The City of Aspen started the Canary Initiative in 2005 with an eye to trimming the city’s greenhouse gas emissions by 30% by 2020. The city announced Wednesday it met the goal seven-years early.
“Well, we found out this year, to our great celebration, was that we actually achieved our goal this year. So, the City of Aspen reduced our greenhouse gas emissions by 30.7%. So, that’s a huge accomplishment.”
Ashley Perl is the Director of the Canary Initiative. She says meeting the goal is about laying the ground work for meeting the next one – an 80% reduction by 2050.
“I can sit in my office all day and think of ways of reducing greenhouse gases, but, I’m not out there on the grounds. So, I’m really hoping that city employees continue to be a good partner and really help us figure out how we’re going to reach those next steps.”
Beyond changing light bulbs and other smaller steps, Perl says the city is looking at how to reduce greenhouse gases through lower energy use or cleaner alternatives from their facilities and as well as their vehicle fleet. At Wednesday’s news conference, city leaders call the goals related to the Canary Initiative a positive for not only the environment but the economic bottom line of Aspen.