In 2018, the city council passed a Strategic Energy Action Plan to address climate change. Ever since, the city’s sustainability efforts have been in a holding pattern. City employees have left our underfunded and understaffed Office of Sustainability, the city’s Environment Committee has been folded into another committee, and costs have doubled for the city’s first big initiative to engage with the circular economy. The budget of the Cross Charlotte Trail ballooned without oversight, hurting Charlotte’s low-income communities the most.
It’s time for us to put action behind our plans.
In my first 100 days in office, I’ll ask staff and council to consider a change to the city zoning ordinance to help us fight traffic pollution and other environmental impacts. In my first city budget, I’ll vote to double the staff of the Office of Sustainability, because climate change isn’t waiting for us to act. I’ll work to make sure that a focus on the environment and healthy, sustainable communities is a centerpiece of Charlotte’s Comprehensive Plan. Finally, I’ll work with environmental stakeholders across Charlotte to figure out how we can make the goals of the SEAP a reality.
I’m committed to environmental justice and building a sustainable, equitable community - but I can’t do it alone. We have to continue to have every community at the table, and when we fail to make good on our promises - like with the Cross Charlotte Trail - we have to explain why. Charlotte should be breaking down silos and working with the County on parks, working with the non-profit sector on our equity work, and working with the private sector to improve our zero-carbon energy generation.