116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
IOWA CITY - City staff and the City Council announced earlier this year they were seeking Iowa City residents to participate in a Climate Action Steering Committee as part of an initiative to reduce the entire city's carbon emissions.
Late last year, the city put out a request for proposals from consultants who believed they could help Iowa City reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 26 to 28 percent of its 2005 levels by 2025 and 80 percent by 2050. To help, the council created a Climate Action Steering Committee. In addition to seven 'community stakeholder” seats for organizations and a University of Iowa student spot, the council opened up five seats.
WHAT'S HAPPENED SINCE
The City Council recently announced the members chosen to serve on the committee. In addition to representatives from stakeholders like MidAmerican Energy, Kirkwood Community College and the Iowa City Area Chamber of Commerce, the city decided on five residents with various backgrounds.
Members have not formally met as the council has yet to choose a consultant. Brenda Nations, the city's sustainability coordinator, said she expected the contract to be on the council's next regular agenda.
'The goal is for the steering committee to really have a lot of input to prioritize some of the actions and get input from the community and really be involved in the whole process in a really major way,” she said.
The Climate Action and Adaptation Plan is meant to be community driven because the goals are for the entire city, not just the land, buildings or vehicles Iowa City itself owns. Nations said she believes there's a lot of public support for the project, which saw about 41 applications for the five open seats.
One of the members selected by the council is Anne Russett, who previously worked at the Oregon Department of Transportation to identify strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
'I'm generally just very concerned and very interested in identifying strategies to curb climate change and I think it's really important for communities to kind of collectively act,” she said.
Martha Norbeck, an architect and LEED building consultant, is another member selected for an at-large position. She said she'd like the future plan to get more residents on bicycles, reduce short car trips and track their energy usage, among other goals.
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Who's on the Climate Change committee?
' University of Iowa: Ingrid Anderson, environmental compliance specialist
' Greater Iowa City Home Builders Association: Karyl Bohnsack, executive officer
' Procter & Gamble Oral Care: Katie Sarsfield, site engineering Leader
' MidAmerican Energy: Jesse Leckband, senior environmental analyst
' Kirkwood Community College: Melissa Jensen, director of emergency services and campus security
' Iowa City Area Chamber of Commerce: Kim Casko, president and CEO
' Certified Architect: Matt Krieger, Neumann-Monson Architects
' John Fraser, management consultant
' Charlie Stanier, associate engineering professor.
' Martha Norbeck, architect
' Eric Tate. assistant professor geographical & sustainability sciences
Anne Russett, city planner for city of Cedar Rapids
' Eden DeWald, University of Iowa