Kansas City region selected for climate leaders initiative

Kansas City region selected for climate leaders initiative

Global Covenant of Mayors award will support development of a regional Climate Action Plan

Greater Kansas City is one of four U.S. regions selected by the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy (GCoM) to receive technical assistance to develop a regional Climate Action Plan. The Mid-America Regional Council applied for the program on behalf of local governments in the nine-county region.

In early 2019, dozens of area elected officials joined together to form the Metro Kansas City Climate Action Coalition. Led by Roeland Park Mayor Mike Kelly and Shawnee Councilwoman Lindsey Constance, the coalition is working to develop proactive strategies to improve climate resilience in the region.

This award, part of GCoM’s International Urban Cooperation (IUC) Regional and Metro-Scale Climate Leaders initiative, will support an inventory of greenhouse gas emissions in the Kansas City region and help coalition members formulate the regional Climate Action Plan. GCoM introduced this regional initiative to foster more ambitious and widespread action on climate change. The other regions selected are Chicago, Denver and Washington, D.C.

“I'm excited our metro area continues making climate resilience a priority,” said Kelly. “Climate leadership in America traditionally comes from cities, and by addressing our climate action plan on a region-wide scale, we can be comprehensive and more impactful in our efforts.”

GCoM is an international alliance of cities and local governments with a shared long-term vision of promoting and supporting voluntary action to combat climate change and move to an inclusive, just, low-emission, resilient society. There are currently 154 members of the GCoM in the U.S., all of whom have made a commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and prepare for the impacts of climate change.

“The momentum seen in terms of climate resiliency is a testament to the collaborative and data-driven approach by elected and community leaders in the Metro KC region,” said Constance. “The partnership and support from the IUC will help guide our municipalities in planning for a resilient, healthy and economically prosperous future.”

MARC and the Metro KC Climate Action Coalition will work closely with GCoM and the IUC on this project over the next 18 months. As part of this effort, the coalition will host a regional Climate Summit on Saturday, Sept. 14, from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. at Johnson County Community College.