Beloit Proclamation on 2040 Carbon Neutrality

Last Monday, March 15, I had the privilege of representing Welty at a Beloit City Council meeting, to accept their proclamation to support efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions with the goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2040 (read the full text here). This was a timely proclamation, ahead of a summer strategic planning process, because a goal like this will have implications for most of the City’s functions. With State and Federal funding in the works, it will be important for Beloit to have a plan in place so they can apply for help in implementing their strategies.

We were masked and distanced and hybrid, but I was happy to be a part of the proceedings. There were a few public comments made, and 11 emails read, all in support of the statement.  We’ve got a lot of work to do, but this is an important first step.

Beloit City Council Meeting, March 15, 2021, will all the necessary Covid-19 precautions (including livestream on YouTube).

Here is the text of my acceptance comments:

I am so pleased to accept this Proclamation on behalf of Welty Environmental Center. Thank you to President Dunkin, City Manager Luther, and the whole Beloit City Council for inviting me and my organization to be a part of these proceedings.

Welty Environmental Center supports this critical first step…

Welty has been operating in the Stateline region since 1999. Our mission is to provide leadership in environmental education and equitably engage the diverse residents of the Stateline area with activities that foster an appreciation of nature and promote environmental stewardship.

First at Beckman Mill County Park and now, since 2015, at Big Hill Center, we achieve this mission by partnering with many organizations across the community to create ecological awareness, make connections with nature, and enjoy the beautiful natural resources of the Beloit region.

Whether we are helping with burns and hosting parsnip-grazing goats on the Big Hill prairie, wading with Big Hill Adventure Campers at Leeson Park, leading the Stateline Boys and Girls Club on a trip to the Merrill Community Garden to pick tomatoes, or collecting Rock River macroinvertebrates with Beloit School District 5th graders, our primary goal is to inspire people to take care of our planet and its systems.

…towards developing and implementing strategies to become carbon-neutral.

This proclamation emphasizes both appreciation and stewardship of our natural resources, by recognizing the importance of reducing greenhouse gases to prevent the worst effects of climate change. Welty Environmental Center supports this critical first step towards developing and implementing strategies to become carbon-neutral. Thank you for this opportunity to participate in the conversation, and we look forward to collaborating with the City of Beloit on this important work.

Brenda Plakans
Executive Director, WEC