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    April 27, 2018 | 2:45 PM

    Size Doesn’t Matter: How Small Towns and Businesses Are Taking Climate Action

    The shift to a clean energy economy is on – and accelerating by the day. Today, cities, businesses, and colleges and universities of all sizes are seeing the threat of the climate crisis and taking action by switching to affordable renewable electricity from wind, solar, and other sources. By choosing renewables, they’re cutting their greenhouse gas emissions and creating a healthier environment for their citizens and customers – and a brighter future for our planet.

    Major corporations like Apple, Google, and T-Mobile are all choosing renewable sources over dirty fossil fuels and it’s clear that the renewable energy revolution is well underway. But as the climate crisis becomes more and more urgent, it can seem like only commitments from huge companies like these can make a real impact.

    The reality is, commitments to transition to renewable electricity come in all sizes – and they all make a difference. Whether it’s the locally-owned coffee shop down on Main Street or a Fortune 500 company, your rural small town or your state’s capital, each one makes a dent in the fight against the climate crisis. One Climate Reality Chapter is proving that towns and businesses, no matter how small, are important in the global campaign to shift to renewable sources. 

    Small Towns, Big Difference

    Nestled in the mountains of upstate New York, The Climate Reality Project: Hudson Valley and Catskills Chapter launched not with a fizzle, but with a bang. Chapter Chair Tim Guinee and his fellow chapter members launched their local 100% Committed campaign and have committed four municipalities and 13 businesses in the first few months of 2018.

    Their strategy? To create a wave of 100 percent renewable electricity commitments by asking everyone from a small business like Rough Draft Bar and Books to the entire Ulster County, New York to commit to taking meaningful climate action.

    Armed with the 100% Committed Toolkit, the chapter began approaching businesses and towns in the area to talk about the impact that the climate crisis could have on the Hudson Valley and Catskills Mountains, as well as the local and state renewable incentives available.

    As 100% Committed logos started popping up on the front doors of businesses and municipality websites throughout the area, it started a conversation about how the community and its residents can get involved in the fight against the climate crisis in their own backyard. Commitments don’t need to come from the national or even the state level – every business, every town, every community can make a transition to 100-percent renewable electricity and it gets us one step closer to creating a safer, more sustainable environment for us all.

    Each commitment is one more drop in the bucket in the fight for common sense solutions to the climate crisis. Dozens of cities and towns across the US have already committed to moving away from dirty fossil fuels in favor of clean, renewable sources like wind and solar.

    Will your community be next?

    Our movement is at a critical turning point in the fight for common sense solutions to the climate crisis. The good news is that the power to make meaningful progress on the climate crisis is in our hands. Making the transition to 100 percent clean, renewable electricity is just one of the ways cities, towns, businesses, colleges and universities are making meaningful progress in the fight against the climate crisis.

    Sign up to join our activist email list and we’ll keep you up-to-date on all the ways you can take climate action.

    © 2017 Flickr/Bill Boyd CC by NC 2.0

    The Climate Reality Project