Our Planet Needs a Few Cool Cities

Is Your City Ready to Change the World?

We invite you to participate in a climate moonshot to make your city carbon neutral by 2030! The Cool City Challenge will award a select number of cities funding of up to $1,000,000 and partner with them in implementing our moonshot climate action plan methodology. 

If your city is interested in applying, click here:

About the Cool City Challenge: Empowerment Institute’s Cool City Challenge initiative is a climate moonshot strategy. Its mission is to accelerate the decarbonization of the world’s cities which emit 70% of the planet’s CO2. Cool City Challenge provides a qualified city funding and a partnership in implementing our moonshot climate action plan methodology.

The plan is a whole system climate solution which integrates bottom up and top down change strategies. It is activated through civic engagement at the block and neighborhood level. It builds the leadership capacity of a climate moonshot team to facilitate this transformative change process. We believe that by combining these elements, a city will accelerate the speed and magnitude of change needed to become carbon neutral by 2030.

A Climate Moonshot

Climate scientists tell us we must achieve by 2030 what humanity is trying to accomplish by 2050 to avoid irreversible ecological tipping points. In other words, we must accelerate time by 3x. To achieve this, we need to change the way we think about change. Business as usual climate solutions are not up to the task. We need a climate moonshot strategy.

The Cool City Challenge invites cities (initially in California and the US; then worldwide) to embark on the climate moonshot of our time: becoming carbon neutral by 2030 without offsets.

Technologically we know this is possible, but it is the magnitude and speed of change that is the challenge. This is a second order change problem and needs a second order change solution.

The Cool City Challenge moonshot strategy is a robust second order change climate solution based on three decades of experience that brings the whole system together. It provides a scalable blueprint for cities to embark on this profoundly inspiring and necessary mission for humanity’s future.

What is Moonshot Thinking?

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Moonshot thinking is when you choose a huge problem and propose a radical solution using breakthrough technology.

Huge problem: The need to dramatically acceleratthe speed and magnitude of carbon mitigation in cities which represents 70% of the planet’s CO2 emissions. 

Radical solution: Empower cities to become carbon neutral by 2030 accelerating by 3x the 2050 United Nations goal. 

Breakthrough technology: Our climate moonshot strategy’s second order change social technology.

Climate Moonshot Vision

A Glimpse Into the Future

Click on image to learn about the vision. 

Climate Moonshot Strategy

Cool City Challenge: Carbon Neutral City Scaling Slides

Click on image to learn about the strategy. 

Cool Block Program

Second Order Change "How To" Manual

Social Change 2.0

Click on image to learn about second order change. 


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Cool City Challenge: Carbon Neutral City Scaling Slides

Click on image to learn about the strategy. 

A Call To Action

Click on image to learn about the call to action. 

Cool City Challenge

Click on image to learn about the strategy. 

Application Available June 1st.

(Request email to send notice when application is available)​

We will connect you with anyone else in your city who requests information.