Environmental equity takes root in Baltimore County

11 TV Hill: Environmental Justice Taking Root in Baltimore County



JASON: LEADING MISSION TO GO GREEN AND REDUCE BALTIMORE COUNTY’S CARBON FOOTPRINT. WE TALK TO COUNTY EXECUTIVE JOHNNY OLSZEWSKI ABOUT INITIATIVES IN THE COUNTY AND WHY HE MAKES IT A PRIORITY. JOHNNY OLSZEWSKI, MANAGING DIRECTOR OF BALTIMORE COUNTY, JOINS ME NOW TO DISCUSS CHANGES IN THE COUNTY. YOUR STAFF SENT ME A LIST OF THE THINGS THEY DO WHEN RELATED TO CARBON FOOTPRINT AND SUCH THINGS. AND IT’S CURIOSITY BECAUSE IT’S AGGRESSIVE. IS IT A DIFFICULT SALE OR ARE TIMES CHANGING? JOHNNY: TIMES CHANGE. PEOPLE RECOGNIZE THAT WITH TSHI PLAN, WE ONLY HAVE ONE STRIKE TO GET IT RIGHT. THIS IS OUR RESPONSIBILITY TO FUTURE GENERATIONS. I THINK WE ARE AMBITIOUS BUT THE TIMES WE LIVE DEMAND THIS WHETHER RED IS 100 PERCENT RENEWABLE ENERGY AND BALTIMEOR COUNTY RESUMING GLASS RECYCLING THESE ARE THE TIMES THAT DEMAND IT. WE ARE HAPPY TO LEAD THIS SPACE IN BALTIMORE COUNTY. DASS JASON: WE ARE GETTING TO THE POINT WHERE WE NEED TO HIRE SOMEONE TO TAKE CARE OF EVERYTHING. THEY ALSO LOOK FOR CAR BATTERY CHARGING AND SPARE PARTS. IS THIS A TRADEMARK FOR YOU SO WE GO OFF THE NET A BIT? WHAT DO YOU GET UPON WHEN WE BEGIN THIS JOURNEY? JOHN: NEVER RENEWABLE ENERGY IS OUR FUTURE. WE MUST REMOVE – ENGYER AND THE INFRASTRUCTURES I PLACED. THE ENTIRE FUTURE OF PASSENGER VEHICLES IN BALTIMORE COUNTY WILL BE HYBRID OR ELECTRIC SO WE MUST HAVE THE INFRASTRUCTURE. WE ARE WORKING WITH WHIT BG&E PARTNERS TO INCREASE CHARGING STATIONS AND USE OUR RESOURCES TO BUILD MORE IN YEARS TO COME. JASON: HERE’S THE CHART OF HOW THEY TALK ABOUT THESE AND THE STRUCTURING OF THINGS. PEOPLE WILL SAY IS THIS MONEY WELL SPENT? IT IS NOT CHEAP TO DRIVE INTO THE FUTURE. I AM CURIOUS ABOUT THIS DEBATE. RESPONDING TO SOME PEOPLE WHO THINK THE MONEY SHOULD GO ELSEWHERE? JOHN:NY IT IS AN INVESTMENT NOT ONLY IN OUR FUTURE, IN OUR ENVIRONMENT BUT ALSO AN INVESTMENT IN OUR ECONOMY. WHAT WE SEE, THE TRADE POINT LAATNTIC, FOR EXAMPLE, EW WAS A MAJOR OFFSHORE WIND INDUSTRY HERE IN BALTIMORE COUNTY WITH HUNDREDS OF QUALITY AND HIGH-PAYING JOBS. THESE INVESTMENTS ARE NOT ONLY GOOD FOR THE ENVIRONMENT, BUT GOOD FOR OUR EMPLOYEES. AS WE BUILD THIS INFRASTRUCTURE, THEY BRING PEOPLE TO WORK, GIVE PEOPLE OPPORTUNITIES, AND SEND PEOPLE TO COLLEGE. I THINK IT’S WORTH IT. JAN: SO I WILL LET YOU WATCH FROM TWO PROGRAMS. ONE IS THE SOLAR PANELS. EXPLAIN HOW IT WORKS. THE IDEA IS THAT THEY GENERATE ENOUGH ENERGY THAT IT BALANCES WITH THE COUNTY – WHAT DOES THE COUNTY USE? JOHNNY: WHETHER TO CAPTURE METHANE GAS AND TURN THAT INTO USABLE ENEY, RG WE HAVE CLOSED LANDFILLS AND ARE LOOKING FOR INSTALLATION OF SOLAR PANELS. WE HAVE THE ABILITY TO GENERATE ENERGY THAT WE CAN THEN UTILIZE FROM FOSSIL FUELS THAT WE WOULD ELSE PAY FOR OR USE A BALTIMORE COUNTY SO WE TRY TO LEAD BY EXAMPLE, MAKE MORE ENERGY EFFICIENT AND CREATE RENEWABLE ENERGY OPPORTUNITIES. I AMRO PUD BY OUR TEAMS AND THE WAY THEY ARE EXPLORING THESE OPTIONS TO ACHIEVE US TO A TARGET OF 100% RENEWABLE ENERGY OR USE BY THIS GOVERNMENT. JAN: ALSO ANOTHER ONE THAT APPEARS TO ME BECAUSE WALKING THE CITY STREETS YOU KNOW WHAT NEIGHBORHOOD HAS NO TREE AND IT CHANGS THE WAY THEY LOOK BUT ALSO THE WAY HOW YOU PERCEIVE WHERE YOU LIVE. THEY DO THE RE-TREE PROGRAM AND PUT A CPLOUE IN THE GROUND I THINK. WHY DOES THIS IMPORTANT TO YOU? JOHNNY: STREET TREES ARE NOT ONLY GOOD FOR THEES ATHETICS BUT FOR PUBLIC HEALTH. THEY IMPROVE PROPERTY VALUES SO WE MAPPED THE COMMUNITIES THAT WERE UNDER TREES. THESE ARE SOME LOW-INCOME NEIGHBORHOODS, MODERATE-INCOME NEIGHBORHOODS AND WE ARE ENTIRELY IN ALL BALTIMORE COUNTY NEIGHBORHOODS TO IMPROVE OUR TREE GUARDIANS. WE CALL IT OPERATION READ TREE. AND ADDITIONAL STREET TREES IN BALTIMORE COUNTY WE WILL PLANT, WERE STREET TREES NEXT YEAR, 2 THOUSAND ST TREES, MORE TREES THIS YEAR AHEAD THAN THE LAST EIGHT YEARS ALONG WITH THE TREES AGAIN. ODGO FOR PUBLIC HEALTH, FOR THE ENVIRONMENT AND GOOD FOR REAL ESTATE VALUE. IT’S AN ALL-ROUND WIN-IN-W AND WE ARE EXCITED THAT IT ALSO WORKS IN PUBLIC SPACES. JAN: SO AND IF YOU LIVE IN A NEIGHBORHOOD YOU WANT TO BE IN WE COULD SEE SOME OF THEM, IS THERE A WAY PEOPLE CAN REACH OR IS THE MAEDPP ALREADY? JOHNNY: IN ADDITION TO UNDERSERVED COMMUNITIES AND PLANTING THESE TREES, WE GIVE AYAW TREES EVERY YEAR. IF YOU WANT TO CONNECT OUR WEBSITE AND SEARCH FREE TREES, THE DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AND SUSTAINABILITY HAS THESE RESOURCES. FEEL FREE TO REACH US IF ANYONE INTERESTED IN GETTING A FREE TREE. WE HAVE THE PROGRAM THAT RUNS ALMOST EVERY YEAR WHEN PEOPLE WANT TO PLANT A TREE IN THEIR BACKYARD. JAN: SO BALTIMORE COUNTY EXECUTIVE JOHNNY OLSZEWSKI, THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIME, SIR. BALTIMORE COUNTY IS NOT THE ONLY JURISDICTION STRIVING TO REDUCE EMISSIONS. BALTIMORE CITY TARGETS ZERO NET GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS BY 2045. MAYOR SCOTT SIGNED THE COUNCIL LEGISLATION. IT ALLOWS THE CITY TO PRIORITIZE CAPITAL INVESTMENTS IN COMMUNITIES MOST AFFECTED BY POLLUTION AND CLIMATE CHANGE. HERE IS THE SCHEDULE. THE ISO TARGET IS TO ACHIEVE A 30% REDUCTION IN GREENHOUSE GASES BY JANUARY 2025 COMPARED TO 2007. THEN FINALLY THE CITY PLANS TO REACH ZERO EMISSIONS BY 4520. YOU CAN SEE ALL OUR PREDICTIONS OF OUR FUTURE STOESRI ON OUR WEBSITE WBALTV.COM. SIMPLY CHOOSE THE FORECAST OF OUR FUTURE T.

11 TV Hill: Environmental Justice Taking Root in Baltimore County

The benefits of environmental justice are more than just aesthetic. Leading the way in protecting the environment and reducing Baltimore County’s carbon footprint. Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski speaks about improving the county for future generations. And Baltimore County isn’t the only jurisdiction trying to reduce emissions. Baltimore City aims to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2045. Mayor Brandon Scott has signed into law the city council bill that will allow the city to prioritize capital investments in communities hardest hit by pollution and climate change. By January 2025, the goal is to achieve a 30% reduction in greenhouse gases compared to 2007 levels. By 2030, greenhouse gases are to be reduced by 60% compared to 2007. Eventually, the city plans to achieve net-zero emissions by 2045.

The benefits of environmental justice are more than just aesthetic. Leading the way in protecting the environment and reducing Baltimore County’s carbon footprint. Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski speaks about improving the county for future generations.

And Baltimore County isn’t the only jurisdiction trying to reduce emissions. Baltimore City aims to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2045. Mayor Brandon Scott signed the city council bill into law that will allow the city to prioritize capital investments in communities hardest hit by pollution and climate change.

By January 2025, greenhouse gas emissions are to be reduced by 30% compared to 2007 levels. By 2030, greenhouse gases are to be reduced by 60% compared to 2007. Eventually, the city plans to achieve net-zero emissions by 2045.