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Forum on environmental issues in Amherst Tuesday

The Town Meeting Coordinating Committee is aiming to educate residents and Town Meeting members about several environment-related issues facing the town.

“Greening Amherst! Our Budget, Our Master Plan, Our Planet” is the title of a forum that will be held in the Town Room at Town Hall Tuesday at 7 p.m.

Margaret Roberts, chairwoman of the TMCC, said she expects to see more warrant articles like one passed by Town Meeting in the fall, prohibiting businesses from using polystyrene foam containers.

“We want people to know things are happening in Amherst and also to see what other communities are doing,” Roberts said.

Speakers will include climate change expert Al Werner, Amherst Sustainability Coordinator Stephanie Ciccarello, Pioneer Valley Planning Commission representative Catherine Ratte, Amherst Recycling Coordinator Susan Waite and Amherst Transition Movement member Bernard Brennan.

The town’s master plan refers to sustainability and other issues, such as how Amherst will deal with the expected closings of regional landfills, Roberts said. In addition, climate change is forcing communities to think creatively about ways to reduce their dependence on fossil fuels.

— SCOTT MERZBACH

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