Plant now for a brighter future

In this era of extreme weather, the New Scotland Town Board members heard cries for help at their August meeting.

Residents asked the board to come up with a “green initiative” to help combat the local effects of climate change.

Readers of this page know there are no easy answers. Changes in individual habits are needed to stem the use of fossil fuels — and the federal government has finally provided meaningful incentives — as well as leadership from small and large governments alike.

Read our story from earlier this month on the benefits you may qualify for, from clean vehicle rebates and green energy tax breaks to funds for farmers using sustainable practices.

New Scotland board members and residents alike suggested some kind of grassroots effort, like letters to the Enterprise editor, would be helpful to kickstart the local green initiative. So we will begin here.

Specific complaints were aired at the meeting about flooding, as Sean Mulkerrin reported. Throughout our coverage area, volunteer firefighters have been busy this summer pumping out basements. The excessive rain has been as extreme as the heat this summer.

Charles Divine, whose home backs up to the town’s Swift Road Park, told the board that, after torrential rains in July, the usually calm stream by his house had turned into a raging river, ripping out a footbridge; the flooding took out about 80 feet of his neighbor’s 3-foot-tall timber retaining wall. 

Divine has installed 22 tons of boulders and 15,000 pounds of rock wall, but the flooding has only worsened over time due to more frequent extreme storms, he said. A neighbor who gets flooded downstream, Pat Corcione, said he has planted a dozen trees — willows, he said, are good at sucking up water — but he’s out of room.

To fight

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