May 2021 Newsletter

– Read the latest updates from Sustainable Plymouth including working group updates, declaring a climate emergency, a rain barrel program and more.

Our Next Meeting

June 21, 2021 at 6:30 pm at Jenny Grist Mill picnic area (weather permitting)

  • Please bring a camp chair, bug spray (hopefully of the natural variety) and water if you’ll need it.
  • If rain is predicted we will meet via Zoom instead.   An official invite will be sent via email with more details as we get closer to the date.

Email to sign up to receive meeting updates.

Weatherization / Energy Conservation Working Group

The Weatherization / Energy Conservation team, working with the Energy Committee, is drafting materials to share with the public.  Once we receive edits from the collaborating organizations, we will continue with next steps.

Native Plant Project Working Group

A member of the Native Plant project team of the Habitat Working Group met with members of the Herring Pond Wampanoag Tribe to learn more about the HPW Tribe’s project at Dina(h) Path.  The Native Plant project team has decided to postpone the next phases of the project at MRA/Indian Brook, so that we can better support the work of the HPW Tribe taking place at Dina(h) Path and collaborate on future projects in the most mutually beneficial way.  Phase I of the Native Plant Project at MRA/ Indian Brook has been completed and is available here (link)

Town of Plymouth’s Climate, Energy & Environmental (CEE) Task Force

Sustainable Plymouth has submitted 3 “Requested Items” so far through the CEE process.

They are:

101.  Declare a Climate Emergency and draft a Phased Netzero Decarbonization Plan

105.  Install water refill stations at public restrooms and municipal buildings

117.  Act upon the recommended priority action items of the Climate-Ready Healthy Plymouth report and share progress with the public

Several other committees and organizations shared requested items as well.  Check out all requested items submitted here (link) . We will continue to submit requested items using this ongoing process.

 To read  more about the CEE process, check out this article. 

The next step is for the public to rate the requested items 1-5.  Using this document, jot down the project IDs that are most important to you and then click the link below to submit feedback to the Town.

See the explanation below from Patrick Flaherty:

Phase III – Prioritizing Item Review Through Public Feedback

Timeline: May 10, 2021 through May 28, 2021

Over the last several weeks, there have been 25 submissions from several community groups and individuals to our CEE Task Force. The submissions have been collated in the attached in the order they were received. Through this phase ending on May 28th, individuals will have the opportunity to rank their personal top five priority items.

Any individual is welcome to submit their rankings at this link: The “Project IDs” in the attachment are what will be used to identify each submission when ranking. The individual submissions will remain anonymous, and the cumulative results shared at the end of this phase.

For each of the top five items, the Town will then review and provide feedback on:

  • The current priority of the item (if and when it is planned to become an active project).
  • Any obstacles, including funding and/or staff resources, that are preventing the item from moving forward.
  • What the next steps would be to make the item an active project (grant application, Town Meeting article, re-prioritizing other initiatives, etc.)

During this agenda item at the Select Board meeting, any group or individual can speak to the items on the docket for that evening.

Declaring a Climate Emergency

Members of Sustainable Plymouth met with members of a few local environmental groups to discuss moving ahead with declaring a climate emergency and asking the Town to draft a phased Netzero decarbonization plan.

The feedback was mostly positive and we have decided to meet again on May 18th to discuss what to include in the resolution, what manner to move it forward, and how to approach other organizations to collaborate on this effort.

We will be sure to include preserving forested spaces that are habitats to wildlife and sequester carbon.

A warning  issued by The Alliance of World Scientists in 2020, which recommends promptly declaring a climate emergency and acting accordingly, has been signed by over 13,000 scientists to date.  15 towns on the Cape have done so in one manner or another.  Hundreds of jurisdictions nationwide have declared climate emergencies and many of them are drafting, or have drafted, decarbonization plans.

We are asking Plymouth to get ahead of the impacts of climate change and sea level rise, which will surely affect us expeditiously.  Acting now to mitigate green house gas emissions is projected to avert an up to 8-times worse sea level rise situation, compared to not reducing GHGs.

We are hoping to educate the community to the fact that failing to act now does not save money—it takes from our children and grandchildren.

For more information on declaring a climate emergency, visit


League of Women Voters Book Discussion: Rising: Dispatches from the New American Shore by Elizabeth Rush

The League of Women Voters’ next book discussion book will be Rising: Dispatches from the New American Shore by Elizabeth Rush. From LWV: This book has an intersection between climate change and social justice which should prove for interesting discussions. We will again have two sessions, one during the day June 9th and 23rd at 2:00pm and June 10th and 24th at 7:00 pm. Jennifer Harris will again be our moderator. To sign up see our website.

Rain Barrel Program – Please Spread the Word

The Water Conservation Committee is pleased to announce that a limited number of free rain barrels are available to customers on the town water system from the Department of Public Works. The DPW purchased fifty rain barrels with grant assistance from the Mass Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP).

If you are a town water customer, you can sign up for one. The Water Conservation Committee will be working closely with the Water Division to judge whether this modest pilot program makes an impact on water usage this summer.

Here’s the link to sign up for your free rain barrel:

The water conservation committee would like to hear from any of you who install a rain barrel how much water you collected and how you put the water to use, even anecdotally.

Thanks to Jonathan Beder and the DPW for launching this summer pilot program!

Mosquito Spraying

Please be advised that the Plymouth County Mosquito Control Project will begin truck based adulticide applications on June 1, 2021 through October 2021. Spraying is conducted between 2 AM and sunrise, Monday through Friday. For more information, click here.

To opt out of spraying, click here:

Hazard Mitigation Plan

The Town is currently updating its Hazard Mitigation Plan and there is a survey for community input here

You may also email Craig Pereira with comments and concerns here: