Signs of Sustainability

We have a long way to go, but we're making progress. Here are some signs that we are moving towards sustainability.

August 22, 2016

Natural Gas Pipelines Versus Renewable Energy

Tompkins Weekly    8-22-16

By Marie McRae

In Tompkins County, the legislature has adopted goals for reduced energy use and carbon pollution reduction that involve a “transition away from natural gas”. Achieving the goals rests on a cut in greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent (from 2008 levels) by 2050.

In our region, as well as in many other areas of the country, new infrastructure designed to carry methane (a.k.a. “natural” gas) is one of the most insidious forms of resistance to that transition. For example, one relatively small pipeline proposed for Dryden has the potential to increase carbon emissions in the county by a volume equal to 30 percent of current levels.

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August 15, 2016

Ithaca Establishes First 2030 District in New York

Tompkins Weekly       8-15-16

By Peter Bardaglio

Earlier this summer, 17 local building owners, community partners, and professional stakeholders came together to launch the Ithaca 2030 District. In doing so, Ithaca joined the ranks of 12 other forward-thinking cities in the United States and Canada that are working toward the goal of cleaner and greener commercial buildings.

2030 Districts, initiated by the non-profit research organization Architecture 2030, are unique private and public partnerships bringing together property owners and managers to meet the energy and resource reduction targets of the 2030 Challenge for Planning. Through collaboration, leveraged financing, and shared resources, they benchmark, develop and implement creative strategies, and establish best practices and verification methods for measuring progress towards a common goal.
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August 8, 2016

CommonBound Conference Inspires Thinking

Tompkins Weekly         8-8-16

By Maribeth Rubenstein

There is a thought that has been in my head for the last month or so from Movement Generation’s Strategy Framework for a Just Transition – “If it’s the right thing to do, we have every right to do it.” Once I heard the words, the idea seemed obvious, yet I had never really thought of systems change in that way before. Where did I hear this idea that has been resonating so deeply with me? At the CommonBound conference in Buffalo.

From July 8-10, the Board of the Green Resource Hub of the Finger Lakes (the HUB) attended CommonBound where we de-colonized our minds and considered a world that puts people and the planet in the center. Here’s a spoiler: it’s a pretty great world. But what is CommonBound (
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