A community initiative to Adapt to and reduce our contributions to climate change
The Philipstown Climate Smart Task Force is a volunteer steering committee to the Town Board, whose mission is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and prepare for the impacts of climate change by increasing use of renewables while decreasing overall energy use; supporting development of a more sustainable local economy; educating and inspiring community members and businesses to contribute to climate solutions; and conserving our natural resources and wildlife for future generations.
About the New York State Climate Smart Communities Program
Climate Smart Communities is a certification-based program administered by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC). The purpose of the program is to provide guidance, benchmarks and funding for local communities and governments to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions while also making their cities and towns more resilient to climate change.
Task Force Members
Each of our Task Force members below has completed a biography and carbon footprint calculation using UC Berkeley’s Cool Climate Calculator that shows their household carbon footprint and their pledged or already taken mitigation actions. Details on each of the mitigation actions can be seen at the above website under the “Take Action” tab by clicking on the arrow next to a listed action (a short description opens up to further explain the action). We hope you learn something valuable from our efforts to walk the walk and are inspired to calculate your own carbon footprint and begin reducing it as well.
Roberto Muller, Cold SPring, CSC Coordinator
A Haldane and Vassar College graduate, Roberto grew up and lives on Garden St. in Cold Spring. He works for the Town of Philipstown as its Climate Smart Coordinator in addition to volunteering to help reduce the amount of greenhouse gases in our atmosphere until they drop below what is deemed to be a safe level of 350 ppm CO2-equivalent (we are currently at 407 ppm CO2-equivalent and rising). Roberto’s efforts to reduce his carbon footprint include gradually renovating his house with energy efficiency upgrades, purchasing carbon offsets for his current emissions, riding a bicycle or metro north trains instead of driving when possible, eating a plant-based diet, using fans instead of AC in the summer, purchasing 100% wind-powered electricity through an ESCO and turning down invitations from loved ones to fly here and there for this and that, unless he has no choice, of course.
Josh Garrett, Cold Spring
Josh is a communications and marketing professional with more than a decade of experience working in the fields of environmental advocacy, sustainability and renewable energy. He received his master’s degree in environmental science and policy from Columbia University in 2012 and currently works at Antenna Group, a specialty public relations and marketing firm serving clients in the clean energy, mobility and sustainability sectors. Josh’s fascination with all things energy keeps him focused on the Task Force’s efforts to reduce GHGs from transportation and home heating/cooling in Philipstown.
Erik Brown, Cold Spring
Erik Brown has been involved in ecological design and sustainability research for about 20 years. Since 2014 he has worked with Mainstay Materials, an interior finish company that helps boutique manufacturers push innovative, sustainably-minded products to the US A&D market. He also designed custom furniture projects and provided technical sales support at From the Source, a company specializing in reclaimed and responsibly harvested Indonesian furniture. Erik designs and fabricates furniture in his free time using reclaimed and recycled materials. He blogged about green issues for about 3 years and has been researching sustainable issues and processes for almost a decade. He’s also worked as a kitchen designer, and from 2002-2007 was the design director for a small non-profit called Green Ground Zero which focused on green building, urban development and ecological policy.
Pamela Doan, Cold Spring
Pamela Doan has lived in Cold Spring since 2010 and her efforts at a sustainable lifestyle and creating an ecologically valuable landscape on 9 acres of property have all been a response to climate change. Learning about how to care for the forested land, bring back native species and create habitat for birds, wildlife and pollinators led her to writing about gardening and climate change for the local paper and other publications, as well as becoming a garden coach with One Nature, an ecological design firm. She believes that personal choices matter immensely in trying to re-balance our relationship to the planet and nature. She is a Master Gardner Volunteer with Cornell Cooperative Exchange and a member of the Philipstown Garden Club.
Krystal Ford, Garrison
Krystal Ford is a writer, mother and an activist. She is a trained Climate Reality Leader, the President of Garrison Union Free Sschool PTA, a member of Citizens’ Climate Lobby, the Philipstown Garden Club, and Advisory Board member of Constitution Marsh. She has a MA from New York University in Food Studies, with a focus on sustainable agriculture.
Catherine Serreau-Thompson, Continental Village
More Task Force members to follow… :)