Author: Tammy Zborel

Opportunities and Impact for Small-Town Sustainability

Of the many misconceptions that sustainability as a field encounters, the notion that it is an approach exclusive to large, well-resourced cities is as pervasive as it is untrue. Last week I had the opportunity to attend a roundtable discussion on strategies to connect and support sustainability efforts in cities and towns across the state

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Engaging the Public on Sustainability

A comic displayed during an NLC Leadership Training session this afternoon summed up a major challenge to sustainability efforts in cities across the country. The image depicts a packed presentation room with benefits of action on climate change listed on a presentation screen. Among the list where items such as energy independence, green jobs, livable

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Cities and Universities: Natural Partners in Advancing Sustainability

As city budgets and resources continue to feel the weight of economic pressures, one word has been at the center of recommendations to overcome challenges: partnerships. And when considering the range of topics contained within city sustainability efforts, the types of available partnership opportunities can become extensive: private sector, community groups, advocacy organizations, state agencies,

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It’s Getting Hot in Here!

As a kid going on family camping trips I still remember the exaggerated inhale of ‘fresh mountain air’ upon arriving at our destination, purging our lungs of that stale ‘city air’ and remarking on how crisp and clean it felt in comparison. During the past few weeks, as D.C. and cities across the country faced

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Concluding NLC’s Delegation to Europe: Day 5 [Hamburg, Germany]

After a full week of traveling, touring, meetings, and presentations we reach the end of NLC’s International Sustainability Exchange. We began our day with a meeting at the Ministry of Urban Development and Environment where delegates engaged with leading authorities on efforts that the City of Hamburg is taking to reduce carbon emissions while at

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NLC’s Delegation to Europe: Day 2 [Malmö, Sweden]

On the second day of the NLC delegation to Europe we head to Malmö, Sweden, the third largest city in Sweden, and along with Stockholm considered one of the leading cities in Sweden on issues of sustainability. Our group was welcomed to Malmö with a lunch meeting hosted by the National Association of Swedish Ecomunicipalities

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Strengthening Sustainability at Home and Abroad: NLC-led Delegation Heads to Europe

The pursuit of sustainability is in many ways a pursuit of innovation. Far from altering the ultimate processes, systems, services, and objectives of local government – sustainability initiatives seek to find new approaches, use creative solutions, and plan comprehensively to enhance overall efficiency of cities and create healthy, prosperous, and strong communities. Sustainability approaches bring

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Local Food – A Conversation for all Regions

“Do you eat food?” This was the question posed by Jim Embry, Director of the Lexington Sustainable Communities Network and local foods “jedi” (according to those in the local ‘food-know’) at the beginning of the Fourth Annual Local Foods Summit held last week in Lexington, KY. “Because if you eat food, you’re part of the

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Economic Benefits of Green Cities

This post is written by Caitlin Geary, Associate within the Finance and Economic Development Program, Center for Research and Innovation at the National League of Cities. As energy and transportation costs rise, market demand for “green” grows and budget cuts continue to loom, communities are increasingly realizing the multiple benefits linking sustainability, cost savings and economic

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Harvesting the fruit begins with finding the tree

Getting started with, or ramping up sustainability initiatives can be a complex process. In a field teeming with ideas and options but perpetually short on funds, capacity, or clear guidance, emphasis has largely been placed on tackling initiatives considered to be on the low-hanging branches of sustainability. Yet even taking on these small-scale, incremental efforts

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