Volunteers Sought for Montgomery County’s Climate Change Budgeting Process Workgroup

June 17, 2020
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County SealMontgomery County is convening a specialized workgroup to develop ideas for incorporating a climate change lens into the County budgeting processes. Creating the “Budgeting Process” workgroup was a recommendation from the community-based climate workgroups that concluded their work in February 2020. The groups were formed by County Executive Marc Elrich as part of the County’s effort to develop a Climate Action and Resilience Plan by early 2021.

Montgomery County has a goal to reduce its community-wide greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent by 2027 and by 100 percent by 2035.

Interested individuals should have demonstrable expertise in budgeting and financial management, particularly as they relate to climate and energy issues. Individuals with the following skill sets and/or experience are particularly encouraged to apply:

  • Budgeting in the public sector
  • Establishing evaluation systems
  • Greenhouse gas or carbon accounting

The deadline to submit expressions of interest to serve on the workgroup is July 8. Letters of interest can be submitted to climate@montgomerycountymd.gov.

Workgroup applicants will be informed of the volunteers selected in July 2020.

The Budgeting Process workgroup will consist of community members as well as County staff. It will be facilitated by a County staff member. The workgroup will convene approximately twice per month in August and September 2020 as it works toward finalizing recommendations by the end of September. Meetings will be held online, or in person pending the County’s public health reopening guidelines. Workgroup members are expected to attend each meeting.

The workgroup will explore a variety of options for climate budgeting including:

  • Environmental reporting and budgeting: Connects environmental data with budgetary planning to ensure that decisions are made that align with the County’s climate objectives.
  • Climate budget tagging: Classifies climate-relevant budget expenditures in the government’s budget system, allowing the County to mainstream climate change in public financial management.
  • Internal carbon taxes: Creates a theoretical or assumed cost per ton of carbon emissions and is used to better understand the potential impact of carbon pricing on the profitability of a project, a new business model or an investment.
  • Carbon budgets: Represents the cumulative amount of carbon dioxide emissions permitted over a period of time to keep within a certain temperature threshold.

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