Author: Raksha Vasudevan

A Mayor’s Perspective on Why Sustainability Matters: An Interview with David Narkewicz, Mayor of Northampton, Mass.

This is a guest post by Hilari Varnadore, Executive Director of STAR Communities. Last week, STAR Communities announced that Northampton, Massachusetts is the first city in the United States to be awarded the 5-STAR Community Rating, STAR’s highest possible designation, and a recognition of Northampton’s strong record instituting a wide range of sustainability practices as

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Mayors, Residents Make Big Strides with National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation

This is a guest post written by Steve Creech, Executive Director of the Wyland Foundation. With cities across the United States facing water scarcity, five U.S. cities were honored today for the commitment of their residents to making water-saving choices as part of the third annual National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation. The cities of Dallas,

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Earth Day Reflections from an Urbanophile

This is the first blog in a series on why the key to protecting our environment lies in city innovation.  I grew up feeling a lot of guilt on Earth Day. When April 22 of every year came around, I felt a huge pile of bricks dropped on my shoulders. How many more natural resources

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Open Data: A New Tool for Building Climate Resilience

This post was written by C. Forbes Tompkins and Christina DeConcini of the World Resources Institute (WRI). The post originally appeared on WRI’s blog. As communities across America continue to experience increasing climate impacts in the form of rising seas, heat waves, and extreme weather, local and federal leaders are starting to roll up their

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Resilient Infrastructure and Energy Savings to be Focus of 3rd Annual National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation, April 1-30

This post was written by Steve Creech, Executive Director of the Wyland Foundation. The facts about water shortages are indisputable. Yet, by and large, we tend to think of these shortages as temporary problems, without giving thought to the fact that a changing climate, growing populations, an aging water delivery infrastructure and increasing demands for

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President’s Task Force Supports Local Efforts to Address Climate Change

This post was written by C. Forbes Tompkins and Christina DeConcini of the World Resources Institute (WRI). The post originally appeared on WRI’s blog. News of California’s epic drought continues to reverberate around the nation. Not only have millions of Californians been cut off from their usual water supply, but the drought is threatening the

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Climate Change Doesn’t Recognize City Boundaries

Drive just thirty miles west of Pinecrest, Florida – a beautiful, cozy village neighboring Miami – and you are engulfed in a dramatically different landscape.  You look around, taking in the dense, semi-tropical air and the mysteriousness of a river that slowly meanders  through the saw grass, a river home to alligators and crocodiles, water

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STAR Communities Announces 2014 Leadership Program & Financial Assistance

This post was written by Lacey Shaver, Outreach and Program Coordinator, STAR Communities. For the past 10 months, more than 30 cities and counties from across the U.S. and Canada have been tracking their sustainability progress through participation in the STAR Community Rating System’s (STAR) pilot program. Working through the rating system with other communities

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“We Need to Act” – President Obama’s Clarion Call for Action on Climate Change

Yesterday afternoon, President Obama gave a rousing speech that introduced his Administration’s Climate Action Plan, a speech that aimed to position the U.S. as a global leader on climate change. ”We want a global low-carbon economy,” he said. While the global perspective is certainly an important one, local communities – cities, towns, and counties– indeed

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The Devil is in the Design Details: Strategies to Enhance Transit Experience

I live in a region that is nationally known for its traffic congestion.  In virtually every poll, newspaper article, or blog on the topic (google “DC region traffic congestion” for proof), the DC metro area is up in the ranks.  Somewhat under the radar are the initiatives taking place throughout the region to provide viable

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