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Northern Westchester Municipalities Inventory and Tackle Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Village of Croton-on-Hudson E-Notice

Northern Westchester Municipalities Inventory and Tackle
Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Reports detailing greenhouse gas emissions will be released on October 26th, documenting another major milestone in initiatives undertaken by Northern Westchester municipalities to reduce energy consumption and associated financial and environmental costs.  Croton-on-Hudson, as the lead applicant on behalf of the Northern Westchester Energy Action Consortium (NWEAC) contracted consultants Ecology & Environment (E&E), to develop these greenhouse gas inventories and climate action plans under a federally funded grant.  The seven municipalities that are receiving assistance include Bedford, Cortlandt, Croton-on-Hudson, North Salem, Peekskill, Pound Ridge, and Somers.
The project has two related components: development of greenhouse gas inventories to establish baselines for energy-related consumption patterns in each community and creation of climate action plans which use those facts as the basis for specific recommendations for each community.  The greenhouse gas emissions inventories will be presented to elected officials, key municipal staff and environmental or sustainability committee members from participating municipalities on October 26th at 5 p.m. in Cortlandt Town Hall by Ecology and Environment.
Underway since February, this project has involved municipal site visits and extensive data collection and analysis by E&E and its sub-contractor Blue Springs Energy.  E&E has developed a greenhouse gas inventory tool to organize and analyze all the data collected for the inventories.  This tool will allow municipalities to continue updating their inventories into the future, by entering data regarding fuel consumption and cost.  The tool will convert the data to information regarding greenhouse gas emissions and will show trends in energy consumption and cost.  
Julie Chang, E & E Principal Economist and Project Manager said, “The NWEAC members have demonstrated true leadership in this collaborative effort to assess municipal greenhouse gas emissions and develop climate action plans.  The success and progress achieved in Northern Westchester can be shared and used as an example for the region.
The individual inventories include recommendations for energy efficiency improvements tailored for each municipality as well as information regarding incentives and rebates available from utilities and New York State.  
Leo Wiegman, Mayor of Croton-on-Hudson and the NWEAC project leader said, “In order for an action plan to move us forward it needs to become a traction plan. We need real data explained in plain English that is accessible to the citizens in our communities. The result of this effort will be climate traction plans for the seven participating municipalities.”
Sample findings from the inventories:
Nearly half of the greenhouse gas emissions in the Town of Cortlandt derive from the residential building sector (49%), leading transportation (28%) and commercial/industrial (23%) emissions.
The City of Peekskill’s total utility and fuel expense for delivering municipal services and operations was just over $1.7 million in 2010, with electricity accounting for 70% of the cost and heating and vehicle fuel the balance.
Public input will be sought during the climate action planning process through an online survey for municipal staff and community members as well as in a public meeting scheduled for November 30th at 5 p.m. in Cortlandt Town Hall.  The Climate Action Plans are expected to be completed in January 2012.
About the organizations:
The Northern Westchester Energy Action Consortium (NWEAC) consists of 14 municipalities in Westchester County, New York. Consortium members collaborate to reduce reliance on fossil fuels, save money for residents and businesses, increase energy efficiency in local communities, enable renewable energy generation, increase economic activity, and align local efforts with county, state, and federal initiatives.
Ecology and Environment, Inc. is a global environmental firm based in New York State with a 40-year history of developing solutions to environmental challenges around the world and throughout New York.
Blue Springs Energy, LLC. is a New York State based firm that helps local governments, organizations and individuals access clean and renewable energy grants, incentives and assistance.

This work is funded by NYSERDA RFP10, Energy Management Personnel for Municipal Sustainability Services for the total amount of $279,800 to complete work scopes for each of the seven municipalities.
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Contact:  Janine King, Assistant Village Manager, 914-271-4848