(PLATTSBURGH - July 5th, 2023) The City of Plattsburgh has taken a giant step toward its goal to become a safe, healthy, and sustainable community with the completion of the Greenhouse Gas Inventory (GHGI) of City Operations.
In 2022, the city hired an environmental consultant, Vermont Energy Investment Corporation (VEIC) to conduct a GHGI, a compilation of data about energy use and carbon emissions. The inventory was funded in part by The Climate Smart Community (CSC) Grant Program, Title 15 of the Environmental Protection Fund through the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation. After months of gathering data from city departments, the study results are ready to be shared with Mayor Rosenquest, the Common Council, City Departments Heads, and the public. The GHGI is a CSC Priority Project and will help the city to achieve a Bronze level Certification in this program, a distinction only four other North Country communities hold.
The GHG Inventory represents the city’s serious commitment to addressing climate change because it establishes a record of current practices in the areas of energy use and carbon emissions. Questions about how to reduce the city’s carbon footprint can’t be answered without determining the status quo. Armed with this data, the city can begin to develop a Climate Action Plan which will have a significant impact by setting energy and emission reduction targets. Those targets will be set over the summer through a process of collaboration between city government and staff and will be assisted by VEIC, SUNY staff/students, and the City Climate Task Force. Along the way, opportunities for public comment will be offered.
Greenhouse Gas Inventory Benefits the City as It Maps Out a Sustainable Future
According to VEIC, this data will drive informed decision making about reducing energy use. It will also provide a perspective on priorities and budgetary allocations and investments. Once a Climate Action Plan is developed and is aligned with the City’s Comprehensive Plan and other city plans, funding opportunities can be leveraged. Taxpayers will also receive benefits because of improved efficiency of city operations, saving money, and time.
In January of 2023, New York State Set Targets in Its Climate Scoping Plan–Plattsburgh Will Be Ahead of the Curve!
With the state’s targets in place, municipalities will need to take action. Plattsburgh is ahead of the curve because of the ambitious steps it has already taken. City Climate Task Force Coordinator Rachelle Armstrong says, “The City has been looking ahead, planning, and taking action to address climate change since 2019. The city is committed to making the changes in its operations that will make a measurable difference. Plattsburgh is a role model, and its residents should be proud.”
The GHG Inventory report is available for public viewing on the City website at the following web address. A hard copy of the report will be located at the reference desk of the City of Plattsburgh Public Library.