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Climate Smart Communities Program

Community Action on Climate Change

Climate Smart Communities (CSC) is a New York State program that helps local governments take action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to a changing climate. For more information visit the Climate Smart Communities website (leaves DEC website).

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Step One - Take the Climate Smart Communities pledge

By taking the Climate Smart Communities pledge (leaves DEC website), your community expresses its commitment to taking action on climate change and is designated a Registered Climate Smart Community. Becoming a member of the Climate Smart Communities (CSC) program is free and voluntary; there are no fees or legal requirements.

Registered and Certified CSCs who apply for funding from the Climate Smart Communities Grant program receive more points in the scoring process compared to applicants who are not members of the CSC program. Participation also benefits your municipality through leadership recognition and access to technical assistance and other New York State resources (leaves DEC website). Each community defines its own best strategies for cutting energy use, reducing emissions, and adapting to climate change. The CSC program is one of the few places where local governments can find free technical support that is tailored to the needs of New York State communities.

Take the CSC pledge and become part of this dedicated group of municipal leaders (leaves DEC website) who have committed to the following objectives:

Person in a rain slicker next to a Rain Collection Barrel
  • Reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs)
  • Save taxpayer dollars
  • Increase energy security and reliability
  • Build resiliency to the impacts of climate change
  • Advance community goals for public health and safety
  • Support a green innovation economy

Step Two - Move toward certification by reducing GHGs and taking action.

The CSC Certification program (leaves DEC website)helps organize and guide municipal action on climate change. The resources and priorities provided out the in certification program help your community design a customized strategy to address key local concerns.

The CSC Certification program recognizes more than 100 actions to choose from when your community works toward certification. A path to certification can come with economic benefits, improved emergency preparedness, expanded community participation, and the knowledge needed to allocate resources wisely.

The Office of Climate Change administers two funding programs for municipalities. Funding is available from the Climate Smart Communities Grant Program for a variety of climate adaptation, mitigation and certification actions. Funding is also available through the Municipal Zero-emission Vehicle (ZEV) & ZEV Infrastructure Rebate Program for clean vehicles and for infrastructure to recharge or refuel clean vehicles.

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