Climate Change Action Resolution Vote to be held at Westborough’s Special Town Meeting

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To the Editor:

“Even though we are facing a crisis of global scale it is imperative that each individual, in every town, understands the importance of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and contributing their fair share toward mitigating climate change,” said Peter Dunbeck, chairman of Sustainable Westborough.

On October 21, Westborough will be voting on the Climate Action Resolution, presented by Sustainable Westborough. This resolution proposes that the town establish a Task Force to create a Climate Action Plan that will help guide decision making, moving Westborough toward a goal of 100 percent renewable energy. A major focus of the plan would be to fulfill Westborough’s portion of the 2008 Massachusetts Global Warming Solutions Act, which set statewide standards for greenhouse gas emissions reduction. In addition, the Climate Action Plan would improve the resilience of the town to both the anticipated and the unanticipated consequences of climate change.

The Climate Action Plan will be built on a foundation of partnership with Massachusetts, aligning with the goals for greenhouse gas emissions reduction as defined in the 2008 Global Warming Solutions Act (https://malegislature.gov/Laws/SessionLaws/Acts/2008/Chapter298). By partnering and aligning with state programs Westborough can take advantage of statewide rebates and grants. In addition, this partnership will allow Westborough to take advantage of state infrastructure and technological insights. In turn, this plan provides value to the state, fostering a team effort to lower the carbon footprint.

With passage of the Climate Action Resolution, Westborough would begin the 18 month process of crafting an action plan, in conjunction with the town’s evolving Master Plan.

Over recent weeks, Sustainable Westborough has had multiple public meetings and town board meetings. Strong backing for the Climate Action Resolution has come from many different and diverse town residents.

Westborough resident, Rabbi Rachel Gurevitz responded to the Climate Action proposal, ”Many people of faith are recognizing a moral imperative to actively engage, not only in individual environmentally-conscious acts, but systemic and communal efforts to combat climate change…Regardless of whether one ascribes to a particular religious tradition, to have hope for our future requires a faith that is grounded in action. Only when town managers, service providers, business, and environmental experts come together for the common good can we design a plan for a sustainable Westborough. That is the invitation before us and I wholeheartedly support it.”

Bridget Lord, Westborough High School student climate activist, concludes, “Investing in renewable energy is Westborough’s chance to invest in the youngest generation. We are counting on the adults of Westborough to help create a future for us.”

Special Fall Town Meeting is on Monday, October 21, at Westborough High School. All Westborough residents are encouraged to attend.

Sustainable Westborough is a group of citizens appointed by the Board of Selectmen to advise it on sustainability matters.

 

Carol Fisher

Sustainable Westborough Communications Team