Climate Planning

NEWS FLASH: Take our Vulnerability Survey

Extreme weather and natural hazards are causing serious damage to our communities, environment, and infrastructure. Hudson Valley communities have faced severe flooding from storms like Irene, Sandy and Ida. Climate and environmental conditions are expected to worsen significantly, with more intense storms, droughts and heat waves, sea level rising in the Hudson River and native ecosystems collapsing. Communities must prepare for these impacts to ensure their safety and resilience. 

Proactive planning and risk mitigation are crucial to protect people, infrastructure, and habitat, and can serve as a model for others. This is why it is critical we hear from the Irvington community. 

Government Climate Action Planning

Irvington has joined an increasing number of local governments committed to addressing climate change at the local level through reducing emissions in their own government operations and by supporting programs such as Climate Smart Communities, Clean Energy Communities, EnergySmart Homes, and Grid Rewards. In 2007, Irvington created a Climate Protection Task Force to study the problem and make recommendations, resulting in a 2008 report that formed the basis for a number of subsequent Village actions. In 2012, the Board of Trustees adopted the Climate Smart Pledge and in 2014 adopted an Environmental Action Plan, prepared by the Green Policy Task Force, consisting of action items based on the principles embodied in the Pledge. The Village’s 2018 update of its 2003 Comprehensive Plan–an update based on the work of a group of subcommittees broadly representative of the community–incorporated this Environmental Action Plan as one of its references, and included a number of recommendations related to climate change and sustainability. 

Irvington is worked with CAPI, the Climate Action Planning Institute, an initiative of ICLEI, the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives, the Hudson Valley Regional Council and  the County, and 8 other Westchester municipalities to create a Climate Action Plan (CAP). The first meeting was held Feb 2, 2023 and the process took 16 months.  A summary and comparison of municipal results can be found here. Irvington had he highest municipal emissions per population. 

As the first step in creating a Climate Action Plan, Irvington has collected and analyzed the data for the Irvington Government Greenhouse Gas Inventory Report. A simplified slidedeck was presented to the Village Board of Trustees on Aug 16, 2023 (which can be watched here from :47). After meeting with Department Heads, a preliminary overview of mitigation strategies was assembled in a presentation deck for the Board of Trustees, on 12/18/2023 (which you can watch here, from 1:15).  Irvington Green hosted a Climate Plan Workshop with the public on March 6th 2024, (photos and slidedeck can be found by scrolling down the Events page here). Following this, the Government Operations Climate Action Plan, or GOCAP, was presented to the Village Board on April 10th 2024. The presentation can be found here (and the meeting can be seen here from 44:17). The final Government Operations Climate Action Plan was adopted June 17th 2024. 

With similar guidance from CAPI, the Village created a Community Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory which identifies and quantifies the sources of GHG emissions from community activities and establishes a baseline from which future emissions reductions and progress can be measured. See more detail below. A Community Climate Action Plan is forthcoming. 

Finally, the Village is currently working with CAPI on a Climate Adaptation and Resilience chapter of the Climate Action Plan (CAP). 

Irvington Municipal Emissions Reductions Goal

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) states we must reduce global emissions by 50% by 2030 and reach climate neutrality by 2050 to achieve the Paris Agreement commitment of keeping warming below 1.5°C Equitably reducing global emissions by 50% requires that high-emitting, wealthy nations reduce their emissions by more than 50%. Irvington commits to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from 1990 levels 50% by 2030 and is endeavoring to exceed these goals as a model of fair. 

Climate Adaptation & Resilience 

Starting February 8, 2024, the Climate Planning Committee embarked on CAPI Adapt, a yearlong process to create a Climate Vulnerability Assessment and a Climate Adaptation Chapter for the Climate Action Plan. See the vulnerabilty survey link above. 

Community Resilience Building

In addition to the flood study, the Villages of Dobbs Ferry, Hastings-on-Hudson, Irvington, Sleepy Hollow, and Tarrytown participated in a  Community Resilience Building Workshop in March of 2020, to identify key vulnerabilities. Find the report here. Find the Community Building Risk Matrix summary here.

In 2024, the village completed a Climate Smart Resiliency Planning (CSRP) assessment in 2024 to determine gaps in policy and plans. The results can be found here

Hazard Mitigation Planning

Westchester County offers tools to assess local vulnerabilities

Country Mitigation Plan 

Irvington Hazarad Mitigation Chapter from the County.

Interactive Story Map

FEMA Resilience and Planning Tool

Team: Green Policy Task Force volunteers 

Warwick Norton, Nicola Coddington, and Sustainabilty Director Charlotte Binns and Village Administrator Larry Schopfer

Community Emissions Report