On March 9th, 2018, the City of Dallas’ Office of Environmental Quality, in conjunction with the Dallas Bar Association, hosted its inaugural North Texas Climate Change Symposium. The symposium drew over 200 attendees from the North Texas region, including local municipal officials, environmental advocacy groups, business leaders, and other concerned citizens.
Councilwoman Sandy Greyson kicked off the symposium by highlighting the efforts the City has made in response to climate change and the City’s great successes. Some of these highlights include:
- Dallas’ use of electricity from 100% renewable sources has resulted in a reduction of 4 million tons of carbon emissions per year.
- Over 60% of the City’s municipal fleet of non-emergency vehicles use alternative fuels.
- The City has constructed 32 LEED Silver or higher municipal buildings since 2003.
- DFW Airport has become North America’s first carbon neutral airport, and was one of only 23 airports worldwide at the time to achieve this distinction.
The keynote speaker, State Climatologist Dr. John Nielsen-Gammon, then followed up with a presentation on the consequences of climate change in North Texas. Extreme heat, drought, changes in agricultural patterns, and severe weather increases are among some of the consequences we could experience. This eye-opening presentation was then followed by three outstanding panels that discussed local action and solutions to these problems, in respect to resiliency, environmental justice, and the local economy.
It is the City’s hope that events like this one will continue to raise public awareness of climate risks to North Texas and help drive climate action. The Office of Environmental Quality would like to send a sincere thanks to everyone who participated in or attended this year’s symposium and for helping ensure that North Texas is doing its part in mitigating and adapting to climate change. Be on the lookout for details about next year’s symposium!