Q & A with the Mayor: Think Globally, Act Locally – Building Sustainability in West Chester
You have been an active member of the Board of Directors with the UN’s World Information Transfer, which is a non profit organization concerned with promoting environmental health and literacy. How has involvement in this group affected your view on the state of our global environment?
You may have heard the saying, “think globally, act locally!” This is how I believe we can make environmentally healthy choices. From the global to the local level, we see that pollution does not stop at political borders. Polluted air and water flows freely from place to place, and in some cased circumnavigates the globe. What we have been seeing is awareness at the global and national level, with little action at those levels. The real action is taking place in local cities and communities who are making policy to reduce carbon footprint and improve health. At the UN conference on human habitat in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, we learned that everything is interconnected.
Your extensive involvement in sustainability awareness is inspiring. Where did this interest stem from?
I was a senior in high school on the first earth day. There was great hope and excitement about the concept of picking up trash and recycling, in particular. There was a national “earth day” project, to walk to school and pick up trash that day. I have always been a student of nature and our symbiotic relationship with all of life. I have always loved the surprise and joy of nature. Personally, I am dismayed at the deterioration of our natural world, and find solace in working to make things a little better.
Congrats on you reelection as the Mayor of West Chester! What do you wish to happen in terms of environmental awareness within the borough during your final term?
I hope and expect that BLUER will work with borough council, residents and businesses to continue to implement the action plan to reduce our collective carbon pollution and improve the overall health of our community.