Celebrating Earth Day in Oakland


As we come together to honor Earth Day, I am filled with pride to celebrate the remarkable progress Oakland has achieved in our journey toward a more sustainable and resilient future. Since taking office, we have embarked on transformative initiatives aimed at combating climate change, promoting environmental justice, and fostering economic prosperity through green innovation and job creation.

Under our leadership, Oakland has achieved several significant milestones and secured substantial investments to mitigate climate-related risks and enhance community resilience:

  • California Hydrogen Hub Funding: Oakland is set to receive federal funding as part of the California Hydrogen Hub initiative, accelerating the adoption of clean hydrogen energy technology.
  • Urban Tree Planting Initiative: The city has been awarded $8 million in federal funding to support tree-planting projects across Oakland, addressing air quality concerns and fostering community engagement.
  • Bloomberg American Sustainable Cities Initiative: Oakland has been selected as one of 25 U.S. cities to participate in this initiative, driving local solutions to confront climate change, promote racial equity, and drive economic prosperity.
  • Lincoln Community Resilience and Recreation Center Grant:Oakland has secured a $9.25 million grant to construct a state-of-the-art Community Resilience and Recreation Center at the Lincoln site, providing vital resources during emergencies.
  • Environmental Justice Plan: Oakland's first Environmental Justice Plan identifies and uplifts communities disproportionately impacted by pollution, receiving a $500,000 federal grant.
  • Transit-Oriented Development Zoning Changes: Oakland has implemented zoning changes to encourage transit-oriented development, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improving public health.
  • Thermal Microgrid Project: Oakland has embarked on an innovative project to deploy a Thermal Microgrid in West Oakland, fostering economic opportunities and increasing resilience.
  • New clean, electric water heating systems have been installed in more than 60 City facilities at no cost to the City.
  • Secured additional support from CalTrans and CalFire to support vegetation clearance in the Very High Wildfire Risk Zone. This clearance is along Highway 13 as well as Joaquin Miller Park.
  • Oakland secured 20 Climate Fellows as part of the California Climate Corps for this year, and 20 more for next year, which is the largest contingent in the state. The fellows have been leading on issues like illegal dumping, climate resilience, compost carbon capture, and more while developing skills that will help them in career and personal development.

These initiatives underscore our commitment to building a city that is resilient, equitable, and sustainable. As we commemorate Earth Day, let us reaffirm our commitment to environmental stewardship and social equity. I want to extend my heartfelt thanks to the hundreds of volunteers who came out this weekend to clean up their parks and communities for Earth Day. Your dedication and passion inspire us all.


Now more than ever, it is essential for Oaklanders to continue to come together to protect Mother Earth. By working together, we can create a brighter, more sustainable future for all residents of Oakland.


Sheng Thao,
Mayor of Oakland