When we turn on the lights, plug in computers, drive to work, or heat our homes, we use electricity or burn natural gas. Carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases (GHGs) are then released into the air. We all need to do our part to help the County of Ventura meet its goal to reduce GHG emissions — often referred to as reducing our carbon footprint. This web site suggests simple actions that County of Ventura employees, community members, and local businesses can take to reduce our footprint and save energy. Together our small actions count.
Climate Protection Plan
The County of Ventura has committed to cutting our GHG emissions by 15 percent by 2020. Our Climate Protection Plan lays out a roadmap and strategies to meet this goal by addressing six action areas:
- Climate Protection Leadership: Create long-term, structural policies necessary for meeting our climate protection targets.
- Countywide Responsibility: Establish overarching activities that reduce GHG emissions.
- Facilities: Reduce electricity and natural gas use in the County's physical infrastructure (buildings and facilities).
- Vehicle (Fleet) Operations: Reduce gasoline and diesel fuel emissions in employees' work-related travel.
- Employee Commute: Reduce GHG emissions from employees' commuting trips.
- Expanded Sustainability Goals: Consider broader environmental goals, such as efficiencies in waste reduction and water conservation.
CaliforniaFIRST: Easy Financing for Energy Improvements
Ventura County businesses and commercial property owners interested in installing energy-efficiency improvements can now take advantage of easy, low-cost financing through CaliforniaFIRST. CaliforniaFIRST is a Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) finance program for nonresidential properties (commercial, industrial, or multi-family buildings). Improvements that qualify for the program include renewable energy generation (such as solar photovoltaics and wind turbines), energy efficiency projects, and water conservation measures.
Benefits of the program include:
- Low interest rates;
- A longer payback period (up to 20 years);
- Property-qualified financing that is not credit-based; and
- Repayment obligation that stays with property if it is sold or transferred.