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File #: 21-0009    Version: 1 Name: Resolution in Support of the University of Michigan's President's Commission on Carbon Neutrality's Recommendations
Type: Resolution Status: Passed
File created: 4/5/2021 In control: City Council
On agenda: 4/5/2021 Final action: 4/5/2021
Enactment date: 4/5/2021 Enactment #: R-21-128
Title: Resolution in Support of the University of Michigan President's Commission on Carbon Neutrality's (PCCN) Recommendations
Sponsors: Christopher Taylor, Kathy Griswold, Erica Briggs, Lisa Disch, Ali Ramlawi


Resolution in Support of the University of Michigan President’s Commission on Carbon Neutrality’s (PCCN) Recommendations


In 2019, University of Michigan President Dr. Mark Schlissel formed a Commission on Carbon Neutrality to recommend a series of actions and a specific goal for when and how the University of Michigan could achieve carbon neutrality. In December of 2020, the President’s Commission on Carbon Neutrality (PCCN) released their draft recommendations for public review and comment. In January and early February, the PCCN revised the recommendations based on feedback and submitted their recommendations to President Schlissel. It is up to the President and Regents to take action. 


The Commission’s recommendations include the following proposed goals:


1.                     The University of Michigan reach carbon neutrality for Scope 1 (direct) emissions across all three campuses by 2025 (inclusive of carbon offsets).

2.                     The University of Michigan eliminate Scope 1 emissions entirely by 2040 (exclusive of offsets).

3.                     The University achieve carbon neutrality for Scope 2 emissions (electricity) across all three campuses by 2025.

4.                     The University establish, by 2025, carbon neutrality goal dates for Scope 3 emissions categories that are met no later than 2040.


Given that the University of Michigan is responsible for just over 1/3 of the greenhouse gas emissions emitted in Ann Arbor, the University’s carbon neutrality commitments are important to achieving the City’s goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2030 (as outlined in A2ZERO). 


Budget/Fiscal Impact: There are no budget implications for this resolution. 


Prepared by: Dr. Missy Stults, Sustainability and Innovations Manager

Reviewed by: Tom Crawford, City Administrator


Whereas, The 2018 United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Special Report on Global Warming made clear the unprecedented dangers of going beyond 1.5C of global heating and the urgent need to rapidly drop greenhouse gas emissions by 50% or more before 2030;


Whereas, The City of Ann Arbor heeded this warning and unanimously adopted a goal of achieving a just transition to community-wide carbon neutrality by the year 2030;


Whereas, Over a third of Ann Arbor’s community-wide greenhouse gas emissions are attributable to the University of Michigan;


Whereas, The University of Michigan has formed a President’s Commission on Carbon Neutrality, tasked with recommending a timeline and actions to help the University become carbon neutral;


Whereas, In December 2020 the President’s Commission on Carbon Neutrality released their draft recommendations in the hopes of receiving public comment;


Whereas, In March 2021 the President’s Commission on Carbon Neutrality released recommendations;


Whereas, The recommendations, if adopted, would set the University on a path to decarbonization in a timeframe and in a manner commensurate with the ambition established in the City of Ann Arbor’s decarbonization plan, A2ZERO;


Whereas, Many of the recommendations call for coordination between the University and surrounding communities, including the City of Ann Arbor;


Whereas, Collaboration to achieve decarbonization at the University and in the Ann Arbor community is highly desirable and has the potential to help both institutions achieve their goals more quickly, affordably, and in transferable ways;


Resolved, The Ann Arbor City Council supports the President’s Commission on Carbon Neutrality’s recommendations; 


Resolved, City Council encourages the adoption of these recommendations by the University of Michigan President and Regents;


Resolved, City Council directs the City Administrator to communicate this resolution to the University of Michigan as appropriate and to take such other actions as are useful to effect coordination and cooperation with the University of Michigan in furtherance of A2ZERO.


Sponsored by:  Mayor Taylor and Councilmembers Griswold, Briggs, Disch, and Ramlawi