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Manassas City, VA

About:

In August 2021, George Mason University (Mason) contacted officials in Manassas City, VA (City) about a potential pilot project involving climate action planning for the City. After several meetings, Mason decided to self-fund the project with funding from the Schar School’s Center for Energy Science and Policy.  Mason selected ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability USA to help guide both Mason and the City through the process. ICLEI (International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives) has over 30 years of experience working with local jurisdictions and schools in developing local climate action plans. The City provided two employees to work with Mason. Mason began the project with two faculty members and two students.

In September 2021, both Mason and the City began the project. Mason and the City signed a Memorandum of Understanding to guide the process, which was finalized in December 2021.

Within Mason, the Schar’s Center for Energy Science and Policy (Center) led efforts, with assistance from Mason’s Institute for a Sustainable Earth, to organize faculty and student involvement in the project. In addition, Mason conducted outreach to local Virginia planning organizations throughout the Commonwealth. The Center conducted further outreach and education with the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, Virginia Department of Energy (formerly Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy), Virginia Governor’s Secretary of Natural Resources, and Virginia Municipal League, among other organizations.

The project involves three phases: (1) Greenhouse Gas Inventory; (2) Climate Action & Sustainability Planning; and (3) Project Implementation. In October 2021, Mason, the City, and ICLEI began phase I. This phase involves developing an emissions inventory of greenhouse gases for the City’s governmental operations. As of January 2022, all parties are still engaged in Phase I.

Memorandum of Understanding

Status: Phase 1 Completed; Currently in Phase 2, Climate Action Planning