The world is searching for a feasible solution to address climate change in the short term while we still have the time to act. Cities generate 70% of the planet’s carbon and citizens generate 70% of those emissions through our daily lifestyle choices. If cities and citizens empower each other to reduce their carbon footprint and enter onto a path of becoming carbon neutral by 2030, it can both change the game around our warming planet and embolden humanity with agency for its future.

The Cool Block program is designed as a whole system solution that optimizes a city’s performance capacity by empowering a new community spirit to take hold. Creating bottom-up change from the demand-side (consumers and voters) activates top-down change from the supply-side (technology and policy adoption). This operating system upgrade for cities will help to activate all players in order to best navigate the climate-stressed world we have inherited. And the resultant community synergy will enable cities and their citizens to achieve social, environmental and economic outcomes not imagined possible.

Here is the vision that launched the Cool Block journey five years ago...


Cool California -- An Invitation to Achieve Climate Impact at Scale

Cool Block will be brought to scale statewide through the Cool California initiative. Empowerment Institute will partner with selected cities and support  them in a two-part challenge: 

  • Cool City Challenge:
    A “Cool City” is a carbon literate, empowered and galvanized community where everyone has a stake in its future. It is a community with distributed leadership and the agency and empowerment tools to make transformative change happen on a large scale. We invite up to five early adopter California cities with demonstrated interest in the Cool Block program to partner with us to become a Cool City by achieving key Cool Block participation goals over three-years. 

  • Cool California Challenge: 
    Carbon reduction is necessary now, but only carbon neutrality is sustainable. Carbon neutrality requires the creation of synergistic breakthroughs across technology, finance, policy and community engagement. During the scaling of our early adopter cities, we will invite any California city with a climate action plan to become a Cool City and then compete for a share of the Cool California “Carbon Neutral City X Prize” of $10 million dollars. Since time is of the essence, this prize expires in 2030.

Hear more about the Cool California vision...


Learn more in the Cool California white paper and the Grand Strategy for Climate Change.