October 2022 Sustainability Newsletter

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October 2022 Newsletter


Sustainability Newsletter

Climate Action and the Inflation Reduction Act


The federal Inflation Reduction Act passed this summer provides the Nation, as well as our community, with many solution-focused funding sources to celebrate! The Act contains investments in climate initiatives, including tax credits for clean energy, energy efficiency, and electric vehicles. The following are just a few personal tax credits that were extended or expanded in the Act:

  • Energy efficiency home improvements: Tax credits of up to 30% for certain energy efficiency upgrades. Provides for credits of up to $1,200 annually for energy efficiency upgrades, including installing new doors, windows, and insulation; and up to $2,000 for certain electric heat pumps and biomass stoves. The Act also includes a 30% tax credit, up to $150, for home energy audits.
  • Residential Clean Energy: Tax credits of up to 30% for residential clean energy, including solar and battery storage.
  • Electric Vehicles: Up to $7,500 in tax credits for certain new electric vehicles and up to $4,000 for certain used electric vehicles.

Click here for details and information on when these and other credits will go into effect.

In addition to the above personal tax credits, the Act also includes measures to:

  • provide grant funding for states to offer rebates to homeowners for energy saving retrofits and electrification projects;
  • support grant programs for tree planting activities and forest resilience practices;
  • provide funding to train and educate contractors in installing home energy efficiency and electrification improvements;
  • provide incentives to replace medium (e.g., school busses) and heavy-duty vehicles (e.g., garbage trucks) with zero emission vehicles; and
  • establish a greenhouse gas reduction fund to deploy zero-emission technologies, including assistance in low-income communities and disadvantaged communities.

Stay tuned for updates as these programs are rolled out!

Preparing for Cooler Weather


October brings cooler weather and shorter days; however, there is still plenty to do in the garden as the growing season winds down!  Plan to empty your rain barrel and winterize your irrigation system to avoid damage from freezing temperatures. Use fallen leaves in your compost pile or shred them to use as mulch in your garden. Save yourself time and create a buffet for the birds by letting sunflowers, asters, and other wildlife-friendly plants go to seed. Speaking of seeds, fall is an excellent time to plant wildflower seeds and get a head start on next year’s garden! Showy milkweed (Asclepias speciosa), butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa), Rocky Mountain columbine (Aquilegia caerulea), and pink wild snapdragon (Penstemon palmeri) are just a few wildflowers that require a period of cold temperatures to germinate and benefit from being sowed in the fall.

Lastly, fall is a great time to pick the last pieces of produce from your vegetable garden before the first frost! Click here for information on canning and other food preservation techniques and here for tips on what to do with those unripe tomatoes at the end of the season!

Go Green this Halloween!


The sound of leaves crunching underfoot and the scent of pumpkin spice are sure signs that Halloween is on its way! Here are a few tips to have a spooky (and sustainable) Halloween:

  • Make your costume from recycled material: Over 9 million tons of discarded footwear and clothing was landfilled in the United States in 2018. Rather than purchasing a brand new costume, try making your own from thrift store finds and recycled materials!
  • Buy local: Support local farms and reduce the greenhouse gas emissions associated with transporting products long distances by picking up apples, pumpkins, and other fall goodies at your local farmer’s market.
  • Reduce and reuse: Opt for reusable cutlery, plates, and cups to cut down on trash when hosting Halloween parties. Provide the trick or treaters in your household with reusable tote bags or pillow cases to collect candy in, rather than purchasing disposable bags.
  • Compost: Compost organic material, like scraps from pumpkin carving, to cut down on the trash that is sent to the landfill. Don’t have a compost pile? Click here for tips on starting one or check out organizations, like Reunity Resources, for local food scrap drop-off and pick-up options.
  • Recycle right: Correctly recycle items from Halloween festivities. Visit the County’s solid waste website for more information or check out the City of Santa Fe’s website to search for recycling instructions by item. Additional recycling resources are available on the Santa Fe Solid Waste Management Agency page.

The Sustainability staff wishes all, young and tall, or old and small, a safe and green happy Halloween! 

Our October Picks

(Click on the blue titles for more information)

River Talks

River Talk Series: Acequia Culture 

Saturday, October 1

3:00 - 4:30 PM

Learn about the history of Santa Fe's Acequia Madre during this presentation from Phil Bove, Acequia Madre Historian. Space is limited. E-mail Zoe Isaacson (zrisaacson@santafenm.gov) to reserve your spot.

River Talks

River Talk Series: Building Resiliency in the Arid Southwest One Household at a Time

Wednesday, October 5

5:30 - 7:00 PM

Join Reese Baker from The Rain Catcher, Inc. to learn how to conserve water and improve water quality on a residential scale. Space is limited. E-mail (zrisaacson@santafenm.gov) to reserve your spot.

El Rancho de las Golondrinas

Santa Fe Harvest Festival

Saturday, October 1 & Sunday October 2

10:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Celebrate fall at El Rancho de las Golondrinas during this weekend event!

Santa Fe Botanical Garden

Santa Fe Botanical Garden Story Slam

Saturday, October 8

1:00 - 2:30 PM

Enjoy an afternoon of storytelling at the Santa Fe Botanical Garden!


Eldorado Reuse Center Temporary Closure & Notice of New Hours

Closed until Tuesday, October 4

The Eldorado Reuse Center will temporarily be closed until October 4th. The Center will then reopen with new hours on Wednesdays, Saturdays, and Sundays from 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM.

Santa Fe County

Santa Fe County Economic Development Newsletter

Want to learn about resources to support local businesses? Subscribe to Santa Fe County's Economic Development newsletter! 


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Sustainability Questions?

We are your local advisors on all things sustainability in Santa Fe County. Contact us with questions or to suggest topics for future newsletters!

Jacqueline Beam, jybeam@santafecountynm.gov

Nav Khalsa, nkhalsa@santafecountynm.gov

Caitlin Weber, cweber@santafecountynm.gov

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