YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Youngstown City Council voted Wednesday to create a new committee.

All seven council members voted yes to create the Climate Change, Environment and Sustainable Technology Committee.

Councilwoman Lauren McNally introduced it at Wednesday’s council meeting and said it’s something she has been working to move forward for a while.

“This was a goal of mine. I spearheaded the Power a Clean Future Ohio legislation and really wanted to make sure that the work was gonna continue when I left my post. So, getting this done before the end of the year was a huge goal of mine,” she said.

McNally says some of the things the city can see come out of the committee once it’s up and running are possibly using solar panels in vacant lots to power government buildings, adding power charging stations, looking at environmental impacts related to construction work, green infrastructure and protecting parks, soil and water in the city.

Councilwoman Anita Davis said she wants to be one of the first to set an example to the rest of the city and plans to use solar panels to power the old McDonald’s building in her ward. The building was recently purchased with American Rescue Plan funds to be turned into a police substation and community center. 

“Ohio is one of the worst in the countries when it comes to carbon emissions. So, if we just do our part here in Youngstown, hopefully, the communities around us will follow suit and it can just expand from there,” McNally said.

McNally said the city of Youngstown recently became a part of the “Power a Clean Future Ohio” coalition, which is dedicated to “empowering local leaders with tools and resources to create carbon reduction plans.” McNally feels having this new committee is a step in the right direction.

McNally says the committee members will be chosen at a later time.