Category: sustainability & resilience

Green Riverside Impresses at the Congress of Cities

Last week, I arrived at the Congress of Cities in Phoenix, both excited and anxious about meeting our members and working a large conference for the very first time.  Would I be in the right place at the right time? Would I have answers for the questions that our members might ask?  For the most

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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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Local Food for Economic Prosperity

Food is among the most relatable, and certainly most fundamental, issues facing our country.  Regardless of race or class, everyone has an agrarian heritage somewhere in his or her ancestry.  And regardless of culture or political leaning, everyone must eat. The modern food system is much more complicated though, with stakeholders, profits and politics muddling

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Recent Advances in Bikeshare Systems from Miami Beach to Washington, DC

Bikeshare systems bring a number of economic and environmental benefits to cities, as previously outlined and in NLC’s new municipal action guide, Integrating Bike Share Programs into a Sustainable Transportation System.  Furthermore, they are attractive to residents and tourists, thereby contributing to a city’s reputation for livability.  Riding a bicycle as a means of transportation

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Bikeshare Systems Contribute to Transportation Infrastructure Strategy

Bikeshare systems are sprouting across the U.S. at a heartening pace.  Motivated by a combination of factors – including rising oil prices that discourage automobile use, public health concerns and a desire to increase physical activity, efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution, and the need to more efficiently use urban space –

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Looking Forward by Looking Back: Earth Day 41 Years Later

When Gaylord Nelson developed the concept of Earth Day 41 years ago, he was looking for a way to raise the profile of environmental issues at the federal level and garner political support to address a visibly ailing environment across the country. While first attempts, including a Presidential tour of national parks, began a conversation,

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Making it go “away” – Waste reduction strategies for cities

Paper, tires, yard trimmings, glass, electronics, batteries, food, wood, leather, plastics – the municipal solid waste stream is as complex in composition as it is in its disposal. And while not necessarily the most glamorous of topics (it’s is after all just plain “trash” to most), waste management and disposal represent an important and expensive

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President Obama Outlines Blueprint for a Secure Energy Future

This post is written by Carolyn Berndt, Principal Associate for Infrastructure and Sustainability, Center for Federal Relations, National League of Cities. This morning, President Obama laid out his plan to reduce foreign oil imports by one-third over the next decade, calling this new goal “reasonable, achievable and necessary.” Speaking at Georgetown University, the President invoked

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State of the Cities in 2011: Sustainability, But What’s in a Name?

This is the third in a seven-part series about mayors’ 2011 State of the City speeches. Mayors across the country are implementing initiatives to drive economic recovery while protecting the environment, promoting public health and creating vibrant communities with a unique sense of place.  These programs fulfill the triple-bottom-line definition of sustainability – bringing concurrent

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