With Frederick government’s greenhouse gas emissions projected to increase by 12 percent by 2030, the city is considering a climate plan to reduce its carbon footprint.

The draft plan provides nine strategies for various city departments, which could reduce the city government’s greenhouse gas emissions by 53 percent from 2015 levels by 2030, according to the report.

The draft document was presented to the mayor and aldermen at a workshop Wednesday. The aldermen are expected to vote on the plan at a later date.

The city passed a climate emergency resolution in April 2020 that recognized the importance of addressing climate change at the local level.

In 2016, the city developed a sustainability plan to establish a more holistic approach to reducing emissions and adapt to climate change. The steps included an environmental purchasing policy, an infrastructure plan for plug-in electric vehicle charging and an electric vehicle readiness policy.

The proposed climate action plan includes government operations such as city buildings and facilities, streetlights and traffic signals, water and wastewater treatment plants, city fleet vehicles and non-fleet vehicles such as lawn mowers and construction equipment.

Purchased electricity was the largest source of emissions for the city, according to the report, producing 8,920 metric tons of carbon dioxide in 2015. Transportation was the second-largest source, and waste — whether emissions from solid waste from city operations, solid waste hauled by the city or wastewater treatment — was the third.

It’s assumed that as the city’s population grows in the coming years, its emissions will also increase, said Leslie Chinery of the consulting firm ICF, who is the project manager for the development of the plan.

The strategies include completing the city’s transition to LED streetlights, retrofitting city facilities with energy efficient upgrades, installing renewable energy options such as solar power at city facilities, purchasing renewable energy credits, electrifying the city fleet, adopting a hybrid replacement program and expanding telecommuting opportunities.

Changes to the city fleet is where the city can “move the needle the most,” Chinery said.

The plan looks at three general areas of city operations, said Angela Wong of ICF: overall planning, land management and development, and capital planning.

As the city’s comprehensive and strategic plans get updated, they need to keep the climate plan’s goals in mind to make sure they’re factored in, Wong said. For example, if the city puts in a new generator, it could be put on an elevated platform to avoid damage from flooding, she added.

Mayor Michael O’Connor said the aldermen are committed to taking steps to make the plan a reality.

It’s hard to do something like this in one big step, O’Connor said, but the plan has broken it into many little steps that city departments can take to make it easier.

Follow Ryan Marshall on Twitter:

@RMarshallFNP.

Ryan Marshall is the transportation and growth and development reporter for the News-Post. He can be reached at rmarshall@newspost.com.

(14) comments

gjthuro

anything to tax and waste and they have no shame about it....it wasn't long ago when they wanted a 24/7 Furnace to burn trash right on Rt 85 across from the shopping center, while poisoning anyone within 3 mile radius...and the Bill which they didn't tell anyone would have been $3 Billion for Frederick over its life span...and guess who signed the 5 contracts , Yees Jan and guess who finally ended this travesty ...Blaine, with the able assistance of about 30 caring citizens...DoE says that is the most expensive form of electric generation and WHO says it is the dirtiest ...but these folks who suddenly care about the environment didn't give a hang...its always all about the MONEY...the taxpayers MONEY !...and this time its no different

MD1756

If they want to be serious about climate change (and I think they should), they should promote solar, geothermal and other green technologies. In addition to promoting those technologies, all new governmental facilities should incorporate those technologies and existing facilities should be retrofitted over time. There is no reason why the rooftops of governmental buildings shouldn't have solar panels so that Frederick can generate energy from resources hitting its properties essentially everyday. Frederick county should stop fighting solar farms and should build one that supplies city/county buildings/operations. We all have a stake in this and all have responsibility for varying levels of emissions. the people and the governments should all be encouraged and/or required to reduce their adverse environmental footprint before adding to it. or governments that means no policies promoting population growth without offsets to counter the harm caused by the promoting of population growth (just think of the environmental harm 1,500 more jobs and the families that will go with those jobs created by a company (Ellume Ltd.) that is getting a $2 million loan from the state and a $400,000 tax credit from Frederick.

TomWheatley

The City Government could start with less hot air in general.

Paul Sobus

Stop all new building of developments

teadoffinfrederickcounty

The City has had a "Sustainability Manager” on board since the spring of 2014.

The Sustainability Committee was first the Green Initiatives Team, an ad hoc committee formed in 2011. (Resolution number 11-17) of community members interested in furthering the sustainability goals of the City. In 2016, the ad hoc committee became the Sustainability Committee (Resolution number 16-05).

2016 Sustainability Plan has been collecting dust on the bookshelf for the last 5 years.

The top 3 successes listed:

1. Complete Streets Policy: Complete streets are streets for everyone. They are designed

and operated to enable safe access for all users, including pedestrians, bicyclists,

motorists and transit riders of all ages and abilities.

2. Bicycle parking in new development. Depending on the type of development, there are a

minimum number of bicycle parking spots required, according to the City’s Land

Management Code Section 607.

3. Bicycle parking. Through a cooperative agreement with Downtown Frederick

Partnership, 24 bike racks have been installed in the downtown area.

And who were the elected officials identified in the 2016 plan?

Randy A. McClement, Mayor

Alderman Kelly Russell, President Pro Tem

Alderman Michael O’Connor

Alderman Phil Dacey

Alderman Josh Bokee

Alderwoman Donna Kuzemchak

Sustainability Committee which meets monthly consists of 7 citizens and Alderman Ben MacShane.

At the April meeting they aired their most recent success

Energy Video released. Available online at - https://vimeo.com/505294107/43620294e3

Now we discover the City hired - ICF International of Fairfax, Virginia to basically read their own 2016 report to them.

New thinking is severely needed at 101 North Court Street. Maybe a new logo to rebrand the city’s image? I heard that that may have already been tried, at a cost of $45K!

HappySeller2014

What a sick joke on the taxpayer's dime.

Guy T. Ashton

Never mistake “activity” for progress. If finding bicycle parking is considered progress then I guess anything is.

Awteam2021

Tea, I thought the overwhelming drive for the Complete Streets Policy: was to make city streets safer for the aging population as well as making it safer for pedestrians and biking? Bike Parking: was to allow folks that bike, to safely park their bikes while not obstructing pedestrian or car traffic.

Tea, you can’t ride a bike? It’s a great exercise, try it. But safely.

TSMGunner

"Purchasing renewable energy credits". Talk about throwing money away.

HappySeller2014

Energu from composting!

Or, bottling methane from cow farts?

Barney & Fred just say "Yabba Dabba Doooo" and get back to using just your feet to drive around?

Turn Nymeo Field into a windmill or solar farm?

An entire workshop was spent on this?

How come I never hear Washington County, MD or Adams County, PA spending valuable legislator time and resources on this stuff? Maybe because they are more focused on their internal pressing local concerns and needs? Remember, it was not too long ago we had the massive balloon release legislation saga. And I still have not seen dead ballon carcass evidence in over two decades of living here in Frederick County. Our neighboring counties and municapalties must be doing just fine, as I am not seeing any collateral balloon wastage either depositing itself locally.

marinick1

[smile][thumbup]Typical nonsense from the Left, HappySeller. Total waste of time at this "workshop."

HappySeller2014

Yeah, embarassing. And I am a Democrat. And I vote. Annoys me SO much.

Awteam2021

Maybe because of smaller populations and less growth?🤷‍♂️

jamesnee

HYDROGEN !

Welcome to the discussion.

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