ENERGY IN THE TOWN OF FRANKLIN
FRANKLIN ENERGY COMMITTEE REPORT OCTOBER 2023:
Supervisor Brown reported an energy audit was conducted on 10/11. A written report will follow in a few weeks.
Dick reported on Sept. 6 meeting with Jacques DeMars regarding task force interest to research/study how to help make town maintained roads adapt and be resilient to future intense storm events, like what happened this summer in Newcomb/Long Lake. Jacques reminded us of microburst event on tributary to Cold Brook that washed out culvert and section of road on Fletcher Farm Road, and Katrina hurricane washed out shoulders of various roads. We focused where to start on this big task with town having 276 culverts. Initially, consensus was to start identifying major stream crossing of roads in town, including consideration of those with man-made dams and beaver dams and large wetlands and surface waters. The next priority would be to work on “collector roads”, such as Cold Brook, Fletcher Farm, Oregon Plains, County Roads etc.
Carlie presented current draft of greenhouse gas emissions for the town owned and maintained facilities. Final draft will be sent in separate email. This report provides the baseline energy uses by the town to compare with and obtain credit for reduction of fossil fuel usage and their emissions that contribute to climate change. The baseline year for the information is 2019, which is BEFORE the significant highway garage and equipment fire and full credit of the solar array at KMP. This will help take credit for the design and construction of the new highway garage and equipment, full year of solar array electric generation, conversion of streetlights, and commencement of improvements at the town hall. The town will get credits towards 50% matching energy grants from DEC under the Climate Smart Communities program. This also will help town focus on short and long term energy actions.
Task force attendees, including new board member Rich Brandt, discussed at length ideas on design of road culvert study. Dick and Rich will gather background data and maps/GIS, including major streams, dams, wetlands, topography, Mesonet weather data, and calculation methods to evaluate capacity/limits of existing culverts to handle future storm events.
Task Force, lead by Alison, is going to review and to write the necessary “Pledge” by the board to formally participate in the Climate Smart Communities (CSC) program. Planning to present to town board at December 2023 meeting.
Mike Sinclair, member of task force, is going work with Nancy Bernstein to focus on monitoring, improving and possibly expanding the solar array at Kate Mt. Park and other sites.