Posts tagged “sustainability

Yes, a Hybrid Garbage Truck!

The City of College Station’s Sanitation Division is always researching new methods and technologies to provide safe, efficient and cost effective solid waste services to our residents, but don’t take my word for it – read our mission statement:

To provide safe, efficient and cost effective solid waste and recycling collection services incorporating state-of-the-art methods and technology, with world-class customer service to all citizens of College Station, in conjunction with promoting waste reduction and clean community programs through public education.”

That’s why we’re excited about unveiling our first Autocar E3 Hybrid this week, making us the first city in the Brazos Valley to operate a hybrid garbage truck. 

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State of the City (Part 6): Sustainable City

This is the final post of a six-part series by City Manager David Neeley based on his 2011 State of the City Report.

Reorganization of Sustainability Efforts

After several years of using a council-appointed task force to assist the city with its sustainability efforts, it was determined that a different approach would need to be taken to complete the Green College Station Action Plan prior to the conclusion of the Department of Energy grant we received in 2009. The Action Plan, which will address energy efficiency, renewable energy, air quality, water conservation, protection of green areas and green house gas emission reduction as it pertains to the city organization, will be presented to the council for approval in 2012. 

Enhancing Conservation

Using Department of Energy stimulus grant funding, Parks and Recreation was able to complete the installation of irrigation system upgrades and smart controllers as well as LED parking lot lighting and solar-powered trash compactors at Veteran’s Park and Central Park. Several pilot projects were also undertaken to reduce costs and promote conservation, including the use of nitrogen in vehicular tires, synthetic motor oil, retreaded tires on certain equipment and a lighter weight copy paper city wide.

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What is a Sustainability Coordinator?

“Howdy, I’m Erin Chastain-Harris, sustainability coordinator for the City of College Station.”

When I introduce myself these days, I am often met by a puzzled look, followed quickly by a question: “What’s a sustainability coordinator?”

Although sustainability is not a new idea, it is a hot topic in government and corporate business. Now that it’s popular to be “green,” many entities are publicizing how effectively they balance resources used and dollars spent with social responsibility. Businesses are tackling their resource usage with a complete systems view and are touting a smaller carbon footprint as a result. The City of College Station has embarked on a similar course.

Finding a Better Way
As sustainability coordinator, I find myself challenging the status quo, encouraging long-term thinking and actions that result in positive economic, social or environmental impact. In simple terms, I’m the one who walks around the office asking why things are done a certain way and if a better way is possible.

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