The purpose of this best practices review is to highlight initiatives from a number of leading jurisdictions, to generate ideas and stimulate discussion as to what suite of strategies would best support Cambridge’s net zero emissions objective. This report identifies a variety of practices that are aimed at both significant building-related greenhouse gas reductions and renewable energy production. The examples from other jurisdictions offer a cross section of policies and programs, from large, mature cities such as San Francisco to young but highly engaged cities like Fort Collins, which is pursuing a net zero energy district.
In addition to Cambridge, seven cities are surveyed in this report: Fort Collins, Austin, Boston, New York, San Francisco, Seattle, and Vancouver. These cities were selected primarily because they demonstrate forward looking and innovative policy leadership, policy maturity, and are similar to Cambridge in terms of urban density and character. Thus, in aggregate, this series of case studies provides a foundation from which Cambridge can build. While these cities and their respective policies and programs are recognized far and wide for their innovation and ambitious approach, it is still early days in terms of being able to measure the impact of each city's suite of initiatives. Where information was available, this report provides a summary of progress to date for each initiative. It should be noted that this analysis is not comprehensive as much of the data and metrics are yet to be reported.