Planning for our Future
The County sponsors programs to expand economic development and create new jobs for years to come, as well as address important ecological issues such as rising sea levels, carbon sequestration, and more.
Capturing Carbon in Natural and Working Lands
Through a grant from the California Department of Conservation, Contra Costa County is conducting a feasibility study – Healthy Lands, Healthy People – to identify strategies we can use to store carbon dioxide in the many different land uses in our county. What works for agriculture may be different from what works for parks and open space, conservation lands, or towns and cities. Learn more about Healthy Lands, Healthy People.
Northern Waterfront Economic Development Initiative
The County is partnering with the cities of Hercules, Martinez, Concord, Pittsburg, Antioch, Oakley, and Brentwood to create more jobs along the County’s Northern Waterfront.
Learn more about the Northern Waterfront Economic Development Initiative
Financing Investments in Climate Action
In 2021, the County worked with graduate students from UC Berkeley on two projects that support the County’s climate and sustainability goals. The two projects look at different ways to support investments in energy efficient homes for low- and moderate-income homeowners, and in green infrastructure. The opinions and recommendations in the reports are the authors' and do not necessarily represent the policies or programs of Contra Costa County.
Leo Steinmetz from the Goldman School of Public Policy wrote this report on how to increase access for low- and moderate-income households to measures that can make a house more comfortable and lower utility bills. There are many barriers for low- and moderate-income households, including high up-front installation costs, low access to credit, high vulnerability to fraud, older housing stock in need of costly repairs, and environmental racism and segregation. Leo’s report identifies programs and strategies that can be implemented on a local or regional scale. Click here to see a presentation on this report.
Sadie Wilson from the City Planning program in the College of Environmental Design wrote this report that explores how special entities, including special districts, can facilitate actions to help mitigate the impacts of rising sea level and other climate changes in shoreline communities. Sadie’s report addresses governance, funding, and community involvement. The report recommends Community Climate Resilience Districts, or green benefits districts, as a way to engage local residents in community-based solutions and fund projects.
Adapting to Rising Tides
The County and local stakeholders are working with the Bay Conservation and Development Commission to understand how water levels may rise along our vast shoreline, and what we can be doing and in the future to plan for challenges and opportunities this creates. Phase 1 of the project was completed in 2016. It looks at the area from Richmond to Pittsburg. Phase 2 was completed in April 2020. It looks at East County: Pittsburg to Discovery Bay.
In 2019, a graduate student team from the UC Berkeley Goldman School of Public Policy developed options the County could pursue to fund and implement the findings from the Adapting to Rising Tides studies. The Goldman School team recommends the County start by forming a working group of government entities, property owners, and other stakeholders.
Read the full report here (PDF)
Overview of the ART process and the Goldman School report presentation (PDF)