ALBANY, NY (WENY) – Monday, Gov. Kathy Hochul announced that more than 100 New York communities have been certified a Climate Smart Community.
Also on Monday Chemung County was designated as a certified climate smart community, something local officials say will help both economically and environmentally.
“Having the certification allows us to be a lot more competitive in getting funds from the state and federal government that otherwise would be a burden on local taxpayers to pay the bills,” said Kevin Meindl, commissioner of planning in Chemung County.
This initiative is designed to help contribute to the state’s implementation of the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act. The Climate Smart Communities Program was started in 2009 as an inter-agency initiative and provides guidance to local governments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
There are currently 364 registered climate safe communities in New York. To become a climate safe community, applicants first have to pass a municipal resolution. Following the resolution, applicants must complete a list of actions including decreasing energy use, shifting to renewable energy, using climate-smart materials and inspiring the public. Once the town or city completes that list, they can officially become a certified Climate Safe Community.
Gov. Hochul’s office stated in a recent press release this initiative is helping the state further its commitment to reducing the state’s climate impact.
“We will continue to leverage key investments and resources to secure a safe and sustainable future for New Yorkers,” Gov. Hochul said in a prepared statement.