Onondaga Citizens League releases study report ‘What Does It Mean To Be Green?’

The Onondaga Citizens League has released the results of its study “What Does It Mean to Be Green?”

Study co-chairs Jason Allers and David Holder will give the first public presentation of the study report at F.O.C.U.S. GREATER SYRACUSE, on Friday, Oct. 15, from 7:30-8:45 a.m., at City Hall Commons, 1st floor atrium, 201 E. Washington St.

The study focused on six areas that present both significant challenges and opportunities to help the community reduce greenhouse gas emissions, protect its natural resources and in general help maintain a high quality of life.

In recent years, governments, businesses and individuals have embraced “green” policies and practices. In addition to signaling concern over environmental degradation, the “green” movement reflects the growing price tag of current practices, including the costs of construction and maintenance of public infrastructure, and the rising and unstable cost of energy.

The OCL report found that past choices about how we grow and develop as a community have led to unsustainable trends in building new subdivisions, water infrastructure, sewers and roads, thus increasing our carbon footprint. “Becoming an environmentally-sustainable community is about more than making choices about the things we buy or the materials we use. It involves changing our assumptions about what is most important to us as individuals and as a community,” says David Holder, OCL Study Committee co-chair.

The report calls for policies that: promote density and mixed-use development; prioritize transportation policies that focus on moving people, not just cars; make the conservation and expansion of green space a main concern; demand that buildings, development sites and neighborhoods are energy efficient; and reduce the amount of waste generated.

According to Jason Allers, co-chair of the Study Committee, “Making environmentally responsible choices isn’t just good for the environment, it’s good for business, too. Green choices generate multiple benefits such as lower energy costs, higher property values and improved health, along with cleaner air and water.”

Sandra Barrett, executive vice president of the Citizens League says, “The study committee came away optimistic about the ability of Central New York to marshal the combined efforts of municipalities, schools, individuals, businesses and other organizations to make a positive impact on our environment.”

To read the report, visit http://onondagacitizensleague.org.