Have fun, learn, and take part.
Why should you care about the City of San Luis Obispo’s decision to be carbon neutral by 2035? Join us on April 30 to find out, have some fun, and get involved.
On September 18, 2018, when the San Luis Obispo City Council decided to pursue a 2035 carbon neutral goal (see page 6), they were making a monumental commitment to protecting this beautiful place where we all love to live, work, and play.
At the time, it was the most ambitious municipal goal in the country and landed San Luis Obispo and Mayor Heidi Harmon on the Sierra Club’s Ready for 100 Campaign website. The Mayor issued a challenge to other mayors across the country to join us. Apparently, Chicago decided to follow our lead because, on April 10, 2019, the Chicago City Council announced a similar commitment.
Last year, even though I live in Cambria, an unincorporated part of San Luis Obispo County, I was thrilled to learn about the City of San Luis Obispo’s carbon neutral goal.
The environment surrounds you, me, and everyone else 24/7/365. It does not recognize city limits, county lines, or state or country borders. What we do to the environment we do to ourselves.
I hope the entire County will embrace a carbon neutral by 2035 goal. That is why I decided to get involved with the San Luis Obispo Climate Coalition and do my part. You can, too.
A good way to get involved and share your ideas is by participating in the SLO Climate Solution Series.
SLO Climate Solutions Series
The first event in the SLO Climate Solution Series is a kickoff celebration with interesting people to meet and talk with, free nibbles, giveaways, prize drawings, and most important, several ways for you to communicate with us what is important to you.
This free event is open to the public.
Date: Tuesday, April 30, 2019
Time: 5:30-8:30 p.m.
Location: SLO Brew at 736 Higuera St. , San Luis Obispo
To reduce the carbon footprint of the event and spread happiness to another city in California the SLO Climate Coalition has purchased a carbon offset. This will support the City of Arcata Community Forest among the magnificent redwoods of Humboldt County.
When you arrive, make sure you pick up your passport. Throughout the evening, you will have opportunities to visit the exhibitor booths to get it stamped. Then fill out the back, drop it off, and you are eligible to win one of our door prizes.
Before and after the panel discussion you will have a chance to talk with representatives from the organizations listed below. Not only are they friendly people from the Central Coast, but they also have information to help you participate in going carbon neutral, and they want to hear your ideas, too.
- Bike SLO County
- City of San Luis Obispo Transit
- City of San Luis Obispo Utilities
- Monterey Bay Community Power
- San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce
- San Luis Obispo Climate Coalition
- Sierra Club Santa Lucia Chapter
- SLO County Green Business Network
Eric Veium, the SLO Climate Coalition chairperson, will be moderating a panel discussion with Heidi Harmon, City of San Luis Obispo Mayor; Jim Dantona, President and CEO of the San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce; and Dennis Elliot, Director of Energy, Utilities and Sustainability at Cal Poly State University, San Luis Obispo.
These leaders will share their thoughts about going carbon neutral by 2035, answer questions, and listen to your ideas.
In her second term as the Mayor of the City of San Luis Obispo, Heidi Harmon continues to be a climate champion and a staunch advocate for inclusivity and diversity. She is committed to a Green New Deal for San Luis Obispo and is spearheading the City’s carbon neutral by 2035 goal. Heidi fell in love with San Luis Obispo as a college student. She earned a degree in early childhood education from Cuesta College and a BA in liberal studies from Cal Poly. She has two grown children Zoie and Jack. Heidi believes that democracy starts and ends with the voice of the people.
When Jim Dantona took over the reins of the San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce in January 2019, he brought with him over 20 years of experience in the public and private sector helping businesses grow and create jobs. In Los Angeles, he worked with residents and community leaders on issues such as homelessness, zero waste, and affordable housing. Jim earned his bachelor’s degree in government from California State University, Sacramento. Having recently relocated to the San Luis Obispo area, Jim and his wife Jennifer are looking forward to taking in all the beauty of our community.
As Cal Poly’s Director of Energy, Utilities, and Sustainability, Dennis Elliot manages the campus’ climate action plan and a $10M utility budget. He and his team oversee a wide variety of projects and programs focused on energy and water conservation, renewable energy, high-performance buildings, student engagement, and sustainability curriculum infusion. Dennis has served in the Facilities Department at Cal Poly for 36 years in a variety of energy-related roles, starting his career as a student working in the campus steam plant while pursuing his mechanical engineering degree.
After the panel discussion, you will have a chance to finish making the rounds of the exhibitors before turning in your passport for the door prize drawings.
San Luis Obispo County is the coolest place to live, work, and play in the country so let’s keep it that way.
Top Photo Credit: Kid preparing for a celebration by hanging a flag garland on a tree – photo credit iStock/portishead1.
About the Author: Linda Poppenheimer researches and writes about environmental topics to share information and to spark conversation. Her mission is to live more lightly on Earth and to persuade everyone else to do the same. She writes as The Unlikely Environmentalist at Green Groundswell.