Update: It did not appear that the County Board of Legislators had enough supporters to pass this legislation. It was voted to table it for a later date. It is worthy to ask oneself -- are we, or shouldn't we, as a County have implemented many of these concepts anyway? It makes fiscally conservative sense to do so.
Tell your St. Lawrence County Legislator
how you stand on
Climate Change and Peak Oil
(contact info provided below)
On July 11th
, the St. Lawrence County Board of Legislators will vote on whether to
adopt a St. Lawrence County Climate Action Plan, which also addresses
preparedness for Peak Oil. At this time, it seems unlikely that the
Board will approve the plan UNLESS THEY HEAR FROM CONSTITUENTS WHO SUPPORT IT.
To read the full St. Lawrence County Climate Action Plan, go to:
For brief versions of information about the plan, please find
attached (at the very bottom of this page) a Background Info sheet and a summary of the Plan’s Guide for Further Steps.
Here are some possible talking points:
~ Climate Change is the biggest environmental problem we have ever faced. We all have a responsibility to do our part to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions by reducing our use of fossil fuels. The County is no exception. It also has a responsibility to prepare for climate change and peak oil so that it can continue to function cost-effectively and serve the people of St. Lawrence County.
~ The Climate Action Plan will save taxpayers money. The St. Lawrence County Climate Action Plan is limited to County buildings and operations. Passing the plan will make county operations more cost effective and save taxpayer money. The CAP does not include unfunded mandates and will not increase taxes. It will not affect what businesses and private individuals can do.
~ The longer we wait to take action on Climate Change the more it is going to cost us. Every year, more greenhouse gas emissions in the atmosphere are being pumped into the atmosphere and it gets harder keep them below what could be catastrophic levels. In the meantime, damages that are probably resulting from climate change and their associate costs increase. Better to act now and save money, than to do nothing now and spend more later.
~ The Climate Action Plan compels the county to do what it should do anyway, conserve energy, use energy efficiently, consider energy and emissions when purchasing items for the county, and moves us away from finite fossil fuels.
~ Going green creates jobs and stimulates the economy. The St. Lawrence County Chamber of Commerce representing 800 county businesses called on the County to prepare a Climate Change and Peak Oil Action Plan, saying that combating climate change and mitigating the effects of peak oil can help create a more sustainable economy, increase local jobs, create a cleaner environment and promote greater energy security.
~ We have to be prepared for higher energy price. Energy prices will continue to fluctuate and rise and energy security will become a real issue. Many experts think that oil production has already peaked. The future is bound to bring higher prices and possibly even fuel shortages. St. Lawrence County should be making plans to keep costs as low as possible and ensure that essential services, such as emergency vehicles will continue to function.
~ Although the Climate Action Plan is limited to County buildings and operations, it will serve as a model for the Towns and Villages and for the rest of St. Lawrence County. Rather than doing nothing in the face of potentially catastrophic problems, the Board of Legislators should take a leadership role in helping us all do what we can to alleviate and prepare for Climate Change and Peak Oil.
~ Planning for Climate Change and Peak Oil is about managing risk. Risk Management is essential to any operation, be it business, farming or government. Uncertainty about the future should not be an excuse for doing nothing; it should be a reason to prepare for probable events. Reducing the amount of fuel the county uses is a good risk management strategy in the event that fuel prices go up.
~ The impacts of Climate Change and Peak Oil will seriously endanger our freedoms and the freedom of future generations. Preparing for them through a conscious planning process will help to preserve our freedoms.
~ We have to pass a Climate Action Plan to participate in international climate markets. The only way we can participate in state, federal, or international climate markets is to pass a climate action plan stating that we are reducing our emissions intentionally for climate change reasons. This is called the additionality principle.
~ Having a Climate Action Plan puts us in a better position to receive state and federal energy grants. If the County wants to apply for grants from the State and Federal governments for energy efficiency or renewable energy systems, then it will be in a better position if it has committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. More and more grant solicitations now require a commitment to energy sustainability, such as having adopted a Climate Action Plan.
~ This Plan uses climate change as an excuse to save money.
St. Lawrence County Climate Change & Peak Oil Action Plan.
The Energy Task Force provides a meeting place for individuals in the North Country to share information about energy issues and work together on energy projects that contribute to a sustainable economy, develop our local renewable energy resources, and keep the benefits of that development in the North Country.
Ann Heidenreich 315-379-0959
Resources & Links >