With a population of approximately 883 thousand residents, San Francisco is California’s fourth-largest city. 

San Francisco and the surrounding Bay Area have their fair share of climate change challenges. Over the past century, the Bay’s sea level has risen eight inches, damaging local population and ecosystems. The damage is compounded by unprecedented erosion brought on by the 2015-2016 El Niño storms. The 2012-2016 drought drove statewide moisture to the lowest levels seen in more than 1,000 years. As climate change drags on, the whole Bay expects more “boom and bust” rain cycles with very wet and very dry years. These cycles exacerbate the area’s “large-fire” years, which have gotten steadily worse and more common over the past 80 years.

The City of San Francisco has ambitious climate change prevention and preparedness goals, having successfully reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 23% below 1990 levels, even as its economy and population have grown. San Francisco’s Municipal Code calls for substantial reductions in greenhouse gas emissions with goals of  40% reductions below 1990 levels by 2025, and 80% reductions by 2050

Mostly hydropower, but also some solar and wind power, provide more than 70% of the electricity consumed in San Francisco

How San Francisco Is Tackling Climate Change




San Francisco Climate Action Strategy

The 2013 San Francisco Climate Action Strategy update is the result of the work and partnerships between city agencies, community members, local businesses, national academic organizations, and international consultants.


Checkout Bag Ordinance

The City and County of San Francisco amended Chapter 17 of the Environment Code, extending the plastic checkout bag ban to include all retail stores on 10/1/2012 and all food establishments starting on 10/1/2013.

Save the Bay

In this era of climate change and a growing population, we work with scientists and policymakers to protect the Bay, an essential natural resource to our environment, economy, and quality of life.


Bay Area Climate Change Hotspots

By Jeff Ranieri, Rob Mayeda, Kari Hall, Vianey Arana, Alex Bozovic, Joyce Huntington and Makayla Humphrey 01/30/2021
Our NBC Bay Area meteorologists fanned out across the Bay Area to get a read on problems climate change is creating in the waters that surround us, our forests, our rivers and streams, and the…