In February 2020, the Delaware County Council recognized its commitment to a more sustainable Delaware County through the creation of the Delaware County Sustainability Commission. Charged with providing recommendations regarding best environmental and energy practices, the group worked diligently with Office of Sustainability staff to create a comprehensive plan for a more sustainable Delaware County.
Published in August 2023, Sustain Delco: A Sustainability Plan for Delaware County lays the framework for a sustainable and resilient Delaware County that protect the most vulnerable residents from the impacts of climate change.
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A Climate Action Plan serves to identify and measure greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) and establish meaningful strategies to reduce them in a community. Climate Action Plans typically set specific targets for greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) reduction and provide detailed steps for achieving them. One notable example of a Climate Action Plan is the 2021 Pennsylvania Climate Action Plan, which identifies strategies for government, business, agriculture, community leaders, and all Pennsylvanians to reduce GHG across the state.
A Sustainability Plan is typically broader than a Climate Action Plan focusing on the three main pillars of sustainability: profit (the economy), people, and the planet. In taking this approach, sustainability plans typically establish broader goals than just GHG reduction, such as reducing environmental inequalities in marginalized communities, improving water quality in local watersheds, or addressing environmental health concerns such as indoor air quality.
Sustain Delco: A Sustainability Plan for Delaware County blends the priorities of both a Climate Action Plan and a broader Sustainability Plan, taking a data-driven and community-informed approach. The Plan identifies solutions to both mitigating GHG and helping the community adapt and thrive in a changing climate.
Sustain, by definition, means “cause to continue for an extended period or without interruption.” In creating a Sustainability and Climate Action Plan for Delaware County, the County is taking steps to improve our environment and community today, so all may havesafe, healthy, and enjoyable place to live without interruption in the wake of a changing climate. Sustain Delco: A Sustainability Plan for Delaware County seeks to “green” county operations while also promoting positive changes in all 49 Delaware County municipalities.
Sustain Delco: A Sustainability Plan for Delaware County was presented and accepted in August 2023 following a two-year planning process. Under the guiding principles of economic sustainability, education, governance, and equity, inclusion, and justice, the Plan establishes goals, targets, and actions in the areas of Climate Resiliency, Natural Resources, Transportation, Energy and Efficiencies, Zero Waste, and Health and Wellness.
In addition to establishing a pathway forward, the Plan provides background data about GHG and climate change impacts in Delaware County. Sustainability spotlights also recognize the unique actions in which the County and community are ready taking to combat climate change.
Sustain Delco serves to inform and inspire for a more sustainable future.
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