The Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities (AHSC) program, administered by the California Strategic Growth Council (SGC), and funded by the State’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund (GGRF), was established in 2014 with the primary goal of reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions through support of projects that implement land use, housing, and agricultural land preservation practices that promote infill and compact development. SGC developed program guidelines to assist interested organizations in preparing proposals for project funding support1 and quantification of GHG emission reductions2 associated with their projects. However, for many applicants, the tools, methodologies and strategies for estimating GHG emissions reductions are not well understood. This panel aims to provide project applicants and other interested parties with a basic understanding of these tools, methodologies and strategies in order to improve their project applications.
The AHSC GHG quantification guidelines require the use of two tools for the estimation of GHG emissions reductions, as specified in the GHG quantification guidelines: the California Emissions Estimator Model (CalEEMod®) and the Transit and Connectivity (TAC) Methods. As part of this discussion, we will examine the background of these tools, including their histories, common uses, and their underlying calculational methodologies. We will also discuss how these tools are used in the context of the AHSC program, including how to identify relevant GHG mitigation measures and the corresponding analysis tool(s) based on project-specific features and elements, the types of information and data that may be needed as inputs for these tools, the process for using the tools, and how to interpret and utilize the outputs (i.e., results) from these tools.
The panel will also demonstrate the use of the tools by providing a variety of project examples. As part of this demonstration, we will examine the impact of different types and locations of projects (e.g., mixed use/non-mixed use, rural/suburban/urban) and the selection of different project features and elements (e.g., providing transit subsidies, improving transit frequency, providing ride-sharing programs, increasing housing density) on the levels of GHG emission reductions. Based on these project examples, the panel will discuss potential strategies for the general evaluation and selection of GHG emission reduction measures.
Diana Downton, Community Economics
Michael Keinath, Principal, Ramboll Environ
Gavin Hoch, Senior Manager, Ramboll Environ
Megan Klevze, Senior Associate, Ramboll Environ