With a population of more than 827,000 people, Charlotte is the second-fastest-growing large city in the nation, adding new residents at a rate of 44 people per day. The metropolitan region is ranked 14th nationally for economic output.
But with that growth comes challenges in regard to the city’s infrastructure, housing and how the city reacts will react to climate changes.
Last year President Donald Trump announced the United States' withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement, an international agreement aimed at lowering greenhouse gases. But mayors across the country, including Charlotte's former mayor, Jennifer Roberts, agreed to uphold the agreement. Governors in multiple states have also proclaimed their support for the accord, including Massachusetts, California, Oregon, New York, Colorado, Hawaii, Washington, Connecticut, Virginia, Rhode Island.
In a June 2017 statement in support of the Paris climate agreement, Roberts said "... I am proud of the ways Charlotte is already doing its part to act on climate. Charlotte is already leading efforts to combat climate change, but there's still a lot we can do. We supported Envision Charlotte to reduce our carbon footprint by 19% uptown and save $26m in utility costs. I've been proud to support greenways, bike lanes, and programs like Open Streets 704, which encourage pedestrian and biking lifestyles and lower carbon footprint. Going forward, we have to support clean energy and our environment in every Charlotte neighborhood."
But there is still work to do.
SHARE Charlotte partners with 29 organizations that are working hard to better our community’s environment, creating a better, healthier city for everyone.
Volumes of scientific evidence show more extreme heat, drought, wildfires, storms, and floods bearing down on Charlotte’s future. Charlotte has made great gains over the past 15 years to address air pollution and extreme weather risk by expanding public transit, tree canopy, and energy and water efficiency solutions. However, without deliberate efforts to build resilience, damage from climate events will challenge Charlotte’s ability to manage and sustain its rapid growth as well as its ability to bridge the drastic divide between rich and poor. (Center for American Progress)
In April, SHARE Charlotte will take a look at the work these organizations are doing. Follow the conversation on social media at #GreenCLT.