September County Climate News: Announcing the County's First Climate Change Officer

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Climate News

Covering the latest climate news in Montgomery County, MD

“We need to engage in short- and long-term planning for a future of more violent storms like Ida; these critically important topics are part of the Climate Action Plan, addressing issues regarding flood plains, drainage, impacts from infill development, loss of tree cover, and more.” - County Executive Marc Elrich

Wednesday, September 8, 2021 | Department of Environmental Protection

Montgomery County Agencies Respond to Flooding, Providing Support to Displaced County Residents

Montgomery County is responding to and providing support following the September 1 overnight flooding in parts of the County. Read more about the County’s response to the September 1 flood events and watch the County Executive’s remarks.  

The County has partnered with local nonprofit groups on recovery and housing needs. Help your fellow County residents by donating to families affected by the Rock Creek Woods flooding. Find out how here.

County Leaders posing with solar panel at Paddington Square Celebration Event

County Executive Elrich and County Leaders Launch New Community Solar Project

Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich joined County leaders and climate change advocates to launch the County’s first community solar project that will directly impact low- and moderate-income families. The event was held at Paddington Square Apartments in Silver Spring, which is an affordable housing community. The 286 kilowatts of solar panel energy will be offered to county subscribers in increments of about 3 kilowatts per household. Those who are renting or cannot put solar panels on their homes can subscribe and participate in the community solar program.

Read the County’s summary of the event, and read more news coverage from Bethesda Beat.

First Montgomery Climate Change Officer Announced

Photo of Adriana Hochberg by Bill Kamenjar

The County Executive recently announced that Adriana Hochberg, previously serving as an Assistant Chief Administrative Officer, began serving as the County’s first Climate Change Officer effective August 30. In this new role, Adriana will lead the implementation of the County’s recently released Climate Action Plan and promote sustainability efforts throughout the County. Read more.

County Executive and DPS Director Launch SolarAPP+ Pilot

Solarapp logo

Montgomery County became one of the first jurisdictions in the country to launch a pilot of U.S. Department of Energy’s Solar Automated Permit Processing (SolarAPP+).  SolarApp+ is an expedited residential solar permitting process that will reduce the review and processing time for solar installations.  Read more about this exciting initiative.

Electrify your Home to Help the Climate

Heat Pump outside of a home

One of the most effective ways Montgomery County residents can contribute to reducing emissions is to electrify home appliances and systems.

If you’re in the market for a new heating and cooling system, heat pumps offer an energy-efficient alternative to furnaces, boilers, and air conditioners. Learn more about switching to an electric heat pump.

Ready to upgrade your kitchen? Induction cooking offers many advantages compared to a traditional natural gas range and better efficiency compared to an electric cooktop. Read on to learn about how induction cooking works, different induction cooking options, and comparisons to electric and gas cooktops.

EmPOWER Maryland’s Incentives for New Home Construction

Bayview Builders New Homes

ENERGY STAR New Homes are at least 10% more energy efficient than a home built to code and cuts energy bills by 20% on average. The EmPOWER program for ENERGY STAR New Home construction bridges the gap between cost and sustainability by offering rebates directly to the builder for ENERGY STAR certified construction and equipment.

Read more about this program and how to access this incentive program from your energy utility company.

Wayfinding signs for EV charging stations installed throughout County

New Blue EV Wayfinding Signs

The Montgomery County Department of Transportation recently installed 42 electric vehicle charging station wayfinding signs in Bethesda, Silver Spring and Wheaton to make drivers aware that they can easily find opportunities to charge their environmentally friendly vehicles.

Read more about the program and check out the WTOP news coverage.

Green Jobs Board

Job Opportunities

If you are looking for open positions in climate and sustainability jobs, check out DEP’s Green Jobs Portal! New listings include positions with Fairfax County, World Resources Institute, Chesapeake Bay Trust, John Hopkins University, and many more!

Climate News Round-Up


To read

Regional Climate News

Coverage about the proposed Montgomery County Building Energy Performance Standards: Bethesda Beat, IMT, The Washington Post, WTOP, and the Montgomery County Press Release.

How Montgomery County Embraced Electric Scooters and the Future of Shared Micromobility (Greater Greater Washington)

Maryland’s Energy Supply Reform Bill Explained (My Green Montgomery)

Opinion: Move Toward a Clean-Energy Future in Md. Means Moving From Reliance on Gas (Maryland Matters)

MCDOT Finding New Ways to Encourage Use of Electric Vehicles (WDVM)

Md. Lawmakers and Environmentalists Working Over the Summer on Climate Change Legislation (Maryland Matters)

Davis & Feldman: With Wind Projects, Maryland Is Addressing Escalating Climate Crisis (Maryland Matters)

Greenhouse Gas Pact Will Open Door to Weatherization for Virginia Households (Energy News Network)

Research Letter: The Impact of COVID-19 on CO2 Emissions in the Los Angeles and Washington DC/Baltimore Metropolitan Areas (AGU)

National/International Climate News

IPCC Climate Change Report: 5 Key Excerpts From the UN’s Findings (The Washington Post)

Energy Efficiency: The Unsung Hero of the Climate Fight (RAP Online)

Climate Change is Disrupting US Forests and Coasts. Here’s What Ecologists Are Seeing at 5 Research Sites (Route Fifty)

US Automakers Pledge Huge Increase in Electric Vehicles (AP News)

Earth's Energy Imbalance Removes Almost All Doubt from Human-made Climate Change (NBC News Science)

Climate Change Is Already Disrupting the Military. It Will Get Worse, Officials Say (Defense One)

It’s Not So Simple: Debunking 5 Myths about Healthy and Sustainable Diets (Our Daily Planet)

This Mini Golf Course Reminds You About the Horrors Of Climate Change (NPR)

A Hotter Future Is Certain, Climate Panel Warns. But How Hot Is Up to Us. (The New York Times)

To listen
Chesapeake Uncharted Podcast (Bay Journal)

Climate Cast (MPR News)

To watch
On Demand Platform Dedicated to the Future of Our Planet (Waterbear)

Micro-documentaries: Craig, Colorado: Coal Town in Transition (Center for the New Energy Economy at Colorado State University)

Upcoming Events

September 14 | Webinar
Metropolitan Washington Region LED Lighting Webinar

September 16 | Webinar
ENERGY STAR Decarbonize Your Design Challenge Kick-off Event

September 18 | Event
National Drive Electric Week Poolesville

September 21 | Webinar
MCEC’s Climate-Centric Solutions, Strategies & Policies

September 22 | Webinar
Multi-family Waste Reduction & Recycling Webinar

September 30 | Webinar
Equity in the Energy Marketplace

October 11-15 | Virtual Conference
GCoM & UN Habitat Event: Innovate4Cities Conference

October 27-29 | In-person Event, NYC
NBI: 2021 Getting to Zero Forum