The Town of Wellesley is looking to understand the specific retail, restaurant and business wants, needs and patterns in Wellesley Square in an effort to bring vitality and new businesses to our community.
Imagine, a pedestrian weekend main street, re-use and plastic free stores, no styrofoam, EV charging stations, community refrigerator, a fix it shop, in town composting and recycling, etc. Let them know what YOU want by filling out this survey.
It takes less than a minute to fill out the survey.
Last week after the Massachusetts Legislature put its climate bill on the Governor’s desk for the second time, Governor Baker signed it into law. This sweeping and historic statute is the first piece of climate legislation passed in Massachusetts in over a decade, creating the foundation for bold and robust statewide climate policy for years to come.
Specifically, the Roadmap Bill strengthens Massachusetts’s emissions reduction targets to establish a 50% reduction by 2030, a 75% reduction by 2040 and a goal of Net Zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
Having targets like these will hold the Commonwealth accountable to reduce emissions in our energy, transportation and building sectors.
To make these goals, the act stipulates the development of a Net Zero Energy stretch building code, which it empowers communities to adopt by 2022. It also mandates energy efficiency standards for appliances by 2025, and authorizes another 2,400 megawatts of offshore wind power. It also provides protections for Environmental Justice communities.
What does this mean for Wellesley?
Later this month, Wellesley’s Sustainable Energy Committee (SEC) will be updating the Town’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction goals and bringing them to the Annual Town Meeting (ATM) 2021. These goals, contained in Article 24, call for reductions in town-wide GHG emissions of 50% below Wellesley’s 2007 baseline by 2030, 75% below Wellesley’s 2007 baseline by 2040, and net zero town-wide GHG emissions by 2050.
These science-based goals follow State policy, are in line with The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, support Wellesley’s Unified Plan, and echo similar climate actions taken by an increasing number of Wellesley’s peer communities across the Commonwealth. Residents are encouraged to contact their Town Meeting Members letting them know they support these emissions reductions goals for our community.
Wellesley residents are taking advantage of being home organizing and trying new things. The Town is a buzz sharing things and offering items up to their community! Looking to test drive a Cello? Ready to give away a chair/weights/books/mugs/etc...There are numerous ways to offer up, and receive, gently used home furnishings, puzzles and even clothing right here in Wellesley!
For residents on Facebook, there are groups dedicated to getting people to reuse! Wellesley Give & Take, Greater Boston Suburbs Give and Take and Buy Nothing Wellesley, allow adults in the area to offer or request certain gifts and services. The goal is for residents to share the resources they have to minimize additional purchases. If you have an item you do not use anymore, you can post it in the group. In addition, if there is something you need, you can post a request for that item.
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, each person generates almost 5 pounds of waste each day which ultimately ends up in landfills. By sharing resources with the community, you are not only minimizing your waste, but also your neighbors’.
For those not on Facebook, you still have options! Try the online website The Freecycle Network, which is similar to the Facebook groups. At Freecycle, residents can page through items for offer, or post your own. There are a myriad of items either available or wanted on the website including student desks, car seats, ribbon, sleds, and much more.
If you still haven't found the right place to offer items you are ready to pass on, try the Wellesley Recycling and Disposal Facility (RDF) allows residents to leave items at the reusable area from April to November. The Reusables Area, also called Take-it-or-Leave-It, is a swap section run by the Friends of Recycling Volunteers (FOR), a community based nonprofit organization made up of Wellesley residents dedicated to helping the Town’s recycling program. Check out the RDF web site for details about hours and protocols. The RDF also offers residents a place to bring- and take- books and certain health care items such as crutches, wheel chairs, canes.
Reusing items is great for the environment and can save you money!
Thanks to Kate Lapierre for contributing to this story!
We received a lot of positive feedback on David Green’s Zero Carbon Home presentation which you can watch here. He used clear language - although we detected an accent (jk) - to inspire and entertain us.
His story is like many of ours.
David decided he wanted to cut his carbon footprint.
He had no idea how to do it.
He looked for books on the topic, but nothing was that clear so he figured out how to do it himself and is now sharing that information with us.
Good news is that he lives in Dover so there is no tropical magic happening.
What did happen is that he:
Check out his website for all of the insider tips.
Thank you David!
Got Problems with Invasive Shrubs?
Cricket Vlass, Wellesley Town Horticulturist and Landscape Planner, will share ways to identify, remove, and replace them on Tuesday, February 23 from 7-8PM via Zoom.
Register in advance here for this virtual educational event:
Invasive plants are not only a threat to conservation lands, they also pose a threat in your yard. In this 1-hr Wellesley Conservation Land Trust webinar learn:
This free event is part of the Wellesley Conservation Land Trust Educational Series and co-sponsored by the Wellesley Free Library, Natural Resources Commission and Sustainable Wellesley.
Sustainable Living Wellesley Facebook page was all a flutter as the new year began. It all started with Courtney’s simple question about what others are doing for sustainable swaps in their homes.
This is such a great question as we all aim to ditch the bad habits from last year and aim for new ones that go easier on the planet (and our wallets)!
A key factor in finding sustainable items is getting items that can be reused numerous times rather than once.
Let's start in the kitchen:
Moving on to the laundry room:
Closet. Yup, we said it. Your closet!:
We loved the communal idea generation on a topic near and dear to all of us. These items may seem small individually, but at large can make a difference.
These were just a few ideas shared in that chat. For more ideas, join Sustainable Living Wellesley Group on Facebook!
Thanks to Kate Lapierre for contributing to this story!
On Thursday, January 14, 7:30pm join a community discussion about housing in Wellesley with:
Jennifer has served local, regional, state, and national housing, community development, and planning organizations and she recently became a Climate Reality Leader with the Climate Reality Project.
The discuss will center around how Wellesley’s zoning created our desirable community, but also contributes to Wellesley’s increasing lack of affordability. How can we ensure that Wellesley’s housing supports our values? What action steps can we take to allow a greater diversity of people to call Wellesley their home?
To register for free Zoom event, please click here.
This event is presented by the League of Women Voters of Wellesley, and the Wellesley Free Library and sponsored by many organizations, including Sustainable Wellesley.
25-30 million real trees are brought into people's homes for the holidays in the United States alone, according to the National Christmas Tree Association. Don't let yours be one that ends up in a landfill where it decomposes to create harmful “landfill gas;” a mixture of methane and carbon dioxide.
Recycle them instead, and give them back to the environment!
Bringing our trees to the Wellesley Recycling and Disposal Facility’s (RDF aka “Dump”) compost area, ensures that they find their way back into the soil. The RDF actually encourages it, asking we just make sure to remove all tree decorations – including ornaments, tinsel and garlands – and the stand, or anything else that may be attached to the tree.
In addition, Wellesley’s Natural Resources Commission reminds residents to dispose of holiday greenery responsibly. Dumping them in parks and conservation areas might seem like returning nature to nature, but it’s actually illegal.
As environmentally conscious townspeople and educated consumers, it is our responsibility to know where and how our tree is being properly disposed of. If taking a trip to the RDF is not in your future, time is not in your favor, or if roof scratching, messy tree needles aren’t your thing, let some WHS graduates take your tree to the dump for you for a nominal fee.
Start your “no pollution” New Year's resolution by getting your tree to the RDF to return to the earth.
This holiday season there are many ways you can do your part for the planet including shopping local and buying pre-loved items.
Some Wellesley options include:
There are up-cycled items in and around town too. Please share with us your favorite, "kinder to the planet" gifts so we can let others know too.
Here are some beautiful, pre-loved inspiring gift wraps too.
Join Newton students on Sunday, December 6 from 4-5pm for a pre-holiday Zoom discussion about ways to have a sustainable holiday season. The program will include gift ideas, trivia questions and easy steps to make an environmental difference. Please register in advance for this webinar.
Presentation topics include: