Eastside cities take important step toward coordinated climate action

Published on April 11, 2024

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Eastside Climate Partnership announces publication of first coordinated greenhouse gas emissions inventories

Greenhouse gas emissions are major contributors to climate change. Understanding the data on community emissions is critical in addressing the challenges brought on by climate change, and five Eastside cities that are members of the Eastside Climate Partnership (ECP) have completed their first coordinated greenhouse gas emissions inventories.

The cities of Bellevue, Issaquah, Kirkland, Mercer Island and Redmond formed the ECP in 2023 to create joint programs that reduce regional sources of climate pollution and advance collective sustainability efforts. Recently, the ECP worked with Cascadia Consulting Group to standardize a methodology to inventory greenhouse gas emissions so that all five cities could compare data. The standardization is an important milestone in the partnership’s collaborative work because it will allow the ECP cities to evaluate the efficacy of their joint programs and help residents across the five Eastside communities understand the part their city plays in regional emissions.

Overall, the five cities found that emissions were down from the first year that emissions were measured for each city, though the reasons for this reduction varied. Emissions from municipal operations have also been reduced across all five cities. Future reports will be able to show coordinated and consistent measurement of trends regionally.

City of Bellevue

Bellevue’s 2022 greenhouse gas emission inventory found that community-wide emissions were down 8% from the baseline year of 2011, despite population growth of 21% and a 13% increase in jobs. However, emissions were up 6% from the previous 2021 inventory, largely driven by a return to pre-pandemic transportation levels. Bellevue’s municipal operations emissions increased by 7% from 2021 to 2022, also largely driven by a continued return to office and pre-pandemic commutes. But thanks to the city’s investments in energy efficiency and renewable energy, municipal operations emissions were down 48% from the 2011 baseline.

“Bellevue’s involvement in the Eastside Climate Partnership demonstrates our city’s commitment to tackling climate change head on with the ambition and scale that this challenge demands,” said Bellevue Mayor Lynne Robinson.

View the City of Bellevue Greenhouse Gas Inventory

City of Issaquah

Issaquah’s 2022 greenhouse gas emission inventory found that community-wide emissions dropped by 12% compared with 2017 baseline emissions. On a per capita basis, emissions were down 21% compared to 2017. The largest sources of community-wide emissions remain energy use in buildings (56%) and transportation (37%), indicating the importance of addressing these sources to achieve the City of Issaquah’s ambitious GHG reduction goals laid out in the Issaquah Climate Action Plan.

“Our 2022 greenhouse gas inventory is a critical tool to improve our data-driven decision making at all levels of the City as we strive to implement the Issaquah Climate Action Plan,” said Issaquah Mayor Pauly. “The Eastside Climate Partnership enables us to share resources and learn from our neighbors as we collectively work to mitigate our region’s contributions to climate change.”

View the City of Issaquah Greenhouse Gas Inventory

City of Kirkland

Kirkland’s 2022 community-wide emissions represent a 15% decrease compared to the most recent comparable GHG inventory in 2019, primarily driven by a 22% decrease in emissions from energy consumption (likely due to increases in community-wide use of Puget Sound Energy’s Green Power programs), and a 10% decrease in emissions from transportation. 

Kirkland’s 2022 government operations emissions represent a 24% increase compared to the last municipal GHG inventory in 2021. This is likely primarily driven by the addition of tracked items that were not measured in previous inventories, such as emissions from the use of refrigerants used for air conditioning and employee commuting, which in total equaled 32% of the City’s 2022 emissions.  

“Responding to climate change requires both hyper-local action and regional collaboration,” said Kirkland Mayor Kelli Curtis. “These reports will help inform how we continue to navigate the generation-defining challenge of climate change both now and into the future.” 

View the City of Kirkland Greenhouse Gas Inventory

City of Mercer Island

Mercer Island community-wide emissions increased 9% in 2022 compared to 2020, primarily due to a rebound in transportation emissions. This finding emphasizes the importance of implementing the City’s Climate Action Plan that was passed by the City Council one year ago, in April 2023. Mercer Island saw an 8% reduction in municipal operations emissions compared to 2020, keeping the City on-target for carbon neutral municipal operations by 2030.

"The standardization of greenhouse gas emissions inventory methodology marks a crucial step forward in our collective efforts to address climate change,” said Mercer Island Mayor Salim Nice. “By providing best estimates of our community emissions data, we can better tailor our actions and measure the impact of our initiatives. Through the Eastside Climate Partnership, our cities are demonstrating the power of collaboration in advancing sustainability and reducing regional sources of climate pollution."

View the City of Mercer Island Greenhouse Gas Inventory

City of Redmond

Redmond’s 2022 community-wide emissions decreased 14% from the 2011 baseline year, despite a 36% increase in population. Community energy consumption to heat, cool, and power residential, commercial, and industrial buildings remains the largest source of emissions, accounting for 57% of community-wide emissions. Redmond’s municipal operations emissions were down 55% compared to the 2011 baseline. This reduction was largely driven by the City’s transition to renewable electricity sources.

“The Eastside Climate Partnership is a great way for our cities to come together and work toward the common goal of creating a more sustainable community,” said Redmond Mayor Angela Birney. “By measuring our greenhouse gas emissions and sharing our findings with one another, we can take the right steps to collectively achieve our climate goals.”   

View the City of Redmond Greenhouse Gas Inventory

About the Eastside Climate Partnership

Eastside Climate Partnership (ECP) is a collaboration between the cities of Bellevue, Issaquah, Kirkland, Mercer Island and Redmond working to jointly create programs that reduce regional sources of climate pollution and advance collective sustainability efforts.


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