Adapting to a Changing Climate and Building a More Sustainable Community
Climate change knows no borders. At the local level, Hillsdale must take actions to identify and implement policies and actions to mitigate the impact of climate change on our residents, institutions and infrastructure, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Many of these strategies have an added benefit; they will save money. Hillsdale is a NYS Clean Energy Community, has taken the NYS Climate Smart Communities pledge and is pursuing many initiatives to become more environmentally sustainable and resilient.
Addressing Climate Change
A Climate Smart Community – The New York State Climate Smart Communities (CSC) Program is a network of New York communities engaged in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improving climate resilience. Municipalities become involved with the program by adopting the CSC Pledge, which includes 10 elements that lead to a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, and provide guidance on climate change adaptation. Municipalities can opt to participate in the Climate Smart Certification Program, and can access technical support and funding opportunities to reach their certification goals. The Town of Hillsdale took the CSC pledge in 2016 and is working toward bronze level certification in the program.
A Clean Energy Community - An initiative of the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), the Clean Energy Communities Program provides funding and technical support to communities that are implementing energy efficiency, renewable energy and sustainable development projects. A community must complete four out of 10 High Impact Actions that save energy and money, and contribute to lowering greenhouse gas emissions, to achieve the Clean Energy Community designation. The Town of Hillsdale completed 4 high impact items and was designated as a Clean Energy Community in 2017.
Climate Smart Resiliency Planning – a tool developed as part of the NYS Climate Smart Communities program that evaluates a community’s policies and planning documents to help identify opportunities to address vulnerabilities to flooding and other climate change related hazards. The Town of Hillsdale worked with Cornell Cooperative Extension’s Climate Resilience Partnership to conduct climate smart resilience planning in 2021-2022.