The Atlanta Regional Commission announced this afternoon that Decatur and Alpharetta are the first two cities in the Atlanta metro region to achieve “Gold Certification” for their “sustainability initiatives”.
Here’s the Decatur-specific portion of the press release…
The City of Decatur achieved Gold certification in 2010 after becoming Bronze Green Community in July 2009. City policies include purchasing of green products, a green fleet policy, green building standards and more. Employees recycle, and new hires must sign the Lights Out/Power Down policy and the No-Idling pledge. Fire Station #2 is LEED silver certified and uses 25 percent less water and 35 percent less energy than a standard building of the same size. Solar panels on the roof provide energy to heat water for the building. The city’s Safe Routes to School Program encourages elementary and middle school children to walk or bicycle to school and makes trips to school safer. Other sustainable measures in Decatur are a Pay-As-You-Throw program for trash disposal, a comprehensive residential recycling program and a Health Impact Assessment incorporated into the transportation plan.
After achieving Bronze status last year, City Manager Peggy Merriss has stated publicly a few times this year that Gold was the city’s next goal. In a statement to DM, she writes…
“We’re very excited that the City of Decatur has been recognized with a Gold level certification for sustainability efforts from the Atlanta Regional Commission. This award recognizes the efforts of our community residents to support recycling and walking and cycling as well as the City Commission’s leadership in supporting construction of LEED certified facilities and City employees’ dedication to turning off lights, using less fuel and taking innovative approaches to sustaining the environment. Resource Conservation Coordinator Lena Stevens was instrumental in getting all of the information together and spearheading the application effort.
Also, I’ve posted the blurbs for all the other Gold, Silver and Bronze winners after the jump. Anyone see any “sustainable” initiatives that Decatur should copy?
Thanks to Creative Loafing’s Thomas Wheatley for forwarding the release!