The CECAP development process is divided into five steps, some of which will take place concurrently. Each step has a distinct purpose and supports the steps that follow.
Step I – Project Initiation
- The Office of Environmental and Energy Coordination, in cooperation with ICF and the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG), will work to establish the nine district-level Focus Groups and the Energy and Climate Task Force. This step encompasses the initial kickoff meetings for each of the groups and the development of guiding documents and charters to steer the work of these groups in the months to come. The Operating Guidelines and Rules of Order for the Task Force and the Focus Groups provide detailed information on how these groups will work.
Step 2 – Greenhouse Gas Reduction Inventories, Models and Goals
- COG will prepare a comprehensive greenhouse gas inventory for Fairfax County, incorporating the latest available data for the period from 2015-2018.
- COG and ICF will then create four emissions models, including a business-as-usual (BAU) model. Each model will consist of a climate mitigation goal and the key actions or strategies required to meet that goal.
- The models will be presented as graphs, mapped against the BAU projection, with sector-specific emissions reduction scenarios incorporated to help demonstrate what would be involved in reaching each emissions reduction goal.
- The models and goals will be presented to the Focus Groups for their feedback and input, and then to the Task Force for review. The Task Force will meet to discuss the materials provided and to decide on appropriate goals for the county.
- The community at large will also be engaged in step two. ICF will organize and facilitate four community quadrant meetings and will develop a community survey to run online in connection with the meetings. The meetings and the survey will offer Fairfax County community members the chance to review the draft goals and offer feedback and input.
- Following the initial round of quadrant meetings, the Task Force will review the input provided by the community and will make any necessary changes to the draft goals.
- COG and ICF will then incorporate all the changes approved by the Task Force and will produce a final version of the mitigation goals for the county and community.
Step 3 – Climate Mitigation Planning and Support
- The goal of step three is to clearly define actions and strategies that the community can undertake to help meet the mitigation goals set in step two.
- ICF will identify at least 20 possible climate mitigation action options to get the conversation started. These options will reflect different sectors within the community, like transportation, energy, buildings, green/open spaces and waste management.
- With input from OEEC staff, the draft set of actions will be distilled into a summary for delivery to the Focus Groups, and then to the Task Force. The Task Force will be charged with coming to a consensus on the list of draft actions and strategies and to make recommendations for any additional actions, strategies or sectors.
- ICF will then analyze the economic, environmental and social impacts of each of the proposed actions and strategies and develop an outline of their findings.
- ICF will create a set of criteria to help the Focus Groups and Task Force prioritize the action and strategy options by both timing and resource requirements.
- The results of the analysis and the criteria will be delivered to the Focus Groups and the Task Force for review.
- The Task Force will meet to discuss the options in light of the analysis, criteria and Focus Group feedback and will develop a final list of mitigation actions and strategies for the community.
Step 4 – Community Engagement Planning
- In order to encourage community participation in the actions and strategies identified in step three, ICF will seek to engage community groups, organizations and stakeholders. A list of local and regional cross-sectional partnerships and programs will be created to help support high-priority action items from step three.
- ICF will then work with county staff to develop messaging and outreach tools, including online materials, to present the results of the greenhouse gas inventory and to facilitate community engagement.
- A Community Outreach Guide, composed of fact sheets and other communications materials, will be presented to the Focus Groups and the Task Force for review.
- The Task Force will meet to provide feedback and a final version of the guide will be developed.
Step 5 – Development of the Final CECAP Technical Report
- ICF will draft a CECAP technical report, encompassing the greenhouse gas inventory, goals, actions and strategies approved by the Task Force.
- The technical report will be shared with the Focus Groups for feedback and then to the Task Force for review.
- The draft will be updated to reflect the input of the Task Force and then presented to the community at large for discussion and input via four quadrant meetings and an online survey.
- The Task Force will then meet to review the feedback from the community and to discuss and decide on revisions to the technical report.
- Any additional changes will be incorporated into the report and the document will be finalized for presentation to the Board of Supervisors.