Monthly Feature

ConcordCAN! Votes to Support Town Meeting Article 23

The Town of Concord acted responsibly regarding the climate crisis when passing Article 51 last year. That article contained far-reaching energy goals for the Town. This year, Article 23 (Community Resilience Goals), a citizen petition submitted by Lori Gill-Pazaris, will take us further by addressing climate resilience.

Article 23 calls upon the Town to take steps to minimize the social, economic, and environmental damage that climate scientists and major environmental organizations say will occur as storms grow more extreme, and frequent.  For example a report on healthy soil as a disaster mitigation step, published, recently, by the USDA states, “Investing in mitigation activities before the next disaster is the key to building a more resilient nation. We cannot prevent natural disasters, but we do have the power to prepare for and potentially reduce their impacts through advanced planning….” 

While Concord has not faced major disruptions, our town needs to make climate resilience planning a top priority for the town and approach it in a systematic and knowledgeable way. Article 23 recognizes the complexity of the challenge by calling for a task force to begin drafting resilience goals, prioritizing threats, identifying actions, and recommending implementation plans.

Our town departments and committees do an excellent job enforcing current state and local regulations. Many of these regulations, however, do not yet reflect an in-depth understanding of climate change and must be updated. Finding new solutions to very complex problems is difficult when daily challenges already place enormous pressure on town staffing resources.

Our next Comprehensive Long-Range Plan, will reflect the importance of resilience; but it has no clear roadmap for making Concord resilient. To be successful, we must take an aggressive, systems-oriented approach to reviewing our current regulations and to identifying the open space and ecosystems important for building resilience. Natural systems provide many climate-related services free of cost and can even limit unnecessary tax increases.

Concord also works with the 13-town, Minuteman Advisory Group on Inter-local Coordination (MAGIC). MAGIC completed and published a vulnerability assessment last year that identified significant issues for Concord. The 2017 MAGIC Climate Resilience Report states, “While it is essential for communities to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to limit the predicted changes in climate as much as possible, it is necessary to simultaneously build resilience to these changes to minimize social disruption and economic and environmental damage.” Concord should lean heavily on this resilience plan, but also needs its’ own set of priorities and a plan tailored to this community’s unique character.

Our town needs to act now to limit future harm to residents, businesses, and property in a systemic and thoughtful way. ConcordCAN supports Article 23. Please join us in voting yes at Town Meeting.


The Wizard and the Prophet:
Two Remarkable Scientists and Their Dueling Visions to Shape Tomorrow's World

The Wizard and the Prophet

By Charles C. Mann

An incisive portrait of the two little-known 20th-century scientists, Norman Borlaug and William Vogt, whose diametrically opposed views shaped our ideas about the environment, laying the groundwork for how people in the 21st century will choose to live in tomorrow's world.

In 40 years, Earth's population will reach 10 billion. Can our world support that? Those answering these questions generally fall into two deeply divided groups - Wizards and Prophets, as Charles Mann calls them in this balanced, authoritative, nonpolemical new book. The Prophets, he explains, follow William Vogt, a founding environmentalist who believed that in using more than our planet has to give, our prosperity will lead us to ruin. The Wizards are the heirs of Norman Borlaug, whose research, in effect, wrangled the world in service to our species to produce modern high-yield crops that then saved millions from starvation. Mann delves into these diverging viewpoints to assess the four great challenges humanity faces - food, water, energy, climate change - grounding each in historical context and weighing the options for the future.

Further information about the book .

Get Involved

Concerned about the impact of climate change and other threats to our natural environment?


PATRIOTS DAY - Monday, April 16 and/or
EARTH DAY - Saturday April 28

April ParadeApril is a big month for parades; and ConcordCAN! loves a parade! We will, as usual, be marching on both Patriot’s Day (April 16) and Earth Day (April 28) behind the ConcordCAN! banner and Commander Bob Lawson. We invite as many of you as are able, and would enjoy it, to march with us. Please let us know that you would like to do one or both events by emailing: and we will give you more specifics.

Saturday May 5, 9:30 - 4 PM

Help the environment! Volunteer just 2 hours - or the whole day. Students earn up to 8 community service hours. Choose from traffic control, check-in or out cars, help unload cars, sort recyclable items, disperse free treasurs at SawapOff, to name just a few. To volunteer or learn more contact Concord Public Works, 978-318-3240 or email:

Keep Good Stuff out of Landfills!

The Freecycle Network® is made up of 5,000+ groups with over 9 million members across the globe. It's a grassroots, entirely nonprofit movement of people who are giving (and getting) stuff for free in their own towns. Our mission is to build a worldwide sharing movement that reduces waste, saves precious resources & eases the burden on our landfills while enabling our members to benefit from the strength of a larger community.

Find active groups in Massachusetts: BrowseFreeCycle

Join the ConcordCAN! Facebook Group

facebook logo If you haven’t done so, check out the ConcordCAN! Facebook group as an interactive way for people to be involved with ConcordCAN!. Just click the link and request to join. You’ll be able to share articles and events with the group, find out about upcoming environmental events in the area, and receive invitations to ConcordCAN! sponsored events, such as speakers, coffees and more. We hope you “Like” it, share with us what you are interested in, and invite others to join.

Join The Biodiversity Climate Action Network (BioCAN) and subscribe to their seasonal newsletter

BioCAN, the Concord Area Biodiversity Network, publishes seasonal newsletters. The most recent edition contains up-to-date information about what is happening to our natural environment due to our ways of managing, or mismanaging, our land and water. It addresses the causes of degradation in natural systems and what we can do at home and in the community to restore them. There is also some discussion in the winter edition about a citizen petition on climate resiliency, submitted by Lori Pazaris, which will be coming up at Concord’s spring Town Meeting. If you would like to receive this newsletter and possibly get involved with BioCAN write to Lori Pazaris at BioCAN.

Become a Citizen Scientist

Satellite Map of a backyardThe YardMap Network is a citizen science project designed to cultivate a richer understanding of bird habitat, for both professional scientists and people concerned with their local environments. We collect data by asking individuals across the country to literally draw maps of their backyards, parks, farms, favorite birding locations, schools, and gardens. We connect you with your landscape details and provide tools for you to make better decisions about how to manage landscapes sustainably.

Review NRDC's Sustainable Living Suggestions

This Month: visit - GoodGuide -to find safe, healthy, green, and ethical product reviews based on scientific ratings wth over 250,000 products on our site, we can help you find what you're looking for.

Green Tips for a Healthy Planet

Read suggestions from Global Stewards. First: Reduce The critical first step of waste prevention has been overshadowed by a focus on recycling. Please help to promote a greater awareness of the importance of the "Reduce" part of the Reduce-Reuse-Recycle mantra. For a great overview of how raw materials and products move around the world, see the video The Story of Stuff

picture of parade environmental light bulb

Join the ConcordCAN! email list

Receive announcements and updates. Send an email message to and you’ll get ConcordCAN’s monthly newsletter and special bulletins through the ConcordCAN Google Group.

Become a change agent within your group

If you are a member of a church, civic organization, or business that is not yet committed to sustainability, climate action, or “green” goals, become active in raising consciousness. We will work with you to give you the help and support you need.


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