Riverside’s New Economic Prosperity Action Plan and Climate Action Plan

In 2014 Riverside was one of twelve cities that collaborated with the Western Riverside Council of Governments (WRCOG) on a Subregional Climate Action Plan (Subregional CAP) that includes 36 measures to guide Riverside’s GHG reduction efforts through 2020.

Building off this highly-collaborative subregional CAP, the City of Riverside has put forth a “Riverside Restorative Growthprint” (“RRG”) document combining two plans: the new Economic Prosperity Action Plan and Climate Action Plan, to expand on local measures to support deep reductions to the City’s greenhouse gas emissions through 2035. Per the City:

The adoption of the RRG will result in actions to reduce GHG emissions that align with the City’s planning priorities and its vision of a future “green” economy based on sustainable businesses. The RRG-EPAP identifies the measures and strategies in the RRG-CAP with the greatest potential to drive local economic prosperity through clean-tech investment, entrepreneurship, and expansion of local green businesses.

Read the combined RRG-EPAP in full here, or take a look at excerpts from the Executive Summary below:


In 2014 Riverside was one of twelve cities that collaborated with the Western Riverside Council of Governments (WRCOG) on a Subregional Climate Action Plan (Subregional CAP) that includes 36 measures to guide Riverside’s GHG reduction efforts through 2020. The RRG-CAP expands upon the Subregional CAP and provides a path for the City to achieve deep reductions in GHG emissions through 2035, while the RRG-EPAP provides a framework for smart growth and low-carbon economic development. By using energy more efficiently, harnessing renewable energy to power buildings and vehicles, improving access to sustainable transportation modes, recycling more waste, conserving water, and building local food systems, the City can keep dollars in the local economy, create new green jobs, and improve public health and community quality of life. 

…The RRG-CAP expands upon the efforts of the WRCOG Subregional CAP, employing local measures to help the City achieve deep GHG reductions through the year 2035. To further develop local GHG reduction measures for the RRG-CAP, the City conducted a detailed assessment of local strategies and actions related to the measures identified in the Subregional CAP, and expanded the discussion and analysis with respect to implementation (particularly post-2020), costs and funding, performance metrics, and local co-benefits. Importantly, the discussions identify local economic and entrepreneurship opportunities that can be integrated with local, regional, and global GHG reductions, such as the development of green enterprise zones. The RRG-CAP contains GHG reduction measures organized into four primary sectors, as defined by the following policy goals:

WRCOG RRG-CAP

Through locally-implemented measures, the City of Riverside anticipates reductions of 189,399 MTCO2e and 275,273 MTCO2e from the City’s 2020 and 2035 BAU emissions forecasts, respectively. Successful implementation of the RRG-CAP will enable the City to surpass its community-wide GHG emissions target for 2020, but more aggressive action by the City, the WRCOG subregion, and the state is needed to reach the 2035 target. In addition to the measures in the RRG-CAP, reductions of nearly half a million metric tons of CO2e will be needed to close the gap.

Creating Economic Opportunities

Together, the RRG- EPAP and RRG-CAP identify opportunities to link economic development with GHG emissions reduction activities. The RRG-EPAP puts forth policies and strategies that support sustainable infrastructure, increase community connections, and foster smart growth. The EPAP’s top 10 Entrepreneurial Opportunity Areas (EOAs), outlined below, directly support RRG-CAP implementation by identifying areas where the City can stimulate economic development and entrepreneurship while reducing GHG emissions. They are key to the success of the RRG as a whole.

  1. ENERGY AND WATER UPGRADES FOR HOME OR BUSINESS – Provide financing for property owners (residential and commercial) to make energy efficient, renewable energy, and water conservation improvements.
  2. GREEN BUILDING STANDARDS – Increase energy efficiency standards for residential, commercial, and municipal buildings.
  3. CLEAN VEHICLES AND CHARGING/FUELING STATIONS – Facilitate alternative and renewable fuels and advanced transportation technologies and infrastructure.
  4. RIVERSIDE PUBLIC UTILITY CLEAN TECHNOLOGY FUNDING – Provide financing and incentives to develop and deploy energy technologies that reduce GHG emissions.
  5. WASTE REDUCTION AND DIVERSION – Create or tap into existing markets for recycling and re-purposing of materials to promote diversion of food and other solid waste from landfills.
  6. EXPAND BICYCLE INFRASTRUCTURE – Expand on-street and off-street bicycle infrastructure including bicycle lanes, parking, facilities/amenities (showers, lockers) and bike sharing.
  7. ECO/INOVATION BUSINESS ZONE – Create a geographically defined area featuring best practices in sustainable urban design and green building focused on supporting both clean-tech and green businesses through a dedicated Green Business Program, enterprise zone incentives, and special showcasing opportunities.
  8. CLEAN-TECH INCUBATOR – Develop a physical incubator office location to offer counsel, funding resources, office space and R&D lab space to cleantech companies looking to launch and grow with Riverside as their base.
  9. BUY AND PRODUCE LOCAL INITIATIVE – Support local businesses and reduce vehicle miles traveled (VMT) for shopping, entertainment, etc. by encouraging residents and employees to patronize local establishments via the bike infrastructure plan, Grow Riverside efforts and the City’s existing Shop Riverside Community Card program.
  10. GLOBAL MARKETS – support local businesses and investment that serves the global need for reducing GHG emissions. 
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