Village sustainability board/climate task force 2020 work leads to food-scrap recycling, charging stations


The Village of Pelham’s Sustainability Advisory Board and Climate Smart Communities Task Force published an update outlining three main 2020 accomplishments that will see programs launch this year, including food-scrap recycling and charging stations for electric vehicles.

One main goal of the group was food recycling, which was supported by a financial start-up grant from EcoPel. Food-scrap drop-off sites will be available to Pelham residents in order to keep food waste out of landfills.

The program, to start in March, “will allow residents to collect food scraps and bring them to a site so that food scraps can be handled the way they should be handled, making them a resource,” said Gabrielle Sasson, co-chair of the SAB/CSC.

The EnergySmart Homes campaign led by the SAB/CSC aims to make it easier for Pelham residents to update their homes to make them less costly to heat and cool while reducing greenhouse gas emissions. This effort was made possible by Sustainable Westchester’s EnergySmart Homes program.

“There are more events coming up where people can learn how to reduce their energy usage at home by investing in ways to heat and cool their home and insulate their home better, which is a really important part in fighting climate change,” said Sasson. 

The board and the task force are also working toward encouraging better land management practices on both public and private land, including reducing the need for artificial fertilizers with the introduction of leaf mulching. Leaf mulching blades were donated to the village by the Pelham Preservation & Garden Society.

Chargers for electric cars also on the agenda.

“Last year, we applied for electrical-vehicle chargers, and we just received notice that we got a grant to install electric-vehicle chargers throughout several areas in the Village of Pelham,” said Sasson. More information will be forthcoming about this project. 

The SAB was created after a group of community volunteers worked on the Solarize Pelham campaign, while Climate Smart Communities is a state-level program. The CSC opens up the village to grant opportunities and led to the creation of the Climate Smart Communities Task Force. The SAB and CSC meet once a month, and those interested in learning more about these programs can visit village website. 

If residents would like to get involved, they can also follow @sustainablepelham on Facebook. Sasson said both panels are “always looking for volunteers of all ages.”