Branford is considering forming a committee and joining a consortium of towns statewide to help build a sustainable future.
First Selectman Jamie Cosgrove discussed the Sustainable CT program at Wednesday’s Board of Selectmen (BOS) meeting. The program enables towns to work together to achieve sustainability goals and qualify for grant funding.
Cosgrove is discussing placing a referendum item on the agenda for this week’s Representative Town Meeting (RTM), which will be held Wednesday at 8 p.m. at Fire Headquarters. The first steps are to pass a resolution and create a sustainable advisory committee.
Cosgrove said this is a way to “truly achieve community sustainability.” He suggests appointing a committee of five people to serve as advisors. “Then we can really concentrate on sustainability.”
Cosgrove said he was approached about the idea by local environmentalist Bill Horne, and Shirley McCarthy, chair of the Community Forest Commission. (See top photo).
Horne said sustainability and resiliency are key points that are being addressed in the Plan of Conservation and Development (POCD). Horne is a member of the POCD Steering Committee.
Sustainable CT History
Sustainable CT includes a wide variety of goals which include promoting the economy, protecting the environment, developing agricultural friendly practices, promoting clean and diverse transportation choices, increasing the use of renewable energy for municipal buildings, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Towns may choose which initiatives are important to them and qualify for certification.
Sustainable CT was created by a group of about 200 people with representative from all 169 cities and towns, including local governments, non-profits, state agencies, businesses, universities, and representatives of all 169 cities and towns. The goal is to build local economies, promote health and well-being, and protect the natural environment.
About 48 towns and cities have already joined, including Madison, Clinton, New Haven and North Haven.
Sustainable CT is an independently funded, grassroots, municipal effort that was launched in November 2017. It is administered by the Institute for Sustainable Energy at Eastern Connecticut State University, and is in partnership with the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities.
Their mission statement is: “To provide municipalities with a menu of coordinated, voluntary actions, to continually become more sustainable; to provide resources and tools to assist municipalities in implementing sustainability actions and advancing their programs for the benefit of all residents; and to certify and recognize municipalities for their ongoing sustainability achievements.”
For more information see the website as Sustainable CT.