Practices > Climate Change/GHG Analysis
With the passage of AB 32 in the fall of 2006, Ascent principals decided to step forward to help lead efforts to define compliance approaches and planning responses.
We initiated and led the first university conference on Climate Change, CEQA, and Land Use at UC Davis in the spring of 2007. Since then we have regularly instructed and presented on the subject, including the second UC Davis conference, the Attorney General/Local Government Commission’s Climate Change and CEQA workshop series in 2008, and at the UCLA Land Use Law Conference and Senator Steinberg/Local Government Commission’s SB 375 Implementation workshops in 2009. Our principals are also leaders in defining approaches to climate change adaptation in CEQA and local planning, including the instruction of the first UC extension course on the subject in 2010.
Ascent’s climate change services include leading-edge approaches for the analysis of greenhouse gas impacts and the projects’ vulnerability to the effects of climate change for CEQA and NEPA documents, as well as local government plans that strive to achieve greenhouse gas reductions and reduce local vulnerability to climate change effects. Our principals have collaborated closely with the California Air Resources Board, Attorney General’s office, Office of Planning and Research, and Natural Resources Agency in the development of guidelines, methodologies, thresholds of significance, and mitigation strategies for addressing greenhouse gas emissions and climate change vulnerability in CEQA documentation. This includes landmark work on the California Air Pollution Control Officers Association’s (CAPCOA) CEQA and Climate Change report and forefront thinking on thresholds supporting the Bay Area Air Quality Management District’s new CEQA Guidelines.
Ascent principals have been instrumental in the preparation of Climate Action Plans for several California cities and counties. We have led the development of greenhouse gas inventories, reduction policies, implementation actions, adaptation strategies, and associated CEQA documents. Our approaches to conducting greenhouse gas analysis in CEQA documents have received commendation from air districts, CEQA attorneys, and the Attorney General’s office. We continue to help advance the environmental planning dialogue on best practices related to climate change, CEQA and NEPA, and land use planning.