For 2018, no little plans

One of the nation's first urban planners said, "Make no little plans. ... Aim high in hope and work."


Given what we're facing, that's our only choice.

Climate change has already drastically impacted our reality; we're experiencing heat waves, droughts, cold snaps, and more -- and that's just the weather over the last few weeks in California.

The affordable housing crisis continues to grow, affecting people in every community in California. Displacement and gentrification are segregating our state. Finally, despite the state's adoption of climate goals and laws, most state transportation dollars continue to fund highway and road projects, worsening sprawl, increasing driving, and exacerbating climate change.

We need bold action to turn the tide, to create a California where everyone has an opportunity to thrive.

ClimatePlan is a network of over 50 organizations, and together, we've been making big plans. Last December, ClimatePlan brought partners together from across the state to reflect on our successes, identify challenges, and chart our path forward. (That's where the Post-It above came from.) Since then, with partners and allies, we've refined our work plan and goals for 2018, and I'm excited to share the results:

ClimatePlan's Goals for 2018:

1. Help California meet its greenhouse gas reduction goals and meet the needs of all Californians by advancing healthy, sustainable, and equitable communities.

2. Address the affordable housing crisis through the intersections of race, equity, land use, water, and transportation. Build support for – and power of – ClimatePlan partners to advocate effectively for fair housing and intersecting issues.

3. Reform state transportation decision-making bodies to increase funding for healthy, sustainable communities and more equitable access for all Californians.

4. Hold state decision-makers accountable for meeting California’s climate goals by implementing strategies that reduce driving.

5. Ensure that regional agencies adopt – and implement – strong Sustainable Communities Strategies.

Those are not little goals. How do we plan to achieve them? You can read our full list of strategies and actions here. We’ll continue to build the strength of our network in the following ways.

Our Network Approach:

• Convene: Bring together diverse groups to learn from one another
• Build capacity: Grow stronger as advocates and a network
• Collaborate: Take joint action to improve land use and transportation for all Californians

And in the next few months, here's what we'll be focusing on.

Our Near-Term Actions:

  • Advancing real answers to the affordable housing crisis:
    We will be convening our diverse network to deepen our understanding and build multi-sector support for fair and affordable housing. We must work together to find solutions on this. If we do not want to undermine one another, it is critical for us to come together to learn from each other and identify the places where there is common ground. We are excited to bring together partners from different issues and regions to delve deep into the affordable housing crisis.

  • Watching where the transportation dollars go, and who decides:
    We'll be keeping a close eye on the implementation of two pieces of legislation we worked on last year: SB 1, California's massive transportation funding bill, and AB 179, which improved public representation on the California Transportation Commission.

    • SB 1, which funds California transportation infrastructure to the tune of $5.2 billion dollars, provides a huge opportunity to move away from business as usual, funding highways, roads and more driving. Instead, the state could invest those dollars in solutions that actually create healthier, more sustainable, more equitable communities. 

    • For the California Transportation Commission, we'll be looking at two things: How it spends SB 1 dollars, and how (and if) it improves its own diversity. AB 179 now requires the Governor to make every to ensure the Commission has a diverse membership, and we want to make sure this becomes a reality. These are big tasks ($5.2 billion!) and to do them well, we need to build our capacity too.

  • Holding regional agencies to delivering on strong GHG targets:
    Each region in the state has to meet greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction targets set by state law SB 375. But the targets have to be strong to make real reductions, and regions have to be held accountable to meeting them. Targets should guide transportation dollars -- and help local jurisdictions shape their land use -- to help alleviate the impact of climate change, and help achieve more equitable development, better public health, and more preservation of natural and working lands. To make that happen, we're pushing for strong targets and more accountability.

We look forward to partnering with you. ClimatePlan's strength is in its network, over 50 strong.

Together, we can aim high in hope -- and work.

Our Strategic Direction


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