Gaithersburg, MD Signs Climate Protection Agreement
Status: Adopted on 10/12/06
With support from the Gaithersburg Environmental Affairs Committee, the Gaithersburg Mayor and City Council approved a resolution to join 307 other cities nationwide, representing over 50 million Americans, in signing the U.S. Mayors' Climate Protection Agreement. The actual signing will took place at a press conference on Thursday, October 12, 2006 at the Youth Center at Robertson Park, 801 Rabbitt Road in Gaithersburg.
“We see this as an important opportunity for Gaithersburg to become a leader in climate protection,” said Mayor Sidney Katz. “In addition to our initiatives, we encourage all citizens to take steps to reduce climate change pollution. Even small steps can save money and help the environment.”
During the presentation, the Sierra Club celebrated Gaithersburg's commitment to reduce the City's global warming pollution. “We commend Mayor Katz and the Gaithersburg City Council for committing, through the U.S. Mayors’ Climate Protection Agreement, to work aggressively to reduce Gaithersburg’s carbon emissions,” said Betsy Johnson, Chair of the Maryland Chapter of the Sierra Club. “The Sierra Club’s Cool Cities campaign volunteers pledge to work closely with the City to help it realize the goals implicit in the agreement.”
The Mayors’ Climate Protection Agreement is an initiative spearheaded by Seattle Mayor Gregory Nickels that was unanimously endorsed by the U.S. Conference of Mayors in June, 2005. It encourages state and local governments to take actions to reduce greenhouse emissions.
By signing this commitment, Gaithersburg pledges to think globally and act locally by striving to meet or exceed Kyoto Protocol targets for reducing global warming pollution and urging Congress to pass climate protection legislation.
Initiatives already in place in Gaithersburg include the opening of Gaithersburg’s first green building, the Youth Center at Robertson Park, with features that include a geothermal heating and cooling system, ENERGY STAR windows, and insulation made from recycled denim. The City also promotes the use of wind energy, its urban forestry program has earned it a Tree City USA designation for 17 consecutive years, and the City’s equipment fleet recently began using B20 biodiesel fuel.
The City will also examine other projects aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions, including conducting a greenhouse gas emissions inventory, implementing energy efficiency improvements in new and existing City operations and buildings, greening the City’s vehicle fleet by incorporating more hybrids, and pursuing clean alternative energy.