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Kudos to Nassau for signing climate pledge


At the Herald, we like to give credit where credit is due. In our Nov. 8-14 editorial, “Nassau should take the Climate Smart Pledge,” we called on County Executive Laura Curran, a Democrat who has long supported environmental issues, to sign the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s Climate Smart Communities Pledge. On Jan. 7, she did just that.

Communities that sign the pledge agree to inventory emissions, set goals and plan for climate action while reducing energy use, shifting to clean, renewable energy and using climate-smart material management. The initiative is intended to support a “green innovation” economy and help inform and inspire the public to act to end the current climate crisis — the steady heating of the Earth because of fossil-fuel emissions.

“It is our responsibility to protect our environment for generations to come,” Curran said, “and Nassau stands ready to do our part.”

In announcing the county’s participation in the program, she was joined by State Sen. Todd Kaminsky, a Democrat from Long Beach who chairs the Senate’s Environmental Conservation Committee. “I commend County Executive Laura Curran on her commitment to making Nassau a climate-smart community and transitioning away from inefficient and cost-prohibitive energy sources,” Kaminsky said.

Climate change works like this: Carbon dioxide and methane allow sunlight to pass through the atmosphere. When sunlight hits the ground, it is reradiated skyward as infrared heat. Carbon and methane trap infrared heat, which is why the Earth is warming, including our oceans. The more carbon and methane we emit from cars, power plants and factories, the more infrared heat is trapped, and the faster Earth warms.

By reducing — and, to the degree possible, eliminating — our emissions, we slow that process, in the hope that one day soon we might even reverse it.

To check out Curran’s public service announcement on the Climate Smart Communities Pledge, click here.