City of Acton marks Earth Day with reflection on sustainability milestones and a look at ongoing efforts


For immediate release

ACTON — The city of Acton joined the more than one billion people around the world who celebrated Earth Day today, acknowledging the strides it has made toward sustainability and looking forward to efforts to to come.

Acton marked the day by planting a new heptacodium tree at NARA Park, which will display flowers and provide shade for park visitors. Attendees also took part in a free litter cleanup and bike and helmet safety checks by Pedal Power Bike and Ski. Complimentary helmets were provided courtesy of the City of Acton Nursing Services.

“Earth Day is a great opportunity to take stock of the work we have done as a community to avoid the impacts of climate change, through our commitment to sustainability and reduced emissions across the city” , City Manager John Mangiaratti said. “I am grateful for the efforts of all members of our community – as well as our partners in this work – for their focus on these critically important goals.”

Additionally, Acton yesterday hosted Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Martin Suuberg, Senator Jamie Eldridge, Rep. Danillo Sena, Rep. Tami Gouveia, and select committee members at City Hall. , where they celebrated the fully-funded DC fast charger for electric vehicles. , which will be set up at Veterans Ball Field, just steps from the Great Road shops.

“We appreciate the support of Commissioner Suuberg, our state legislators, and other state officials to help us with financial resources such as the grant we received for the new EV charger,” Mangiaratti added. . “I am grateful for the ambitious and bold leadership shown by the Select Committee in prioritizing and supporting efforts to address climate change. I would also like to acknowledge the excellent work of the director of sustainability, Andrea Becerra, who led the process of developing a climate action plan and several other sustainability initiatives. »

Acton celebrates its steps towards sustainability

The new low-emission North Acton Fire Station, which uses geothermal heating and cooling, began operations in February. Since then, the station’s new solar roof has generated 12.2 megawatt hours, the equivalent of planting 143 trees. Additionally, the new triple net zero elementary school in Acton will open with the start of the upcoming school year.

Like its buildings, Acton’s municipal fleet is also moving towards a more sustainable future. By the end of 2023, all branded police vehicles in the city will have been replaced with hybrids, one hybrid saves over 1,250 gallons of fuel and eliminates over $3,000 in fuel costs. Acton Police are also welcoming their first all-electric vehicle, a Ford Mustang Mach-E, which was partially funded by a MassEVIP Fleets Fleets grant. The new car, which replaces a gas-powered vehicle, will come to town later this year.

The city has also added a Nissan Leaf EV to its fleet and is exploring how it can use the vehicle’s energy storage capabilities to supplement power consumption at City Hall during peak hours when the vehicle is not in use. is not used.

In addition to the city vehicle, Acton received 10 fully-funded e-bikes through a collaboration with Metro Mobility, via an ACT4All grant from the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC). Another grant from MassCEC offsets the costs of a Summer Transportation and Mobility Fellow who will focus on initiatives to reduce Acton’s emissions, half of which come from vehicles and transportation.

Residents are invited to join the sustainability effort

The City of Acton is actively working to support residents’ efforts to go green. The building department is implementing updates to the permitting process and reducing barriers to installing rooftop solar panels and energy-efficient windows.

Additionally, the city is working with Abode Energy Management to provide free consultations for residents and businesses looking to upgrade to air-source and geothermal heat pumps. To learn more, visit abode.energy/acton.

Residents and businesses looking to reduce their carbon footprint are encouraged to visit Energize Acton, which provides information on taking steps to increase sustainability at the individual level and contribute to a more sustainable future. The initiative is a partnership between the City of Acton and Acton Climate Action.

Three upcoming climate-focused events

Residents have the opportunity to participate in three events focused on climate and sustainability over the coming weeks.

On Wednesday, April 27, from 12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m., the city is hosting an online Climate Action Plan workshop via Zoom. To register, click here. To catch up on past workshops and learn more about the process, visit the CAP page here.

On Friday, April 29, Acton will mark the 150th anniversary of Arbor Day with a ceremony from 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the Public Safety Facility. The city of Acton received the Tree City USA designation in 2020, a recognition from the Arbor Day Foundation highlighting Acton’s commitment to urban forestry, community improvement, and civic pride. No registration is required.

Finally, Energize Acton will host a discussion on building electrification on Thursday, May 12, from noon to 1:15 p.m. The event will feature the latest updates on the Electrification Roadmap, an assessment of the electrification of Acton’s most energy-intensive buildings. and in the Acton-Boxborough Regional School District. The technical study is funded by the Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness (MVP) program. A registration link will be shared soon, but residents can email [email protected] if they would like the link shared with them directly when it becomes available.

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