As a committed Eco-City and a coastal City with aging infrastructure, Alexandria must continue to take bold actions to address the impacts of climate change. Our flooding issues, carbon dioxide levels, and rising temperatures demand that we take action now for the sake of our health and our children's future.
I am proud that this Council dedicated $1.8 million dollars to create an Office of Climate Change with staff focused on holistic solutions. We must integrate the goals and methods of our Environmental Action Plan 2040 into our City planning and evaluate our housing, transportation, and development projects through a lens of both environmental justice and sustainability.
I will continue to prioritize:
- Supporting and investing in public transportation methods that are frequent, affordable, and safe. This includes increasing DASH routes, realigning routes to address underserved communities, maintaining our commitment to free DASH service, and improve pedestrian and bicycle safety to incentivize those who are able to consider those options.
- Encouraging and incentivizing NetZero and LEED-certified building standards for new developments and redevelopments.
- Providing support and incentives for existing structures to convert to renewable energy sources, invest in weatherization and energy efficiency programs, and provide electric vehicle charging spaces and stations in their private parking lots and grounds.
- Advocating for bike racks, electric vehicle charging stations, pedestrian connectivity to local roadways and transit hubs as we approve multi-family housing developments and redevelopments.
- Fully staffing City positions whose responsibilities include inspecting housing and ensuring that air quality is acceptable and that residents are not experiencing health impacts due to lead, mold, or other pathogens in the air and walls of their homes.
- Listening and responding to the work of our Ad Hod Stormwater Mitigation Committee and our Waterfront Committee in sddressing our sewer and stormwater capacity issues as increasing rainfall and "100-year storms" expose residents to ongoing water infiltration in their homes and businesses.
- Pursuing partnerships and guidance from environmental groups who can guide our public projects and find ways to craft short, mid, and long-term solutions for our water, sewer, stormwater, and stream restoration challenges.