Global contest seeks pioneering solutions to help Somerville/cities reach carbon reduction goals

SOMERVILLE – If you have an outside-the-box, inventive or otherwise pioneering idea that can help Somerville (and cities in general) cut down on carbon emissions, we want to hear it. In 2014, Mayor Joseph Curtatone set the goal for Somerville, MA, to be a carbon neutral city by 2050, and we’ll need your ideas— big and small—to get there. Somerville is beginning a planning process to develop a roadmap to carbon neutrality, and as part of that process, we’ve teamed up with MIT’s Climate CoLab on an international contest to collect the best atypical ideas out there.

The most promising ideas submitted for strategies, actions and projects will be considered for inclusion in our long-range SustainaVille carbon reduction plan. Among other review, the top contest ideas will be discussed at community meetings as we work with the public to create a climate change plan for Somerville. The community and City will give serious consideration to implementing the top idea to emerge from this process, and we’ll share all of the great ideas that come in on our SustainaVille website so that other cities can have access to them.

The MIT Climate Colab is a community of over 30,000 members from around the globe. We are excited to hear from this community on how Somerville can reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and for local CoLab members to interact with the global Climate CoLab community. This contest will bring the best global—and local—ideas to Somerville. Throughout the contest period, CoLab members and contest staff will comment on proposals to help develop ideas to their full potential.

Kickoff Event
Tuesday April 7, 6 to 8 p.m., at Greentown Labs, 28 Dane St., Somerville
Anyone interested in learning more about to contest is invited to join us for a casual Q&A at green technology incubator Greentown Labs. The event will also be broadcast online for anyone who cannot attend in person. Please check back to the contest website for more information on this upcoming event.

Contest Details
To learn more about the contest and to submit your proposal, visit, click on the “Contests” tab and scroll down to “Atypical Ideas for Carbon Neutrality.” Register as a Climate CoLab member (it’s easy!) and submit your ideas and comment on other proposals. The submission deadline is May 16. Please note that proposals can be edited throughout the duration of the contest, so they can be submitted in draft form.

For more information, please contact Director of Sustainability and Environment Oliver Sellers-Garcia at 617-629-6600 ext. 2106 or

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