Walczak plan tackles climate change, environment

Bill Walczak, one of 12 candidates vying for mayor, has released a comprehensive plan that aims to tackle climate change and the environment.

Among his proposals, Walczak said he would pursue a long-term strategy to protect Boston from rising sea waters and catastrophic storms.

Walczak said his plan, released today, would simultaneously address climate change, reduce air pollution, create jobs, and save Bostonians money.

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“Climate change is the most serious environmental challenge facing Boston and the world,” Walczak said in a statement. “Addressing climate change is one of the primary issues facing the next mayor and is why it is a central part of my platform to take the next step toward reducing Boston’s carbon footprint.”

Walczak cited his history as a champion of environmental issues long before climate change dominated the news, and noted his background as co-founder of the Boston GreenSpace Alliance.

Under his administration, Mayor Thomas M. Menino had outlined his goal for the city to achieve greenhouse gas reduction by 25 percent by 2020 and 80 percent by 2050. The plan includes such thing as green buildings, improved transportation, waste reduction, and community engagement.

Walzak said he supports Menino’s plan, but he said that the implementation of it will require dedication and “deft management.”

In addition to seeking to protect Boston from rising waters and storms, Walczak’s plan would:

-- Push for requiring renewable energy for all city buildings and promoting energy programs at city schools.

-- Press for 24/7 MBTA service to curb late-night driving and improve air quality across the city. Under his plan, the city would expand its Hubway system and add more bike paths and bike lanes, especially in the neighborhoods.

-- Seek to increase the city’s urban argicultural initiative to create jobs, provide fresh food, and reduce the necessity of transporting food to local communities.

-- Include energy usage and carbon emissions targets in the city’s master planning.