Boulder's Climate Commitment
100% Renewable Electricity by 2030
80% City Organization Emissions Reduction by 2030
100 MW of Local Renewable Generation by 2030
80% Community Emissions Reduction by 2050
Want updates on climate and energy programs, events and city progress? Sign up to receive email updates.
Boulder's Climate Commitment
For our community, climate action is about resilience and transformation: we need to adapt to the climate changes that are already in motion, as well as reduce the emissions-heavy activities that drive future climate change. We face a great challenge but also a great opportunity to make Boulder better-- to create a healthier, safer and more prosperous community. We need your help to make it happen!
The strategic framework laid out in the Climate Commitment guides the city's climate work in three action areas: energy, ecosystems and resources. Rising to the climate challenge will require long-term action in all three area and work is underway! Learn more on the Climate Commitment page.
Check out our list of actions you can take during Earth Month and beyond!
Looking to take action on climate in your household? These four actions—maximizing your energy efficiency, powering your life with renewable energy, electrifying your heating and cooling and clean transportation-- really add up and make a difference. Ready to make a move? We have resources to help!
We also have resources to help you take action no matter what assets you have or where you are in your climate journey!
Check out our Actions with Impact page for more information.
Climate Accountability Litigation
On April 17, the city, in partnership with Boulder County and San Miguel County filed a lawsuit against two oil companies operating in Colorado.
Climate change affects fragile high-altitude ecosystems and hits at the heart of these communities’ local economies, affecting roads and bridges, parks and forests, buildings, farming and agriculture, the ski industry, and public open space. Adapting to such a wide range of impacts requires local governments to undertake unprecedented levels of planning and spending. Over the next three decades, these communities will face at least one hundred million dollars in costs to deal with the impacts of climate change caused by the use of fossil fuel products like those made and sold by Suncor and Exxon.
The city's Legislative Agenda includes several items related to climate and energy. The city works with partners across the state, region and globe to support efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase use of renewables.
- City of Boulder Legislative Agenda
- Colorado Communities for Climate Action (CC4CA)
- Urban Sustainability Director's Network (USDN)
- Carbon Neutral Cities Alliance (CNCA)
Spotlight on: Carbon Neutral Cities Alliance
Did you know? Boulder is a part of the Carbon Neutral Cities Alliance (CNCA), a global collaboration of 20 cities who are committed to cutting emissions by 80 percent or more by 2050 or sooner. Being a part of this cohort allows Boulder to collaborate and share lessons in deep carbon reduction best practices with other progressive cities around the world.
Visit Boulder's profile on the CNCA website to get a snapshot of Boulder's emissions reduction targets as well as other sustainability initiatives.
Contact the Climate Initiatives Department at [email protected] or 303-441-3274.
Director, Climate Initiatives
Stay tuned for opportunities to engage in 2019!
Boulder Building Performance: An ordinance to reduce energy use and improve the quality of Boulder’s commercial and industrial building stock by requiring rating and reporting (R&R) and energy efficiency measures.
Boulder Energy Challenge: A grant program to foster innovative solutions from the community to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Boulder's Energy Future: The city's long-term effort to create a municipal electric utility in order to democratize, decarbonize and decentralize electricity in Boulder.
Boulder Solar Tool: An interactive online tool that illustrates the solar potential of individual buildings and supports community investments in solar power.
Climate + Sustainability Department : The department home page for climate and sustainability programs.
Collaborations in 2017: Regional, National and International: A document of Boulder's regional, national and international collaborations on legislative and regulatory issues, as well as technical and working group collaborations for 2017.
CU Energy Green Team: A collaborative program with the University of Colorado Environmental Center to foster peer-to-peer education in student-heavy neighborhoods about energy efficiency and Boulder's energy goals.
Electric Vehicles and Charging Stations: An overview of electric vehicle incentives and charging options around Boulder.
Energy Conservation Code: Energy and sustainability code requirements for new construction, additions and building renovations.
Energy loans from Elevations Credit Union: Low interest loans to make energy upgrades for your home or business.
EnergySmart: A program that provides free and discounted energy efficiency advising services and rebates to residents and businesses.
Greenhouse Gas Inventory: A community inventory of Boulder's greenhouse gas emissions.
Partners for a Clean Environment (PACE): A business sustainability advising service that provides free technical support to Boulder businesses and helps them achieve their sustainability goals.
Resilient Boulder: City strategy and programs to prepare for and respond effectively to stress such as flood, wildfires, violence or illness.
SmartRegs: A series of ordinances that supports tenant comfort and reduced energy waste by requiring all rental housing to meet a basic energy efficiency standard by Dec. 31, 2018.
Solar Resources: Information on solar in Boulder.
Solar Grant and Rebate Programs: Programs that support Boulder residents, businesses and nonprofits in financing solar power installations at their homes, businesses and facilities.
Zero Waste: Programs and policies to reduce waste in Boulder, including the Universal Zero Waste Ordinance, which requires composting and recycling throughout our community.
Boulder launched its first formal climate action efforts in 2002. Since that time, the city has been at the forefront of innovation in working to reduce climate impacts: adopting the Climate Action Plan tax, the country's first voter approved tax dedicated to addressing climate change, developing a national model for delivering energy efficiency services, enacting the country’s most stringent energy code for new buildings and much more.
Boulder's Climate Action Plan, often referred to as the CAP, was Boulder's first phase of climate action, and featured a set of aggressive, city-funded programs and services designed to reduce local greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate climate change. As a result of CAP-funded programs, many of which exist today, Boulder avoided more than 50,000 metric tons of emissions between 2007 and 2015, keeping our community emissions fairly constant despite growth in population, jobs and economic activity.
In Dec. 2016, Boulder City Council adopted the Climate Commitment and its associated goals of an 80 percent reduction in community greenhouse gas emissions below 2005 levels by 2050; 100 percent renewable electricity by 2030; and 80 percent reduction in organization greenhouse gas emissions below 2008 levels by 2030. The goals and their related sub-milestones are the city’s first since the expiration of the city’s previous climate action goal in 2012.