Climate Smart Communities Certification Report

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bronze Certified

This is the Climate Smart Communities Certification Report of Gardiner, Town (Ulster). Gardiner, Town (Ulster) is a bronze certified Climate Smart Community.

Gardiner, Town (Ulster) was certified on September 25, 2021 with 134 points earned from 20 completed actions. Listed below is information regarding Gardiner, Town (Ulster)’s Climate Smart Communities efforts and materials associated with its certified actions.

The certification for Gardiner, Town (Ulster) will expire on September 30, 2026.

Contact Information

The designated Climate Smart Communities contact for Gardiner, Town (Ulster) is:

Name:Jason Mayer
Title: Climate Smart Coordinator

Actions Implemented

Each approved action and supporting documentation for which Gardiner, Town (Ulster) was approved for in 2021 appears below. Note: Standards for the actions below may have changed and the documentation listed may no longer satisfy requirements for that action.

  • 1. Build a climate-smart community.

    PE1 Action: CSC Task Force

    20 Points
    Bronze Mandatory Silver Mandatory

    Program Summary: Since 2018, Climate Smart Gardiner Task force has met on a monthly basis and at that time, task force members update the CSC Coordinator on their project status and support needed. Attached are copies of two meetings held within the last year, an attendance sheet and an appointment letter on the task force members, which was approved by the Town Board and signed by the Town Supervisor. Our monthly meetings are attended by a member of the Town Board, who is also a member of the CSG task force. Additionally, the Task Force Coordinator briefs the Town Board on the meetings and the minutes are posted on the Town of Gardiner official website. https://www.townofgardiner.org/climate-smart-gardiner-taskforce. Please note: Since COVID, we have been meeting monthly via Zoom and therefore no attendance sheets are available. Actual attendance was recorded on the monthly minutes.

    PE1 Action: CSC Coordinator

    10 Points
    Bronze Mandatory Silver Mandatory

    Program Summary: Attached is a signed letter from the Town Supervisor showing the appointment of a CSC Coordinator and specifying his responsibilities. His appointment, as well as the adoption of the CSC pledge was approved by the Town Board in November 2018, following a presentation to the Board by Mr. Mayer. Mr. Mayer has chaired all monthly meetings of the Climate Smart Gardiner task forces as demonstrated in PE1. A copy of the January 2021 meeting attests to his continued involvement. Mr. Mayer has also ensured that the Town Board is frequently updated of CSG actions and renders an annual report, all of which are published on the Town's website @ https://www.townofgardiner.org/climate-smart-gardiner-taskforce

    PE1 Action: National/Regional Climate Program

    3 Points

    Program Summary: Climate Smart Gardiner joined the Hudson Valley Regional Council during their administration of NYSERDA Clean Energy Communities Program. This committed CSG to attend monthly meeting of the Council during which CSG was highlighted as one of the leading participants being first to complete its Government GHG inventory. Additionally, due to a CSG member being the former Fleet Manager for the City of New York's fleet, we were asked to present how to do the fleet inventory, right size the fleet and incorporate green vehicles in a city's fleet. In 2020, we joined the Clean Energy Communities Program at NYSDERDA and also ICLEI. Documentation below shows an invoice for our membership in ICLEI, as well as documents demonstrating our participation in the Clean Energy Communities Program. In June 2021, two members of the CSG will attend the ICLEI Cohort training that is being given so that we can perform a Community GHG study.

    PE1 Action: Partnerships with Other Entities

    3 Points

    Program Summary: Climate Smart Gardiner has worked with the Town of Shawangunk in establishing a Climate Smart Community. Our joint efforts began with a meeting of the Shawangunk Environmental Management Council In June 2018. The CSG Task Force Coordinator made a presentation that demonstrated the benefits of becoming a Climate Smart Community. At that meeting, the EMC voted to have the Climate Smart Gardiner Coordinator make a presentation to the Shawangunk Town Board. The documentation shows that this Town presentation was made in October 2018 by CSG Coordinator, Jason Mayer. Following this, the Town Board voted in December 2018 to become a Climate Smart Community. Mr. Mayer then made a presentation to the newly formed Shawangunk Climate Smart Task Force in January 2019. The documentation below shows a letter from the Shawangunk Task Force that minutes for this latter meeting were not taken but that Mr. Mayer did attend and presented. In April 2019, a member of the CSG attended a Shawangunk Task Force meeting and documentation is provided. Mr. Varian of the CSG presented information on the GHG inventory process.

  • 2. Inventory emissions, set goals, and plan for climate action.

    PE2 Action: Government Operations GHG Inventory

    16 Points
    Bronze Priority Silver Priority

    Program Summary: In 2019 and 2020, members of the Climate Smart Gardiner conducted a Government Greenhouse Gas Inventory. The methodology used was given to us by the Hudson Valley Regional Council's Climate Action Planning Institute (CAPI) who assisted us in gathering the needed information. The documentation below shows that the inventory was published as Excel docs and discussed as part of the town's government climate action plan. The Excel docs containing the GHG data are posted on the Town of Gardiner website: https://www.townofgardiner.org/climate-smart-gardiner-taskforce The GHG study was presented to the Town Board and was accepted by the Board on April 14, 2020. Two members of Climate Smart Gardiner are working continuously on updating data from 2019 and 2020 records and comparing them to the information obtained from the Fleet Inventory shown in PE3.

    PE2 Action: Government Operations Climate Action Plan

    12 Points
    Bronze Priority Silver Priority

    Program Summary: The attached Town of Gardiner Government Operations Climate Action Plan was adopted by the Town Board on April 14, 2020. Prior to that meeting, the Board members were afforded an opportunity to review the plan and several board members proposed changes that were incorporated into the plan. The minutes of the Board documenting the adoption of the plan are also attached. Climate Smart Gardiner requested that the Town Supervisor include the plan on the town website and send out a Town Blast publicizing the plan's availability to all Town residents. Documentation is on the Town of Gardiner's website that shows that the Plan was adopted. See https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5bd1e899da50d36cfc91e963/t/5ebec986a029576f8e0963e9/1589561736149/4+14+2020+regular.pdf. The plan can be found @ https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5bd1e899da50d36cfc91e963/t/5ea706a61fdccb23b6f5a8d8/1588004524088/Town+of+Gardiner+Climate+Action+Plan+2019+Final.pdf

  • 3. Decrease energy use.

    PE3 Action: Fleet Inventory

    4 Points

    Program Summary: A comprehensive fleet Inventory was done in November 2018 and was updated in January 2020 and January 2021. Copy of the inventories and the agreed upon procedure for updating the inventory are attached. Currently, Climate Smart Gardiner has recorded all vehicle fueling transactions through April 2021. A copy of the 2021 fleet inventory is published on the Town of Gardiner website: https://www.townofgardiner.org/climate-smart-gardiner-taskforce

    PE3 Action: LED Street Lights

    8 Points

    Program Summary: The Town of Gardiner has recently completed its audit of street lamps. We have photographed and documented the existence of 74 lamps and have certified that 24 of them are LED. We have also completed the CSC High Impact Item as over 50% of the cobraheads are LED. We have additionally documented to Central Hudson those bulbs that are inoperative and asked that they install replacement LED bulbs of a specified wattage. We have asked for a rectification of billing. On March 2, 2021, Climate Smart Gardiner presented our finding to the Town of Gardiner Board and asked for their cooperation in getting Central Hudson to reimburse the Town for inoperative lights and to replace them with LED lamps to our wattage specifications. On March 10, 2021, Climate Smart Gardiner was advised that we were awarded 700 points for completion of the high impact item on the CSC scorecard.

  • 4. Shift to clean, renewable energy.

    PE4 Action: Renewable Energy Feasibility Studies

    3 Points

    Program Summary: The Town of Gardiner's Solar Feasibility Study was conducted in May 2017 by the US EPA for a solar array on our town landfill. The Town of Gardiner's Local Solar Law was also enacted in 2017. Climate Smart Gardiner is actively pursuing a Community Solar installation on our landfill as part of our CCA. CSG members are actively working on a RFP and have already met with a number of potential contractors to map out the anticipated capacity and acreage requirements.

    PE4 Action: Heat Pumps

    9 Points

    Program Summary: The Town of Gardiner pioneered the use of Geothermal technology, installing a Geothermal heat pump in Town Hall in 2004. The pump was installed by Peter Kluge from DJ Heating & Air Conditioning. Peter Kluge received training and a certificate for installing GSHPs and documentation of this training is attached. Additionally, other staff at DJ Heating & Air Conditioning received training and certificates for installing GSHPs, and these training certificates are also attached, providing significant evidence that DJ Heating & Air Conditioning is a qualified installer of Geothermal heat pumps. Additional information about DJ Heating & Air Conditioning can be found at: https://www.dnb.com/business-directory/company-profiles.d_j_heating__air_conditioning_inc.7f254dbb72261743e02c4f6df1d09de8.html The attached documentation shows the components that were installed, the cost savings to date, e-blast press release sent to Gardiner residents from Supervisor Majestic, photos of the currently active GSHP at the Gardiner Town Hall, and the poster that is displayed in the Gardiner Town Hall to publicize the benefits of Geothermal heat pumps. The details and educational poster regarding the Heat Pump are also on the Town of Gardiner web site @ https://www.townofgardiner.org/climate-smart-gardiner-taskforce

  • 5. Use climate-smart materials management.

    PE5 Action: Recycling Program for Public Places & Events

    3 Points

    Program Summary: The Town of Gardiner has obtained and placed recycling bins in Majestic Park, where major outdoor events are held, as well as day camps, outdoor roller blading and other recreational activities. During the camp season, recyclables are picked up twice a week. In the Spring and Fall once a week and in Winter it's about every 2 weeks. In total, we have five recycling bins. They are located by the playground, baseball fields, skatepark and pavilion. We have a fifth recycling bin that we save for special events. We also put them out at Gardiner Day. A volunteer, Sharyn Fogelman, is picking up the bottles to redeem them for money that goes into a kindness scholarship fund for students. From her calculations in the 3 years she has done this she has collected 2,697 bottles and made $134.85. With that money she bought Amazon gift cards for Family of New Paltz and, at holiday time, bought warm clothes for the kids at the Pine Ridge Reservation and bought diapers and wipes for the Grace Washburn domestic violence center. The recyclables collected are deposit bottles and cans. The bins are chained with locks to either posts or walls of buildings. See picture of Sharyn with a bin and chain in the uploads. On Gardiner Day 2018 (Sept. 8, 2019) and 2019 (Sept. 7, 2019) and at our Go Green Expo of 2019 (March 16, 2019), we brought these recyclable cans to where they were most needed and posted signs as shown in the uploaded documentation. All recycled items were brought to the Town Recycling Center. For Gardiner Day 2019 we placed recycling frames for bottle deposits by Town Hall and Station Square. We borrowed recycling frames from the Ulster County Fairgrounds and the town purchased clear plastic bags for us to use in them. The Gardiner Day Committee and Climate Smart Gardiner volunteers collected the bags of deposit bottles and gave The Girl Scouts these bags of bottles and cans as a fundraiser for them

    PE5 Action: Community Repair

    4 Points

    Program Summary: The motto of Repair Cafe in the Hudson Valley has always been, “Bring a beloved but broken item to be repaired by experts who are also your neighbors.” Gardiner Repair Cafe embodies this motto. The group has been active in Gardiner since 2015. We bring together volunteer repair coaches and community members to repair treasured objects, and also to build community. At every event, held 4-6 times/year, there are a variety of coaches who are skilled in woodworking, sewing, jewelry repair, electronics, mechanics and even massage. There are currently approximately 20 volunteer repair coaches. In addition to providing free consultations and repair services (the only fee is to cover the cost of replacement parts), Repair Cafe also has refreshments available and an opportunity for community members to get to know each other in a relaxed, friendly setting. The events are hosted by the Gardiner Library which provides the space at no charge. The Gardiner Library also advertises the events on its website and through emails. News of the Cafes is also spread through social media through Climate Smart Gardiner's Facebook page, created and maintained by the Climate Smart Gardiner Taskforce, a municipal taskforce. Although Repair Cafe events have had to be suspended due to COVID, the town and library are committed to resuming events as soon as possible and are currently exploring holding an outdoor event in Summer, 2021. In the documentation attached for three Gardiner Repair Cafes, 6/30/19, 11/24/19, and 2/23/20, held at the Gardiner Library from 1PM-4PM, there are redacted attendance sheets, items brought in for repair, selected "fixed it" photos, advertising posters, and publicity through the Gardiner Library Newsletter and through Climate Smart Gardiner's Facebook page. Our Climate Smart Gardiner Facebook Page also contains additional photos and publicity for additional Gardiner Repair Cafes at https://www.facebook.com/climatesmartgardiner.

  • 6. Implement climate-smart land use.

    PE6 Action: Alternative-fuel Infrastructure

    6 Points
    Bronze Priority Silver Priority

    Program Summary: Climate Smart Gardiner has installed an EV charging station and its use is free to the public. The station was installed officially on July 5, 2020 at an event attended by NYS Senator Jen Metzger, Ulster County Legislator Tracey Bartels and Marybeth Majestic, Town of Gardiner Supervisor. The site is open to the public from 5 a.m. to 12 a.m., is located in the Gardiner Library parking lot, and as shown below is owned by the Town of Gardiner. Electrical usage is being paid via local businesses and concerned members of Climate Smart Gardiner. Documentation below shows a vehicle being charged at the station as of May 27, 2021 and it is currently active. Addition information and publicity is available from CSG upon request.

    PE6 Action: Natural Resources Inventory

    10 Points
    Bronze Priority Silver Priority

    Program Summary: The Gardiner Town Board passed a resolution in favor of creating a Natural Resources Inventory (NRI) in January 2020. The Environmental Conservation Commission and Open Space Commission, in conjunction with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, have established an NRI working group. A Natural Resources Inventory will describe the Town of Gardiner’s fresh water, parks, natural habitats and scenic spaces that are essential to ensure continued prosperity, quality of life and responsible growth for our Town. The Town of Gardiner NRI Project is now completed and has been adopted by the Town Board in February 2021. It contains a series of maps and a report with narrative descriptions, supporting data tables, and recommendations. All available data and reports have been reviewed and a number of public hearings were held to educate the public. The inventory will serve as an essential tool for the Town in officially identifying sensitive land, water and habitat resources. A copy of the NRI maps drawn is available at https://www.townofgardiner.org/natural-resources-inventory. Each of the map presented therein are in conformance with the requirements of the PE. A copy of the NRI report is attached.

  • 7. Enhance community resilience to climate change.

    PE7 Action: Evaluate Policies for Climate Resilience

    6 Points
    Bronze Priority Silver Priority

    Program Summary: In conjunction with Climate Smart Gardiner, Melinda Herzog and Brent Gotsch, Healthy Communities Program Leaders from Cornell University completed the Climate Smart Resiliency Tool and the Recommendations for Resiliency in Planning. She made a presentation to the Town of Gardiner Board on May 5, 2021 which the Board adopted. The tool and the recommendations for improvement in the Town's plans for dealing with emergencies arising from climate change will be posted on the Town of Gardiner website.

    PE7 Action: Riparian Buffers

    4 Points

    Program Summary: Climate Smart Gardiner (CSG) has been actively involved in the Tree For Tribs program. In 2019, CSG volunteers planted a site near the Gardiner Library where an extensive amount of dirt could potentially block a tributary and flood the main hamlet. In 2021, CSG coordinated with the DEC and identified a floodplain adjacent to the Wallkill River. We planted 300 trees and scrubs and had extensive volunteer help in preparation work and actual installation. The planting area is 38,400 square feet. It is 120 feet wide, and 320 feet long. The documentation attached shows the Riparian Assessment, the installation of the trees and scrubs and the maintenance plan for upkeep.

  • 9. Inform and inspire the public.

    PE9 Action: Climate-related Public Events

    3 Points

    Program Summary: Climate Smart Gardiner (CSG) sponsors several community events each year to increase community awareness and action in fighting climate change. In collaboration with the Town of Gardiner Library and Climate Smart Gardiner, Andrea Frank, an Associate Professor from SUNY New Paltz, held an interactive En-ROADS Climate Action Workshop via Zoom on October 19, 2020, from 7PM-8:30PM, on options to reduce GHG emissions by pursuing different initiatives. During the session, participants proposed climate solutions such as energy efficiency, carbon pricing, fossil fuel taxes, reducing deforestation, or carbon dioxide removal. The facilitator then tested these approaches in the cutting-edge and science-based En-ROADS Climate Solutions Simulator, so participants could see the impact on global temperature, sea level rise, and other factors. The resulting experience was hopeful, scientifically-grounded, action-oriented, and eye-opening. This presentation was attended by 9 people. Ms. Frank was invited to give this workshop by the Climate Smart Gardiner (CSG) Taskforce, a municipal entity, who publicized the event on their Facebook page and listserve. She also presented this workshop to members of the Climate Smart Gardiner Taskforce as a test run for the program on 7/13/20, from 7-9PM. A representative from the Gardiner Library created the Zoom room, sent e-blasts for publicity and included the event in the library newsletter. This library representative acted as the official host of the event. See attached for presentation and publicity documentation. We have also posted the notice of the annual Wallkill Riverkeeper Sweep. The Gardiner section of the Sweep was coordinated by Rebecca Carucci, a Climate Smart Gardiner Taskforce member, in both 2020 and 2021. CSG enlisted the community to clean up this river and recycle some of the trash in various locations in Gardiner. The results of our October 17, 2020, 9AM-12PM, Sweep were covered in the Wallkill Times. See https://www.recordonline.com/story/news/2020/10/19/river-sweep-cleanup-targets-sites-along-wallkill-river-gardiner/3658361001/. We again repeated this event on May 1, 2021 (9AM-12PM) and the documentation is attached below. This event was supported by the Gardiner Highway Department, which brought the trash and recycling to the Town Recycling Center. It was also publicized by the Climate Smart Gardiner Taskforce, a municipal entity, on social media. The event had 62 volunteers. We also held a community event on Arbor Day on April 24th, 2021, from 10-11AM, where we planted trees in the town's Majestic Park in Gardiner. This event was coordinated by Kimberly Mayer, a Climate Smart Gardiner Taskforce member. About 100 people attended. It was discussed how climate change should be considered when choosing trees in a changing climate. This event was held in conjunction with the NYS Urban Forestry and was attended by the Town Supervisor and Councilman Franco Carucci (a member of CSG). Supervisor Majestic signed and announced a proclamation citing April 24 as Gardiner Arbor Day. It was also publicized by the Climate Smart Gardiner Taskforce, a municipal entity, on social media. See https://nysufc.org/town-of-gardiner-residents-create-a-joyful-arbor-day/2021/05/18/ and http://timeshudsonvalley.com/stories/gardiner-celebrates-arbor-day,26596 and https://hudsonvalleyone.com/2021/04/29/gardiner-holds-first-ever-arbor-day-celebration/ for more details.

    PE9 Action: Local Climate Action Website

    3 Points

    Program Summary: We have implemented our Climate Smart Gardiner website on the official Town of Gardiner website: https://www.townofgardiner.org/climate-smart-gardiner-taskforce. On the Climate Smart Gardiner Taskforce tab, there is a description of our goals and projects related to local climate change mitigation and adaptation, including links to our GHG inventory reports, climate action plan, monthly minutes and annual progress reports made toward achieving GHG targets and other goals. There are ways that residents and businesses in the community can participate in efforts led by the local government to reduce GHG emissions and build community resiliency to climate change, including links to get involved and learn. There is a summary of actions that residents and businesses in the community can take to reduce their GHG emissions, including links to external resources that provide more information and describe the support available for actions related to energy efficiency, renewable energy, and clean transportation options, such as electric vehicles. In the past year, we have made many additions and completed ongoing maintenance for our website. We have included the summary of ways the public can be more "climate smart," added the 2021 Fleet Inventory, and the 2020 Annual Summary. The ZOOM Meeting schedule is updated monthly, as is the monthly CSG progress report and monthly CSG Taskforce meeting minutes. Our CSG Taskforce membership has also changed in the past year, so that has been updated as well.

    PE9 Action: Social Media

    3 Points

    Program Summary: The Town of Gardiner's Climate Smart Gardiner (CSG) Taskforce, a municipal taskforce, has established a Facebook Page. The CSG publishes flyers for events that are open to the public, as well as pictures and text of past events and accomplishments. We describe ways for the community to get involved in all types of local green projects and educational events. Our content is continuously updated with information about Community Choice Aggregation, LED Conversion, Trees for Tribs Projects, Arbor Day, and many other opportunities for the public to learn and get involved in becoming more climate smart. The page is available at https://www.facebook.com/climatesmartgardiner

  • 10. Engage in an evolving process of climate action.

    PE10 Action: Annual Progress Report

    4 Points

    Program Summary: Climate Smart Gardiner (CSG) produced an annual report for the public and Gardiner Town Board for 2020. It was published on the Gardiner Town website on the Climate Smart Gardiner tab: https://www.townofgardiner.org/climate-smart-gardiner-taskforce. CSG provided the Town government and the Gardiner community a complete progress report on priority actions to date, progress on implementation of the local climate action plan, and goals for the future.