Iowa City Climate Action and Adaptation Plan

Iowa City
Posted on: 6/12/2019 - Updated on: 6/12/2019

Posted by

Rachel Gregg



The Iowa City community is ready to respond to the challenges of climate change. Iowa City has, and will continue to be impacted by the effects of greenhouse gas increases in the global atmosphere produced by fossil fuel use and other human activities related to lifestyle choices. In the last several years, Iowa City has experienced increases in flood magnitude and frequency, intense precipitation events, warmer temperatures, strong winds and changes in plant communities. Experts predict these changes will continue and likely intensify as levels of emissions continue to increase.

This Climate Action and Adaptation Plan for the City of Iowa City outlines thirty-five actions to be taken by the community and City which will result in an 80 percent reduction of community-wide greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Implementing these actions will allow Iowa City to adapt to climate change and remain a resilient, healthy community, for current residents and for future generations. Additionally, actions outlined in the plan reflect local responsibility toward reducing the causes of global climate change and its negative affects around the world, and to do so in an equitable manner.

Actions in the plan were chosen because they were locally relevant and the most impactful choices to achieve a short-term 26 to 28 percent greenhouse gas reduction goal by 2025 and an 80 percent reduction goal by 2050. The actions will help position Iowa City as a national leader in sustainable practices, which can be used to maintain and drive economic development. Actions are organized into three traditional emission-producing categories, a category on adapting to climate change, and a section on personal lifestyle changes:

  • Buildings
  • Transportation
  • Waste
  • Adaptation
  • Sustainable Lifestyle

A number of actions are already being implemented, and other complementary actions can be undertaken immediately and will have cumulative effects. Some actions will require a longer timeframe to implement. Actions specific to climate adaptation are included in this report, but a separate Vulnerability Assessment and Climate Adaptation report contains more comprehensive details on risk-based adaptation measures.


Document Type
Type of Adaptation Action/Strategy