I’d like to start by thanking all our members who were active on climate issues in 2021. We, as an organization, and Napa as a county were able to move forward in some very significant ways.
I’m going to start with our bottom line.
I serve as NCN!’s treasurer and am very happy to say that in 2021 we were able to raise a lot of money! A big thank-you to everyone who donated and who rode in our Climate Ride Fundraiser. The money raised has allowed us to provide grants to our parent organization, 350 Bay Area, to the Napa Climate NOW! Issue teams, and to fund a Social Media Intern for eight months.
These are just some of the activities Issue Teams and members have been working on:
- In June we put on a 3-day 150-mile bike ride as a fundraiser. Each of the rides-to different parts of our county–featured people talking about climate actions they were working on in those locations. It was so fun and successful that we are now working with 350 Bay Area for a Bay Area-wide climate ride in 2022.
- The Leaf Blower Ban team tabled at the Napa Farmers Market collecting signatures for a ban in the City of Napa. They also provided resources for Calistoga’s Green Committee (a 2021 Climate Champion) for the ban enacted by Calistoga that goes into effect this coming July. Now we have 2 cities in the county with bans on gas-powered leaf blowers: Yountville and Calistoga.
- Members, especially Jim Wilson in his role as advisor to the Napa Schools for Climate Action, supported the students’ request for Climate Emergency Resolutions. So far Calistoga has adopted a Climate Emergency Resolution, American Canyon is working on a resolution, and Napa City Council member Liz Alessio has expressed support for Napa adopting a Climate Emergency Resolution. This work has been led by the Schools for Climate Action Co-Presidents, Alisa Karesh and Emily Bit, who are 2021 Climate Champions. Members of NCN!’s Political Action Committee are working on the Ad Hoc Committee that is crafting American Canyon’s resolution (led by Am Can City Council member Mark Joseph, a 2021 Climate Champion).
- The Regenerative Practices Team is working on educating homeowners, local landscapers and yard care companies about practices that increase soil health and carbon sequestration.
- The Waste Reduction Team was busy writing a Disposable Foodware Ordinance and presenting this to local electeds.
- The Waste Reduction Team also provided support materials for the new food scrap composting program that went in effect upvalley.
- The Transportation Team, with a lot of community support, successfully appealed the permit for a new drive-through on Soscol Avenue in Napa, on the basis that vehicles idling at the drive-through would increase GHG emissions and impact public health. This gave rise to a discussion by the Napa City Council on ways to reduce idling emissions.
- Members provided comment letters to BAAQMD, the Bay Area Air District, that led to a decision to require increased pollution controls at refineries in the region. Comment letters have also been provided at the state level to support residential solar, all-electric building codes, and at the local level to support the gas station ban in American Canyon.
- The Built Environment Team held discussions that included local electeds, government staff, utilities representatives, and private developers on the best ways to move forward with building decarbonization.
- We worked with the City of Napa’s General Plan Advisory Committee to get a Climate Change and Sustainability Element into the city’s updated General Plan.
- We have developed close relationships with elected representatives on each of our county’s City Councils. In fact, we have been asked by Napa City Council members to provide a list of climate actions that the City should prioritize for 2022.
This coming year will see us in Napa Climate NOW! continue to push for significant climate actions throughout our county and state!