The Easton Board of Selectmen voted Jan. 16 to join a growing number of communities across the state participating in Sustainable CT, an exciting program to support Connecticut’s cities and towns. The statewide initiative, created by towns for towns, includes a detailed menu of sustainability best practices, tools and resources, peer learning, and recognition.
Over 50% of Connecticut’s municipalities are now registered to participate in Sustainable CT. The second cohort of certified communities was announced in October 2019. Collectively 27% of the state’s cities and towns have achieved certification.
“Easton has strived to promote sustainability throughout its practices with initiatives such as the solar farm at Samuel Staples Elementary School and leasing municipal land for agricultural use,” said Justin Giorlando, Easton Land Use Director.
“It is great to be involved in a program with actionable goals to continue our commitment and track our progress towards a sustainable future. Sustainable CT provides us with the tools, resources, and potential funding to accomplish this.”
The Sustainable CT platform supports a broad range of actions, such as improving watershed management, supporting arts and creative culture, reducing energy use and increasing renewable energy, implementing “complete streets” (streets that meet the needs of walkers and bikers as well as cars), improving recycling programs, assessing climate vulnerability, supporting local farms/businesses, and providing efficient and diverse housing options.
Easton has and will continue focusing on those actions that protect and restore our watershed, promote agriculture and agriculture-friendly practices, and promote the health of our community. There is no cost to participate and communities voluntarily select actions that meet their unique, local character and long-term vision. After successful implementation of a variety of actions, municipalities are eligible for Sustainable CT certification.
The initiative was developed under the leadership of the Institute for Sustainable Energy at Eastern Connecticut State University in partnership with the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities. Three Connecticut philanthropies – The Emily Hall Tremaine Foundation, Smart Seed Fund, and Common Sense Fund – have supported the program’s development and launch.
“We are thrilled that Easton has passed a resolution to join Sustainable CT. The program builds on many current success stories in our communities to create and support more great places to live, work, and play,” said Lynn Stoddard, Director of the Institute for Sustainable Energy. “We are looking forward to working with the Town as they pursue Sustainable CT certification.”
For more information on Sustainable CT see the program’s website: www.sustainablect.org.