City of Lexington Announces Commitment to Achieve Net-Zero Greenhouse Gas Emissions by 2050

In a monumental decision underscoring Lexington’s dedication to environmental stewardship and a sustainable future, the Urban County Council members voted unanimously to commit to community-wide net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by the year 2050. This landmark resolution, which took place on June 15th, 2023 as a part of Lexington’s Comprehensive Plan, solidifies the city’s pledge to reduce its carbon footprint and combat the adverse impacts of climate change.

District 10 Councilmember Dave Sevigny, a key advocate for the decision, emphasized the importance of this decisive move:

This goal is not just about setting targets but ensuring a better future for all residents of Lexington. Our commitment reflects the city’s dedication to sustainable practices and solutions for the generations to come.

As part of the commitment to this aspirational goal, the City of Lexington has laid out a roadmap that encompasses a multifaceted approach to tackle greenhouse gas emissions through the forthcoming Empower Lexington Plan. The 2023 Empower Lexington Plan will be Lexington’s guide for a sustainable, resilient future. It will help Lexington-Fayette County adapt to both natural and manmade changes, and it is a plan for the entire community, not just local government.

Lexington proudly stands shoulder to shoulder with regional counterparts such as Louisville, KY, and Cincinnati, OH, who have created goals and comprehensive climate action plans to reach community-wide net-zero by 2050 and 2040, respectively. Furthermore, the City of Lexington is eager to explore synergies with the University of Kentucky’s Office of Sustainability. By combining resources, expertise, and a shared vision, both entities can collaboratively work towards fulfilling these vital objectives that resonate with the needs of the entire community.

Shane Tedder, the University of Kentucky’s Campus Sustainability Officer, remarked,

The commitment by our city further emphasizes the pressing need for actionable measures against climate change. The University of Kentucky’s Office of Sustainability is excited about the potential collaborations ahead, aligning our goals with the city to foster a sustainable future.

The City of Lexington recognizes the magnitude of this challenge but remains committed to building a greener, more sustainable tomorrow. To learn more about Lexington’s commitments to environmental sustainability and climate action, visit the 2045 Comprehensive Plan website as well as the Empower Lexington Plan website.

Katherine Johnson

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