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Will Peabody Go Green?

There is a quiet campaign underway attempting to move Peabody toward an energy efficient future.

There are two campaigns taking place in Peabody these days, one quite visible and the other barely visible. But both campaigns will have a major impact on the future of our community.

The first campaign (or more accurately campaigns) will determine who leads our city come January 2012. The second and much quieter campaign is the one now being waged by GreenPeabody to help boost Peabody into the ranks of Massachusetts’ “Green Communities.”

Here is some information about the Quiet Campaign.

The Green Communities movement was initiated in Mass. upon the passage of the Green Communities Act in 2008. In a nutshell the act was passed to promote through education and financial incentives more energy-efficient practices especially by and within municipal government. Adoption of any of the provisions of the Green Communities Act is strictly voluntary and NO community is mandated to do anything it does not want to do by voting to approve certain conditions of the law.

GreenPeabody, the official Green Committee of the city of Peabody is now actively working on the application for Peabody to join the seventy-four other Massachusetts cities and towns, including many on the North Shore. GreenPeabody members are now staffing an information table at the Saturday market with information about the Green Community Campaign and we’ll have a lot more information at the International Festival.

Over the next several posts I will discuss the benefits as well as the costs associated with becoming a green community. But at the core of it all is both a vision and a concrete plan to move Massachusetts and eventually all of the cities and towns in the Commonwealth that choose to move into the 21st century economy by taking concrete steps to reduce our energy consumption and carbon emissions while simultaneously supporting the renewable energy technologies that will power this century going forward.

In short, we have a choice. Over the next few weeks I will attempt to articulate what I believe these choices are while providing as much information about the basic elements of the plan as a reader might want.

Russ Eckel,

Chairman GreenPeabody

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

PeabodyCitizen August 31, 2011 at 01:14 PM
Thank you, Mr. Croce, for your perfectly reasonable approach. We, the taxpayers of Peabody, want and deserve answers to our serious questions about how our money is spent, whether it be our local, state, or federal taxpayer money. With the recent debacle of Evergreen Solar (bankrupt & closed, after spending tens of millions of our taxpayer $$$ thrown at it by Gov. Patrick) especially fresh in our minds, we would be remiss in our duty as citizens if we did not ask about costs, efficiencies, payback, funding, oversight, reporting, and priorities. Putting labels on us and attempting to belittle our specific concerns cannot and will not discourage responsible citizens.
BC August 31, 2011 at 02:36 PM
Thank you for your comment. All I am asking is that politics be taken out of this discussion, and that we do take a reasonable approach. This shouldn't be about promoting the highly polarizing political agenda of the so-called green movement. It should be about doing what's right for Peabody. I agree with Mr. Eckel that we should be doing whatever we can to save energy costs, since ultimately that means savings for Peabody taxpayers. This is why I asked him, instead of name calling, to please make his case to me on why I should support this should I get elected to Peabody's City Council. http://www.bob4councilor.com
Susan Sturgeon September 04, 2011 at 07:49 PM
I cannot tell you how disappointed I am in some of the head in the sand attitudes I see here. And I wouldn't call Mr. Croce's characterization of us as the "so-called green movement" a lack of name calling. Not everyone in Peabody, thank goodness, is willing to let everything here go to hell, including the schools, for lack of a few dollars in taxes.
Joseph Silva September 05, 2011 at 01:11 PM
Wow. Watch out for your wallet. "Not everyone in Peabody, thank goodness, is willing to let everything go to hell for a lack of a few tax dollars." That statement right there should be THE MAJOR reason our city council should reject the proposal by these green, tax and spend radicals and their queen Ann Manning.
GreenPeabody September 07, 2011 at 09:29 PM
Well I can see that I have been away for a while as this "conversation" continues. So let me again pledge that I will post a thorough piece by next week outlining the elements of the green community initiative. I just completed a post to be published this week on another issue. But let me not defer entirely. Let me start by using an analogy of sorts. We all know lots of people who claim they want to loose wait or need to manage their time better or need to finally finish that book they have been writing for years. But somehow it never happens unless of course they have a heart attack or they loose their job for being chronically late. So it is with city government. ALL candidates for office make earnest and high minded claims during an election about how they are going to "make government work for the people" or something to that effect. It's endemic to the process of running for office. But city government suffers from the same forces of inertia and entropy common to many other institutions. The School Department seems to have been doing some good things in the area of energy savings. What the GC Act does is provide some additional resources to boost these efforts while also getting others in the community and in other areas of city administration to take this goal seriously as well. The biggest piece of the green comm application involves creating energy reduction plan requiring at least a 20% reduction in energy consumption over five years.

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