Climate & Environment Committee

Mission Statement

The mission of the Climate and Environment Committee is to inspire and facilitate energy conservation and environmental stewardship by the Town and its residents through education, government policies, and incentives.

The Climate & Environment (C&E) committee is establishing a C&E Advisory Group that will provide occasional email feedback on committee initiatives. Whether you have a wealth of expertise in sustainability or just an interest in making the Town greener, we would love to work with you on activities that mean the most to you! If you are interested in volunteering, please fill out the form below or email TOCCFriendsofHealthyClimate@Gmail.com

Volunteer Form

2020 Committee Priorities Survey

Please fill out this survey so we can get your input on what the 2020 priorities should be for the Climate & Environment Committee. Also, mark your calendars as survey results will be provided during a committee meeting on Tuesday, January 7 at 7 p.m. in the Town Hall.

Shades of Green Resource Pages

We’ve done lots of the legwork for you! Shades of Green helps you assess your daily decisions from how you travel, to what you eat or buy, to how you fix up your house or tend your yards. Become more aware of the environmental impacts of those decisions and choose greener options.

Members

  • Kirk Renaud, Council Liaison
  • Irene Lane, Chair
  • Sheila Blum
  • Daniel Clohossey
  • Julia Craighill
  • Matilde Farren
  • Christina Files 
  • Bridget Hartman
  • Betsy Johnson
  • Ronni Jolles
  • Sally Kelly
  • Simma Kupchan
  • Jessica Langerman
  • Kirsty Little
  • Paul Magnusson
  • Thornton Matheson
  • Steve Seidel
  • Stu Sessions
  • Kathy Strom
  • Vicky Taplin
  • Julie Trocchio

Climate Discussion with Congressman Jamie Raskin & Jessica Langerman – October 10, 2019

The goal of the session was for attendees to discover the core ideas and challenges for how the Green New Deal addresses climate change by creating jobs while simultaneously expanding the use of clean energy. Attendees would also understand how bipartisan state and federal proposals for Carbon Pricing is a strong first step for decreasing pollution while increasing innovation.

The event had a large turnout with four speakers. Sisters Rosie and Eleanor Clemons-Cope discussed why they as middle and high school students, respectively, founded MoCo Students for Climate and why it’s important for adults to act. Jessica Langerman explained in detail about Carbon Pricing and how ClimateXChange state initiatives are moving the needle. Ms. Langerman also recognized Climate Citizens Lobby (organization that was tabling at the event) as the federal version of Carbon Pricing from which ClimateXChange was born. Rep. Jamie Raskin discussed the Green New Deal explaining how pricing fits into as it’s a foundational component that will allow the other objectives of the resolution to be achieved. You can view the handout from the event here. 

Lastly, a “What You Can Do” handout with 42 practical suggestions for decreasing climate impact stressing that individual actions were no longer enough. Another organization that tabled at the event was 350.org

You can view the presentation here

ClimateActivismPhotosOct10

CLICK FOR A FULL SESSION REPLAY

Landscaping Noise Session & Workshop – September 28, 2019

Including presentations by Dr. Jamie Banks, Executive Director of "Quiet Communities" (see the Quiet Communities Fact Sheet) and Mr. Chuck Elkins, J.D., Washington ANC3D Commissioner (see the Quiet Clean DC Powerpoint here). If you were unable to attend the informational meeting:

Lee Wick Dennison Sustainable Garden 

Initial installation of the Lee Wick Dennison Sustainable Garden at the southern end of Zimmerman Park was completed in October, 2019. The garden honors the bequest that Ms. Dennison gave to the Town for park beautification within Town. The grand opening of the garden will take place during the Spring of 2020. In the meantime, we request that care be taken to protect the fragile plantings by staying on the path. Links to all related documents are included here for quick access.


3R’s (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle) Sub-Committee

Sorting and disposing of household waste appropriately can be confusing, even for recycling enthusiasts! In addition, China’s recent waste management changes have resulted in a <1% acceptance rate of and dramatic price decreases for US recycling materials. In response, the Town of Chevy Chase’s recycling contractor, Goode Companies, has changed its policies for acceptable recycled materials. We are therefore writing to provide you with a brief refresher course in how to dispose of your household waste.

  1. Only include authorized items in your recycling. This is a visual depiction of acceptable recycled items. If an item is not included on the list, it should be either composted (see below) or disposed of in the trash.
  2. No plastic bags! This means you should neither enclose your recyclables in plastic bags nor include bags among the items to be recycled. Instead, recycle plastic bags and plastic films in the bag recycling bin in front of most grocery stores. Cut off any paper labels prior to recycling. Stuff one bag full of other bags, tie it up and pop it in!
  3. Clean all items before recycling. Dirty items, including dirty bulky items, cannot be recycled. Also, dirty items often contaminate other items and prevent their recycling as well. Washing out recyclables including plastic lids, caps, aluminum foil and pans, and metal containers, also helps keep your recycling bins clean.
  4. Separate paper and cardboard. Although we have single stream recycling, loose paper easily becomes contaminated, and small scraps get lost in the shuffle. Putting papers inside a cardboard box or paper bag helps prevent this. Ideally, shredded paper should be enclosed in a paper bag. You can recycle corrugated carboard that does not contain a wax coating, junk mail, magazines, newspapers, books, and wrapping paper.
  5. Do not include glass in your curbside recycling. Goode Companies is no longer accepting glass, which is easily broken and can harm workers and machines. The Town has a temporary solution: residents can bring their glass recycling to the Lawton Center and place the glass in one of the many containers in the rear of the center where the trash and composting is located – it is accessible from 44th street near the corner of 44th and Elm St.
  6. Sign up for free curbside composting! A wide variety of organic materials are collected every Tuesday by our composting contractor, the Compost Crew, including pizza boxes. Every household can receive one composting bucket free of charge. You can sign up for this service through the Town’s website.
  7. When in doubt, throw it out. Items not specified on either the recycling or the composting list, including cans or bottles of paint, chemicals, motor oil should be put in trash.

And remember, the best way to minimize waste is to reduce purchases, particularly of single-use plastics such as disposable cups and cutlery, and reuse items whenever possible.

Committee Goals

Committee Reports

Subcommittee Reports

Agendas & Minutes

Agendas are posted prior to each meeting. Minutes are posted upon approval at a regularly scheduled committee meeting.

Environmental Survey Results

The Climate and Environment Committee is planning to hold a meeting in September to review the results of the Town's Environmental Survey and hold a brainstorming session on the Town's environmental priorities for the next several years. The Committee will then develop recommendations to be presented to the Town Council for consideration.

Awards

  • 2010 ICLEI Local Sustainability Leaders; Climate Outreach Innovation Award Runner-Up
  • 2010 Bethesda Magazine Green Community Award