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Conservation and Climate Outreach Commission (View All)

Special Conservation Commission Mtg 03/07/09

Saturday, March 07, 2009

10:30am – March 07, 2009
Parks Department Office (located in Lithia Park)

Chairperson Jackson welcomed everyone and gave a brief overview of what
the Commission hoped to accomplish.

Risa Buck, Stuart Corns, Ross Finney, Jim Hartman, Shelley Lotz, and Jim McGinnis were present.
Russ Chapman and Tracy Harding and was not present and excused.

City Council member and Chair: Kate Jackson
Staff representative: Dick Wanderscheid

Moved to end of agenda.

1. Greening the July 4th Event
     Lead Commissioner –Jim McGinnis
Commissioner McGinnis reported on the success of the 4th of July event, stating initial goals were met and his hopes to continue moving forward in the coming year. Commissioner Buck remarked about working with the 4th of July Committee to direct vendors/participants through written communication in order to facilitate changes. The Belleview grange has created a water bar that will début at Earth Day.

2. Reduction of Plastic Bag and Petroleum Based Disposable Dinnerware
            Lead Commissioner – Risa Buck
Commissioner Buck reported the major emphasis for the subcommittee was Education and outreach. They have worked with different community members and businesses imploring dialogue as a basis for change. At this point they would not like to suggest a City policy that would enforce none usage of plastic bags, but rather continue with education and outreach.

Until Ashland can effectively compost disposable dinnerware instead of utilizing the landfill, promoting this
type of product would not ultimately benefit our community. The dinnerware has to be shredded in order to compost; otherwise it ends up in the garbage. Reduce would be a priority through education outlets.
Commissioner McGinnis wished to encourage the business use of sporks and possibly could be supported by the Commission.

3. Support and promote Solar Pioneer II, Clean Energy Choices and Continue with the Commission’s Educational & Outreach Efforts
     Lead Commissioner – Tracy Harding
Commissioner Harding not present, Dick Wanderscheid gave a brief report on the progress of the Solar Pioneer II Project. The Commission hasn’t promoted this project except through communication at various event/display board.   The Commissioners discussed the promotion of green tags and compost classes as another way the Commissioner has supported the goal. Both have increased significantly.

Green Tag purchases                            Compost Classes
2003 $3,036.00                                     added one class
2004 $8,522.00                                     increased participation on-going
2005 $14,858.00
2006 $26,882.00
2007 $32,865.00
2008 $15,304.00—partial report
2009 $1,500.00—futures

4. Support the Cities for Climate Protection (ICLEI)
            Lead Commissioner -- Jim McGinnis
Commissioner McGinnis reported he feels to continue this goal would mean a focus on greenhouse gas, baseline inventory for the City. Any efforts for plans and sustainability would need this baseline. The Commissioners discussed different options how the City would benefit from retaining this goal.

5. Encourage New & On-going participation in Ashland’s Green Business Program
            Lead Commissioner— Ross Finney
Commissioner Finney reported the City Council approved this an official program around 1999 to be under the Conservation Commission. The program has been re-designed this year and revitalized and is supported with and entire Green Team instead of just one staff member. Seven businesses have been certified in the program, and eight businesses in process, a total of 15 for 2008. The goal for 2008 was achieved through these efforts and there is also a waiting list from interested businesses to move forward to next year.

Chairperson Jackson initiated discussion concerning the appropriate role of the City and its responsibility with Energy usage.

The Commission listed brainstorming ideas and Dick Wanderscheid organized the ideas on a chart as follows:
Recycling-lack of curb side collection of post consumer organics, packaging, recycling content purchasing,
demolition waste.
Energy Conservation-plug-in electric cars, energy conservation for natural gas & oil usage, home & business energy use and indoor air quality, building inefficiencies, new construction passive solar and solar H2O.
Water Conservation- storm drains, water catchments, grey water reuse, pollution reduction/clean up, drugs & poisons out of waste water 7 storm drain, water quality and quantity, thermal water pollution, non-point pollution, us as fungi to reduce toxins.
Resource conservation—none
New Power source—Local energy production
Renewable Resource—renewable energy generation
Air Quality—residential burning of plastic
Climate Change—Global warming/climate change, cap and trade legislation, carbon taxes, increased CO2 production, carbon sequestration.
Sustainability—peak oil, sustainability, natural resources
Non Relevant to Commission or handled by other commissions
Excessive TV, computer games, computer time, noise pollution, disconnect from nature, public transportation, vehicle idling, single vehicle occupancy, citizen involvement in community, population increases, wildfire risk, taking care of creeks, urban heat production, aging population/demographics, alternative currencies, resource hording, investment in green technology, localizing investments in green
tech/jobs, support local economy, climate refuges, local food production, increased energy costs, traffic congestion/volume, safe pedestrian & bike travel lanes, financial collapse and reaction, land conservation for green space, forests & farming
The Commissioner went over the display board’s content and position and possible different aspects for the Earth Day event coming up in April. Commissioner Harding sent an email resigning from the Commission due to personal commitments.
The Commission members discussed different responsibilities and aspects of the Commission. Looking at how to adapt to changing times and needs, they discussed how they could best be proactive.

Dick Wanderscheid volunteered to organize the brainstorming into a format that 2009 goals could be formulated. He will send out communication to the Commission before the next meeting.
In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, if you need special assistance to participate in this meeting, please contact the Community Development office at 541-488-5305 (TTY phone number is 1-800-735-2900). Notification 72 hours prior to the meeting will enable the City to make reasonable arrangements to ensure accessibility to the meeting (28 CFR 35.102-35.104 ADA Title1).

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