 will take place Saturday, September 9 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at Rockhurst University. The event is currently sold out, but you can sign up for the waitlist.