Climate Resiliency Committee
Agendas & Minutes
Agendas are available prior to the meetings. Minutes are available following approval.
View Most Recent Agendas and Minutes
|Mike Johnson, Chair
|Dylan Lewellyn, Electric Light Department
|Carolyn Britt, Vice Chair, Planning Board Representative
|Rebecca Love, Resident
|Michele Hunton, Environmental Law
|Carl Nylen, Select Board Member
|James Donovan, Resident
|Frank Ventimiglia, Public Works Representative
|Ken Swenson, Finance Committee Representative
|Christopher Rais, Facilities Representative
|Rick Mitchell, Climate Resiliency Manager
|Kate Eliot, School Committee
About the Committee
The Climate Resiliency Committee’s purpose is to facilitate measurable progress on conservation and efficiency with the purpose of reducing of greenhouse gas emissions. This committee is charged to identify and promote opportunities for strategic coordination and collaboration among town departments, schools, voluntary committees, local businesses, civic and business associations, nonprofit organizations and residents.
The Ipswich Climate Resiliency Committee was formally created in 2018. The mission of the Committee is to make progress as a Town on climate adaptation and the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. The Committee focuses on increasing awareness and educating the community on resilient and sustainable actions.
In addition to promoting opportunities for strategic coordination and collaboration among town departments, schools, committees, and boards, the Committee works to promote and identify practical tools for local businesses, business associations, nonprofit organizations, and residents to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to climate change impacts. Subcommittees were created to address education and outreach through the Communications Subcommittee, and to develop solar strategies for the Town through the Solar Subcommittee.
Green Communities Program
The initial efforts of the Climate Resiliency Committee were to shepherd the Town through the Green Communities application process, which was completed in February 2020, when the Commonwealth of Massachusetts accepted the Town into the Green Communities Program.
The Massachusetts Green Communities Act (GCA) of 2008 revolutionized the energy efficiency market in Massachusetts. Among other things, the GCA charged the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER) with developing a Green Communities Program to assist municipalities to meet five energy related criteria:
3) development of an Energy Reduction Plan to reduce municipal energy consumption by 20% in five years
The Energy Reduction Plan was adopted by the Select Board and the School Committee in late 2019. The Plan identifies energy-saving measures to reduce usage and meet the goal of a 20% reduction over five years.
Some of the proposed projects in the Energy Reduction Plan include upgrades to school facilities, energy management systems, air sealing and insulation, and the installation of LED lighting. The Town received an initial grant of $149,200 from the DOER to accomplish its year-one projects that will lessen its carbon footprint and improve energy efficiency. These funds will be used for clean energy projects in municipal buildings such as the schools, Town Hall, and the library. In future years, the Town may apply for grants of up to $250,000 per year to help pay for other conservation measures identified in its Energy Reduction Plan. In future years, this page will report on grants received over time, their uses, and the projected impact on costs and greenhouse gas emissions.
Learn more here:
Ipswich Municipal Government Resolution for Zero Carbon Energy by 2040
In 2020, the Committee turned its focus into creating a Municipal Zero Carbon Resolution, which has since been adopted by the Select Board, the School Committee, and the Finance Committee. The Committee continues to work on the implementation of the Resolution within Town government.
In the Resolution, the Ipswich Select Board, School Department and School Committee commits the municipal government to achieving a Zero Carbon Energy goal of no later than 2040, with the following interim goals: 25% by 2025, 50% by 2030, and 75% by 2035. The Town further commits in the Resolution to support all Ipswich community members and local businesses in efforts to increase energy efficiency and conservation and the use of renewable energy.
The Climate Resiliency Committee, in conjunction with the Ipswich Police Department and the Ipswich Schools Green Team have been working on ongoing efforts to address unnecessary and extended idling of vehicles at the schools and the community as a whole, such as at the train station, and business and public parking lots in Ipswich.
Take Action on Climate Change
- Town recycling and compost programs.
- Ipswich Electric Light Department Rebates and Incentives:
- Home energy efficiency assessment: All Ipswich residents are eligible for a free home energy efficiency assessment to help save energy and money! Rebates are available for targeted efficiency measures after completion of home energy audit.
- ENERGY STAR appliances: Rebates ranging from $30 - $500 are available for a variety of energy efficient equipment such as air purifiers, heat pump water heaters, wi-fi thermostats, and more.
- Solar: Information on installation of solar panels in Ipswich.
- Electric vehicles: Resources about discounts available from local dealerships.
- Connected homes – smart devices: Leverages the technology of smart appliances and devices into cost savings on electricity prices.
- Learn more here.
- Ipswich GreenTeams