NWI Region Resilience is a group of volunteers in northwest Indiana that is dedicated to fighting climate change. The group manifested as an outcome of a Climate Action Blitz that took place in February. Individuals concerned about climate change gathered at that event and decided to do something about it.
Now, our primary objective is to encourage local elected officials to become part of the Indiana University Resilience Cohort. The Resilience Cohort is an initiative that operates under the Environmental Resilience Institute and within the Indiana Sustainability Development Program at IU. They work with local governments to conduct a greenhouse gas inventory in the first year and create a climate action plan if the municipality chooses to participate in the second year. 2019 was the first year of the Resilience Cohort and included 14 Indiana towns and cities such as Gary, Michigan City, Goshen, Muncie, and Carmel.
As part of the cohort, an IU extern is placed with a municipality to conduct the greenhouse gas inventory. The cohort provides training, technical resources, a peer network, and access to ClearPath software (through ICLEI). As part of the cohort, the local government is able to conduct an inventory through a greatly reduced cost and without placing the responsibility on a staff member who is already busy with other duties.
By doing a greenhouse gas emissions inventory, we will know:
How much energy we consume
Where our energy comes from
Community vehicle types and fuel usages
With that knowledge, we can develop a plan to:
Reduce emissions cost-effectively
Improve public health
Mitigate the effects of climate change
Become a more resilient region