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Sustainability: Fighting for our Future

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Sustainability: Fighting for our Future

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  1. Sustainability: Fighting for our Future Abby Cocke, Baltimore Office of Sustainability

  2. What the heck is “sustainability” ???

  3. Sustainability: meeting the current environmental, social, and economic needs of our community without compromising the ability of future generations to meet these needs

  4. Other definitions Sustainability is… • the capacity to endure.

  5. Other definitions Sustainability is… • the capacity to endure. • the idea that human society should operate by utilizing industrial and biological processes that can be sustained indefinitely.

  6. Other definitions Sustainability is… • the capacity to endure. • the idea that human society should operate by utilizing industrial and biological processes that can be sustained indefinitely. • the commonsense notion that long-term prosperity and ecological healthnot only go together, they depend on one another.

  7. So, are sustainability and environmentalism the same thing?

  8. Sort of!

  9. It’s the little differences • Perception (who can argue with the idea of sustainability?)

  10. It’s the little differences • Perception (who can argue with the idea of sustainability?) • Specificity (less vague than “healing the earth” or “living in balance”)

  11. It’s the little differences • Perception (who can argue with the idea of sustainability?) • Specificity (less vague than “healing the earth” or “living in balance”) • Focus (explicitly recognizes the human element, often focused on cities)

  12. Why focus on cities?

  13. Why focus on cities? • The more people that live in cities, the more space we can save elsewhere for forests and natural ecosystems.

  14. Why focus on cities? • The more people that live in cities, the more space we can save elsewhere for forests and natural ecosystems. • As of 2008 more than half of the human population lived in cities for the first time.

  15. More than 100 pages!

  16. You gotta have a plan! Timeline: • May 2008 – Kickoff Meeting

  17. You gotta have a plan! Timeline: • May 2008 – Kickoff Meeting • Summer 2008 – Working Group Meetings

  18. You gotta have a plan! Timeline: • May 2008 – Kickoff Meeting • Summer 2008 – Working Group Meetings • Fall2008 – Community Meetings

  19. You gotta have a plan! Timeline: • May 2008 – Kickoff Meeting • Summer 2008 – Working Group Meetings • Fall2008 – Community Meetings • Winter 2008 – Presentation of Draft Plan

  20. You gotta have a plan! Timeline: • May 2008 – Kickoff Meeting • Summer 2008 – Working Group Meetings • Fall2008 – Community Meetings • Winter 2008 – Presentation of Draft Plan • March 2009 – City Council Adopts Plan

  21. You gotta have a plan! Timeline: • May 2008 – Kickoff Meeting • Summer 2008 – Working Group Meetings • Fall2008 – Community Meetings • Winter 2008 – Presentation of Draft Plan • March 2009 – City Council Adopts Plan • April 2009 – Plan Published

  22. Over 150 participants! Youth-planned and youth-led.

  23. Plan Organization 29 Goals 131 Strategies • Cleanliness • Pollution Prevention • Resource Conservation • Greening • Transportation • Education & Awareness • Green Economy

  24. Cleanliness Goals • Eliminate litter throughout the City • Sustain a clean and maintained appearance of public land • Transform vacant lots from liabilities to assets that provide social and environmental benefits

  25. Pollution Prevention Goals • Reduce Baltimore’s greenhouse gas emissions by 15% by 2015 • Improve Baltimore’s air quality and eliminate Code Red days • Ensure that Baltimore water bodies are fishable and swimmable • Reduce risks from hazardous materials • Improve the health of indoor environments

  26. Resource Conservation Goals • Reduce Baltimore’s energy use by 15% by 2015 2. Reduce Baltimore’s water use while supporting system maintenance • Minimize the production of waste • Maximize reuse and recycling of materials

  27. Greening Goals • Double Baltimore’s Tree Canopy by 2037 • Establish Baltimore as a leader in sustainable, local food systems • Provide safe, well-maintained public recreational space within ¼ mile of all residents • Protect Baltimore’s ecology and bio-diversity

  28. Transportation Goals • Improve public transit services • Make Baltimore bicycle and pedestrian friendly • Facilitate shared-vehicle usage • Measure and improve the equity of transportation 5. Increase transportation funding for sustainable modes of travel

  29. Education & Awareness Goals • Turn every school in Baltimore City into a green school • Ensure all city youth have access to environmental stewardship programs and information • Raise the environmental awareness of the Baltimore community • Expand access to informational resources on sustainability

  30. Green Economy Goals • Create green jobs and prepare city residents for these jobs • Make Baltimore a center for green business • Support local Baltimore businesses • Raise Baltimore’s profile as a forward thinking, green city

  31. That’s great, but how do we make it happen?

  32. Formed in 2009

  33. TheOffice of Sustainability develops and advocates for programs, policies and actions by government, citizens, businesses, and institutions that improve the long-term environmental, social, and economic viability of Baltimore City.

  34. In addition to overseeing and tracking the implementation of the Baltimore Sustainability Plan, the Office integrates sustainability into City government operations and develops partnerships with groups performing related work.

  35. Partners • Other city agencies • Nonprofits • Advocacy groups • Schools • Businesses • Art organizations • National campaigns • Community groups • Individual activists … to name just a few!

  36. So, what’s happening?

  37. Cleanliness

  38. Single-Stream and One Plus One

  39. The Community Open Space Preservation Project

  40. Pollution Prevention

  41. Green and Healthy Homes Campaign

  42. Healthy Harbor Initiative

  43. Resource Conservation

  44. Baltimore Neighborhood Energy Challenge

  45. Climate Showcase Communities

  46. Greening

  47. Great Kids Farm

  48. Improving Food Access Through Farmers Markets

  49. Transportation