Moriah Saldaña, the Climate Action Plan Program Manager for the City of San Diego’s Sustainability and Mobility Department.
In this blog series, I’m speaking with sustainability officials in local governments around the country to learn about how they’re tackling socio-environmental issues within the public sector. This week, I interviewed Moriah Saldaña, the Climate Action Plan Program Manager for the City of San Diego’s Sustainability and Mobility Department. Moriah grew up in San Bernardino, a region with historically poor air quality that likely contributed to her asthma and inspired her to become an environmentalist from an early age.
After earning her Master’s in Public Administration from San Diego State University, Saldaña joined the environmental nonprofit I Love A Clean San Diego (ILACSD), where she organized large-scale volunteer events to collect litter and debris from the beach. Saldaña started at ILACSD as a part-time program assistant and became their Director of Regional Affairs after five years. In that position, she managed government contracts and ran zero-waste educational programs in local schools, all while gaining public sector connections that later helped her transition into the San Diego government.
In 2015, the City adopted a Climate Action Plan that aims to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 50% and obtain 100% of its energy from renewable sources by 2035. The plan outlines five major goal areas: building utilities, renewable energy, transportation/land allocation, waste elimination, and climate adaptation. I spoke to Moriah about the Climate Action Plan, why she loves working in the public sector, and more.