About Us

The ClimatePlan partnership works to improve land-use and transportation planning to protect Californians’ health, communities, environment, and climate.

ClimatePlan was formed in 2007 by 11 nonprofit organizations—American Farmland Trust, California Center for Regional Leadership, California League of Conservation Voters, Center for Clean Air Policy, Greenbelt Alliance, the Local Government Commission, Natural Resources Defense Council, Pacific Forest Trust, Planning and Conservation League, Sierra Club, and TransForm—with a seed grant from the San Francisco Foundation.

Our coalition now includes more than 50 partners, who represent a broad range of interests, from urban planning and public health experts, to social equity advocates, to farmland preservationists. All are dedicated to planning for a sustainable, equitable future.

Our Mission

ClimatePlan’s mission is to advance policies and programs to address the relationship between land use policy and climate change, and leverage the resources and partnerships necessary to realize more sustainable and equitable development throughout California.

Our Vision

We envision a healthier and more vital California that supports sustainable and equitable communities, preserves iconic landscapes, and significantly reduces greenhouse gas emissions.

We recognize that California has been shaped by a history of inequity, racism, oppression, and disinvestment. We use equity and justice as an important lens on our work, and we work to ensure that low-income communities, communities of color and other marginalized communities have power over the decisions that impact their lives. Our Agreements frame our ongoing conversation, as well as the guiding principles.

Our Agreements

To learn: We commit to ongoing dialogue and education around these issues as a core component of our work. We each commit to listening attentively to each other’s experience and learning from the stories we share about our work.

To strengthen relationships: We will assume the best intentions of one another as a key foundation. We commit to holding one another accountable and elevating issues to the Steering Committee if we cannot mediate the issue among ourselves. 

To be transparent: We commit to transparency about our perspectives and individual/collective strategies. We will not undermine or manipulate any other member or member’s position for any reason.

To recognize who we collectively are and are not: We strive to amplify the agenda of our equity partners through the specific work we do around climate and land use, rather than leading on what we define as an equity agenda.

To value community voices and the expertise of equity-led groups: We will honor community voices and leaders (and the understanding that local/regional advocates have developed via these relationships), as well as the expertise gained by equity-led networks and groups over decades of work.

To check ourselves: We are dedicated to sharing power in an authentic way within our network and with those in communities most affected by the issues and policy decisions where we focus.

To get things done, and to do them better next time: We are committed to reflect upon our experiences through discussions with partners and allies in order to continuously improve the practice of working with one another over time.

Guiding Principles

Advance Pragmatic Policy Solutions: Policy solutions should be both visionary and pragmatic, advancing innovative ideas and best practices, while being grounded in the reality of existing trends.

Find Common Ground: Focusing on shared priorities and areas of common ground is the best way to achieve our goals. We are committed to bringing together diverse stakeholders around policy solutions that will help all our partners advance their goals.

Build a Long-Lasting Movement: All communities and regions should have informed, engaged organizations that are working to monitor and shape growth over the long term. We work to build enduring capacity among local smart growth advocates.

Promote Policies that Protect and Improve Public Health: We advocate for policies that promote walking, bicycling, and reduced driving, resulting in more active lifestyles, better air quality, and safer streets.

Advance Solutions that Increase Social Equity and Environmental Justice: All communities, particularly low-income communities, must have the opportunity to benefit from growth. We advance policies that address mobility, jobs, and affordability, and protect existing residents and local businesses from displacement.

Protect Areas Where Growth Should Not Occur: Forests, agricultural areas, important watershed areas, and wildlife habitat should be protected from development. We promote policy tools that quantify the GHG benefits of preserving these areas and create incentives for preservation.

Increase Community Participation in Planning: Planning at both the local and regional levels is more effective when there is meaningful community participation throughout the process. In particular, under-represented communities need to be engaged in long-term planning.

Help Local Governments Move Ahead: Cities, counties and MPOs need financial support to plan and implement VMT reduction strategies. We are committed to establishing, restoring, and expanding funding for these efforts.

Amplify Synergies: We strive connect smart growth campaigns to add value to the work of organizations at all levels, from the neighborhood to the national.










Our Strategic Direction


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