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Seattle Plays a Zero-Sum Emissions Game

Aspiring to become carbon-neutral by 2050, the Emerald City commits to an ambitious plan that relies on a 10% purchase of carbon offsets.
August 12, 2011, 2pm PDT | Jeff Jamawat
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In order to meet the 90% reduction targets outlined in a 121-page report titled "Getting to Zero: A Pathway to a Carbon Neutral Seattle," the City will need to cut 4.1 metric tons of carbon dioxide-equivalents - 70% of which comes from fossil fuels.

To address the issue of cars, the City has several policy measures in its arsenal, including congestion pricing, higher parking costs, lower insurance premiums that correspond to VMT, and more electric vehicles on the road. "These ideas aren't revolutionary. Seattle's decision to implement them at this scale is. But every city in the country should be pushing to make as many of these sort of changes as possible, even if it means reducing emissions by half instead of zeroing them out," notes Sarah Lashow.

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Published on Wednesday, August 10, 2011 in GOOD Magazine
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