Sustainable Wellesley's Youth Leadership Team invites you to stop by the library to learn from their imaginative and enlightening series of educational displays about Wellesley’s Climate Action Plan. Swing by the Common area at the Main Wellesley Free Library to learn what small and big steps you can take to ensure Wellesley meets its greenhouse gas reduction goal.
After interviewing town board members and doing some research they created dazzling displays for the community to learn about the different pathways in Wellesley's Climate Action Plan. Below is a sneak peak into what they learned and shared. Thanks to the students for all of their hard work!
The energy display case informs Wellesley residents about sustainability within the energy sector and the actions that can be taken to reduce emissions. Specifically, the Wellesley Municipal Light Plant, a government organization working towards reliable and non emitting renewable energy, has put into place multiple initiatives to reduce energy consumption like the Shave the Peak and the WECARE Program. Check out the lego log home with solar as you consider installing solar panels in your home —there are currently over 140 solar systems in town already with great ROIs!
The buildings display focuses on how to best practice sustainability within individuals' homes as buildings are the main greenhouse gas emitter (approximately 61% in our town) of which 37% is residents’ homes. One key takeaway is the importance of updating to more modern heating and AC systems such as air source heat pumps (mini splits) to reduce energy costs, improve comfort and, most importantly, improve efficiency! Plus, the Town offers consultants at no cost to help you figure out what would work best in your home. Learn more today by calling: 339-707-0918!
Transportation is the second largest source (34%) of energy consumption in Wellesley. For those willing to take the crucial first step of breaking their routine of driving, there are various ways to reduce personal transportation emissions. Walking and biking are an easy and accessible way to enjoy fresh air while reducing your environmental footprint. Furthermore, public transit, carpooling, or Wellesley’s no cost rideshare vehicle, CatchConnect, are similar to driving in their time commitment and protection from weather, but are far more energy efficient and in many cases can also be cheaper!
This display delves into the section of the Climate Action Plan focusing on town government’s role in sustainability, specifically focusing on the important issue of gas leaks. The display case gives a comprehensive understanding of the risk of gas leaks and how to prevent them. (Hint: the only way is to get off gas!) Governance is crucial to the Climate Action Plan because each element requires citizens to advocate in support of its implementation. The first step you can take is to educate yourself on sustainability initiatives the town is considering and get involved to advocate for the ones you are passionate about! Learn more about the candidates before you mail in your ballot or go to the polls on Tuesday, March 7th to vote. Your voice is your vote!
The display focuses on trying to convey statistics on waste, and what people can do to reduce the amount of waste going to landfills. Wellesley has a world class recycling and disposal facility and we need to take advantage of that to reduce our emissions from waste (approximately 6%) and as a way to make money for the Town of Wellesley as they sell our properly sorted recyclables. Wellesley residents and businesses can recycle their items, reuse items and compost quite easily if you give it a try. Waste is a very visible issue for students and often the gateway topic to sustainability. Grab a free food waste kit from the recycling center and start removing food waste from your waste stream today. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that more food reaches landfills than any other single material in our everyday trash, constituting 24% of municipal solid waste. Think about that!
The ultimate purpose of this display is to educate Wellesley residents on how their land care can contribute to climate action. From growing native plants to using electric leaf-blowers, there are so many actions we can take to build a more sustainable relationship with the land around us, which we share with other organisms. The top and middle shelves display tips, photographs, and artifacts to provide practical examples and straightforward ideas for Wellesley residents to rethink their land care methods and "re-naturalize" their landscapes. The bottom shelf of the display is like a mini kid-friendly exhibit, presenting fascinating specimens like animal skulls, nests, and preserved insects (just to name a few!) to illustrate that Wellesley has an incredible biodiversity worth protecting.
Come hear from the candidates about issues specifically related to sustainability in Wellesley on Monday, February 13th at Sustainable Wellesley's "Conversation With The Candidates" night from 7-9pm in the Wakelin room at the Wellesley Free Library.
Mark your calendar so you can hear from them before you mail in your ballot or go to the polls on Tuesday, March 7th to vote.
Hear About Wellesley's electricity cost increases, renewable power portfolio and distribution system
Wellesley Municipal Light Plant Director, Don Newell addresses resident's concerns about electricity cost increases, renewable power portfolio and distribution system in a recent interview. Here is this video you can watch to learn more about Wellesley's electricity.
Join an enthusiastic crowd of people demonstrating for the climate every Friday from 3-4pm on the Town Hall lawn. This Friday is Friday's For Future - Wellesley's 3rd anniversary. The inspiration for this group and this type of action—weekly demonstrations for the climate—comes from Greta Thunberg and her organization Fridays For Future. One Wellesley College student will share about her research in Kenya last semester.
Note that on Friday, March 3rd Wellesley will participate in the Global Climate Strike.
Wellesley Police Department is debuting its first all Electric Vehicle (EV) in service to the community. The new police cruiser is a big step toward reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
A generous donation from a resident provided funding for Chief Jack Pilecki to purchase the car. Watch this video for a look inside the car and keep an eye out for it on local roads.
Don your boots, coat, and a warm hat for Wellesley’s Winter Walk & Roll to School
event on Wednesday, February 1! It’s fun, invigorating and celebrates the benefits of
staying active and enjoying the outdoors in WINTER.
Like other Walk, Bike, & Roll to School events during the school year, the Winter
Walk is one of the flagship activities supporting Wellesley’s partnership with the
Massachusetts Safe Routes to School program. Research shows that physical activity
before school improves student focus and engagement, and walking and biking saves
$$ on gas.
Plan to participate on February 1. Individual schools can register on the Safe Routes
to School website and get free materials to help promote your walks. See you outside!
More on Mobility
Watch for more mobility news and educational events in the coming months. To learn
more about Safe Routes to School, please reach out to School Committee member
Catherine Mirick (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Select Board member Colette Aufranc
A message from the Massachusetts Climate Action Network
Ask your legislators to prioritize equitable building decarbonization by cosponsoring SD.500 and HD.776 An Act Establishing A Zero Carbon Renovation Fund.
The Zero Carbon Renovation Fund is a bold proposal to allocate $300 million from the remaining American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds to establish a Zero Carbon Renovation Fund that will jumpstart the market for zero carbon renovations in existing buildings in Massachusetts. The ZCRF will advance equitable building decarbonization by prioritizing affordable housing, public housing, schools, BIPOC and women businesses, and buildings located in Environmental Justice communities.
By prioritizing the most vulnerable populations among us, the ZCRF will reduce emissions, improve climate resiliency, lower energy costs, and improve the overall health of communities most in need.
This fund will also transform the marketplace and jumpstart zero carbon renovation projects across the Commonwealth by driving down costs and providing relief for consumers over the long term as we transition away from our reliance on fossil fuels.
Take five minutes to use this action alert and write a personalized letter asking your legislators to cosponsor this critical bill.
Be sure to personalize your message so that they know why this issue matters to you!
Take action for a green, healthy, and climate-resilient future for all.
For those that missed last week's SAVE MONEY ON HOME HEATING AND COOLING webinar, you can watch it here. Please feel free to look through the slide decks here, and the Q&A here, to learn how billions of government incentive dollars and free technical advice can help you make money-saving home energy improvements.
Since the beginning of this year, rebates and tax credits are now available for home energy upgrades such as weatherization, heat pumps, and induction stoves under the federal Inflation Reduction Act. Review this webinar and all the offerings to learn about how to:
Wellesley residents should contact Abode Energy Management consultants to get assistance with every step of the heat pump planning, installation, and operation process, at no cost. Click here to learn more about Abode and other heat pump resources for Wellesley residents.
Incentives allow homeowners to save on equipment and annual home heating and cooling costs while reducing their carbon footprint. Have questions? Call 781-235-7600 or email email@example.com.
IS THIS TOTALLY YOUR JAM?
Good News, The Wellesley Municipal Light Plant, the Climate Action Committee and Sustainable Wellesley are joining together to develop an exciting new Energy Coach program. In this program, the Wellesley MLP will train volunteers (at no cost to volunteers) on energy saving technology and incentives. These volunteers will then be available to Town residents for peer-to-peer energy coaching. If you already have experience in any of the subjects of home energy efficiency, solar installations, heat pumps, battery storage, electric vehicles, tax incentives, or other measures that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, or if you are simply very passionate about climate change and want to do more, then reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The team at Green Energy Consumers is offering advice on heat pumps, electric cars, and more at their upcoming webinars. For specific Wellesley information (rebates, assistance, etc. watch this first).
This goes beyond Wellesley, but know many will want to hear this...
The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) invites you to attend the next Director’s Innovation Speaker Series lecture featuring Ashlee Cunsolo, PhD. This Thursday, January 19th she will discuss the profound, cumulative, and complex mental health outcomes of the climate crisis.
Drawing on 15 years of experience working with people on the frontlines of climate change and leading global research, Dr. Cunsolo will explore diverse expressions of ecological grief and loss and how the ‘gift of grief’ and ‘gritty hope’ can furnish new ethical and political communities.