Take Climate Action Today 

Take Climate Action Today  

The effects of climate change are here: wildfires, record heat waves, droughts, and flood-inducing storms are directly caused by global warming (source). It will keep getting worse until we reduce our greenhouse gas pollution to zero, which will only be possible if all of us take action.

Atherton's Environmental Programs Committee Member Gregory Loew shares a call to take action locally that can be reviewed here.

What has been done? Atherton’s Climate Action Plan establishes a framework for reducing the Town’s emissions. After achieving and exceeding its 2020 goal of reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to 15 percent below 2005 levels, the Town has turned its attention to reducing GHG emissions to 49 percent below 2005 levels by 2030 (or 40 percent below 1990 levels) and carbon neutrality by 2045 (or 100 percent below 1990 levels).

 Notable actions to date include: 

  1. All Atherton are customers of Peninsula Clean Energy, which provides electricity from renewable, clean energy sources at a lower rate than PG&E. This partnership decreased Atherton’s greenhouse gas emissions by 71%.

  2. Atherton’s new waste service provider, GreenWaste uses cutting-edge technology and additional manpower to process and sort all waste to maximize diversion from landfills. This partnership will decrease Atherton’s greenhouse gas emissions by 26%.

  3.  Atherton’s new Town Center is has a variety of green features. To learn more visit the Town Center page, click here. 

What’s next?

To prevent the worst effects of climate change, residents will need to take individual action. 40% of Atherton’s greenhouse gas emissions come from natural gas use in homes. 24% of Atherton’s carbon emissions come from cars. One-third of the material in our landfills comes from food waste and other organic materials. 

What can you do? 

    Eliminating gas from your home will improve your indoor air quality, reduce your greenhouse gas emissions and save money. Replace your furnace and water heaters with heat pumps. Replace your gas stove with an induction stove. Check out our green building checklist. There are rebates available and these energy-efficient devices will reduce your electric bill. 

    Save money and the planet by switching to electric vehicles (
    learn more). There are a number of rebates and tax credits available to offset the cost of the vehicle and home charging installation. Or, even better: ride your bike, walk, or take public transit! 

    Help prevent blackouts by installing solar panels and battery storage at your home. Consider forming a microgrid with your neighbors. Not only will solar panels keep your lights on during a power outage, it will also reduce your power bill and add more renewable energy to the grid. Net metering in CA means solar homeowners will receive credits for surplus electricity at the retail rate, often causing drastic reductions in utility bills. Tax credits, rebates and financing options to help offset the cost of installation make going solar a smart financial decision. 

    Wasted food accounts for 8 percent of greenhouse gas emissions globally. Take advantage of our local farmer's markets; local food tends to last longer. Reduce your plastic consumption. Eliminate your use of single-use items (disposable plates/utensils, paper towels, plastic water bottles). Use a refillable water bottle and travel mug. Donate gently used items instead of throwing them away. The County’s Foodware Aware program asks us to Reuse, Choose, and Refuse.

Track our progress in reducing greenhouse gas emissions throughout the Town of Atherton's Climate Action Plan!