City of Chula Vista

The City's multi-department climate protection program's success is in large par
The City's multi-department climate protection program's success is in large part due to extensive public involvement and outreach.

The City of Chula Vista is the second largest city in San Diego County, with 240,000 residents and a jurisdiction covering 42 square miles.  The City of Chula Vista’s commitment to implementing sustainability through strategic policies, creative use of municipal authority, successful implementation of utility and cost savings in municipal operations, and active engagement with community stakeholders to leverage municipal resources provide excellent examples of sustainability best practices for local government.

Climate Protection--Leading by Example

The City of Chula Vista’s Conservation Division’s mission is to serve the community’s environmental needs and to assist in its pursuit of a healthy, prosperous, just and secure environment for all citizens.  Division staff works with and on behalf of the community to preserve and restore land, air, water, and other natural resources in ways that advance the welfare of present and future generations.

Specifically, the Conservation Division seeks to provide additional resources that:

  • Provide the foundation for an economically and environmentally sustainable community;
  • Invest in public education and emerging technologies for tomorrow’s environmental solutions;
  • Provide businesses with a competitive edge and the prosperity to create quality jobs in the pursuit of those solutions;
  • Assist the community’s environmental leadership;
  • Foster the development of the next generation of local environmental leaders; and
  • Develop a greater appreciation among all citizens for the full value of the community’s natural resources.

The City of Chula Vista takes a comprehensive approach to energy efficiency and renewable energy in municipal operations through a collection of policies and action under its “climate protection program.”  The initiative, driven by stakeholder engagement, has successfully integrated sustainability efforts across city departments. The coordinated initiatives across city departments have reduced municipal operations’ greenhouse gas emissions by 47%, which has contributed to reducing per capita community emissions by 27% compared to 1990 levels.  In addition, the climate protection program fosters cross-departmental collaboration to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and build broad support across the city’s organizational structure through achievement of cost-effective utility and budget savings.

Climate Change Working Group

Chula Vista achieves its impressive results in great part by engaging its diverse stakeholders through the Climate Change Working Group (CCWG). The CCWG is a collection of residents, businesses, public agencies, and non-profit organization representatives that work to reach consensus on strategies to reduce Chula Vista's carbon footprint and to reduce future risks form climate change impacts while supporting local economic development. As a result of this extensive public involvement, the Climate Protection Program positively impacts all aspects of the community by improving air quality, lowering utility bills, reducing traffic congestion, and creating local green jobs and industries.

This case study describes some of the City of Chula Vista’s innovative policies, programs, and practices.  A detailed look at some of the City of Chula Vista’s projects is included in the Features section.

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