Four cross-cutting vision themes drive how the Priority Area actions will be implemented to contribute to the County’s overall sustainability vision and goals.
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The Sustainability Master Plan builds on the sustainability elements included in the Board Policies on Sustainability adopted in 2010 to establish a vision that addresses the emerging societal challenges posed by the changing climate and racial inequities and prioritizes building resilience and serving the historically marginalized and vulnerable community members.
The County Sustainability Master Plan presents a vision and roadmap to build and maintain a healthy and safe County by reducing climate pollution, adapting to a changing global climate, enhancing natural resources and the environment, fostering a prosperous and just regional economy, and meeting the needs of current and future generations to ensure all people have equitable opportunities to reach their full potential.
Commitment to Equity
Eliminate disparities and environmental injustices experienced by historically marginalized communities based on income, race/ethnicity, age, ability, immigration status, sexual orientation, and gender, and ensure that there is equitable distribution of benefits and burdens across all communities. This will be achieved through culturally responsive engagement and capacity building with communities that experience the most burden or harms, mobilizing and distributing resources and investments equitably, developing policies to reduce systemic inequities, and inclusive decision making.
Collaborate with County departments, cities, and other public agencies within the County, as well as businesses, nonprofits, community-based organizations (CBOs), and community leaders to implement shared sustainability goals and develop solutions that will help build vibrant and thriving communities. Cross-County collaboration will be achieved by building a governance structure that allows County departments and divisions to work together to design new or improve existing programs that accelerate linkages, sustainable thinking, and goal progress.
Regional collaboration will be achieved through network building and information sharing, partnerships across sectors, disciplines and jurisdictions, and collective action to build a sustainable County and Bay Area.
Encourage innovation, creative thinking, piloting new tools and technologies, and developing state-of-the-art solutions and unique financing mechanisms. Leverage Santa Clara County’s location at the heart of Silicon Valley, which is globally renowned for its innovative high-tech industry and high concentration of inventive startup companies. The County will tap into this creativity by exploring public-private partnerships to become a leader in innovation in the sustainability realm.
Empower all County employees and community members to be mindful sustainability practitioners who continually strive toward sustainability goals and actions within both their workplace and their communities. This will be achieved by educating all employees on sustainability practices and training staff to perform operations and/or lead programs designed to achieve the County’s sustainability goals.
County residents and businesses will be engaged in sustainability-related issues, fostering leadership across the County, increasing awareness, and inspiring individuals to act.