Any plan to control greenhouse gas (GHG) needs to predict the amount of future GHG emissions. To predict future emissions planners first need an inventory of GHG emissions from “business as usual”. Such data tell planners how they much need to reduce GHG in the future and make it possible to measure whether a jurisdiction is meeting its climate goals.
Sacramento County missed the point
In 2011, Sacramento County promised a Climate Action Plan (CAP) within one year and updates to the GHG inventory every three years. With 2005 as the original base-year, Sacramento County should have provided Inventories for 2011, 2014, 2017, and 2020. However, Sacramento County produced only one base-year 2015 Inventory and uses this single year for its current draft CAP. This 2015 Inventory excludes GHG emissions from the greenfield sprawl the County has approved and plans for the future. Obviously, the 2015 Inventory is a seriously inadequate starting point. (San Diego County attempted the same approach and the courts ruled against them.)
350 Sacramento responds
Sacramento County’s new Sustainability Manager proposes using 2022 as the base-year for an Inventory update. When the Sustainability Manager asked environmental organizations to comment, the CAP and SMUD Watch teams gladly obliged. For details of what they said, see the 350 CAP Team and SMUD Watch responses.