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Local Climate Action

Addressing Climate Crisis Locally

Climate change presents an urgent, existential threat to our communities, and those who are most vulnerable in our society today are disproportionately affected.  CG3 believes that smart, sustainable development and local climate advocacy are our best strategies for reducing emissions and enhancing preparedness for future climate impacts.  Concord Greenspace is working to connect local climate activists, climate focused city committees, with the wider community to come together and advocate for the future of our planet. Join our team!

 

Steps Toward Climate Action

The City of Concord government has taken several steps to reduce its climate footprint and energy usage, such as:

  • Embracing the NH Climate Action Plan to reduce greenhouse gaemissions 80% by 2050;

  • Investing in energy efficiency projects and purchasing green energy for City buildings; and

  • Signing the Climate Mayors Agreement to uphold the Paris Climate accord and develop a climate action plan.*

Concord's Climate Goals

In 2018, the City adopted a 100% renewable energy goal by unanimous vote of the City Council. The City committed to the following community-wide goals:

  • 100% of electricity consumed in Concord will come from renewable energy sources by 2030;

  • 100% of thermal energy (heating and cooling) consumed in Concord will come from renewable energy sources by 2050; and

  • 100% of transportation in Concord will be clean transportation by 2050.*

Reaching Our Goals

In the 2019 Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory Brief Report and the 2019 Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory, Emissions Forecasts and Mitigation Scenarios report, the Concord Energy & Environment Advisory Committee (CEEAC) provided the city with a list of recommendations for taking climate action to meet the city's carbon-neutral goals including:

  • Hiring a full-time Sustainability Director

  • Participate in the Community Power Coalition

  • Replace existing gas and diesel powered vehicles with alternatives.

  • Support walkability and bikability.

  • Build the capacity for electric vehicle charging in Concord. Encourage electric vehicle purchasing by businesses and residents in Concord.

  • Invest in and protect forests and other natural areas. Carbon sequestration can reduce carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. 

  • Conserve existing forests, tree cover, and open space lands.

  • Encourage redevelopment over new development in natural areas.

  • Scale up tree replacement and tree planting programs and consider mitigation ordinances.

  • Encourage smart agriculture and wetlands management.

  • Invest in a transition to solar and wind power in the region. Provide educational materials and resources to make it easy for homeowners and business owners to switch to renewable sources.

  • Reduce stationary fuel consumption in all sectors. Weatherizing old buildings, upgrading energy efficiency in buildings, and transitioning to new heating technologies will help.

  • Identify emissions from the largest commercial buildings. Work with and promote these businesses as leaders in developing strategies to reduce their emissions.

  • Promote composting and recycling. Encourage responsible waste disposal for residents and provide incentives for responsible waste disposal in commercial businesses.

What is CG3 doing?

  • "Sustainability Director" - CG3 is advocating for the city to hire a Sustainability Director.

  • "Community Power" - CG3 is advocating for the city to adopt Community Power.

  • "Parks Not Parkways" - We successfully advocated for CIP-40 (Langley Parkway Phase 3a) to be removed from the City budget thus protecting a large swath of forested land from being turned into a parkway.  This land is used as a walking/biking path and we hope to work towards connecting it to a larger multi-modal pathway system.  The land serves as a critical "carbon sink" (carbon sequestration) for the city.  Learn more here.

  • "Middle School Rebuild" - We advocated for the Concord School District to rebuild the new middle school at the existing site (infill) and not at the undeveloped Centerpoint Church property which is the last north/south wildlife corridor in Concord and host to critical farmland soils.  With Centerpoint recently off the table, we are advocating for the School District to revisit existing infrastructure sites on the east side of town to better serve Concord's underserved communities. Learn more here.

  • "I-93/Deck Park & River Bridge" - Currently, we are advocating for the City of Concord to push back on NHDOT's I-93 Expansion Plan including minimizing the highway widening, improving pedestrian/bike alternatives at all interchanges, bringing in a rail system, and connecting the two sides of the highway with a deck park and pedestrian river bridge.  These efforts work to unify our divided city with safe, meaningful non-motorized transportation; and minimizing the widening works to protect many acres of forested land and prevent increased transportation-related gas emissions. Learn more here.

  • "Urban Canopy Initiative" - Our Urban Canopy initiative aims to partner with the City's Tree Committee to plant native trees and shrubs in the more urban/paved sections of the city. Learn more here.

*(2019 Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory Brief Report)

Smart Growth & Climate Refugees

According to the UN, “Climate change [is] now found to be the key factor accelerating all other drivers of forced displacement. Most of the people affected will remain in their own countries. They will be internally displaced.” Concord, like other New England cities, has already seen a surge of internally displaced Americans relocating North, and it is projected that there will be more climate refugees.  Careful, smart growth and local climate advocacy now is one of our best strategies for climate resilience. 

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Learn about  Weatherize Concord & Other Local Efforts

Resources here!

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