The Clinton Climate Initiative, a project of the William J. Clinton Foundation, announced the launch of the Climate Positive Development Program, a global program developed in collaboration with the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) to support the development of large-scale urban projects that demonstrate cities can grow in ways that are “climate positive.”
Climate Positive real-estate developments will strive to reduce the amount of on-site CO2 emissions to below zero, the USGBC said. Sixteen founding projects on six continents, supported by local governments and property developers, are planned as demonstrations of Climate Positive strategies.
The William J. Clinton Foundation launched the Clinton Climate Initiative to create and advance solutions to the core issues driving climate change. The initiative focuses on three strategic program areas: increasing energy efficiency in cities, catalyzing the large-scale supply of clean energy, and working to measure and value the carbon absorbed by forests.
Cities occupy just 2% of the world’s landmass, but are responsible for more than two-thirds of global energy use and greenhouse gas emissions. Rapid urban growth and climate change are contributing to of escalating costs for infrastructure, energy, and health and human services, and these costs will be magnified by the pressure of climatic adaptation, the USGBC said. How cities change and grow, thus, represents a critical component to tackling the climate crisis.
“As the Earth’s population increases and our cities grow, we need to ensure we have the models in place to sustain our way of life in an increasingly urbanized world,” Clinton said. “The Climate Positive Development Program will set a new global standard for developments that will minimize environmental impacts and benefit economies as we build and rebuild homes, schools, and businesses.”
To reduce the net greenhouse-gas emissions of these projects to below zero, property developers and local governments will agree to work in partnership on specific areas of activity. This includes implementing economically viable innovations in building, the generation of clean energy, waste management, water management, transportation, and outdoor lighting systems.
When the initial 16 projects are completed, nearly one million people will live and work in Climate Positive communities. These communities will be located in: Melbourne, Australia; Palhoça, Brazil; Toronto,Ontario; Victoria, British Columbia; Ahmedabad, India; Jaipur, India; outside Panama City, Panama; Pretoria, South Africa; Johannesburg, South Africa; Seoul, South Korea; Stockholm, Sweden; London, England; San Francisco, CA; and Destiny, FL.
By combining the Clinton Climate Initiative’s business and finance expertise with the technical knowledge of the USGBC, the Climate Positive Development Program will support the planning and implementation process for each real estate development and establish the standards and metrics by which the sites can measure climate positive outcomes, the USGBC said.