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Building Community Green to Make Life Better

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Recycling Rates, City of Las Vegas
Here’s the introduction of the “Building Community Green to Make Life Better, Annual Report July 2013,” sent to me by the City of Las Vegas. Las Vegas is making amazing progress in sustainability initiatives! For the full report, see the PDF file at bottom.

The City of Las Vegas’ core purpose is to Build Community to Make Life Better. The efforts to build a Sustainable community has been no different; the comprehensive Sustainability Initiative’s improvements that the City has taken, which have increased the City’s efficiency and productivity, have made City and community quality of life better by reducing long-term costs and providing economic and environmental benefits. Built around four key focus areas (People, Power, Water, Waste), the City of Las Vegas has made improvements that reflect its core values of achievement, creativity, teamwork, integrity, and ownership that make it a recognized nationwide leader.

The Las Vegas City Council took ownership over sustainability by adopting policies, beginning with the 2006 U.S. Mayor’s Climate Protection Resolution and culminating in the 2008 Sustainable Energy Strategy that set sustainability targets for City operations, City codes, and the community. Aided in part by leveraged investments from City funds and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, and requiring teamwork from the City Manager, the Office of Sustainability, multiple departments, contractors, consultants, and the community the City has achieved substantial cost savings and resource conservation:

•     More  than  5  megawatts  of  renewable  energy,  including  creatively  designed  solar covered parking structures at 30 City facilities,

•    Energy improvements to more than 1 million ft2 of green buildings,

•    Introduction of recycling at all parks and City facilities,

•     Over 8 acres of water saving turf conversions, and

•     Construction of more than 225 miles of bike lanes. Built into the Strategy are metrics to evaluate progress over time and show accountability and integrity. As a part of the larger picture, as a result of these improvements, the City has reduced annual energy consumption by 15%, saved 400 million gallons of water since 2008, increased recycling rates to more than 50%, and saved more than $9.6 million in energy costs since 2010. The cost savings are being reinvested into additional energy, water, and recycling upgrades to City facilities on the horizon.

For the City, sustainability is a way to ensure that current and future generations will enjoy the quality of life we have all worked so hard to achieve. It includes every aspect of our lives and it takes the whole community to make it work. The City has made significant progress impacting energy, water, and resource infrastructure and will be diligently working with our community partners to affect changes that will help support the continued success of Las Vegas and make it America’s first net zero city. This annual report details progress made towards achieving annual focus area targets outlined in the strategic business plan, and shows how this progress Builds Community Green to Make Life Better.

Click Here to Read Full Report with Graphics:  Annual Report July 2013

Las Vegas Improved Water Usage

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