Mobilize

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This phase involves reviewing the draft plan and getting ready to mobilize for climate action. We want to hear what community members think about the draft plan so we can refine the plan further. Additionally, we want to hear how residents, neighborhoods, businesses, and community organizations can help activate the plan and accelerate climate action in Kansas City and beyond.

The Draft Climate Protection and Resiliency Plan public comment period has ended. Thank you for your patience while we review the over 500 comments received!

You can still view the draft plan here

(Note that the online plan is interactive. For the best experience we recommend reviewing the online version.)

Plan appendices and supplemental documentation can be accessed through the "Important Links" section to the right.


Next Steps For Plan Adoption

1) The Office of Environmental Quality, the Climate Protection Steering Committee, and our consultant team will work on reviewing the draft comments received and use them to refine the plan document.

2) The final plan will go to the city Executive Team and City Council for review.

3) The plan will go before a City Council Committee (date and committee to be determined) for discussion. At this point the public can also comment on the plan in front of council. The committee will either recommend edits to the plan or forward to full City Council for adoption. Show your support!

4) City Council will vote on adopting the plan.

5) Once the plan is adopted, we mobilize for climate action!

This phase involves reviewing the draft plan and getting ready to mobilize for climate action. We want to hear what community members think about the draft plan so we can refine the plan further. Additionally, we want to hear how residents, neighborhoods, businesses, and community organizations can help activate the plan and accelerate climate action in Kansas City and beyond.

The Draft Climate Protection and Resiliency Plan public comment period has ended. Thank you for your patience while we review the over 500 comments received!

You can still view the draft plan here

(Note that the online plan is interactive. For the best experience we recommend reviewing the online version.)

Plan appendices and supplemental documentation can be accessed through the "Important Links" section to the right.


Next Steps For Plan Adoption

1) The Office of Environmental Quality, the Climate Protection Steering Committee, and our consultant team will work on reviewing the draft comments received and use them to refine the plan document.

2) The final plan will go to the city Executive Team and City Council for review.

3) The plan will go before a City Council Committee (date and committee to be determined) for discussion. At this point the public can also comment on the plan in front of council. The committee will either recommend edits to the plan or forward to full City Council for adoption. Show your support!

4) City Council will vote on adopting the plan.

5) Once the plan is adopted, we mobilize for climate action!

Plan Comments

Use this tool if you have a few comments you are okay with sharing publicly

CLOSED: This discussion has concluded.

Hello, my name is Alejandra and I am a Kansas City, Missouri resident. I’m a supporter of the Green New Deal, and that’s why I believe this plan must adopt the demands from Sunrise Movement KC's People’s Climate Town Hall. You can view the demands at: https://bit.ly/pcthdemands

Alejandra about 2 months ago

Education and outreach need to be a big part of this plan. So many people are unconcerned with climate issues or unwilling to endure lifestyle changes because they do not understand what the big deal is. They don’t understand that we are now in the planet’s sixth mass extinction, the first mass extinction that humanity caused, and the first that we can hope to do anything to mitigate. It was not until I read the book “Six Degrees: Our Future on a Hotter Planet” by Mark Lynas that I began to understand that this is for all the marbles. There is no place to move away to, and there is no way to continue this way of life – we can voluntarily dial back our comforts and habits, or reality will dial them back for us.

While it’s true that climate-change-induced floods, heat, drought, storms, freezes, and tornadoes in KC are genuine hazards, this localized viewpoint ignores the much more impactful large-scale hazards of ecological collapse, including collapse of our food supply and societal disintegration. As a city, or as the larger metro area, we ought to be growing at least enough food to feed ourselves, backed up with a municipal supply of stored food for emergencies. Of course urban community and household gardening are essential, but there’s an additional abundance of edible potential that’s being overlooked. Every natural ecosystem, when healthy and unmolested, can produce food for the people, wildlife, and pets living within it. We only need to refrain from paving, mowing, channelizing, and otherwise destroying living systems. How much land is being deliberately sterilized by planting and mowing grass? Think of parks, parkways, medians, churches, homes, office complexes… why not restore these lands to health? Pecans, walnuts, apples, berries, and thousands of other interrelated animal and plant species form a self-nourishing, water-conserving, carbon-sequestering, safe place to live. Yep, I’m suggesting we unpave the parking lot and put up a paradise (credit to Joni Mitchell).

Some uses of fossil fuels are egregiously wasteful and unnecessary. These could be curtailed immediately: auto racing in all its forms; gas-powered lawn equipment (mowers, blowers, those whatchamacallits they ride around on); “eternal flames”; outdoor heaters. I’m sure there are others. Manual rakes and pushmowers are inexpensive, zero-emission, delightfully quiet, and provide employment to more individuals than the polluting type. An easy and immediate win.

More trees, more plants, and much more biodiversity generally are essential to resilience. The city can help by repealing the infamous weeds ordinance and replacing it with one that respects plant diversity. It may be reasonable to outlaw specific plants that are actively dangerous – say, poison ivy near a sidewalk – but baseless height restrictions and random inspector opinions such as “untidy” are having the effect of damaging important living systems and our quality of life. A simple example is cutting down or removing plants in which insects or their eggs overwinter. Those insects feed birds year-round. Our national bird population has dropped by 70% since I was a kid. Today’s children live in an environmentally impoverished world as a result. Again, an easy win is just to leave nature alone and allow it to nourish us all – insects, birds, people.

I appreciate and support every word of the Natural Systems chapter of the plan.

I would personally be happy to invest in community-level solar or wind power generation (E-2.2) that households could share without each having to install their own systems.

On waste management: Everything I can possibly compost or recycle, I do. That leaves one type of waste that goes to the landfill: packaging, mostly food packaging. It would be so nice if, once we are done with the plastic packaging, we could send it on the reverse path back to its manufacturer to be reused or recycled. A small tax on nonrecyclables coming into the metro would both cover the cost of returning them and incentivize packagers to switch away from plastics.
W-3.2 - I LOVE the repair cafe idea. The makerspace crowd could be a helpful partner, as can retirees.

General thoughts:

So many goals are written as “by 2030” or “by 2050”. Let’s ask ourselves WHY we cannot write “by next Tuesday”. Because, seriously, whatever barriers prevent us from doing something this week will still be in place 10 years from now if we don’t address them. Let’s identify those impediments now and get them out of the way. Let’s make it a goal to move our goalposts closer to us, not farther, as we progress.

It’d be great to have an editor give the plan a once-over before sending it to the council. Examples on page 22: bottons -> buttons; “reduce 89% of our carbon emissions” -> “reduce our carbon emissions by 89%”; “convenlient transity” -> “convenient transit”, etc.

Thank you for doing this excellent work.

Greenspring about 2 months ago

Hi, my name is Yuli and I’m a KCMO resident. I’m a supporter of the Green New Deal, and that’s why I believe it’s imperative that the Climate Protection & Resiliency Plan adopt the demands from Sunrise Movement KC's People’s Climate Town Hall.

By failing to do so, we fail to maximize our ability to strive for a greener — not to mention more feasible — future not just for ourselves, but for generations to come.

We NEED more mobility, accessibility, and options to choose from. KC residents need more public transportation, clean and renewable energy, and support to achieve those things.

I am willing to make the necessary sacrifices to guarantee the wellbeing of my neighbors, loved ones, and our planet. We must be accountable for our own actions and take the necessary steps to improve our current conditions.

A more extensive list of these demands can be found at: https://bit.ly/pcthdemands"

Yuli about 2 months ago

This draft plan is group think at its finest. It is clear there is an “all-electric” agenda with no consideration of the impact of such an extreme position. Where is the impact statement on the economy if the city becomes all-electric? They never want to calculate the impact or explain exactly how they would implement this agenda. Nor, take in account unintended consequences, higher emissions and increased costs for our community and our city’s residents. Take a look at gas prices, if you've got the money you can drive your car, if you don't you can't. Think about the increase in electricity bills and how many people won't be able to use energy because it will become too expensive. Where's the "equity" in that?

Secondly, electricity is not reliable. How many times a year is electric services disrupted in Kansas City? Especially during bad weather, snow storms, tornados, rain storms etc. And we want to be totally dependent on electricity? Natural Gas continues to provide affordable and reliable energy bad weather or not.

Lastly, the Mayor's steering committee is packed with an extremist majority. No business leaders, experts with divergent views, not even utilities are at the table. They all want an all-electric policy at any cost. Cost of jobs, cost of living, cost of reliability, cost of increased emissions. This bias trap is irrational and dangerous.. It is clear they've started with the end in mind. No diversity of opinion, little ethnic diversity, no economic diversity. The committee doesn't look like KC at all. Doesn't make sense to appoint a group that is not willing to have complete discussions regarding energy, the economy, and the use of technology to provide a healthy environment.. It is clear the committee wants to remove content, sensor opposing positions, exaggerate findings, use incomplete data all in an attempt to create a narrative that this is what "the people" want.

Kansas City will prosper with energy freedom. anything less will lead us to the "dark ages" - multiple times a year when the electricity predictably goes out.

Moral Case about 2 months ago

Hello, my name is Cody and I live in KCMO. I’m a supporter of the Green New Deal, and that’s why I believe this plan must adopt the demands from Sunrise Movement KC's People’s Climate Town Hall.  Specifically, I support language that prioritized rooftop solar and building retrofits to historically redlined communities. This and other initiatives on the list of demands can and should be paid for by utilities like Spire and Evergy who have profited off of greenhouse gas emitting fossil fuels that exacerbate the crisis we’re in. I want kids to have a future on this planet and Kansas City. I’m glad a plan is being adopted but it’s not enough and not specifically oriented around justice. Put Mahreen and Beto on the climate steering committee. You can view the rest of the demands at: https://bit.ly/pcthdemands

Cody Boston about 2 months ago

Hello, my name is John and I am a Kansas City, Missouri resident. I’m a supporter of the Green New Deal, and that’s why I believe this plan must adopt the demands from Sunrise Movement KC's People’s Climate Town Hall. You can view the the demands at: https://bit.ly/pcthdemands

John Mc about 2 months ago

I think my comment disappeared, so I will try again.

Natural Gas is not a clean fuel. It generates a good deal of methane as it is being produced -- and we cannot afford that addition to an already critical stage of global warming.

If Kansas City is going to move into the future, we need to leave natural gas behind.

I say this, knowing that I have an older home that has gas heating. I am willing to make the sacrifice to move forward for the sake of future generations and the survival of the planet.

KCgardener about 2 months ago

Natural gas is not a bridge fuel and if Kansas City is to move forward, we need to move away from this fossil fuel dinosaur. Natural gas is NOT a "clean fuel." It generates a good deal of methane as it is produced and we can no longer afford that in terms of our climate.

I say this, knowing that my older home has a gas furnace and that I will need to move away from this form of heating if we are to have a planet for the next generation. It's time to ditch natural gas. I'm up for that sacrifice.

KCgardener about 2 months ago

I am glad that the Kansas City Sustainability Manager and her team have devoted so much time and effort in seeking out community input. I see a lot of good suggestions in the comments "below", and I appreciate the effort it must have taken on the part of city government and resident contributors to put together such a HUGE plan. I am eager to see how the broader intents expressed in the plan translate into concrete actions on the part of city government and Kansas City residents. Namely, my hope is that government planning and citizen action work together to support residents experiencing Climate Change impacts while holding larger entities (corporations, lobbyists, climate change deniers in office) accountable in taking steps to effectively curtail climate change.

TVQ about 2 months ago

Hello, I would like to see this plan have a broader focus, bring in all of the KC suburbs, make the provisions legally binding, and have many more initiatives coordinated and focused on preservation and restoration of native ecosystems/pollinator habitat/wild spaces. We need to move toward the Half Earth plan proposed by E.O. Wilson, which calls for half of all Earth's land and oceans to be preserved without human presence or interference. The U.S. 30x30 plan is a start toward this with a goal of preserving 30 percent of federal lands as wild lands. Kansas City should identify areas in 30 or more percent of the city where habitat can be restored and left undeveloped, and protect these in perpetuity. This should be coordinated with all of the suburbs on both sides of the state line, all areas should implement development limits beyond which development will not be allowed (help biodiversity and transportation), and all cities should require any developer to permanently preserve habitat at the rate of at least 2x as much as they develop. Without this kind of more ambitious action, all of these small actions like increases in electric vehicle chargers, etc., will fall short. Any step in the right direction is good, but set your sights much higher! We don't have time to take small steps anymore if we want humans to survive long-term.

WildKCD about 2 months ago

My name is Ryan and I’m a leader with Sunrise Movement KC and KC Tenants. I live in the 4th district and have followed the design process of the CPRP for about 6 months now.

Mobility
-More aggressive expansion of existing rail. The streetcar should be more than a way of accessing fun downtown shopping and bars, we should have a rail system that people all over the city can reliably and cheaply use to totally replace their need for cars. Would love to see a collaboration with Kansas that spans the state line
-Expansion of rail and bus routes east/west
-More funding for our bus system so that buses can arrive more frequently and reliably. Less traffic on streets will already help reliability but more frequency will give them much more appeal
-I like that M-5.3 plans to electrify all public-serving vehicles.
-Include plans for reclaiming streets for pedestrian use only as car travel is phased out; many neighborhood blocks could eventually be walk/bike/roll only with more patio space for businesses and leisure room for residents
-Immediately remove as many police cars from the streets as possible. This plan talks a lot about reducing vehicle miles traveled and idling without mentioning the massive city agency that does these things en masse every day

Energy Supply
-A roadmap for a city-owned and operated utility that doesn’t waste our money on lobbying, funding politicians, stock buybacks, and PR. Our rates should go to keeping electricity flowing, not these extraneous costs that keep a few people on the right side of a monopoly wealthy
-Close Hawthorn coal plant ASAP, no later than 2025
-Reparations for residents that have lived inside the radius of Hawthorn’s circle of impact
-Ensure workers whose jobs are at risk from transitioning away from fossil fuels have good livable alternate work
-Our target should be zero carbon by 2035 as opposed to net-zero by 2040.
-I like that E-1.3 calls for performance-based regulation of Evergy, and would like that to apply to Spire and other large utilities in the state if it’s pursued at that legislative level. I also wonder whether something similar could and should be done in addition at the city level (though I realize this would be more limited)
-E-1.4 is a good step though lacking a little specificity. Is this intended to address the law MO passed banning the banning of natural gas hookups? That plus more? Something else? I’d like to know what resistance we expect from the state
-Consider reparations in the form of reduced utility rates to residents that have lived in the radius of Hawthorn that has the highest risk of negative health impacts

Natural Systems
-I appreciate the upfront acknowledgement of the problems with KC’s stormwater management
-Would like to see plans to designate natural green spaces that can not be developed in the future to preserve large natural areas and contain sprawl over time
-I like that this section emphasizes planting prairie grass; I’d like to see stronger and more specific language about replacing bluegrass with prairie grasses where possible, such as city property, medians, vacant lots, etc

Homes and Buildings
-Needs much more language that empowers and finances tenants to install renewable energy and efficiency measures; educating and incentivizing landlords won’t get us as far as we need since they don’t particularly directly benefit nearly as much as the tenants will. Tenants need the legal right to initiate these installations
-Needs planning to ensure access to green technology and transit doesn’t cause displacement and skyrocketing rents. Healthy and comfortable homes should be a given for everyone in KC
-Provide green low-carbon permanently affordable social housing
-Guarantee housing for all. This includes the people of Kansas City along with the people that will migrate here as homes in other places become unlivable
-No incentives for new development without a high bar for energy efficiency and rooftop solar

Food
-This section looks pretty good to me. If there are problems I don’t know enough to spot them

Waste and Materials
-Find a way to reduce/eliminate trash spilling out onto the street on trash day. The current system of just putting out bags often results in trash (recycling especially) getting spilled out onto the street before the waste workers take them away
-W-1.7 is good. KC depends heavily on styrofoam and plastics in grocery shopping and food takeout
-I like W-2, though have concerns about adding another utility residents would have to pay for. This strategy could be integrated with other community garden initiatives in the city and could help plug more community members into the gardens

Miscellaneous
-Specific measurable targets for each strategy along with more solid estimates on emissions reductions and costs
-KC’s climate plan needs significant public funding to work. I know this plan cannot secure this based on the ordinance that directed its creation, but we also need to acknowledge that we cannot redirect the climate crisis with private money and grants
-The city should incorporate approved edits to the plan from the CPSC, specifically the more stringent electrification measures and Hawthorn closure by 2025
-Strategies involving directing people into green work should be directing them into unionized jobs
-This plan should not pass on additional costs and burdens to average people, whether it be extra utility costs, fares, more difficulty navigating their neighborhood, etc. This is the quickest way to hamstringing climate efforts in our city now and for years to come. We have money in our bloated utility monopolies and police that can pay for these societal improvements. We are capable of doing these things, and we can pay for them. We just need to be ready for the long fight ahead.

rdickey about 2 months ago

I would first like to give sincere gratitude for our Climate Protection Steering Committee who have worked diligently on this plan and provided great feedback to OEQ. Special thanks to our Chair, Robin Ganahl, for working to ensure public feedback is taken into consideration and for navigating the committee through this process. I would have liked the process to have been more open to the general public. Although anyone could attend, there was minimal engagement or outreach by the city to gather more public feedback and participation. Rather, participation relied on already maintaining a connection with a member of the steering committee or an organization involved in advocacy on climate issues. The city must work to better advertise and engage public voices through these processes.

General:
I would like to start by saying I strongly oppose a definition of “net-zero” for our broad climate goals. Natural gas must not merely be switched out for existing coal plants. We must swiftly transition to clean sources of energy. I strongly discourage the addition of new coal, gas, oil, or toxic plants or leases to be added to our city. In alignment with that point, I would like to additionally urge for the closure of the Hawthorn coal plant as soon as possible.

Equity:
This plan includes mentions of equity, however, lacks specific detail in addressing which communities will benefit or be harmed by pieces of the plan. I urge for additional details to be added regarding which communities will be affected in what particular ways.

Transportation:
I would urge for the addition of increased frequency of bus routes, as a lack of transit access is a large accessibility barrier. This plan should work in tandem with a goal for folks to work, live, and play without the necessity of a personal use vehicle. Transit accessibility is a civil right and the city must make public transit as affordable, reliable, and accessible as possible, in addition to powering transit with clean energy sources. I would urge this plan to also include higher wages for transit workers.

Food:
I suggest a funding mechanism in which food pantries are able to purchase fresh food directly from local farmers. I would also like to see increased incentives for converting vacant lots into urban farms and gardens in addition to increased protections for current urban farms and gardens against alternative land development.

Renters:
I would like to see renters more prioritzed in this plan. Additionally, I urge the plan to support KC Tenant’s People’s Housing Trust Fund. Finally, interim and specific targets MUST be set in order to measure our progress. It is critical for these targets to be set in the near future to ensure we are on a path of progress. Thank you for your consideration.

EFlores about 2 months ago

Hello, my name is MAK and I am from the 4th District. I’m a supporter of the Green New Deal, and that’s why I believe this plan must adopt the demands from the People’s Climate Town Hall. Specifically, I really support adding in more green technology investment and divestment from dirty technology. You can view the rest of the demands at: https://bit.ly/pcthdemands

mak about 2 months ago

Contrary to certain comments made, the Climate Action Plan benefits Labor and jobs creation, and it's unfortunate to see the shortsightedness displayed here. Instead of supporting natural gas and coal we should be moving with all deliberate speed to shift to ELECTRIFICATION and move away from reliance on fossil fuels. Implementing this plan will provide the impetus to move forward with energy solutions like wind, solar, and geo-thermal. Solar and wind are now LOWER in cost than natural gas! As these two sources continue to scale up, heating and cooling homes should continue to become more affordable. Moreover, renewable energy is a much more reliable and resillient source of energy - https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2022/02/20/texas-energy-winter-renewable-jacobson-dessler-rogan/ .

To tackle the dire harms our communities are starting to face more and more as a result of climate change, like what happened in Texas, it's no longer business as usual, we need to act now.
It's time for bold and courageous action by our elected officials, businesses and Labor to avert the catastrophe. By implementing this climate plan, and being intentional about shifting our built environment and transportation to clean energy sources, i.e., NO FOSSIL FUELS/NO CARBON GREEN HOUSE GAS EMISSIONS will not only be the moral thing to do, but will also help spur a new green economic boom for our region.

Don't be fooled by so called "fuel choice" legislation - it's all about the corrupting power and influence of the natural gas and fossil fuel industry lobbyists in states like Missouri. Quite the contrary, these special interests are doing everything in their power to block the will of everyday people to choose a clean energy future, and life for themselves and their families.

Beware of all the false claims that gas is clean - both gas and coal are major contributors to the rise in greenhouse gas emissions that have brought us to this critical moment - putting our lives and futures in jeopardy.

I get it, that Spire and Evergy are stakeholders who can't be ignored. We need all hands on deck - everyone working together to tackle the biggest threat in our lifetimes. So it's a shame that both (along with their cronies) are doubling down to thwart the ability of our city and state to take the steps necessary for all of us to come out ahead - in a clean, just and equitable world where our people and our communities are thriving.

Eslun about 2 months ago

Natural gas production causes releasees of massive amounts of methane, a potent greenhouse gas. Our prosperity in the Midwest depends on a healthy agriculture industry, and we should not remain stuck in fossil fuel consumption habits that destabilize the climate and weather reliability our farmers need. Therefore we need a plan for ratcheting down our consumption of natural gas and coal as our developing technology enables us to do so. Use of electric heat pumps to warm and cool homes is increasingly feasible. Electrical Induction cooktops now are responsive to chefs’ needs, so we don’t need the indoor pollution from natural gas. Developing large battery technology enables more and more reliance on wind and solar electricity generation. The natural gas distribution system is too leaky, and there should be less gas transmission, not more. Let’s not let our energy plan be bent to the benefit of those who are invested in the current form of ‘buggy whips’ – natural gas!

JTenvir about 2 months ago

These comments are being submitted on behalf of Elevate, Idleburg Equity Consultants, Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance, Natural Resources Defense Council and Renew Missouri, who are members of the Missouri Energy Efficiency for All coalition (MO EEFA). MO EEFA works to ensure that All Missourians live in affordable, efficient, healthy housing by engaging utilities and building power with local communities.
We are encouraged to see the Homes & Buildings section of the Plan focus on energy efficiency and electrification, and the benefits they provide to the declining affordable housing stock. Because buildings account for more than half of all carbon emissions in Kansas City, we encourage the Office of Environmental Quality to prioritize, fund, and build out this section accordingly. Energy efficiency not only decreases the energy and emissions of buildings, but it also reduces tenants’ energy bills, improves their comfort and health, and reduces owners’ operating costs. Additionally, reducing the heating and cooling loads of buildings improves the resilience of the city’s energy grid, reduces costly infrastructure investments, and paves the way for adopting distributed renewable energy resources. We support the OEQ’s four strategies within this section and the related actions within the Short-Term Implementation Plan. As you continue to refine Kansas City’s Draft Climate Protection and Resiliency Plan, we strongly encourage you to incorporate the following recommendations in order to effectively and equitably accomplish the plan's goals:

1. Make energy efficiency a central pillar of the plan and outline specific plans for implementation
Because Kansas City buildings account for more than half of the city’s carbon emissions and because privately owned, affordable housing stock has the most need with the fewest resources, the Homes & Buildings section and specifically strategy b-2 should be prioritized. The Climate Action Plan should articulate specific goals and metrics for the number and kind of audits and retrofits it hopes to complete annually, with plans detailing how those goals can be achieved- including with what funding and whose involvement. As part of those plans, we believe specific under-resourced areas with multifamily housing should be targeted for these services using energy burden (the portion of a household’s income that goes to utility costs as a central identifier for efficiency improvements). Cities like Atlanta, Cincinnati, Houston, Minneapolis/St. Paul, New Orleans, and Philadelphia have goals to reduce or cap city residents’ energy burden- below the 6% level that’s considered “high”. Kansas City should follow the lead of these other cities and also incorporate an energy burden reduction goal. This will require additional utility data, so a plan to make that data available and how it will be utilized will also be necessary.
Audit accessibility, incentives, and financing for efficiency improvements are vital to accomplishing efficiency goals. Cities like Minneapolis require energy audits upon resale, but whether or not they are required, they should at least be accessible and affordable. We recommend this Climate Action Plan include an expanded section or separate document that details the providers of, types, sizes, and eligibility requirements offered by existing funding and programming in addition to what improvements it covers. Other considerations that will facilitate the strategy of improving the performance of the city’s housing stock include the fact that health and safety issues often force a “walk away” when an under-resourced building seeks efficiency work. We recommend pairing the two pipelines together using programming like that of KC Healthy Homes, to address these issues and re-enter buildings into energy efficiency programming once they are addressed. This requires specific funding and policies- pairing energy audits with health and safety inspections would facilitate problem identification and lead to code enforcement. Finally, it would also be in the City’s best interest to outline a plan for outreach and education, that is, how to get landlords, property managers, and tenants to be aware, to understand, to have interest, and to participate in said programs.

2. Provide equitable components to decarbonization
We appreciate the Homes & Buildings section Strategy b-4 and fully support the City’s mission to transition to one hundred percent renewable electricity. There are, however, important considerations to guide this process to ensure a positive and equitable outcome. Firstly, the plan for implementation of this strategy would be most successful if robust rebates, incentives, and financing options are available for efficiency and electrification. As more buildings electrify to meet space heating needs and demand for natural gas decreases, the more prices will increase, leaving the last group of buildings that are able to make the switch- likely predominantly under-resourced buildings- to cover the continually increasing natural gas bills. We must acknowledge that while some homes and buildings are not going to be able to electrify right away, all should eventually be able to do so without facing an undue burden. Therefore, as decarbonization work becomes available, building owners who can’t afford to should be offered programming for deep energy efficiency, with a focus on building envelope measures such as air sealing and insulation. We view this situation as entirely manageable, as Kansas City’s geographic and market position makes it uniquely positioned to incorporate nearby renewable wind energy paired with demand-side management to stabilize rates during the major transition that is electrification. Determining the appropriate metrics and the kinds and levels of assistance for this goal is necessary to measure and ensure its gradual progress. Essentially, this is an opportunity to help those who are able to electrify and taking advantage of that is certainly important but ensuring that in so doing we are not widening the equity gap between them and those who may not be able to do so in the near term, is paramount.

3. Include effective and trusted people, organizations, and programs for outreach, education, and implementation of the plan, especially those that target low-wealth, multifamily housing and community-based groups representing KC’s under-resourced communities.
We believe it is in the City’s best interest to get more specific about which people and organizations will play an important role or provide an important service for the accomplishment of the strategies outlined in the Climate Action Plan. We highly encourage that this plan be one that centers on actual communities and organizations representing them including environmental justice groups like the local chapters of Sunrise Movement and Sierra Club, tenant groups like KC Tenants, affordable housing advocates and developers like KC Common Good and Westside Housing, among many others. This is the only way the policies can be designed to address past, present, and future harms and to direct the subsequent benefits to those communities. Simply put, there should only be a plan for the future if its authors have done their due diligence in consulting communities and community-based organizations who share that future- those impacted by climate change and energy burden most must be directly involved in the solutions. There are best practices and tools that can be incorporated from existing and proven community-driven processes, such as Facilitating Power’s Spectrum of Community Engagement to Ownership. Facilitating Power notes that “the key to closing equity gaps and resolving climate vulnerability is direct participation by impacted communities in the development and implementation of solutions and policy decisions that directly impact them.”
Additionally, industry leaders, such as the Building Energy Exchange, should also be explicitly listed in the implementation plan for each goal and strategy in which the City plans that they will be involved. In addition, the City should make an outreach plan that incorporates existing networks and programs that utilize strategic targeting, like KC LILAC, a resource sharing and referral network for weatherization providers. Coordination with local organizations like Renew MO and Bridging the Gap can connect the City to owners, program administrators, utility representatives, neighborhood leaders, and resources like MOsaves.com. Community education materials like those produced by Evergy and community engagement forums like the Missouri Energy Efficiency Advisory Collaborative’s (MEEAC) Low-Income Work Group are also valuable resources that the City should incorporate into their plans for community-wide involvement.
Consider also that different programs have different advantages and requirements, and some programs may be better for some households than others, so a hub, guide, or other resident resource that lists the programs and who they target would be helpful to many. Any and all programs that target under-resourced buildings, low-wealth areas, and multifamily housing should be included, promoted, and strengthened however possible. To earn community trust, we recommend implementing such a resource with a coinciding system of transparency for potential applicants to learn about previous experiences, both positive and negative, and accompanying consumer protections policies to ensure no harm is ultimately done. Being clear and direct is not only the best way to make a plan for its own sake, but will also foster community trust and communication, often improving the participation and efficacy of the programming.

4. Target under-resourced areas for workforce development, focus on existing training pipelines, and emphasize job creation and economic development
We fully support the Homes & Buildings Strategy b-3.2 to address workforce development by providing training to local builders on high-efficiency building techniques. We suggest that the Climate Action Plan include plans to collaborate with KC community-based organizations, the US Green Buildings Council, the Buildings Performance Institute, trade unions, the City’s job training program, and anywhere else training programs are being launched to prepare local residents for the jobs that will be needed for the implementation of the Plan. We also recommend identifying and launching training programs for any areas of the workforce where there may be a gap in the necessary workforce, and promoting these opportunities in areas of low wealth and/or low employment. It is our collective obligation to ensure that the transition to the clean energy economy should include and benefit those for whom our current system does not.

5. Center the Climate Action Plan around core values including racial and economic justice
MO-EEFA strongly believes this Climate Plan presents not only an opportunity to combat the harsh and disproportionate effects of climate change, but to also create good jobs, revitalize an aging and underperforming housing stock, and restore equity to municipal policies. We recommend emphasizing and centering the plan around these values. This is also an opportunity to ensure all KC residents can equitably benefit from a clean energy future and to ensure the programs and priorities included in the plan are distributed to KC under-resources and BIPOC families that are disproportionately burdened by climate change.

The members of the Missouri EEFA coalition appreciate the opportunity to submit these comments and welcome any further discussions around these issues. Interested parties may reach out to our organizations regarding these comments and the recommendations contained within.

MO_EEFA about 2 months ago

A specific measure that could be added in the houses and buildings section could be about reviewing and updating zoning R-zoning requirements to allow for adding rental unit(s) to an existing R-zoned property. As climate refugees become a seasonal and/or permanent reality for KC, we will need new ways to add density without erasing the character of our neighborhoods. This would be a simple change that would allow communities to grow in density in a way that keeps the improvements accountable on behalf of renters.

JKnoll about 2 months ago

My name is Dream and I live in the 3rd district, along with many of my family. Our family has resided in this district, and specifically on my same street, for over seven decades. My grandmothers, grandfathers, my cousins and siblings have all given every ounce of humanity they have to building and maintaining a community of care in Kansas City, myself included.

Those of you in charge, you have let us all down. I want to be able to look forward to future generations sharing memories of their love for Kansas City, but if things stay the same, and once again Kansas City Power commits to profits over futures, lives, compassion -- we will not get a second chance to mess things up again. I am imploring you, whoever, however, for the future of our entire planet - we must act now. We must disinvest ourselves from the elements that will become our slow demise. I want my children to be able to breathe, run, play, drink water, to LIVE not just to survive. I don't want to hoist decades of harm onto my children's future. I don't want to hand our childrens futures over to the highest investor, financier, developer, chief, commissioner, etc.

I support KC Climate Action Plan - I fully support ZERO emissions

Latest Report: 100 Seconds from Midnight - We Need to Act Now
https://www.ipcc.ch/report/ar6/wg2/

Please restore our faith in Kansas City, because we are Kansas City.
How much is enough?
Thank you.

Dream about 2 months ago

I am a resident of the 1st district. I am also a renter, and am disappointed at the lack of priority renters and tenants have in this plan. Below are my full comments on Kansas City’s Climate Protection Plan:

Renters and tenants. Kansas City is composed of nearly 50% renters, and renters are minimally prioritized in this plan. I’m happy to see a utility disclosure at time of lease be included, but I believe the plan can go further to ensure tenants are central in the implementation of these policies.

Define who will benefit: Kansas City is a racially segregated city, and this plan does not define who will benefit from the resources in this plan. People who struggle to pay their utility bills, in threat of utility shut offs and evictions, and have experienced displacement should be prioritized.

Set interim and specific targets: I was happy to see that the plan is ambitious, but without interim benchmarking, staff and community won’t be able to evaluate and adjust their implementation strategies.

Building electrification: I’m glad that this is a priority, but want to emphasize how important of a priority this is. I currently have a gas stove and my landlord isn’t receptive to upgrades because of lack of incentives. Given the negative climate and health impacts of gas stoves, I want to be able to live in a fossil free building. Furthermore, I am still paying off my outrageous gas bill from the winter months. Tenants and underrepresented communities should not be left behind in this transition.

Close the Hawthorne Coal Plant by 2025. An operating coal plant in an environmental justice community is a stain on the city’s sustainability and equity goals. The city must make it known that this is a priority.

Social Housing: Support KC Tenant’s People’s Housing Trust Fund and other anti-gentrification policies.

Developers who are not building affordable housing as defined by tenant unions should not be rewarded with city dollars, even if they have clean energy goals.

EKruse about 2 months ago

Reading lots of concern about electrification, and should note that this plan does not flip a switch and suddenly make natural gas illegal to use. While NG does burn cleanly, the transportation, piping, and extraction result in a GHG profile equivalent to coal in the US - not including that we have had earthquakes in KC from the frakking industry in Oklahoma. Compost from restaurants, residences, and leaf/brush collection can be combined with waste products from beer production, dairy farming, and other industries that we have in and around KC to create methane extraction as a completely viable source of gas that can be used to supplement or replace NG while keeping those dollars in our region. Since NG heating will be with us regardless of this plan for the coming 20-30 years, we should be focused on how to make this work to our benefit. Several folks note that NG is needed to warm homes during blackouts in KC, but our HVAC blower motors are electric and shut down the furnaces so we don't asphyxiate. I'd love to see Spire commit to shifting their model to focus on renewable regional production and delivery of non-fossil-fuel gas, and to provide resiliency measures to home owners with partial electrification, such as a simple battery backup for blower-motors in gas-fired furnaces - which would allow homes with NG furnaces to keep heating during a blackout. Switching to a heat-pump HVAC system could function on a similar battery setup during a blackout, btw.

JKnoll about 2 months ago
Page last updated: 13 Apr 2022, 12:47 PM