At a Glance
Goals/Targets, Sustainability and Energy Management Strategy
Park City, UT
John Rooney forecasted greenhouse gas emissions growth and modeled the impact of reduction strategies to prioritize sustainability projects for Summit County.
Utah’s Summit County has ambitious goals for reducing its greenhouse gas emissions, adopted by the County Council in 2019. Looking to prioritize projects that could drive down emissions, the county enlisted John Rooney to determine the overall utility of ICLEI’s ClearPath software for forecasting emissions growth and modeling the impact of potential reduction strategies. This modeling aims to inform how the Sustainability Office considers using the software in the future and how it prioritizes potential projects.
Rooney approached the project in several phases:
- Tool and data discovery: a deep dive of ClearPath was taken, including existing inventories and methodology, and what inputs are required for forecasting and planning. Informational interviews were conducted with staff, and data collected from across the county.
- Iterating forecasting and modeling: once data was collected, preliminary forecasting and modeling was produced. Following calls with ICLEI staff, modeling was revised to best make use of internal calculators and functionality while other approaches were let go as limitations were discovered.
- Final modeling and recommendations: modeling was completed on high-emissions sectors, helping to quantify the reduction potential of several electrification and efficiency projects to be used as future projects are prioritized by the county.
Using a mix of reduction strategies across sectors, ClearPath modeling suggests a number of impactful projects could be undertaken in the short term, reducing emissions in certain sectors by as much as 50% through a mix of electrification and efficiency projects between 2023 and 2040. Current and future modeling, along with quantification of co-benefits, will prove useful as the county prioritizes and implements projects into the future.