Up In Smoky Carbon - 27 East


Southampton Press / Opinion / Letters / 1823408

Up In Smoky Carbon

Kudos for urging action on climate change. Extolling Southampton Village’s declaration of a climate emergency and breaking ground to install EV charging stations, the papers stated: “It’s late to start, probably too late to avoid crisis altogether, but the steps can be small as long as they’re cumulative” [“A Small Step, Editorial, September 30].

Climate mitigation actions are needed at all levels of government, and readers should be reminded that Southampton Town has long recognized the need for climate action.

In 2017, New York State recognized Southampton Town’s commitment to act on climate change by certifying the town as a Climate Smart Community. Southampton Town government supports the state’s aggressive goals to reduce statewide greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent by 2030 and reduce emissions by 80 percent by 2050. (See Southampton’s Sustainability 400+ plan’s section on “Energy and Carbon.”)

Some of the “cumulative” steps include improving energy efficiency and shifting to clean energy sources. Some practical initiatives include supporting Long Island Green Homes and launching the “Solarize Southampton” campaign. Through Southampton’s Community Choice Aggregation program, “Southampton Town issued a request for proposals for what would be Long Island’s first community distributed generation solar array.”

Another program aimed at reducing our carbon footprint is the streetlight upgrade and replacement project “that is projected to save Southampton taxpayers nearly $269,000 in annual energy and maintenance costs while also reducing greenhouse gas emissions by roughly 550 tons a year.”

Space constraints prevent mentioning other plans.

Communities across America should emulate Southampton Town’s climate program. But progress made by Jay Schneiderman’s forward-thinking administration could go up in smoky carbon if this year’s local Republican candidates win election. A profile in The Press points out that candidate Ann Thomas, “a native of Houston, came to New York City to work for Chase Manhattan Bank in its oil and gas risk-management business.”

Can we trust Ann Thomas to support climate action given the fact that it is now common knowledge that the oil and gas industry knew for decades that burning fossil fuels increased global warming (see “Exxon Knew about Climate Change Almost 40 Years Ago” in Scientific American)?

Please don’t take the chance. The choice is clear.

Mike Anthony


Mr. Anthony is a former chair of the Southampton Town Democratic Party — Ed.