‘Looking into the future’: Irondequoit recognized for ‘climate smart’ attitude

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IRONDEQUOIT, N.Y. — The Town of Irondequoit has met some green goals over the past few years. So many, in fact, that New York State has labeled them a Bronze Certified Climate Smart Community (CSC).

The CSC program is a state-wide initiative that encourages communities to help fight climate change and make environmentally-friendly policies. Once a community is deemed Climate Smart, they get access to various funding opportunities for current and future projects.

Irondequoit has been a Tree City USA community for a few years. Town Supervisor Rory Fitzpatrick says that their maintenance of the town’s gorgeous tree-lined streets – and employment of a town arborist — helped them to reach Bronze Status.

The state rewards more than just tree-hugging. They also work to keep transportation green. In Irondequoit, that means an increase in electric charging stations, and additional bike paths.

Fitzpatrick said the town was already a great place to be a pedestrian or cyclist — you can get anywhere in town without having to leave a sidewalk.

Even having a farmer’s market is rewarded for supporting a “green innovation economy.”

One of the town’s bigger programs was one that Fitzpatrick said saves taxpayers money. Irondequoit finished their energy audit of local government buildings. Sealing a few cracks, installing some led lights, and putting up solar panels will decrease their energy costs by about 8%.

“We’re looking into the future. We want our kids to have a positive environment in the future,” Fitzpatrick said. “It’s also a savings to our residents. So, it’s multifaceted. So I think it’s beneficial whether you’re a green person or not a green person what the town is doing right now will benefit all residents.”

Other bronze certified communities include Brighton, Pittsford, Henrietta, and Monroe County. To learn more about the CSC program, click here.