First Parish of Sudbury is pleased to announce that the Board of Trustees voted unanimously to support Article 58, The Climate Emergency Declaration (CED), which is scheduled to be heard at Sudbury Town Meeting in May 2022. This is a monumental move on the Board’s part, as it’s the first time in First Parish’s history that the Board has endorsed a town article.
“Think globally, act locally,” advocates Rev. Dr. Marjorie Matty. “This perspective has existed for a long time and is very valid. The 7th Unitarian Universalist Principle calls us to ‘have respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.’ We all need to take steps now, in our hometowns, to advocate for the planet and work to fight climate change. “
Leslie Lowe, a Sudbury Climate Emergency working group member shares, “The effects of climate change in Massachusetts in just the past 11 months have been intense. In May 2021 an area near the Appalachian Trail experienced the biggest wildfire in MA for 20 years. Last summer, Boston experienced extreme temperature fluctuations of 40 degrees over four days. (It was 100 degrees on June 30, 2021, which tied the hottest temperature in June on record. Then we hit a 60-degree high on July 3, 202, which tied the coldest high temperature in July on record.) In September 2021, Hurricane Ida caused a tornado and flooding on Cape Cod. Sudbury needs to prepare for high winds and microbursts of intense rain—which can knock down trees, down power lines, cause power outages, and flood our roads.”
Massachusetts passed the Next-Generation Roadmap For Massachusetts Climate Policy in March 2021, which established a clean energy and climate plan for the state. Ultimately, each community will have to create and meet the state’s goals to reduce its carbon footprint. By being proactive, we can take charge of how we implement the plan locally. Sudbury’s Select Board has prioritized sustainability and climate change action. This CED builds on Sudbury’s accomplishments as a Green Community and the Sudbury Master Plan’s focus on climate resilience and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
What can we do? The Climate Emergency Declaration tasks the town with hiring a Sustainability Director and creating an Action Plan to help businesses and residents respond to our unfolding and pervasive climate emergency. The Sustainability Director will create benefits for the town by identifying opportunities to take advantage of state and federal programs and funding, providing resources for residents and local businesses, and streamlining the efforts of diverse committees.