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What is Erie County Climate Action?

Erie County Climate Action is Erie County’s green initiative to implement an equity-centered Community Climate Action Plan, to take actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and help the community adapt to our changing climate.  Please click here for our Climate Action informational flyer in multiple languages.


Erie County has made a commitment to address climate change and help create a more sustainable region.  Those efforts can be seen in the Climate Action & Sustainability Plan (CASP) for internal operations, which was created by the Erie County Green Team and adopted by the Erie County Legislature in January 2019.  Erie County issues annual updates  on this work and has been recognized at both the state and national level for our achievements. For more information about the County's programs, please visit

Erie County Community Climate Change Task Force


In order to address the community-wide emissions, Erie County’s Environmental Management Council, which advises the County on environmental issues, formed a Community Climate Change Task Force in January 2019. The County Executive recognized this Task Force as its official climate change advisory committee through Executive Order #20.  The Task Force has key stakeholders in a variety of sectors – municipalities, community-based organizations, not-for-profits, education, utilities, transportation, as well as youth representatives and the Buffalo Museum of Science, which until the pandemic hosted the meetings.  The Task Force laid the groundwork for a larger Community Climate Action Plan (CCAP) by meeting monthly to discuss how current programs can work together to mitigate and adapt to climate change. The group continues to advise the County on the implementation of the CCAP.  Click here to learn more about the Community Climate Change Task Force.

Introduction Video

Climate Change Messages to Share

Info Flyer

View and Download the Erie County Climate Action informational flyer



Understanding Community Priorities

Erie County Community Greenhouse Gas Inventory

In the past, the County developed a community GHG inventory, which helped identify key focus areas for the Community Climate Action Plan.  The inventory found that transportation, commercial energy consumption, and residential energy consumption are the top three GHG emission sources in Erie County.  This community inventory will be updated in 2024 under an EPA funded initiative.


Equity as Focus

The legacy of inequity that has been inherited from previous generations is still present today in Erie County, as well as the rest of the country. The compounding issues of past economic policies, such as racially influenced zoning regulations and lending policies, termed “redlining,” have resulted in a segregated County that has areas with deep challenges, including lack of food access, lack of trees, old housing stock, and mobility issues. While many of these problems are most apparent in the urban areas of the County, rural communities also feel the impacts of inequity, poverty, and feeling forgotten. 

Erie County has approached this Plan with a commitment to using an equity lens while developing the Plan’s strategies and action items. The working group members used the “Racial Equity Impact Analysis Tool,” which is a series of questions to help ensure that a process does not forget to consider the impact of recommended strategies or actions on minority and disadvantaged communities. More information about this topic can be found in the Climate Justice chapter.


Climate Vulnerability Assessment 

In 2022, Erie County Climate Vulnerability Assessment (CVA) was completed.  This project assessed the threat of climate change to our community, the sensitivity of the community to those hazards, and the adaptive capacity of the County government to responsd to those threats.

Click here to read more on Climate Vulnerability

The Assessing Climate Vulnerability article about this initiative, written by Sustainability Director Josh Wilson, was published in the NYSAC News  - New York State Association of Counties Fall 2021 issue.  This article provides a summary of the CVA project.

Community Involvement

Stakeholder ParticipationIt was critical that County residents played an active role in the development of this Plan.  Community feedback was necessary to understand how climate change is affecting our community and our families, and to make sure the actions outlined in the Plan are appropriate and match community needs.





Plan Development

Community Climate Action Plan - Timeline

The Plan was a multiyear process spearheaded by the Community Climate Change Task Force.  The Task Force formed ten subject area working groups that began meeting in 2021 and included more than 100 volunteer stakeholders, experts, and residents.  In the spring of 2023 an initial draft of all the chapters was released at a public listening event in the City of Buffalo, which was attended by more than 250 residents and began a 90 day public comment period.  Over three hundred comments from the community were received on the plan, which were then addressed by the Task Force working groups.  The Plan introduction describes this process in more detail.

CCAP Timeline



Thank You To Our Partners
Academy for Human Rights Lake Erie Watershed Protection Alliance
Barton & Loguidice LISC WNY
Black Rock Riverside Alliance Massachusetts Avenue Project
Blue Green Alliance Monarch of Infinite Possibilities
Buffalo & Erie County Library NAACP
Buffalo Museum of Science National Grid
Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper NeighborWorks Community Partners
Buffalo Seminary NFTA - Metro
Buffalo Sewer Authority NOCO
Buffalo State Small Business Development Center Northland Workforce Training Center
Center for Biological Diversity Partnership for the Public Good
Central Terminal Restoration Corp Phillips Lytle LLP
Citizens for Regional Transit PUSH Buffalo
City of Buffalo Rich Products
Community Action Organization of WNY Rural Transit Service
Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo Russo's Auto Service
Cornell Cooperative Extension Shared Mobility Inc.
Curbell Inc Sierra Club
Daemen University SUNY Erie
Designing to Live Sustainably The Buffalo Bisons
Empire State Development Town of Evans
Erie County Environment Management Council Town of Tonawanda
Erie County Industrial Development Agency UB Regional Institute
Erie County Soil & Water Conservation District University at Buffalo - Students and faculty
Farmer Pirates Villanova University
FeedMore WNY West Side Promise Neighborhood
GObike Buffalo WNY AFL-CIO
Grassroots Gardens WNY WNY Environmental Alliance
Greater Buffalo Niagara Regional Transportation Council WNY Foundation
Greater Buffalo Urban Growers WNY Homeless Alliance
Guidehouse WNY Land Conservancy
Home HeadQuarters WNY STEM HUB
Kidney Foundation of WNY WNY Sustainable Business Roundtable
Kreher Family Farms Youth Climate Council
County Executive Office Parks, Recreation & Forestry
Emergency Services Public Works
Environment & Planning  Purchasing Department
Equal Employment Opportunities Senior Services
Health & Health Equity Social Services
Office of People with Disabilities Workforce Investment Board